To view other 2020 review posts (including non-fiction, comics, and magazines), visit the main post here.
I read 37 works of fiction this year. I enjoy reading fiction in a variety of formats: paper, audio, and ebook. A good narrator (such as James Marsters for the Dresden books) really makes an audiobook come alive.
I try to get my physical books via Bookshop.org to support independent sellers. If I cannot find directly there, my next search is on Indiebound, for the same reason. I have collected my 2020 recommendations (both fiction and nonfiction) on a Bookshop list for easy perusal. That, and all of the individual book links, are affiliate links.
For audiobooks and ebooks, I recommend checking your local library using Overdrive/Libby to borrow the digital books. Many digital booksellers have not adopted a good way for us to pass on, resell, or share digital books like we can with physical books (despite it being easier), so I recommend supporting the library system first.
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ The Raven Tower by Ann Leckie - This was a re-read. I upgraded this to a rare 5-star when I re-read with my spouse this year. (mentioned in last year’s review)
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Alien: Out of the Shadows by Tim Lebbon - This is the start of a trilogy of novels in the Alien universe (not movie adaptions, but tied-in), and I’m a sucker for things in the Alien universe. I listened to a version that was recorded as an audio drama, and it was very well done.
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ The Calculating Stars (Lady Astronaut #1) by Mary Robinette Kowal - my micro review
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ The Toll (Arc of the Scythe #3) by Neal Shusterman - three years in a row (book 1, book 2), this trilogy ends up on my recommendations list. I’ve now bought the series in a hardback boxed set.
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ The Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris - not much to say here, other than the usual advice: the book is better than the movie.
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ The Strain - Guillermo del Toro, Chuck Hogan: my micro review
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Caliban’s War (Expanse #2) by James S. A. Corey - still very much enjoying this hard-scifi-with-horror-thrown-in. I hope to catch up more before I try the show, again.
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Gravel Peril (Dresden #3) by Jim Butcher - This was a re-read. This is where the series really starts to pick up.
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir - my micro review
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Summer Knight (Dresden #4) by Jim Butcher - This was a re-read. I enjoy the twists and turns and escalations in this one.
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Binti by Nnedi Okorafor - this novella is a captivating struggle, wherein the protagonist is first of her people head to the the greatest academy in the galaxy
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ The Shadows by Alex North - my micro review
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett - through paths that were traveled differently, we learn a lot about family, race, and ambition
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ The Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates - this was my first foray into “magical realism” books
Here are the other at-least-3-star books that I read in 2020. Books that are unfinished, I abandoned, or I only gave 2 stars are omitted.
- ⭐️⭐️⭐⭐️️ Towers of Midnight (Wheel of Time #13) by Robert Jordan & Brandon Sanderson - my micro review
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Battle Ground (Dresden #17) by Jim Butcher - my micro review
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Samantha’s Surprise (American Girl: Samantha #3) by Maxine Rose Schur - part of a Christmas practice this year
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Dawnshard (Stormlight Archive #3.5) by Brandon Sanderson
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Memory of Light (Wheel of Time #14) by Robert Jordan & Brandon Sanderson - my micro review
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ The Cruelest Month (Gamache #3) by Louise Penny
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ A Fatal Grace (Gamache #2) by Louise Penny
- ⭐⭐️⭐️ Peace Talks (Dresden #16) by Jim Butcher
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Aeronaut’s Windlass by Jim Butcher (re-read)
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Emergency Skin (Forward #3) by N. K. Jemisin
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ The Dispatcher by John Scalzi
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Bird Box by Josh Malerman
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Good Omens by Terry Pratchett, Neil Gaman
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Big Damn Hero (Firefly #1) by James Lovegrove
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Agatha Raisin and the Quiche of Death by M. C. Beaton
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Stonefather by Orson Scott Card
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Planet X (Star Trek/X-Men #3) by Michael Jan Friedman
- ⭐️⭐️⭐️ The B-Team (Human Division #1) by John Scalzi
What did you read this year? What do you recommend?