Happy Tuesday bookworms!! Today’s Top 5 Tuesday is top 5 books of 2020. Yes, it’s the penultimate post for the year and we are looking at your top 5 books of 2020!!
This one is always hard for me because I always have a list of like 30 books that I loved every year, but I guess I can leave the long list for my annual wrap up!! (I almost made this 6 books… but I decided to keep to the original plan!!)
top 5 books of 2020
Hollowpox: The Hunt for Morrigan Crow by Jessica Townsend
If this list didn’t have Hollowpox on it, then you can probably assume I have been kidnapped and someone else wrote this post. Yes, my first pick for 2020 is a middle grade fantasy story that was one of my most anticipated reads for 2020. I am obsessed and I will not be apologising.
Morrigan Crow and her friends have survived their first year as proud scholars of the elite Wundrous Society, helped bring down the nefarious Ghastly Market, and proven themselves loyal to Unit 919. Now Morrigan faces a new, exciting challenge: to master the mysterious Wretched Arts, and control the power that threatens to consume her.
But a strange and frightening illness has taken hold of Nevermoor, turning infected Wunimals into mindless, vicious Unnimals on the hunt. As victims of the Hollowpox multiply, panic spreads. And with the city she loves in a state of fear, Morrigan quickly realizes it’s up to her to find a cure for the Hollowpox, even if it will put her – and everyone in Nevermoor – in more danger than she ever imagined.
The Switch – Beth O’Leary
Hello! My name is Meeghan and Beth O’Leary is now an auto-buy author for me. I actually read both of O’Leary’s books this year, and I loved The Switch slightly more. It’s definitely because of the family dynamics. I just loved the friend relationships and how everyone seemed to grow emotionally in this.
Eileen is sick of being 79.
Leena’s tired of life in her twenties.
Maybe it’s time they swapped places…
When overachiever Leena Cotton is ordered to take a two-month sabbatical after blowing a big presentation at work, she escapes to her grandmother Eileen’s house for some overdue rest. Eileen is newly single and about to turn eighty. She’d like a second chance at love, but her tiny Yorkshire village doesn’t offer many eligible gentlemen.
Once Leena learns of Eileen’s romantic predicament, she proposes a solution: a two-month swap. Eileen can live in London and look for love. Meanwhile Leena will look after everything in rural Yorkshire. But with gossiping neighbours and difficult family dynamics to navigate up north, and trendy London flatmates and online dating to contend with in the city, stepping into one another’s shoes proves more difficult than either of them expected.
Leena learns that a long-distance relationship isn’t as romantic as she hoped it would be, and then there is the annoyingly perfect – and distractingly handsome – school teacher, who keeps showing up to outdo her efforts to impress the local villagers. Back in London, Eileen is a huge hit with her new neighbours, but is her perfect match nearer home than she first thought?
Jack of Hearts (and Other Parts) – L. C. Rosen
I read L C Rosen’s other YA contemporary this year (Camp), and then delved into his back catalogue because I loved it so much. And Jack of Hearts broke my heart, but also made it into my top 5 for the year. This queer contemporary novel is almost an anthem for the ages. I love how Rosen gives real advice, and writes a compelling novel that tells a great story. This is definitely a book that I will recommend for years to come.
My first time getting it in the butt was kind of weird. I think it’s going to be weird for everyone’s first time, though.
Meet Jack Rothman. He’s seventeen and loves partying, makeup and boys – sometimes all at the same time. His sex life makes him the hot topic for the high school gossip machine. But who cares? Like Jack always says, ‘it could be worse’.
He doesn’t actually expect that to come true.
But after Jack starts writing an online sex advice column, the mysterious love letters he’s been getting take a turn for the creepy. Jack’s secret admirer knows everything: where he’s hanging out, who he’s sleeping with, who his mum is dating. They claim they love Jack, but not his unashamedly queer lifestyle. They need him to curb his sexuality, or they’ll force him.
As the pressure mounts, Jack must unmask his stalker before their obsession becomes genuinely dangerous…
An Ember in the Ashes – Sabaa Tahir
This is one of those books where I’m going to scream “I can’t believe it took me so long to read”, but also complain about how I had to wait for the last book. I have never claimed to be a good, or non-contradictory, person. But yes, I genuinely don’t know why I waited so long to read An Ember in the Ashes because I really did love it. I also haven’t finished the series yet because I want a matching paperback of A Sky Beyond the Storm and I haven’t even looked in my local bookstore yet.
Laia is a slave. Elias is a soldier. Neither is free.
Under the Martial Empire, defiance is met with death. Those who do not vow their blood and bodies to the Emperor risk the execution of their loved ones and the destruction of all they hold dear.
It is in this brutal world, inspired by ancient Rome, that Laia lives with her grandparents and older brother. The family ekes out an existence in the Empire’s impoverished backstreets. They do not challenge the Empire. They’ve seen what happens to those who do.
But when Laia’s brother is arrested for treason, Laia is forced to make a decision. In exchange for help from rebels who promise to rescue her brother, she will risk her life to spy for them from within the Empire’s greatest military academy.
There, Laia meets Elias, the school’s finest soldier—and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias wants only to be free of the tyranny he’s being trained to enforce. He and Laia will soon realize that their destinies are intertwined—and that their choices will change the fate of the Empire itself.
It Sounded Better in my Head – Nina Kenwood
I loved this book a ridiculous amount. Not because it doesn’t deserve it (it really does), but because I love it so much I keep putting off writing the review. Because I worry that I can’t do it justice. So, here’s my 5 cents worth now:
If you ever struggled as a teen with popularity, or feeling left out with your friends, or liking a boy you probably shouldn’t, this is the book for you. It gave me serious Looking For Alibrandi vibes, and I just really resonated with the characters. I LOVED IT.
When her parents announce their impending divorce, Natalie can’t understand why no one is fighting, or at least mildly upset. Then Zach and Lucy, her two best friends, hook up, leaving her feeling slightly miffed and decidedly awkward. She’d always imagined she would end up with Zach one day―in the version of her life that played out like a TV show, with just the right amount of banter, pining, and meaningful looks. Now everything has changed, and nothing is quite making sense. Until an unexpected romance comes along and shakes things up even further.
Please don’t forget to link to one of my posts (not my home page), and I will link back to all of your posts as soon as I can!! (Because I know it’s Tuesday here, but it’s probably still Monday elsewhere…)