10 Books to Watch For in 2020
So many new books are published every week, it’s difficult to comprehend. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) tracks books published in every country, and they estimate that 2.2 million new titles are published worldwide each year. And that’s from data that’s six years old!
So how is a reader expected to stay on top of new releases? How are we to know what’s really worth reading out of those millions of titles?
That’s what I’m here for (plus many other professionals who are way more in the loop than I am!)
Here’s my recommendation for ten new books coming out in the first part of the new year that you should keep an eye out for.
10 Books to Watch For in 2020
1. Such A Fun Age by Kiley Reid
Expected publication December 31, 2019 I read an advanced copy of this and I can understand why it’s getting a lot of buzz (that’s not always the case!)
From Goodreads: A striking and surprising debut novel from an exhilarating new voice, Such a Fun Age is a page-turning and big-hearted story about race and privilege, set around a young black babysitter, her well-intentioned employer, and a surprising connection that threatens to undo them both.With empathy and piercing social commentary, Such a Fun Age explores the stickiness of transactional relationships, what it means to make someone “family,” the complicated reality of being a grown up, and the consequences of doing the right thing for the wrong reason.
2. Dear Edward by Ann Napolitano
Expected publication January 6, 2020
I read an advanced copy of this last month. And while I didn’t exactly love it, I can see why many readers will.
From Goodreads: Inspired by a true story of one child’s incredible survival–riveting, uplifting, unforgettable. After losing everything, a young boy discovers there are still reasons for hope in this luminous, life-affirming novel, perfect for fans of Celeste Ng and Ann Patchett. In the face of tragedy, what does it take to find joy? Dear Edward is at once a transcendent coming-of-age story, a multidimensional portrait of an unforgettable cast of characters, and a breathtaking illustration of all the ways a broken heart learns to love again.
3. How to Break Up With Fast Fashion by Lauren Bravo
Expected publication January 9, 2019
From Goodreads: You probably know the statistics: global clothing production has roughly doubled in just 15 years, and every year an estimated 300,000 tonnes of used clothing ends up in UK landfill.
Fast fashion is the ultimate toxic relationship. It’s bad news for the planet, our brains and our bank balances. We can’t go on like this; our shopping habits need an overhaul. Journalist Lauren Bravo loves clothes more than anything, but she’s called time on her affair with fast fashion in search of a slower, saner way of dressing. In this book, she’ll help you do the same. How To Break Up With Fast Fashion will help you to change your mindset, fall back in love with your wardrobe and embrace more sustainable ways of shopping – from the clothes swap to the charity shop. Full of refreshing honesty and realistic advice, Lauren will inspire you to repair, recycle and give your unloved items a new lease of life without sacrificing your style.
4. American Dirt by Jeanine Cummins
Expected publication January 20, 2020
From Goodreads: Already being hailed as “a Grapes of Wrath for our times” and “a new American classic,” American Dirt is a rare exploration into the inner hearts of people willing to sacrifice everything for a glimmer of hope. American Dirt will leave readers utterly changed. It is a page-turner; it is a literary achievement; it is filled with poignancy, drama, and humanity on every page. It is one of the most important books for our times.
5. The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel
Expected publication February 15, 2020
This is the second novel from the author of Station Eleven. It sounds just as compelling and I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy!
From Goodreads: In this captivating story of crisis and survival, Emily St. John Mandel takes readers through often hidden landscapes: campgrounds for the near-homeless, underground electronica clubs, the business of international shipping, service in luxury hotels, and life in a federal prison. Rife with unexpected beauty, The Glass Hotel is a captivating portrait of greed and guilt, love and delusion, ghosts and unintended consequences, and the infinite ways we search for meaning in our lives.
6. The Night Watchman by Louise Erdrich
Expected Publication March 3, 2020
From Goodreads: Based on the extraordinary life of National Book Award-winning author Louise Erdrich’s grandfather who worked as a night watchman and carried the fight against Native dispossession from rural North Dakota all the way to Washington, D.C., this powerful novel explores themes of love and death with lightness and gravity and unfolds with the elegant prose, sly humor, and depth of feeling of a master craftsman.
In the Night Watchman, Louise Erdrich creates a fictional world populated with memorable characters who are forced to grapple with the worst and best impulses of human nature. Illuminating the loves and lives, the desires and ambitions of these characters with compassion, wit, and intelligence, The Night Watchman is a majestic work of fiction from this revered cultural treasure.
7. Under the Rainbow by Celia Laskey
Expected publication March 3, 2020
From Goodreads: When a group of social activists arrive in a small town, the lives and beliefs of residents and outsiders alike are upended, in this wry, embracing novel. Big Burr, Kansas, is the kind of place where everyone seems to know everyone, and everyone shares the same values-or keeps their opinions to themselves. But when a national nonprofit labels Big Burr “the most homophobic town in the US” and sends in a task force of queer volunteers as an experiment-they’ll live and work in the community for two years in an attempt to broaden hearts and minds-no one is truly prepared for what will ensue.
8. Untamed by Glennon Doyle
Expected publication March 10, 2020
From Goodreads: In her most revealing and powerful book yet, the beloved activist, speaker, and author of the bestselling sensations Love Warrior and Carry On, Warrior explores the joy and peace we discover when we stop striving to meet the expectations of the world, and start trusting the voice deep within us. Soulful and uproarious, forceful and tender, Untamed is both a memoir and a galvanizing wake-up call. It offers a piercing, electrifying examination of the restrictive expectations women are issued from birth; shows how hustling to meet those expectations leaves women feeling dissatisfied and lost; and reveals that when we quit abandoning ourselves and instead abandon the world’s expectations of us, we become women who can finally look at ourselves and recognize: There She Is.
9. Darling Rose Gold by Stephanie Wrobel
Expected publication March 17, 2020
From Goodreads: For the first eighteen years of her life, Rose Gold Watts believed she was seriously ill. She was allergic to everything, used a wheelchair and practically lived at the hospital. Neighbors did all they could, holding fundraisers and offering shoulders to cry on, but no matter how many doctors, tests, or surgeries, no one could figure out what was wrong with Rose Gold. Turns out her mom, Patty Watts, was just a really good liar. After serving five years in prison, Patty gets out with nowhere to go and begs her daughter to take her in. The entire community is shocked when Rose Gold says yes…Unfortunately for Patty, Rose Gold is no longer her weak little darling.And she’s waited such a long time for her mother to come home.
10. I Want You to Know We’re Still Here: A Post-Holocaust Memoir by Esther Safran Foer
Expected publication March 31, 2020
From Goodreads:A riveting memoir of family, the Holocaust, and the search for truth. I Want You to Know We’re Still Here is the poignant and deeply moving story not only of Esther’s journey but of four generations living in the shadow of the Holocaust. They are four generations of survivors, storytellers, and memory keepers, determined not just to keep the past alive but to imbue the present with life and more life.
Are any of these on your list for 2020? Or are there other titles you’re looking forward to?