The librarians have spoken! LibraryReads 2020 Voter Favorites list features the Top Ten titles from all the lists in 2020, as voted on by librarians across the country. Penguin Random House had a great showing with seven titles, including the #1 pick for 2020!
The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett
From The New York Times bestselling author of The Mothers, a stunning new novel about twin sisters, inseparable as children, who ultimately choose to live in two very different worlds, one black and one white.
“Centering on two twin light-skinned black girls who grew up in a strange town in the Jim Crow south, this book explores racism, colorism, sexism, and familial relationships through the interweaving storylines of vivid and complicated characters. For fans of Red at the Bone by (Woodson).”—Pamela Gardner, Medfield Public Library, Medfield, MA
NoveList read-alike: A Kind of Freedom by Margaret Wilkerson Sexton
Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson
Pulitzer Prize–winning, bestselling author of The Warmth of Other Suns examines the unspoken caste system that has shaped America and shows how our lives today are still defined by a hierarchy of human divisions.
“A magisterial overview of how caste has been implemented in
three different places. This is an important look at how the U.S., Nazi Germany, and India implemented caste and how it affects each country. Don’t think that this is a dry academic read; Wilkerson is a genius with words and incorporates her own experiences throughout the book. For readers of Stamped and The New Jim Crow.”—Jennifer Schultz, Fauquier County Public Library, Warrenton, VA
NoveList read-alike: White Trash by Nancy Isenberg
Dear Edward by Ann Napolitano
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.
“A dear, dear wondrous novel. Edward is The Miracle Boy, the only survivor of a plane crash. As he struggles to navigate the landscape of his new life, we hear the voices of those who didn’t make it. Napolitano is an amazing writer who deserves a wider audience. For fans of Did You Ever Have a Family (Clegg), The Grief of Others (Cohen), and The Friend (Nunez).”—Jennifer Dayton, Fairfield Public Library, Fairfield, CT
NoveList read-alike: The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
Also available in a Spanish-Language Edition.
Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
From the author of Gods of Jade and Shadow comes a reimagining of the classic gothic suspense novel, a story about an isolated mansion in 1950s Mexico—and the brave socialite drawn to its treacherous secrets.
“A perfect gothic mystery. Noemí is a Mexico City socialite in the 1950s. When her father receives a letter from his niece, he sends Noemí to check on her cousin at the remote house where she is living—a rotting English-style mansion, built by the colonialist eugenicist family she has married into. Lush descriptions and the creepy atmosphere make this a good choice for readers who liked The Witch Elm, The Little Stranger, or The Haunting of Hill House.”—Lorena Neal, Evanston Public Library, Evanston, IL
NoveList read-alike: The Supernatural Enhancements by Edgar Cantero
The Midnight Library by Matt Haig
‘Between life and death there is a library, and within that library, the shelves go on forever. Every book provides a chance to try another life you could have lived. To see how things would be if you had made other choices… Would you have done anything different, if you had the chance to undo your regrets?’
A dazzling novel about all the choices that go into a life well lived, from the internationally bestselling author of Reasons to Stay Alive and How To Stop Time.
“At a seminal moment in her life, Nora visits a unique library. Every book she chooses is one that she becomes part of and is a possible life she might have led. There are adventures, close calls, and joy. Give this totally engrossing page turner to fans of Here and Now and Then (Chen) and Life after Life (Atkinson).”—Deborah Margeson, Douglas County Libraries, Castle Rock, CO
NoveList read-alike: Or What You Will by Jo Walton
The #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Devil in the White City and Dead Wake delivers a fresh and compelling portrait of Winston Churchill and London during the Blitz.
“Once again Larson’s new book is nonfiction that is as hard to put down as the best fiction. The book recounts the early days of Churchill as prime minister when France fell to Germany and the British Empire stood alone against Hitler. For readers who like The Great Influenza (Barry) and Death in the City of Light (King).”—Celia Morse, Berkley Public Library, Berkley, MI
NoveList read-alike: Their Finest Hour by Winston Churchill
Transcendent Kingdom by Yaa Gyasi
Yaa Gyasi’s stunning follow-up to her acclaimed national bestseller Homegoing is a powerful, raw, intimate, deeply layered novel about a Ghanaian family in Alabama.
“Gyasi is a force of a writer and in her new novel, Gifty is a Ph.D student of neuroscience fueled by the need to understand her brother’s addiction and mother’s depression. For fans of Imagine Me Gone (Haslet) and Chemistry (Wang).”
—Kari Bingham-Gutierrez, Olathe Public Library, Olathe, KS
NoveList read-alike: A Particular Kind of Black Man by Tope Folarin