If you thought 2019 was a great year for books, it’s time to gear up for 2020’s amazing selection. No matter your favorite genre, there’s a book here for every kind of reader to pick up in the new year.
1. Behind Every Lie by Christina McDonald
When Eva Hansen’s mother dies under mysterious circumstances, the police begin to question Eva’s involvement in her mother’s death. Eva must travel to London, her mother’s hometown, to clear her name and find the true killer. In this thriller by bestselling author Christina McDonald, Eva must face the sickening truth behind all of her mother’s carefully hidden secrets.
2. My Dark Vanessa by Kate Elizabeth Russell
Vanessa Wye has a dark secret she’s been hiding since high school. When her old English teacher, Jacob Strane, is accused by another student of sexual abuse, Vanessa must make the decision to either share her secret and accept that she too was a victim, or to continue hiding what she has done and move on with the life she has now. My Dark Vanessa tells the story of a woman challenged by the traumatic truth about the man she considered to be her first love.
3. American Dirt by Jeanine Cummins
Lydia Quixano Pérez lives a quiet life in Acapulco, Mexico. She has a house, a family and a beautiful bookstore where she spends most of her days. It all comes crashing down when her journalist husband publishes an exposé on the leader of the drug cartel that has slowly taken over the city. Facing death, Lydia must take her family on a rough journey to the refuge of North America, the only place where they can be safe. American Dirt is a story about the determination and grit of a mother who must adapt to a new environment when her life is turned upside down.
4. The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James
Carly Kirk is determined to find out what happened to her aunt who disappeared in 1982 after taking a job at the Sun Down Motel. Even though it’s been more than 30 years since Aunt Viv disappeared, Carly knows the only way to find the truth is to travel back to the motel, the last place her aunt was seen alive. This haunting novel captures the mystery of a motel that is not all that it seems from the outside looking in.
5. The Opposite of Fate by Alison McGhee
After being horrifically raped and left pregnant with her assaulter’s child, Mallie Williams now lies comatose, surrounded by people who have to make an impossible decision for her: keep the child or abort it. By the time Mallie comes out of her comatose state, she’ll have to live with the decisions her loved ones have made for her and the consequences that come with it.
6. The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel
Vincent was always enthralled with Jonathan Alkaitis, the man who owns the hotel where she bartends. After meeting for the first time, they get caught up in a new romance, and after a year, they’re married. It doesn’t take long before Vincent finds herself in the middle of Jonathan’s shady business practices and their lives fall apart. Years after the fallout, Vincent boards a ship and disappears during the journey—a new mystery that must be solved.
7. A Witch in Time by Constance Sayers
The year is 1895 and 16-year-old witch Juliet LaCompte has fallen in love with a married man, an artist named Auguste Marchant. When Juliet’s mother casts a curse upon Auguste to keep him away from her daughter, she accidentally summons a demon and makes the unfortunate romance even worse. Juliet is now forced to relive her tragic love affair and die over and over again. It’s not until she is born in present-day when her luck begins to change.
8. It’s Not All Downhill from Here by Terry McMillan
Loretha Curry’s life seems perfect, but after an unexpected and tragic loss, she realizes she needs a little more help than she thought. Wanting to show her family that getting old doesn’t mean losing everything, Loretha is determined to pursue a new and improved path in life. It’s Not All Downhill from Here is a beautiful novel about growing old and how powerful it can be to take control of your life, no matter your age.
9. Feels Like Falling by Kristy Woodson Harvey
Gray Howard’s life is falling apart. Her mother passed away, her sister is MIA and her husband left her for his secretary. Diana Harrington’s life is also not going very well. She lost her job, broke up with her boyfriend and lost her home—all on the same day. When Gray and Diana’s lives are thrown together, they do their best to turn everything back around. This is a heartwarming story of two women who learn how to lift each other up when everything else seems to be falling apart.
10. Such A Fun Age by Kiley Reid
Alix and Emira are two very different people. Alix is a successful white woman with a family and everything she’s ever wanted, while Emira is a young black woman doing her best to get by with what she has. After Emira is wrongly accused one evening of kidnapping Alix’s child, who she nannies, Alix realizes that something must be done to address this wrongdoing. Such A Fun Age is a thoughtful novel that highlights the uncomfortable feelings that arise in what seems at the surface to be a transactional relationship.
11. A Hundred Suns by Karin Tanabe
It is 1933 and American Jessie Lesage is moving to the colonies in Vietnam with her husband, the French heir to the Michelin rubber fortune. Jessie quickly makes a friend in Marcelle De Fabry, but Jessie soon learns their friendship may not be all that it seems. As a political struggle rises around her, Jessie must decide whether her friendship or her husband’s fortune are more important to her.
12. A Beginning at the End by Mike Chen
After a horrible pandemic wiped out most of the world’s population, four completely different people are thrown together to fix what is left of the planet. When rumors of another pandemic surface, the four must protect their futures by facing their checkered pasts. A Beginning at the End is a classic post-apocalyptic tale with a refreshing twist that challenges four people to truly understand what brought them where they are.
13. Epic Solitude: A Story of Survival and a Quest for Meaning in the Far North by Katherine Keith
In this inspiring memoir, Katherine Keith tells the dramatic story of her life and the time she spent exploring the world’s remote and wild places. After she faces a tragic loss, Katherine learns how to survive in the Alaskan wild alone, chopping wood and collecting water—things that once seemed unnecessary. But when she begins long-distance dog sledding, Katherine opens the door to a new world that both challenges and rewards her like never before.
14. We Came Here to Shine by Susie Orman Schnall
It is 1939, Vivi Holden wants to be a famous actress and Maxine Roth wants to be a successful journalist. When their two worlds collide, they form a dynamic and unbreakable friendship that shows them what it means to be strong women. Set during the New York World’s Fair, We Came Here to Shine tells the remarkable story of two young women who both have big dreams and the determination to make them a reality.
15. Home Before Dark by Riley Sager
Maggie Holt doesn’t remember Baneberry Hall—a home she lived in for three weeks. While she’s unsure about the place, her family and ghost-obsessed father remember every haunting detail. After he dies, Maggie decides to renovate the old estate and put it up for sale. But first she’ll have to explain the unexplainable occurrences that keep happening while she’s there.
16. The Wife Who Knew Too Much by Michele Campbell
Tabitha has been in love with Connor since the moment she laid eyes on him, and when he comes back into her life, distraught over his less-than-perfect marriage, Tabitha feels like everything’s falling into place. After his wife, Nina, kills herself, Connor and Tabitha get married. But when Tabitha discovers Nina’s old diary, a dark truth is revealed: Nina may not have killed herself and Connor may not be as innocent as he seems.
17. Long Bright River by Liz Moore
Philadelphia police officer Mickey has just learned that her troubled sister, Kacey, has gone missing. Mickey knows there is something more to it than an extended drug bender. At the same time, Mickey is assigned to investigate a case of mysterious murders—and she begins to connect her sister’s disappearance with the killer’s other victims.
18. The City We Became by N.K. Jemisin
New York City is a magical place, full of myths and stories of the powerful souls that protect it. When a dark evil begins plotting to destroy the city and everything that holds it together, five protectors must join forces to stop it. The City We Became tells the imaginative story of five colorful souls that live in the heart of New York City and will do anything to make sure it stays intact.
19. Queen of the Owls by Barbara Linn Probst
When Elizabeth meets Richard, he introduces her to artistic worlds she never thought she could be part of before. So, when he convinces her to pose nude to recreate Georgia O’Keeffe’s famous photographs, Elizabeth quickly agrees. It is after the fact, when Richard refuses to take down the photos he shared publicly, that Elizabeth begins to understand the capacity to which her life is going to change.
20. The Beauty of Your Face by Sahar Mustafah
Afaf Rahman is a Palestinian American and the principle of a Muslim school for girls. One morning, as she is preparing for the day, a shooter begins to terrorize the school. As the shooter grows closer to Afaf’s location, she begins to relive her life and all of its moments, both good and bad. The novel also deftly explores the bigotry many Palestinian women face from a young age.