If there was one thing that kept me entertained during this year (other than uni) it was reading. At the beginning of 2020, I set myself a challenge, a reading challenge on goodreads. It is not a very ~impressive~ number, but next to reading for school it is more than I’ve ever challenged myself: 20 books in 2020.
Especially with the quarantine situation we are all too familiar with, I feel like a lot of people have summoned their inner bookworm again and made time, or had more time, to read. I’ve certainly been inspired by this, but it was also a goal I had for a longer time. Reading always gives me a feeling of longevity. It is as if time goes slower as you skim through the words on paper. It allows me to be absorbed in someone else’s world and their problems and I love to escape.
It was also easier to read because I started a book series that I had grown to love, which gave me 3 more books to enjoy – or devour – during the challenge. So now, I present my favorite reads from 2020!
Brooklyn Colm Tóibín
I got this little paperback from a friend from university and it made me fall in love with historical fiction. It was a perfect first read in 2020 and made me more ‘homesick’ for a different country than ever. The story follows Eilis Lacey and she moves from Ireland to Brooklyn in the 1950s, where her new life begins.
Little Women Louisa May Alcott
Another book gifted to me! This beautiful edition was given to me by my dearest friend. It includes the first part of Little Women written by Louisa May Alcott. And since the newest film adaptation by Greta Gerwig was on its way when I read this, it couldn’t have come at a better time. At first, I found the tone of the writing a bit youthful, but this progressed into something different over time. It became inspiring and I could see the lessons the book was trying to teach the four girls, and at the same time to me.
The Toymakers Robert Dinsdale
Beautifully written and with an intriguing story about a magical toy emporium, this book has drawn me in between the shelves filled with toys and brought a little magic back into my life. This story takes place in London after the First World War. The reader discovers the secrets of Papa Jack’s Toy Emporium along with Cathy Wray as she applies for a job there, hiding the fact that she is pregnant, and looking for a place to escape to.
Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle #2), Blue Lily, Lily Blue (The Raven Cycle #3) &
The Raven King (The Raven Cycle #4)
I could not wait to read the rest of the Raven Cycle after I discovered the series last year, so that is what I did. Stiefvater’s writing style is one of the most vivid and beautiful and entertaining one’s I’ve read up until now. I love the way she writes her characters and you really get to know each and every one of them. When they are alone, but also the dynamic they have when they are together.
In short, this book is about Blue and four Raven boys, Adam, Ronan, Gansey and Noah, students from Aglioby, a local private school. Blue comes from a family of clairvoyant people and has a policy to stay away from the Raven boys, but when she joins her mother on an evening when the the soon-to-be-dead walk past, she sees Gansey. From that moment on feels drawn to him.
Peter Pan J. M. Barrie
I think most people know Disney’s version of Peter Pan. But since Peter appeared in the series Once Upon A Time as (spoiler alert!) the villain, I have a different affection for him. It seemed such a cool idea that he was not all that he seemed to be… So, this had drawn me to the original version, which is written brilliantly and shows Peter’s true colors..
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows
This must be my favourite book from this list. I watched the movie before I read it, because I am obsessed with period dramas starring Lily James. And this film also did not disappoint. But the book is just as marvelous! It is written in letter correspondences between Juliet, the main character, the people on Guernsey and of course Sydney, her publisher. Juliet proves herself to be such a witty writer, even in her letters she sounds so clever and fun. It is a book about writing and love and adventures and discovering your own people, but most of all it is about the joy of reading. And what a joy this was to read.
What is the best book you’ve read this year?
love, Eva ♡