I read 83 books this year, which is funny because I read 82 books last year. So I guess I’m consistent? Funny. I read less YA this year vs. last year (10 books vs. 20 last year), which makes sense as we started featuring a wider range of books on the podcast (when we started out, it was only YA!). It was a good year of reading. Honestly, out of everything I read I would say that the best books of the year were non-fiction. It felt unfair ranking Three Women 6 on that list but it was only because everything on the list is so good!
To keep this post from being an actual novel, I didn’t include any descriptions but if you want my review, just type the name of the book into the search bar of the blog. You can also browse my Book Club page which has shorter descriptions of each book!
Everything I Read in 2019
The Best Non-Fiction I Read This Year.
Everything on this list is EXCELLENT. Quiet and Save Me The Plums were easily the two best books I read of the year. I still can’t stop thinking about either book!
- Quiet by Susan Cain
- Save Me The Plums by Ruth Reichl
- Becoming, by Michelle Obama.
- Modern Love by Daniel Jones
- American Predator, by Maureen Callahan
- Three Women, by Lisa Taddeo.
- So Here’s The Thing, by Alyssa Mastromonaco.
- Nobody Wants to Read Your Shit, by Steven Pressfield.
- My Friend Anna, by Rachel Deloache Williams
The Best Historical Fiction I Read This Year.
It’s funny that I only read four historical fiction books this year as it’s one of my favorite genres. I am probably the only person ever that wasn’t a big fan of Rules of Civility, but everything else was fab.
- City of Girls, by Elizabeth Gilbert
- American Spy by Lauren Wilkinson
- Park Avenue Summer, by Renée Rosen
- Rules of Civility, by Amor Towles
The Best Thrillers
Ugh, my genre. I know it’s so lowbrow but I just love a good scary thriller… even the predictable ones! Verity and We Came Here to Forget were both podcast book picks – they both stuck with me for weeks after finishing them.
- Verity, by Colleen Hoover.
- We Came Here to Forget, by Andrea Dunlop
- The Family Upstairs, by Lisa Jewell
- The Banker’s Wife, by Cristina Alger.
- The Other Woman, by Sandie Jones.
- An Anonymous Girl, by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen.
- The Silent Patient, by Alex Michaelides
- The Mother-in-Law by Sally Hepworth.
- Good Girls Lie by J.T. Ellison
- Necessary People, by Anna Pitoniak.
- Lock Every Door, by Riley Sager.
- The Woman Inside, by E.G. Scott.
- Tell Me Everything, by Cambria Brockman
- A Keeper by Graham Norton.
- A Nearly Normal Family, by M.T. Evardsson
- My Lovely Wife, by Samantha Downing
- The Wives by Tarryn Fisher
- Behind Her Eyes, by Sarah Pinborough
- It Ends With Us, by Colleen Hoover.
- The Turn of the Key, by Ruth Ware
- I’ll never tell, by Catherine McKenzie
- The Woman Upstairs, by Ruth Heald
- The Perfect Girlfriend, by Karen Hamilton.
- The Shape of the Night by Tess Gerritsen
- The Poison Garden, by A.J. Banner
The Best Light Reads
Yup, Becca was right! The Idea of You was just FANTASTIC. If you have not read it yet, drop what you are doing and go order it now!
- The Idea of You, by Robinne Lee
- One Day in December, by Josie Silver.
- Tell Me Lies, by Carola Lovering.
- A Sky Painted Gold, by Laura Wood.
- In Five Years, by Rebecca Serle (out March 2nd)
- Where the Crawdads Sing, by Delia Owens.
- An Unkindness of Magicians, by Kat Howard.
- Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid
- Regretting You by Colleen Hoover
- The Honey-Don’t List by Christina Lauren
- Twice in a Blue Moon by Christina Lauren
- Daisy Jones & The Six, by Taylor Jenkins Reid.
- My Favorite Half-Night Stand, by Christina Lauren.
- Get a Life Chloe Brown, by Talia Hibbert
- The Wedding Party, by Jasmine Guillory.
- The Gifted School, by Bruce Holsinger
- How Could She, by Lauren Mechling
- More than Words, by Jill Santopolo.
- The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren
- That’s What Frenemies are For, by Sophie Littlefield and Lauren Gershell
- The Friends We Keep, by Jane Green
- Waiting for Tom Hanks, by Kerry Winfrey
- Evvie Drake Starts Over, by Linda Holmes.
- Chances Are by Richard Russo
- Fleishman is in Trouble, by Taffy Brodesser-Akner
The Best Young Adult Books
- With the Fire on High, by Elizabeth Acevedo.
- American Royals, by Katharine McGee
- Followers, by Megan Angelo
- Anna K by Jenny Lee
- One Of Us Is Next, by Karen McManus
- Little White Lies, by Jennifer Lynn Barnes.
- The Luxe, Rumors, Envy, and Splendor by Anna Godbersen (3 books)
- The Seasonaires, by Janna King.
- Malibu Bluff, by Janna King.
- A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder, by Holly Jackson
Miscellaneous / More Serious Books!
I kinda just lumped the more serious books from the year here. Still fiction but not thrillers/YA/a light read.
- My Brilliant Friend, by Elena Ferrante.
- The Story of a New Name, by Elena Ferrante.
- The Testaments by Margaret Atwood
- Normal People, by Sally Rooney.
- The Last Book Party, by Karen Dukess.
- The Governesses, by Anne Serre.
- The Seas, by Samantha Hunt.
photo by Carter Fish.
I’m going to read every single book on this list, starting with the top! Love your suggestions always! 🙂
Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
Excited to come back to this page over the year to help me reach my goal of 20 books! The podcast/blog inspired me to get back into reading, so thank you!
I know people get intimidated by nonfiction (I think they think it’s all biographies and dense historical treatises), but if it’s well-written in narrative form, it really is the best. Memoirs and investigative journalism are my favorite. I still remember reading “Columbine” by Dave Cullen when it first came out (2009 or 2010) and being blown away by what non-fiction could be. And memoirs! Love them. Chef memoirs are my favorite – Barbara Lynch, Gabrielle Hamilton, Marcus Samuelson, Eric Ripert, Anthony Bourdain… they’re so good. I also recommend Anne Lamott’s Bird By Bird, which is my favorite book that’s kind of/sort of about writing. I have my students read the chapter “Shitty First Drafts” every year! (Operating Instructions is also fantastic).
With the Fire On High was one of the last books I read in 2019 and it was just the best. I am going to be evangelizing it for a long while!
It Ends With Us as a thriller? I read that and don’t remember it fitting into that genre
There were a few books that I wasn’t really sure where to put them (Followers and Anna K included. Thriller seemed like the best bucket (though drama probably would have been better – I just didn’t have a category for that!)
you are glowing on the cover photo for this page!!!!!
Haha it was in Chicago for our live show – I had really good makeup 😉 xo
So many good ones, my favorites were Becoming, The Dutch House and Recursion!
I also loved Where the Crawdads Sing and One Day in December!
I would like to thank you for becoming HOOKED on thrillers—I read Verity and now I can’t stop. Going to try some of these other thrillers!
So happy to discover your website via The Pink Clutch. As I am in 2 book clubs, I like to have a list of books I particularly want to read. Will definitely be choosing books from your list. You probably get a lot of suggestions, but i would like to recommend “A Gentleman in Moscow” by Amor Towles. Loved this book. “Rules of Civility” is on my list. Thanks for compiling your list and sharing. Pat
Ah I also loved so many of these, especially City of Girls, With the Fire on High and Normal People. I was sent an arc of In Five Years. I need to get to it ASAP!
That’s quite a list.
May I recommend “The girl who came out of the woods” by Emi!y Barr to wet your whistle. She’s my second favourite author.
can’t wait to add some of these to my list! have you read ninth house by leigh bardugo? it might be right up your alley!
I haven’t! It’s in my TBR pile but I haven’t gotten to it yet!
oh our piles of ‘to be read’, lol. mine seems miles high. I think you’ll enjoy! my husband gave it to me for Christmas and I blew through it!
Wow 83 books. I don’t think I will ever make that in a year.
I read Becoming – and totally love it!
Quiet is on by TBR for this year.
Thanks for list all that you read – will definitely pop back for inspiration on what to read.
I read six of those books listed above. I didn’t like Rules of Civility either. Love your book lists!
So many great books on this list! I’m curious how you decide whether something is a “light” or “serious” read. I thought The Gifted School, Where the Crawdads Sing, Chances Are, and Fleischman Is In Trouble all touched on a lot of weighty and important topics.
It’s nothing official, just my personal opinion!
This post is great because I now have so many more books to add to my wishlist even though it’s already too long! Thank you for sharing ♡
Oh good I’m so glad! Happy reading!
I bookmarked this list and will be using it as my virtual TBR pile for the next few months. It’s incredible that you read 83 books this year! Idea of You was my first book of 2020 and I know that was the best way to kick off a great year of reading… Happy 2020! Nicole
I just finished The Wives after reading your recommendation, and I really liked it. I can’t wait to check out some of the other books on your list. Thanks for sharing!
Oh good! Happy reading!!!
I’m curious why It Ends With Us is a thriller? And Daisy Jones isn’t listed as historical fiction?
Always love seeing your reading lists and getting recommendations!
I love your book reviews so I’ll definitely have to check more of these out! I read the Idea of You while traveling last year and LOVED it!
We read so many of the same books it’s crazy and have similar taste. I need to list mine out like this as it’s super helpful. I started tracking my reads on this insta @brookebookclub
didn’t see the last 3 I read and loved:
Red at the Bone
Maybe You Should Talk to Someone
The Night Tiger
I would add all to your 2020 list if you haven’t read them yet.
Thanks for the recs!
Thanks to you I’ve now read The Testaments and Verity, two INCREDIBLE books. The Idea of You and Conviction are next on my list.
My Style Vita
Ugh just finished The Idea of You! Wow! I’m heartbroken as if I lived that relationship! Thank you for a great recommendation. Looking forward to reading more from your list!
Oh good! I’m so glad you enjoyed it!!!!