My 2020 Most Anticipated Books

I was that kid staggering out of the library at the beginning of summer with a stack of twelve books she couldn’t possibly read before they were due, or even before the end of the season. I had an entire shelf dedicated to Goosebumps and Animorphs, those standbys of the Scholastic book fair. I learned history from Little House on the Prairie, Dear America, and the American Girl books. And maybe I didn’t meet my goal to read 100 books each summer, but I sure had fun trying.

Time to read feels more and more precious with each passing year. Instead of the library’s checklist, I take advantage of Goodreads’ annual reading challenge. (I’m one book ahead of schedule for 2020!) And there are plenty of interesting reads coming out in 2020 that I’m keeping an eye out for:

“A Long Petal of the Sea” by Isabel Allende. Allende is one of my favorite authors and I was so excited to see this on a shelf at my library – until I took it up front and realized it was someone’s ARC, unprotected by library plastic, bare of any stickers or barcodes. The guy working at the desk thanked me for finding it and took it away to get processed. I guess finders-keepers doesn’t fly in a library? Anyway, I’m really excited for this.

“The Seep” by Chana Porter. “Perfect for fans of Jeff VanderMeer and Carmen Maria Machado,” says Goodreads, and it’s about benevolent alien invaders giving us everything we ever wanted and how sometimes what we want is not what’s best for us. Neat. Depressing! But neat.

“Doors of Stone” by Patrick Rothfuss. I have an issue with series. If all the books in a series aren’t already out, then I’m not diving in. *gestures in the direction of eternally disappointed Song of Ice & Fire fans* But! The third book in The Kingkiller Chronicles is allegedly, finally, maybe coming out in August, which means I can now safely embark on reading the series. (These books are so huge, though, I should probably just get started anyway.)

“Why We Can’t Sleep” by Ada Calhoun. After so many years of being told they not only can have it all, but they should, maybe we shouldn’t be so surprised that Gen-X women are on the brink of collapse. I don’t read a lot of nonfiction, but this looks interesting, in a staring-into-the-abyss sort of way.

“Night Theater” by Vikram Paralkar. A family in India is murdered in a home robbery, then visits a surgeon saying they get a second chance at life if he can mend their wounds before sunrise. I have read pathetically little magical realism, and this is right up that alley.

“The Relentless Moon” by Mary Robinette Kowal. “The Calculating Stars” has been waiting patiently in my to-read pile for months now, but I can already tell you that alternate history lady astronauts saving the world and building lunar colonies is extremely my aesthetic.

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