In 2020 I read over 150 books, so you can imagine how hard it was for me to narrow down my list to just ten. As a result, I decided to do at least four different lists, 10 of My Favorite 2020 Books, Favorite Backlist Books, Top 2020 Read Caribbean, and those books that just not it.

Here are my top ten favorite 2020 release. These books moved me in ways I never imagine. There are days I would be going about my business and I would stop dead in by tracks when I remember a scene or line from one of these books. I am still big mad about how some of these characters were treated and I am still cheering them on, even after closing the book.

If you are looking for a book that will stick with you, here are ten to start with.

1. Real Life By Brandon Taylor

I cannot believe this is a debut novel because Brandon Taylor came for my neck with this. When I initially read this back in January and elven months later I still think about Wallace and that explosive dinner party. So, if this is not on your radar, now is the time to make it right.

2. Children of the Land by Marcelo Hernandez Castillo

This is a deeply moving memoir of what it is like to live in America without documents. Whenever I think about this book I am moved to tears by what Castillo writes about. The writing is beautiful and deeply personal. You must not look away from this.

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3. Transcendent Kingstom by Yaa Gyasi

If you know, you know. I think all the words have been written about what a well written book this is. Gyasi changed the game with Homegoing and I am pleased to say Transcendent Kingdom lives up to all the hype.

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4. His Only Wife by Peace Medie

Marketed as the Crazy Rich Asians of Nigeria, I have to say His Only Wife remains a book that will stick with you. This is a book that demands discussion for hours. Medie’s debut novel explores feminism in contemporary Nigeria and I could not have enough.

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5. The Deep Blue Between by Ayesha Harruna Attah

A tiny book that packs a huge punch. From the setting, the scenery, the characters to the plot, they are all alive and bursting. This is Attah’s first stab at YA and she writes with conviction in this genre. Be prepared to be swept away from the Gold Coast to Brazil, this is a ride you will not want to end.

6. The Vanishing Half by Britt Bennett

This book was on every must-read list, and rightly so. Britt Bennett’s second novel explores colorism, racism and family ties. When I first read this book, my initial thought was “I need more eyes on this” and I continue to feel this way.

7. Luster by Raven Leilani

It is not every day I pick up a debut novel about a 23-year-old Black Woman living in NYC who is having an affair with a married man. She then proceeds to move in with the white married man, his wife and their adopted Black daughter. This novel is fresh, biting and will leaving you going “what the hell!!!?

8. Anxious People by Fredrik Backman

Yes, a novel by a white man made my list and I am not going to defend myself. I have such an affinity for Backman’s writing, because at the core he always challenges us to be kind to others because you never know what they are going through. In other words, Anxious People did not disappoint and it is a beautiful reminder of the goodness in the world.

9. Once I was You by Maria Hinojosa

In Maria Hinojosa’s memoir Once I Was You she is able to tell her story while forcing us to look at the history Mexicans have had with the US. Throughout the memoir the author constantly shines a light on the history of the US immigration policy and how deeply unfair it is. In conclusion, this is a memoir that is worth reading and talking about.

10. Leave The World Behind by Rumaan Alam

This is a book you will either love, deeply dislike or cannot shake. In my case, it is a mix of all three. Alam writes a book that is rich with atmosphere and reading this during a pandemic I 10/10 would not recommend, unless you have a strong heart. This Above all, this is a well executed novel.

There you have it! Ten of my favorite books released in 2020! Now that you have this list, get to reading!

About the Author


Founder & Editor

Hello, I am Cindy, a Jamaican girl living in Trinidad & Tobago who is thoroughly enjoying island life. I started the BookOfCinz platform to encourage people to Read, read More, read Widely, and Read Caribbean.

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