My original goal for this year was to read 20 books, but when I completed that before July I decided to add another 30 books to that target. I’m excited to say that for once I managed to achieve my reading goal, and here are my thoughts on all the books…
Trust Again by Mona Kasten
02/01/2020 – 03/01/2020
I have been waiting for this book to be translated ever since I read and fell in love with Begin Again, which was the first book in this series. Okay so at first I was a little unsure that I was going to have as much of a connection with this book as with the first one because the main characters in Trust Again were a sort of ‘side plot’ in Begin Again, and I just didn’t gel with them. But was I wrong or was I wrong?? I immediately found myself falling in love with Dawn and Spencer and really rooting for them. Mona Kasten does not write books. She writes emotional rollercoasters. Seriously. Up and down and up again at breakneck speed. My heart could not deal with it, and honestly I’m emo just thinking about that damn book.
American Royals by Katherine McGee
03/01/2020 – 05/01/2020
First of all we have to agree this is a 10/10 for the concept alone. America with a royal family? Sign me up for that. I’m usually not a fan of multi-perspective books but this one worked so well and I really felt like we got to know all the characters in a thorough way. Definitely an interesting choice to have chapters written from Daphne’s perspective, who we’d consider to be a villain, but I liked it. There were some tears at the end, for sure, and I’m now waiting for book two verY IMPATIENTLY. YOU CAN’T KEEP THIS FROM ME FOR EIGHT MORE MONTHS. I CAN’T HANDLE IT.
Let Me List The Ways by Sarah White
05/01/2020 – 07/01/2020
Pre-dic-ta-ble. If you didn’t know how this was going to end then I’m going to assume that you’ve never read a YA book or watched a rom-com. I’m not saying it was bad, I even gave it four stars on my GoodReads (although looking back that was a little generous). If you’re looking for a fun, easy summer read with a ‘cute but obvious’ best friends to lovers trope then this is your book!
Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie
07/01/2020 – 10/01/2020
This has been on my to-read list for years. Whilst I knew it was going to be a little weirder than the Disney version, I didn’t really expect to be googling “Did J.M. Barrie hate children?” and reading psychological profiles on the guy as soon as I’d finished the book. This book was creepy creepy. Is Peter Pan a metaphor for death? Or is it just an innocent book with concerning undertones? No one really knows, but I for one will not be rereading.
Signs Point To Yes by Sandy Hall
11/01/2020 – 14/01/2020
Cute YA romance? Yes. Favourite book ever? Signs point to no. I liked this book. Nice protagonist. Nice storyline. Nice, but nothing stronger. One thing I did like was the growth in the relationship between the two sisters, but honestly nothing else was substantial enough to make that much of an impact.
Truly Devious by Maureen Johnson
15/01/2020 – 18/01/2020
This book was my first step into the world of murder mysteries and I’m never looking back. Oh, my god. This book was freaking amazing. I tore through it like there was no tomorrow, and downloaded the sequel as fast as my buffering Kindle could.
The Vanishing Stair by Maureen Johnson
18/01/2020 – 20/01/2020
OH, MY GOD. The plot thickens. The riddles? The murders? The tunnels? The guy totally obsessed with Disney World that he talks about it whilst dissecting a cows eyeball? Okay, that last one was kind of weird, but I got so invested in this story that I almost want to reread it already. If you want to know all my thoughts on this book, I emptied my brain into this GoodReads review as soon as I had read the last page.
The Hand On The Wall by Maureen Johnson
21/01/2020 – 22/01/2020
WE FINALLY KNOW WHATS GOING ON. THANK YOU GOD. I CAN SLEEP IN PEACE. GOODNIGHT. Okay, first of all I want to appreciate how lucky I was that this book was literally released the day after I finished The Vanishing Stair, or I would have gone totally crazy waiting for answers. This book had it all: Stress. Suspense. Tunnels. And most importantly it had the answers that were crucial to me continuing life as a sane human being.
If me finishing the entire 1169 page trilogy in five days doesn’t make it clear enough, these books were really freaking good and you need to read them as soon as possible. I mean it.
A Good Girl’s Guide To Murder by Holly Jackson
22/01/2020 – 28/01/2020
Oh. My. God. I did not see that ending coming. I’ll be honest and say that I did get a little bored in the middle of the book, which you can tell because it took me much longer to read, and I think that was because I didn’t feel a strong connection with any of the characters. However the plot twists redeemed it. I had no idea who the murderer was going to be – it could have been anyone off the suspect list and it would have made sense. Then BOOM plot twist. And before you can recover from that, BOOM there’s another plot twist. Full on insanity. Literally.
Two Can Keep A Secret by Karen M. McManus
29/01/2020 – 01/02/2020
This might be an unpopular opinion, but I think I enjoyed this more than One Of Us Is Lying. It was a great story with twists and turns, and I definitely didn’t guess who the kidnapper-slash-murderer was (although maybe I should have, it’s never really the boyfriend, is it?)
The last words of the book sent a shiver right through my heart, and although essentially all the plot lines were tied up into a bow like a stand-alone, I’d be fascinated to read a prequel/sequel where we find out the motive for Sarah’s disappearance.
Heartless by Marissa Meyer
01/02/2020 – 15/02/2020
This was an incredible concept for a book, and looking back on it I think it was truly brilliant, but what in Wonderland was that ending supposed to be?? I suppose I should’ve known that’s how it would end, because it had to finish set for the original Alice In Wonderland, but it was still a shock and I feel like my heart just got ripped out.
I thought this book was great, with all the whimsy bakery dreams and how it gave the Queen Of Hearts a real human backstory. The ending though. I. Am. Crushed.
The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton
16/02/2020 – 19/02/2020
Ten out of ten for concept, that was a pretty freaking cool idea to have a subspecies that can change how people look. And weave in a bit of mythology and gods too? You got me.
I did really like this book, but it didn’t grab me in the way that I couldn’t put it down. Looking forward to seeing the direction the story takes in the sequel, as I feel books like this tend to lose something as a series – but we’ll see!
The Everlasting Rose by Dhonielle Clayton
20/02/2020 – 04/03/2020
I have to admit that usually I can’t stand sequels where the main characters are on the run from the controlling authority, they all seem to be the same. Find a rebel group and then live underground for 80% of the book. I thought The Everlasting Rose would probably follow this formula, and to an extent it did – but it didn’t have the monotony that many sequels tend to have. I really enjoyed the continuation of the story, and the way it was carried out.
Surprised to find out there’s another book in this series coming out in future, as I felt this could have been a nice tidy ending… but I’m intrigued!!
Chain Of Gold by Cassandra Clare
04/03/2020 – 17/03/2020
A Cassie Clare book that didn’t end with me sobbing on my bedroom floor? Thanks for having mercy on my emotions for once. Although I do still feel like Cortana has been driven through my shippers heart, I can bear it.
It took me a while to get into the story this time and keep up with who all the characters were, but after a while you settle into the familiarity you have with the world and the families. Super excited for the next two books and the emotional destruction they will undoubtedly bring.
Hate List by Jennifer Brown
17/03/2020 – 20/03/2020
Well, wow. I knew this book was going to be an emotional journey, but I could have cried at almost every page. I think we’ve all, in our minds, made a “hate list” or some sort of tally of all the people that have done us wrong thinking it was an innocent thing and that we were the victims, but for someone to take that list out of your hands and use it to determine who to target in a horrifically violent crime is something that would never cross your mind as a possibility. Was Valerie the victim? Was she to blame? Was she both? When you can see a situation from everyone’s perspective, is there even an answer?
There’s a lot to take away from this book, but, when you strip it right back, what it shows is that the world could use a little more kindness.
A Danger To Herself And Other by Alyssa B Sheinmel
15/05/2020 – 17/05/2020
It’s really difficult to review this book without giving away any spoilers, so all I’m going to say is that it has some massive plot twists and was really emotional. I definitely cried a bit. However I want to let you all know the trigger warnings you should be aware of: eating disorders, vomiting, and mention of suicide. Be aware the book is set in a mental hospital so if that’s a tough subject for you, this might be one to avoid.
Girls With Sharp Sticks by Suzanne Young
17/05/2020 – 22/05/2020
Holy dystopia! I absolutely loved this book. You start out thinking that some things at the school might be a little off, but wow does it go beyond that. Full of some insane plot twists, this story is really empowering and made me want to grab a pitchfork and disassemble the patriarchy brick by brick. Five stars.
Girls With Razor Hearts by Suzanne Young
22/05/2020 – 22/05/2020
As with most sequels, I did feel that this lacked a bit of something compared to the first book. However I did get through it in a day, so you can’t say that I wasn’t hooked. I will definitely be reading the third book when it is released in 2021.
This Lie Will Kill You by Chelsea Pitcher
22/05/2020 – 25/05/2020
Alright, I gave this book 4 stars but didn’t write a review when I finished it, and now I can’t actually remember who did what and quite how the whole mystery fit together. I did enjoy the story at the time, but clearly it hasn’t made too much of an impression in my memory! Pretty standard YA mystery, think Pretty Little Liars mixed with One Of Us Is Lying and you’ve got the vibe of this book.
Persuasion by Jane Austen
25/05/2020 – 31/05/2020
I finally got round to reading Persuasion after saying I would for around eight years. A lot of people have said that this is their favourite Jane Austen, and it was good but I wouldn’t put it above Pride And Prejudice or Northanger Abbey, but that’s just my opinion. It was relatively slow moving, but that’s to be expected with a classic, and I didn’t really connect with many of the characters (although Mary is my spirit animal). Still a really good book!
Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover
02/06/2020 – 02/06/2020
I’m a simple YA reader. If you give me a book with a roommate trope and angst, and then add in the fact that the main characters are song writers? I will read that book in one day and obsess over it. Was it a literary masterpiece? No. Did it make me extremely happy? Yes. Five stars.
Maybe Now by Colleen Hoover
02/06/2020 – 04/06/2020
I love it when books continue the story but focus on the side characters, and it was really nice to see Maggie get her own “happy ending” as it were considering the slightly questionable actions of our protagonists back in the last book… Definitely not as good as Maybe Someday, but it was okay. The ending was horrifically cliche though, and I plan to erase it from my memory as soon as I’ve finished writing this.
The Tenant Of Wildfell Hall by Anne Brontë
04/06/2020 – 16/06/2020
In my opinion, Anne Brontë is vastly overlooked considering she wrote “one of the first sustained feminist novels”. Whilst her more famous sisters romanticised the horrific characters of Heathcliff and Mr Rochester, Anne candidly wrote about a young woman escaping an abusive relationship in 1827. After writing such a progressive book for the time period, I feel like we’ve really failed as a society by not giving Anne Brontë the same praise as her two sisters.
The Guest List by Lucy Foley
18/06/2020 – 19/06/2020
I really loved this book, even though it was pretty jumpy and confusing at first. Obviously it was a murder mystery, but for quite a while we didn’t even know who had been killed. Once you got into it, though, you got caught in such an intricate web of whodunit. You’ve got to love it when every single character has a motive!
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
19/06/2020 – 29/06/2020
This book wasn’t entirely what I was expecting, although with it being a Brontë I should have known it would be relatively gothic. As much as I can acknowledge it was good, I wouldn’t class it as enjoyable. I definitely have a problem with the way both Charlotte and Emily romanticised their male leads considering how they were incredibly manipulative and abusive.
The Last Song by Nicholas Sparks
29/06/2020 – 30/06/2020
This is one of the few books that I’ve read after watching the adaptation, and I wasn’t totally sure how I was going to feel about it. I loved the movie and it made me cry my eyes out, and it turns out that I loved the book and it made me cry even more. The plot was really beautiful and I loved the character development. I wouldn’t say this is anything out of the ordinary for a YA book, I get the impression that some people think Nicholas Sparks is the best of the best for these types of stories, and it was good, but not that good. I also had a little trouble with the perspective, it was written in third person but I often felt like it would have been a lot more natural in first person. All in all, though, it was a really good book. I would definitely re-read.
A Court Of Thorns And Roses by Sarah J Maas
30/06/2020 – 06/07/2020
I had been putting off reading this series for years. Even though so many people raved about it, I just didn’t vibe with the synopsis. After seeing it on BookTok, though, I finally decided to give it a chance and I am so glad I did. It took me a little while to get into the story, but once we get into Prythian it starts to pick up speed. Also I apologise to myself and everyone else who reads this for being Team Tamlin…
A Court Of Mist And Fury by Sarah J Maas
07/07/2020 – 21/07/2020
Even better than the first book, and I’m fully obsessed at this point. Team Tamlin quickly turned into Tamlin The Tool, so then the proper fun began. I loved the development of Feyre being very isolated to becoming a part of the Inner Circle, and how we got to see much stronger personalities in the Night Court than there were in the Spring Court. Also Mor and Amren. Just them.
A Court Of Wings And Ruin by Sarah J Maas
21/07/2020 – 25/07/2020
Talk about an emotional rollercoaster. This book was so stressful but I loved every minute of it. A great conclusion to Feyre’s story, even though she will continue as a secondary character in the next trilogy that will follow Nesta.
A Court Of Frost And Starlight by Sarah J Maas
26/07/2020 – 27/07/2020
This novella isn’t really necessary to the plot, but it ties off any loose ends in Feyre’s story and starts setting up for Nesta’s. It’s set around the Winter Solstice which is essentially the Night Court’s version of Christmas, so it felt really festive and had a much more chilled vibe than the rest of the series.
Throne Of Glass by Sarah J Maas
28/07/2020 – 31/07/2020
An eighteen year old, smug, female assassin? You’ve got me already. I enjoyed this book, but honestly it didn’t quite live up to the sky high expectations I had considering the reputation of the series.
Crown Of Midnight by Sarah J Maas
31/07/2020 – 03/08/2020
I enjoyed this even more than the first, and started to understand the hype a bit more. In retrospect, I find it difficult to remember what went down in each book so I can’t review it that thoroughly. Note to self – review books as soon as you finish them!!
Heir Of Fire by Sarah J Maas
03/08/2020 – 15/08/2020
Sarah J Maas really has a talent for somehow turning the biggest asshole in a series into the love interest without it being weird. I only gave this 4 stars because I never get on too well with series that pick up one character and drop into a different world, because it just feels disjointed. It was still good, but not my favourite.
Queen Of Shadows by Sarah J Maas
15/08/2020 – 26/08/2020
Finally everything starts to come together! This is the book that really got me to connect with the characters and become fully invested in the outcome of the series.
Empire Of Storms by Sarah J Maas
26/08/2020 – 06/09/2020
It just gets better and better! So much happened and I can’t say anything without spoilers!
The Assassin’s Blade by Sarah J Maas
06/09/2020 – 10/09/2020
This is a set of five novellas which are all set before Throne Of Glass. It’s debatable when in the series you should read these, but you should probably read them before Empire Of Storms. I loved how we got a much more in depth look at Caelena’s backstory, especially with Sam and seeing how she ended up in Endovier.
Tower Of Dawn by Sarah J Maas
10/09/2020 – 03/10/2020
Considering the cliffhanger that Empire Of Storms left us with, the last thing I wanted to do was read a full length novel about Chaol. However everything that happens in Tower Of Dawn is integral for the plot of Kingdom Of Ash – so you can’t skip it, as much as you may want to. It was a bit slower than the previous few books, so I only gave this 4 stars.
Kingdom Of Ash by Sarah J Maas
03/10/2020 – 13/10/2020
Coming in at just under a thousand pages, this was a mammoth book and a full on stress-fest. This was the perfect way to wrap up all the different storylines with a neat bow. I can’t think of any plot holes or loose strings, which for such a crazy series is brilliant. To be completely honest, I was expecting a bit more of a dramatic ending with deaths that would emotionally crush me – and as much as I’m pleased I didn’t end up sobbing, you could also say that it was a teeny bit underwhelming in that respect.
Majesty by Katherine McGee
13/10/2020 – 15/10/2020
Alright so this is the sequel to American Royals which I read back in January, and I’ve been waiting for this to be released for what feels like forever. The previous book left us with a dramatic cliffhanger, and I had no idea how it was going to be resolved. Sequels can often be disappointing but I enjoyed this just as much, if not more, because I did not predict any of what happened. Pretty sure there won’t be any more books in this series because it was wrapped up neatly.
Broken Things by Lauren Oliver
15/10/2020 – 16/10/2020
This has been on my to-read list since it was first announced, and Lauren Oliver never disappoints. Broken Things was a great YA murder mystery. Although I did guess the outcome relatively early on, it was an enjoyable read and I gave it four stars.
Caraval by Stephanie Garber
16/10/2020 – 19/10/2020
Imagine if The Hunger Games was crossed with Alice In Wonderland on steroids. That pretty much describes Caraval. I really enjoyed the twists and turns of the story, and even though the world building was Lewis Carrol levels of chaotic, it somehow worked!
Legendary by Stephanie Garber
19/10/2020 – 29/10/2020
That ending was a plot twist. It also kind of wasn’t. But it also kind of was. I have an awful lot of mixed feelings about this. Interestingly, I think I enjoyed Legendary more than Caraval as I preferred reading from Donatella’s perspective. I’m really looking forward to the final book and seeing how all of this is going to come together.
Finale by Stephanie Garber
29/10/2020 – 07/11/2020
The closer I got to the end of the book, the more certain I was that there would not be a happy ending. When I tell you I was stressed. Anyway, I really did enjoy this series and conceptually it was incredible. I maybe didn’t develop the same emotional connection with the characters as I have done in other trilogies, but I was definitely invested in the outcome. For the overall series, I would give Caraval 4/5 stars.
Sawkill Girls by Claire Legrand
07/11/2020 – 11/11/2020
This has been on my to-read list since the beginning of the year, and I was so excited to finally get round to it. However unfortunately I was really quite disappointed. I didn’t enjoy it as much as I thought I would, and didn’t vibe with the supernatural themes.
Circe by Madeline Miller
11/11/2020 – 23/11/2020
I’m usually hooked the second anyone says “Greek mythology”, but unfortunately this just didn’t grab me. I was so excited to read it considering the rave reviews, and as much as I did find it interesting I felt that it tried to cover too much. Three stars.
Legend by Marie Lu
24/11/2020 – 28/11/2020
It has been so long since I’ve read a good dystopian novel that hooked me the way that Legend has. My only issue with the entire book is that the characters do seem a bit too young for anything to be remotely realistic. I’m really looking forward to seeing how this progresses over the next few books!
Prodigy by Marie Lu
28/11/2020 – 05/12/2020
It’s always a challenge for the second book of a dystopian series to keep the story going in an original way, but Prodigy managed to keep my attention. I almost felt that the series could be over and done with at the end of this book if a few more loose ends were tied up, so I’m really interested to see how the story manages to keep going in the next book.
Champion by Marie Lu
05/12/2020 – 12/12/2020
I’m really conflicted about this ending, but I think I liked it.
Panic by Lauren Oliver
12/12/2020 – 18/12/2020
I always have high expectations for books by Lauren Oliver, but unfortunately Panic just fell completely flat. The concept was good, but nothing about the book really hooked me. Personally, I would have found it more interesting if we had been given the tragic ending that seemed to be set up, rather than a happily ever after.
If you’ve made it to the end of this post, congratulations and thank you! Comment and let me know how many books you’ve read this year.