The Best Books Library Staff Read in 2020

We here at the library know a thing or two about books, and we often like to take them for a test drive before making recommendations to our patrons, friends, or family. We decided to compile a list of the best books we read throughout this unprecedented year. Some of us found solace in classic favorites that have withstood the test of time, while others dove into the latest and greatest new novels of 2020. We escaped into the following stories and hope that you, too, enjoy exploring the wonderful worlds of these fantastic reads.

Every book is available for check out at your Laramie County Library System so you can easily add these titles to your 2020 reading list or wait and turn new pages in the New Year.


The Color Purple by Alice Walker

Contemporary Fiction
Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Anxious People by Fredrik Backman
Ask Again, Yes by Mary Beth Keane
Beartown by Fredrik Backman
Monogamy by Sue Miller
Nothing to See Here by Kevin Wilson
Right After the Weather by Carol Anshaw
Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward
There There by Tommy Orange
Us Against You (Beartown #2) by Fredrik Backman
When All Is Said by Anne Griffin

Christian Fiction
A Merry Heart (Book #1 of the Brides of Lancaster County Series) by Wanda E. Brunstetter
Courageous by Randy Alcorn
Risen: The Novelization of the Major Motion Picture by Angela Elwell Hunt
The Ebb Tide by Beverly Lewis
The Memory House by Rachel Hauck
The Secrets of Paper and Ink by Lindsay Harrel
The Thorn (Book #1 of the Rose Trilogy) by Beverly Lewis

Circe by Madeline Miller
House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas
Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
The Empress of Salt and Fortune by Nghi Vo
The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

Historical Fiction
A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles
Deacon King Kong by James McBride
Shuggie Bain by Douglas Stuart
The Book of Longings by Sue Monk Kidd
The Book of Lost Friends by Lisa Wingate
The Extraordinary Life of Sam Hell by Robert Dugoni
The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah
The Indigo Girl by Natasha Boyd
The Island of Sea Women
by Lisa See
The Mirror and the Light (Book #3 of the Thomas Cromwell Trilogy) by Hilary Mantel
The Night Watchman by Louise Erdrich
This Tender Land by William Kent Krueger

Graphic Novels
The Boy, The Mole, The Fox and The Horse by Charlie Mackesy
Watchmen by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons

The Institute by Stephen King

Juvenile Fiction
Hollowpox: The Hunt for Morrigan Crow by Jessica Townsend
Mañanaland by Pam Muñoz Ryan
Stand Up, Yumi Chung! by Jessica Kim
Stella by Starlight by Sharon M. Draper
The Line Tender by Kate Allen

Long Range by C.J. Box
Remain Silent by Susie Steiner
Spirit of Steamboat by Craig Johnson
The 7 ½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton
The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James
Troubled Blood by Robert Galbraith
Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

Picture Books
A Stone Sat Still by Brendan Wenzel
Ball & Balloon by Rob Sanders
The Undefeated by Kwame Alexander
What’s Cooking at 10 Garden Street? by Felicita Sala

Political Fiction
The Plot Against America by Philip Roth

Bridge to Haven by Francine Rivers
Glory Road by Laura K. Denton

Science Fiction
Dune by Frank Herbert
Ink & Sigil by Kevin Hearne
The Midnight Library by Matt Haig
The Passage (Book #1 of The Passage Trilogy) by Justin Cronin
The Testaments
(The Handmaid’s Tale #2) by Margaret Atwood

American Dirt by Jeanine Cummins
Camino Island by John Grisham
Invisible Girl by Lisa Jewell

Young Adult Fiction
Beyond the Summerland (Book #1 of The Blinding of the Blade Series) by L.B. Graham  
Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia
I Am Still Alive by Kate Alice Marshall
Legendborn by Tracy Deonn
Midnight Sun by Stephenie Meyer
Shadow of the Fox Trilogy by Julie Kagawa
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
They Went Left by Monica Hesse

A Bookshop in Berlin: The Rediscovered Memoir of One Woman’s Harrowing Escape from the Nazis by Françoise Frenkel
Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah
Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson
Clean: The New Science of Skin by James Hamblin
Fallout: The Hiroshima Cover-up and the Reporter who Revealed It to the World by Lesley M.M. Blume
Get Well Soon: History’s Worst Plagues and the Heroes Who Fought Them by Jennifer Wright
Hidden Valley Road: Inside the Mind of An American Family by Robert Kolker
Me by Elton John
Our Time Is Now: Power, Purpose, and the Fight for a Fair America by Stacey Abrams
Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus: A Devout Muslim Encounters Christianity by Nabeel Qureshi
Somebody to Love: The Life, Death and Legacy of Freddie Mercury by Matt Richards
Stillness is the Key by Ryan Holiday
The Genius of Birds by Jennifer Ackerman
The Hilarious World of Depression by John Moe
The Infinite Game by Simon Sinek
The Magnolia Story by Chip and Joanna Gaines
The Soul of an Octopus: A Surprising Exploration into the Wonder of Consciousness by Sy Montgomery
Think and Eat Yourself Smart: A Neuroscience Approach to a Sharper Mind and Healthier Life by Dr. Caroline Leaf
Unbroken: A World War II Airman’s Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand
Voices from Chernobyl by Svetlana Aleksievich
We Keep the Dead Close: A Murder at Harvard and a Half Century of Silence by Becky Cooper