20 books for 2020

April 27, 2020

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As the New Years bells were preparing to chime I set about goal planning, both for the year ahead but also more manageable monthly goals. One of the things that I really wanted to achieve this year was to read more. With the introduction of a Kindle Paperwhite which I had treated myself to at Christmas.

As a teenager, I read many, many books. Often re-reading ones that I fell head over heels in love with the storyline and the characters. With a library reserve list always being added to. However, over the years I have favoured watching movies over reading books. The ability to start and finish within an hour or two fitted perfectly within a busy lifestyle. But as the saying goes ‘the best things in life are worth waiting for’. Which goes hand in hand with devouring a book that might take a day, two days or even a week to get through.

With this in mind, I set myself a target of reading 20 books in 2020. Something I have managed to achieve before the end of April – I’m really quite proud of myself. In case you are also on a quest to read more this year, or simply looking for reading list inspiration. I have made a note of all the books that I’ve read for you to take a look at…

The Note – Zoë Folbigg

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Based on a true story it beautifully follows the life of Maya Flowers who meets The One on her train journey to work one day. Eventually, Maya plucks up the courage to give Train Man a note asking him out for a drink. Following the highs and lows of the journey and whether or you can really find the love of your life on your morning commute.

Available from Amazon in Paperback, Kindle Store and Audiobook.

Everything I Know About Love – Dolly Alderton

Rating: 4 out of 5.

One that I’d seen a few of my friends had read and opted to give it a go. A book full of different chapters of a life lived falling in and out of love. Themed parties, getting drunk and the meaning of friendship. One to make you laugh and cry.

Available from Amazon in Paperback, Hardcover, Kindle Store and Audiobook.

One Day In December – Josie Silver

Rating: 5 out of 5.

A book that I’d started reading last year but never got very far and forgot all about it. Popping up on my Kindle books list spurred me on to start from the beginning. A beautiful story following the lives of Laurie and Jack who met by chance – but it’s only a fleeting glance at a bus stop. Circumstances take a turn when they meet again. An opportunity to follow their loves through the highs and lows of love and friendship.

Available from Amazon in Paperback, Kindle Store and Audiobook

Things We Never Said – Nick Alexander

Rating: 5 out of 5.

When Sean’s wife Catherine dies she leaves behind a series of tapes for him to listen. An opportunity for her to leave behind the things she never said. Including the good things and the bad, in order to give a full insight into the life of someone, he potentially thought he knew everything about.

Available from Amazon in Paperback, Kindle Store and Audiobook

We Met in December – Rosie Curtis

Rating: 5 out of 5.

A story unfolds over the course of a year. Meeting in December as they move into a shared hose, Hess and Alex each have an instant attraction to each other, however, never quite let their feelings known. Follow them throughout the year as they walk around London discovering the hidden treasures, change careers and navigate romantics aquaintances.

Available from Amazon in Paperback, Kindle Store and Audiobook

The Wedding Date – Zara Stoneley

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Thinking that this would be a slight variation to the popular The Wedding date film (which I love). However, it soon became apparent that whilst there was a wedding and a need for a date. The storylines and characters were very different. I loved this book!

Available from Amazon in Paperback and Kindle Store.

The Two Lives of Lydia Bird – Josie Silver

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I’m torn as to how I feel about this book. It follows the journey of Lydia Bird who’s fiance dies in a car crash on her birthday. Switching between her life awake and the alternative reality she dreams whilst she sleeps – with the help of pink sleeping pills given to her by the doctor. Which made me uncomfortable, however, I can understand why she would want to dream about what life could have been like.

Available from Amazon in Paperback, Hardcover, Kindle Store and Audiobook.

Will You? – S J Crabb

Rating: 5 out of 5.

An easy read that takes you back to your high school crush and the ‘what if I met him now’ scenario. However, what if you bumped into them as they opened a rival store across the street? This sparks the start of an unlikely fake relationship. I did wonder if they would be a few more twists within the book but actually it is a good read without too much drama.

Available from Amazon in Paperback and Kindle Store.

It’s Not Me, It’s You – Mhairi McFarlane

Rating: 5 out of 5.

A rollercoaster of a journey for Delia thinks her life is moving on to the next stage of marriage and possibly a family. However, a text sent to the wring person reveals that her life as she knew it was not as easy going as she imagined. This starts her off on a path to finding the old Delia before Paul, before the drama and whether or not she is able to return to the life she thought she was destined for.

Available from Amazon in Paperback, Hardcover and Kindle Store.

It Would Be Wrong to Steal My Sister’s Boyfriend – Sophie Ranald

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Sitting on the sofa wearing her comfy’s and not even a bra, Ellie’s world would take a turn when her younger sister Rose brings home her new boyfriend, Oliver. Ellie is instantly attracted to him and decides that taking more care with her appearance might make him notice her. A journey through the rights and wrongs of relationships and other feelings.

Available from Amazon in Paperback and Kindle Store

The Last Piece of My Heart – Paige Toon

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Bridget is a travel writer who has an idea for a book about regaining the pieces of her heart back from the people she has loved in the past. The idea is that she can then give the biggest part of her heart to her one true love. Her publishers don’t seem convinced by the idea, however, offer her a deal to ghostwrite a sequel for a novel written by a writer who passed away before she was able to finish it. This sparks a journey to Cornwall and into the life of Charlie (the writer’s widow) and their baby daughter April. A page-turner that I didn’t want to finish, although the ending might be a little predictable it didn’t make it any less wonderful.

Available from Amazon in Paperback, Kindle Store and Audiobook

In Search of a Love Story by Rachel Schurig

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The Prenup by Lauren Layne

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Ten years ago Charlotte and Colin signed a prenup ahead of their marriage of convenience. Put together by Charlotte’s brother to protect the inheritance that Charlotte was going to receive upon getting married. Colin, on the other hand, was gaining his green card so both parties stood to gain what they wanted from the ‘marriage’. However, Colin contacts Charlotte after ten years looking to gain a divorce, although there was a little surprise within the prenup that they signed – they have to live together for three months before they are able to get a divorce. A little joke clause added by her brother which he thought was funny at the time.

In order to fulfil the prenup clause, Charlotte moves into Colin’s apartment to ride out the three months of living together. However, they are both in for some surprises along the way.

Available from Amazon in Paperback and Kindle Store.

The Postcard by Zoë Folbigg

Rating: 3 out of 5.

The sequel to The Note I hoped that this would continue the beautiful love story between Maya and James.

After meeting and falling in love Maya and James embark on a year out travelling together. Maya has landed a magazine column journalling their travels with Train Man. However, it is clear that the magical year travelling is not all it’s cracked up to be. Maya is living in hope that James will propose, whilst James is thinking about all the photography jobs he has given up to take this year out.

The story didn’t have the same feel from the first book, with the story bland and rushed in places.

Available to buy from Amazon in Paperback, Kindle Store and Audiobook.

Us, in Pieces by Tasha Cotter

Rating: 5 out of 5.

What happens if you fall in love with your college best friend, never tell them and then don’t have any contact for the best part of ten years?

Introducing Adin who met and fell in love with his best friend Lilly whilst they were at college. However, Lilly never returned to Ohio University after the first year. Not that this stopped Adin thinking about her, wondering where she was, what she was doing etc. A chance conversation with another college friend leads Adin to find out that Lilly is in the middle of getting divorced. Insist makes him call her parents home in Beaufort and leads to their first meeting in almost ten years. It doesn’t go well. What follows is a series of emails between them, their friends and family.

With the opportunity to see how things unfold from both Adin and Lilly’s perspective. Flashbacks to their time in college and the ‘what could have been’ moments. The story starts slowly, however, I was soon swept up in the rollercoaster of their re-acquaintance – devoured in just one day.

The Switch by Beth O’Leary

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Leena was named after the grandma Eileen, at the time they thought that grandma was going to pass away but as she survived. Having two Eileen’s in the family became confusing so younger Eileen switch to Leena. The bond between grandma and granddaughter goes beyond just sharing a name despite living different lives miles apart.

Leena is living in London mourning the loss of her younger sister, who suddenly finds herself with a two-month leave of absence from work. Whilst Eileen lives in a small village in Yorkshire discovering what life is like after her husband Wade left her for a younger woman. Committed to being chair of committees, driving the bingo van and very much part of village life.

A chance conversation about how life could have been for Eileen had she taken a job in London before she met Wade gives Leena an idea to switch lives for two months. Grandma will live in London and discover the dating scene, check out all the places she wanted to do as a young lady, Whilst Leena will move to Yorkshire and discover whether she can adjust to a slower, tech-free life. Taking on her Grandma’s duties, all carefully noted down in a file which her Grandma has left behind for her.

A charming story of discovering what was missing in either of their lives and building relationships.

Available to buy from Amazon in Hardback, Paperback, Kindle Store and Audiobook.

My Year Of Saying no by Maxine Morrey

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Meet Lottie a Virtual Personal Assistant, who loves her pj’s a little too much but when you work from home does it really matter? After suffering heartbreak in the past her best friend convinces her to a year of saying yes. Yes to new opportunities, yes to new adventures and yes to dates that she’d rather not do.

The story starts at the end of this year with her first ‘no’ experience. Something which kick starts a year of saying no. The first person she tells is her client Seb via video chat. Over the last few years they have become friends as well as employer/employee. Although there is a complication, Lottie has a little bit of a crush on Seb. Of course, she couldn’t, wouldn’t do anything about it as he is a client. Her biggest client, in fact, so it would be both personally and financially stupid to pursue this little crush.

Follow Lottie through out the year, as she gets a dog, meets Seb in real life and says no to the things she doesn’t want to do (and even some of the things she’d love to do).

Devoured this book in a day, too eager to see what happened next with Lottie and Seb. The chemistry between them leaping off the page. It had me laughing, cringing and crying along with them.

Available to buy from Amazon in Paperback, Kindle Store and Audiobook.

Maybe One Day by Debbie Johnson

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Jess comes from a family with a stiff upper lip, one where emotions and feelings are things that are not talked about or expressed. The story starts as Jess attends her mother’s funeral. A small, unemotional affair with no wake or celebration of life afterwards. Simply returning home with her cousin they decide after a pink gin or two to start clearing some of the items on the house.

Starting in the attic which was her mother’s place for hiding things away. They discover a box full of cards, postcards and letters. Which after confessing to her younger cousin about a daughter he knew nothing about. Along with a period of time in a mental hospital. Sparks a journey of finding the love of her life, who she thought had left her abandoned her. However, her parents had kept him away whilst she was ill.

Retracing the places he had sent letters from she embarks on a road trip to see what happened to him.

One to read with tissues handy as you learn about Jess and Joe’s hardships. As well as what has happened in the seventeen years since she last saw him.

Available to buy from Amazon in Paperback, Kindle Store and Audiobook.

We Just Clicked by Anna Bell

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Izzy has dreams of becoming an influencer, something she confides in her brother as he selects an engagement ring for his fiancé. He tells her that she should follow her dream. However, that is the last conversation that they have. Ben sadly passes away in his sleep from an undiagnosed heart condition. Upon hearing the news Izzy rushes home but is overcome with emotion. Luckily a fellow commuter takes her under his wing and ensures that she gets home safely.

Two years have passed since her brother’s death and whilst her Instagram following is slowly growing she’s still working a day job in insurance to pay the bills. A chance Interaction with a colleague leads to a fake romance – because you can’t believe everything you see on Instagram. The plan is to date for a while and then break up once they had increased their followings and had brand sign-ups.

Bumping into the helpful commuter, Aidan, who puts Izzy into a spin. Not only is she grateful for him helping her but she finds herself falling in love despite being very much happy to be single. Is it possible to have a fake life on social media and a different real life?

Available to buy from Amazon in Paperback, Kindle Store and Audiobook.

The Wedding Favour by Lilly Bartlett

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Nelly is about to live the dream. Not only is she getting married but has landed herself a magazine series to cover the lead up to the wedding and the wedding itself. Perfect for her hopes of leaving her insurance job behind and becoming a full-time influencer. Sound wonderful right? Just one thing, with three months to go to the big day her fiancee decides he needs to think and wants a break to see whether this is truly what he wants.

With her love life falling apart as well as her future job goals, no to mention the money she has paid in deposits from the magazine. Nelly wonders how she is going to navigate through the future. An after work drink leads her to meet Rafael who works for the same company as her. Although he is face’s returning to his niave Columbia as his visa is due to expire. Nelly suddenly has a thought to help them both out. They should get married, Rafael will get his visa and Nelly won’t have to repay the magazine plus can fake a new relationship to win more followers.

Sounds simple? The course of true love never did run smooth, even when it is just an arrangement.

Available to buy from Amazon in Paperback and Kindle Store.

Time for another 20 books in 2020?

1 Comment

  • Fiona jk42 April 27, 2020 at 9:02 pm

    I used to read on the train to and from work. Then when I stopped working, I found it hard to fit reading into my new schedule, as I always seemed to have other things to do. But I missed reading, so now I make sure that I read while I have lunch.

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