What to say about this past year that hasn’t already been said? As an avid twitter lurker, I’ve seen mostly negative things written about these past 12 months, and it’s no secret why this was the worst year of many people’s lives. My family has muddled through these times with a little less grace than usual, but both my husband and I are lucky enough to have desk jobs that allow us to work from home, and our kids are back in school and daycare, so I have much to be grateful for. And I know I’m not the only bookworm who is giddy with delight at the lack of reasons to leave the house; this will probably be one of the few times in my life that consistently staying home and snuggling up with books will be labelled as a good deed. Many people struggled with their reading this year, which is completely understandable given the new stresses we are dealing with, but I took advantage (and continue to take advantage) of this pause in my social calendar to hunker down and get more reading done.

I’m proud of my bookish accomplishments this year: I reached my goodreads goal of reading 105 books, worked on a refresh of this website, started a bookish newsletter and an online book club, published a few reviews and articles and got a job at Calgary Reads. Truth be told I think this was the busiest year I’ve ever had book-wise, but I’ve been able to spend lots more time with my family just playing games, putting together puzzles and cooking nice meals. I know I’m in a very privileged position to be able to say this but all things considered… 2020 was a great year for me.

I started this blog back in 2013, which seems so long ago because it was before I had kids, and sometimes I have trouble remembering what that was like. Lots of people don’t understand why I blog because it takes up so much of time, and it’s not like I get paid to write on my own website! The free books are nice, but I could always use the library if that was the issue. I do it because I love talking about the books I’ve read and I hope it encourages others to read, plus the other book reviewers I’ve met through blogging have become an important part of my online life. I guess my wish is that everyone could find a similar outlet because book blogging consistently gives me so much joy, and being able to continue with this during the pandemic is a big reason why I continue to feel so optimistic and grateful for everything and everyone I currently have in my life. Ok, enough with this wishy washy stuff, let’s get to the summary:

My Favourite Book of the Year: Wow, No Thank You by Samantha Irby

The Book I Recommended MostAnxious People by Fredrik Backman

Most Popular 2020 Review posted: From the Ashes by Jesse Thistle (this was technically posted in December 2019)

Below is the full list of books I’ve read, with links to my reviews if available. Some books I don’t review on this blog because I’ve read them for a specific organization, or had the review published in a separate media outlet. This year, I made an effort to read more books by BIPOC populations, and I’ll continue to do this as I request new books for review.

  1. Three Women by Lisa Taddeo
  2. The Man Who Played with Fire by Jan Stocklassa
  3. Chase Darkness with Me by Billy Jensen
  4. Catch and Kill by Ronan Farrow
  5. Don’t You Forget About Me by Mhairi McFarlane
  6. Starlight by Richard Wagamese
  7. The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
  8. Ducks, Newburyport by Lucy Ellmann
  9. The Farm by Joanne Ramos
  10. Pieces of Her by Karin Slaughter
  11. NDN Coping Mechanisms by Billy-Ray Belcourt
  12. Processed Cheese by Stephen Wright
  13. Relative Fortunes by Marlowe Benn
  14. The Empress of Idaho by Todd Babiak
  15. A Study in Scarlet by Arthur Conan Doyle
  16. The Sign of Four by Arthur Conan Doyle
  17. The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead
  18. Barry Sonnenfeld, Call Your Mother by Barry Sonnenfeld
  19. Bina by Anakana Schofield
  20. These Ghosts are Family by Maisy Card
  21. Kill the Mall by Pasha Malla
  22. Here I Am! by Pauline Holdstock
  23. This Has Nothing to Do With You by Lauren Carter
  24. Recipe for a Perfect Wife by Karma Brown
  25. Holding on to Normal by Alana Somerville
  26. Woman on the Edge by Samantha M. Bailey
  27. Someday Jennifer by Risto Pakarinen
  28. The Student by Cary Fagan
  29. Hideaway by Nicole Lundrigan
  30. Woke by Titania McGrath
  31. Actress by Anne Enright
  32. Perfect Tunes by Emily Gould
  33. Talking to Strangers by Marianne Boucher
  34. The Stationery Shop by Marjan Kamali
  35. Best Canadian Essays 2019-Edited by Emily Donaldson
  36. Wow, No Thank You by Samantha Irby
  37. Cutting Edge, Stories -Edited by Joyce Carol Oates
  38. The Subtweet by Vivek Shraya
  39. Songs for the End of the World by Saleema Nawaz
  40. Ridgerunner by Gil Adamson
  41. The Last High by Daniel Kalla
  42. My Dark Vanessa by Kate Elizabeth Russell
  43. How to Raise Successful People by Esther Wojcicki
  44. I’ve Been Meaning to Tell You by David Chariandy
  45. Trained to Hunt by Simon Gervais
  46. Whisper Network by Chandler Baker
  47. The Dishwasher by Stephane Larue
  48. No More Nice Girls by Lauren McKeon
  49. The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones
  50. The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel
  51. Becoming a Man by P.Carl
  52. The Union of Smokers by Paddy Scott
  53. Hello, Summer by Mary Kay Andrews
  54. All the Lost Things by Michelle Sacks
  55. Camp Girls by Iris Krasnow
  56. Conventionally Yours by Annabeth Albert
  57. Pass Me By, Gone Fishin’ by Kyle Simmers and Ryan Danny Owen
  58. The Mercies by Kiran Millwood Hargrave
  59. Long Bright River by Liz Moore
  60. The Ghost in the House by Sara O’Leary
  61. The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires by Grady Hendrix
  62. Death and the Seaside by Alison Moore
  63. You Can’t Catch Me by Catherine McKenzie
  64. Indians on Vacation by Thomas King
  65. The Jane Austen Society by Natalie Jenner
  66. The Braver Thing by Clifford Jackman
  67. Kim Jiyoung, Born 1982 by Cho Nam-Joo
  68. The Adventures of Isabel by Candas Jane Dorsey
  69. A Russian Sister by Caroline Adderson
  70. Mad Cow by Alexis Kienlen
  71. Seven Lies by Elizabeth Kay
  72. How to Raise a Reader by Pamela Paul and Maria Russo
  73. How to Pronounce Knife by Souvankahm Thammavongsa
  74. The Residence by Andrew Pyper
  75. The Children of Red Peak by Criag DiLouie
  76. Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
  77. Plain Bad Heroines by emily m. danforth
  78. Anxious People by Fredrik Backman
  79. Consider This by Chuck Palahniuk
  80. The Orphan of Cemetery Hill by Hester Fox
  81. The Beguiling by Zsuzsi Gartner
  82. Watching You Without Me by Lynn Coady
  83. In the House in the Dark of the Woods by Laird Hunt
  84. Big Friendship by Aminatou Sow and Ann Friedman
  85. Harry’s Trees by Jon Cohen
  86. A History of my Brief Body by Billy-Ray Belcourt
  87. White Ivy by Susie Yang
  88. Rabbit Foot Bill by Helen Humphreys
  89. Calm Christmas and a Happy New Year by Beth Kempton
  90. One More for Christmas by Sarah Morgan
  91. The Atlas of Christmas by Alex Palmer
  92. El Jefe; The Stalking of Chapo Guzman by Alan Feuer
  93. How to Eat Your Christmas Tree by Julia Georgallis
  94. Why the Rock Falls by J.E. Barnard
  95. Vermin by Lori Hahnel
  96. The Sea Gate by Jane Johnson
  97. God Loves Hair by Vivek Shraya
  98. The Finder by Will Ferguson
  99. Group by Christie Tate
  100. The 19th Christmas by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
  101. The Paris Library by Janet Skeslien Charles
  102. A Dog’s Perfect Christmas by W. Bruce Cameron
  103. The Gucci Mane Guide to Greatness by Gucci Mane
  104. The 2020 Short Story Advent Calendar
  105. Impossible Parenting by Olivia Scobie

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