For the 2020 favourites post I asked my closest friends to join me and share their favourite books of the year. The result is an extraordinary reading list with inspiring fiction and non-fiction books, a list infinitely better than what I could have written only based on my 2020 books.
Dear Cathleen, Cristina, Diana, Maren, Monica, and Roxana – thank you so much for sharing your best reads with me! I haven’t read most of the books you picked as favourites, so I’ll definitely catch up in 2021 😀
§ On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong
The debut novel by poet Ocean Vuong, this book is written in the form of a letter from a Vietnamese American son to his illiterate mother.
§ The Midnight Library by Matt Haig
In The Midnight Library Matt Haig depicts the story of a wondering soul full of regrets who has the chance to learn by living the different ramifications of her life, something that everyone wished for at some point in life.
§ Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Americanah tells the story of a young Nigerian woman who immigrates to the United States to attend university. A powerful story of race and identity.
§ Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi
Spanning on more than 100 years, Homegoing (my review) tells the story of multiple generations descending from two sisters from Ghana – one marries a British Governor, while the other is enslaved.
§ Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut
The book is a manifesto against the war, starting with the bombing of Dresden in World War II. The story is told slowly and nonchalantly, through the eyes of a prisoner of war who randomly travels to the past and to the future.
§ Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman
Norse Mythology is a collection of stories of Nordic gods, giants, elves and other beings. If you are an expat living in a Nordic country this book is a great way to get a little closer to the local culture.
§ Tomorrow I Was Always a Lion by Arnhild Lauveng
A book about schizophrenia written by Norwegian Arnhild Lauveng who had schizophrenia for 10 years and managed to be completely “free” of the illness. Today Lauveng works as a psychologist.
§ No Rules Rules by Reed Hastings and Erin Meyer
A book that presents insights into Netflix culture, a culture built around encouraging independent decision-making, sharing information openly, keeping only the highly effective people, and … avoiding rules.
You can find out more by also checking the company’s culture deck here.
§ Let My People Go Surfing by Yvon Chouinard
Written by the founder of Patagonia, one of the most environmentally responsible companies, this book is “a sincere attempt to address the core tension between the market’s demand for endless growth and the planet’s need for a break”.
§ Greenlights by Matthew McConaughey
According to the author, Greenlights is a collection of “stories, prayers, poems, people and places and a whole bunch of bumper stickers”. An alternative to reading the book is listening to the podcasts of McConaughey.
I hope this list of favourites is as inspiring for you as it is for me! What were your favourite books read in 2020?
‘Till next year … happy reading!