Here are some of my favorite books I read in 2020. Yes, as long time blog followers know, I do love to read and post about books and I get lots of reading ideas from your blog reviews.
My favorite book year I read in 2020 is "The Splendid and the Vile" by Erik Larson. Winston Churchill's fearless character and brilliant mind meant he was the right and perhaps only leader in the UK equipped to lead the fight in World War II and to bravely encourage his people during the brutal Blitz. He would walk London before, during and after attacks, and people would mob him and cheer. This book covers one year during the Blitz. It was so well written I did not want this book to end, but I also would love Larson to write a second book about this time period continuing on.
"A Dangerous Man" by Robert Crais. For me, this is the best novel in the series and is number 18 of 18, and I did not want to put it down. Elvis Cole and Joe Pike, two men skilled in bringing criminals to justice, especially where the law can't reach, are in top form in this book. They are friends who have saved each others' lives more than once, and will always immediately help each other. Joe has worked for the government to save hostages in Africa, etc. and uses his skills freelance in the L.A. of today. Elvis is a private investigator. In "A Dangerous Man" a young woman is kidnapped and they come to her aid.
"Vittoria Cottage" by D.E. Stevenson. I like this author a lot and bought the next one, "Music In the Hills" featuring some of these same characters. The setting is a small town and farms in the Scottish Borders. Stevenson wrote this book in 1951 and said that she received letters from readers all over the world who told her that her books helped them through troubles and loneliness. Perfect books for these times, I think. Stevenson also said that she answered all the letters, what a sweetheart. Like C.S. Lewis did. There is a wonderful publishing entity, The Furrowed Middlebrow, that published these two books and is bringing many more wonderful books back in print.
"Clementine: The Life of Mrs. Winston Churchill" by Sonia Purnell. Lady Clementine was a strong, elegant, gifted, and giving woman. I learned while reading that her name is pronounced clem-in-teen. The photos in this biography are a big plus. We learn a lot about Lady Clementine, her husband Winston Churchill and their children, the times and their lifestyle and well known friends. Fascinating family and book.
The Portrait by Antoine Laurain. A brilliant first novel or novella, written in 2007. An art collector in Paris makes a brilliant find: a portrait from the 1700s of a count. The young collector recognizes himself in the portrait as he looks exactly like the subject. He finds clues to investigate if he is related to the Count, or possibly IS the Count, and he finds and visits the family estate. It is very mysterious and I found it delightful.
For a sense of joy I bought a dear book titled "The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse" by Charlie Mackesy. For beautiful black and white sketches and some with delicate color, and wise words, you too may like this book.
A book that I love as I am in the second half of my life is "Falling Upward: A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life" by Richard Rohr, a Franciscan priest and teacher for more than 40 years. He is a true elder, in the sense of wise and kind teacher, and has founded a place in the Southwest for prayer, meditation and action. I like how he writes that the first half of our life is for building and finding who we are and the second half is for going deeper and growing in our faith.
Let me know in comments what your recent favorite books are. I love your tips and though my TBR shelves are overflowing, I am always ready to find room for one more. Or put one on my Kindle.