One of the most exciting things about a new year is perusing the many lists of new releases expected to come out. There are quite a few that we’re looking forward to reading in 2020…
♥ Books We’re Both Excited About ♥
The Glass Hotel, Emily St. John Mandel (Feb 15)
In this captivating story of crisis and survival, Emily St. John Mandel takes readers through often hidden landscapes: campgrounds for the near-homeless, underground electronica clubs, the business of international shipping, service in luxury hotels, and life in a federal prison. Rife with unexpected beauty, The Glass Hotel is a captivating portrait of greed and guilt, love and delusion, ghosts and unintended consequences, and the infinite ways we search for meaning in our lives.
Kim – Station Eleven left me with a lot to think about so Emily St. John Mandel has been on my radar ever since. Her writing is so intricate and descriptive. I’m really excited about this new thriller that sounds mysterious and a little bit haunting.
Tanya -The synopsis for the Glass Hotel made me want to read it. And like Kim, I read Station Eleven, but I didn’t love it as much as everyone else. But the world building was insanely good, so I’m ready to dive into another book by Mandel.
The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes (Hunger Games #0), Suzanne Collins (May 19)
The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes will revisit the world of Panem sixty-four years before the events of The Hunger Games, starting on the morning of the reaping of the Tenth Hunger Games.
Kim– I can’t resist another trip into Hunger Games territory. This book takes place in Panem 64 years before Hunger Games- so no Katniss and Peeta, but I’m still interested in this world and reading more about it. There’s been a lot of speculation about the characters and plot. I’m excited to see what it’s actually all about.
Tanya– The Hunger Games series brought me back to reading – like it did for so many others – so I cannot wait to delve back into this World one more time.
Chosen Ones, Veronica Roth (April 7)
A decade ago near Chicago, five teenagers defeated the otherworldly enemy known as the Dark One. Sloane, Matt, Ines, Albie, and Esther had been brought together by a clandestine government agency because one of them was fated to be the “Chosen One,” prophesied to save the world. With the goal achieved, humankind celebrated the victors and began to mourn their lost loved ones. Ten years later, though the champions remain celebrities, the world has moved forward and a whole, younger generation doesn’t seem to recall the days of endless fear. But Sloane remembers and it turns out the Dark One was never really gone.
Kim – I’d file this under “I’m curious” because I haven’t read anything from Roth since the Divergent series which ended up totally tanking for me. This is supposed to be her first ‘adult’ novel. It sounds interesting so I think I’d give it a try.
Tanya – I had the same thoughts as Kim about the Divergent series, so while the last book in the trilogy didn’t thrill me, I did love the first 2, so I’m looking forward to reading Veronica Roth again.
☙ On Kim’s Release Radar ☙
Aurora Burning – Aurora Cycle #2, Amie Kauffman & Jay Kristoff (May 5, 2020)
First, the bad news: an ancient evil—you know, your standard consume-all-life-in-the-galaxy deal—is about to be unleashed. The good news? Squad 312 is standing by to save the day. They’ve just got to take care of a few small distractions first.
I listened to Aurora Rising earlier this year. It was a solid YA sci-fi book and I really enjoyed it. I wouldn’t say it’s the best of the author’s work, but I’d still like to find out what happens to the crew next so I’m planning to read it.
Network Effect – Murderbot #5, Martha Wells (May 5, 2020)
You know that feeling when you’re at work, and you’ve had enough of people, and then the boss walks in with yet another job that needs to be done right this second or the world will end, but all you want to do is go home and binge your favorite shows? And you’re a sentient murder machine programmed for destruction? Congratulations, you’re Murderbot. Come for the pew-pew space battles, stay for the most relatable A.I. you’ll read this century.
This series of novellas have been so fun to read. They’re short and fast paced and they’ve broken up long stretches of reading time for me. BUT! this one is supposed to be a full length, stand alone novel! I’m so here for this. I love Murderbot so much!
Clap When You Land, Elizabeth Acevedo (May 14, 2020)
Camino Rios lives for the summers when her father visits her in the Dominican Republic. But this time, on the day when his plane is supposed to land, Camino arrives at the airport to see crowds of crying people…In New York City, Yahaira Rios is called to the principal’s office, where her mother is waiting to tell her that her father, her hero, has died in a plane crash. Separated by distance – and Papi’s secrets – the two girls are forced to face a new reality in which their father is dead and their lives are forever altered.
The Poet X was one of my favorite reads of 2019. This time she’s written a dual narrative novel set in both New York City and the Dominican Republic. The synopsis looks intriguing (and look at that gorgeous cover) and I’m betting the book is just as thoughtful as The Poet X.
Stormsong – The Kingston Cycle #2, C.L. Polk (Feb 11, 2020)
Dame Grace Hensley helped her brother Miles undo the atrocity that stained her nation, but now she has to deal with the consequences. With the power out in the dead of winter and an uncontrollable sequence of winter storms on the horizon, Aeland faces disaster. Grace has the vision to guide her parents to safety, but a hostile queen and a ring of rogue mages stand in the way of her plans. There’s revolution in the air, and any spark could light the powder. What’s worse, upstart photojournalist Avia Jessup draws ever closer to secrets that could topple the nation, and closer to Grace’s heart.
Witchmark was such an incredible debut. I loved the Edwardian England setting and want to revisit this world sometime soon.
★ On Tanya’s Release Radar ★
The City We Became, N.K. Jemisin (Mar. 26, 2020)
Every city has a soul. Some are as ancient as myths, and others are as new and destructive as children. New York City? She’s got five. But every city also has a dark side. A roiling, ancient evil stirs beneath the earth, threatening to destroy the city and her five protectors unless they can come together and stop it once and for all.
Jemisin’s Broken Earth trilogy was fantastic, so her next release must be read as soon as it comes out.
If It Bleeds (Holly Gibney), Stephen King (May 5, 2020)
News people have a saying: ‘If it bleeds, it leads’. And a bomb at Albert Macready Middle School is guaranteed to lead any bulletin. Holly Gibney of the Finders Keepers detective agency is working on the case of a missing dog – and on her own need to be more assertive – when she sees the footage on TV. But when she tunes in again, to the late-night report, she realizes there is something not quite right about the correspondent who was first on the scene. So begins ‘If It Bleeds’, a stand-alone sequel to the No. 1 bestselling The Outsider featuring the incomparable Holly on her first solo case – and also the riveting title story in Stephen King’s brilliant new collection. Dancing alongside are three more long stories – ‘Mr Harrigan’s Phone’, ‘The Life of Chuck’ and ‘Rat’.
I’ve loved the Stephen King books I’ve read in recent years, and I’m pumped to see the Holly Gibney character back in another book. We were first introduced to her in the Bill Hodges series. Then she made an appearance in The Outsiders, and here she is again in this collection of “long stories.”
The House in the Cerulean Sea, TJ Klune (Mar. 17, 2020)
Linus Baker leads a quiet, solitary life. At forty, he lives in a tiny house with a devious cat and his old records. As a Case Worker at the Department in Charge Of Magical Youth, he spends his days overseeing the well-being of children in government-sanctioned orphanages. When Linus is unexpectedly summoned by Extremely Upper Management he’s given a curious and highly classified assignment: travel to Marsyas Island Orphanage, where six dangerous children reside: a gnome, a sprite, a wyvern, an unidentifiable green blob, a were-Pomeranian, and the Antichrist. Linus must set aside his fears and determine whether or not they’re likely to bring about the end of days.
I don’t remember how I came across this book, but it’s by an author that’s new to me. The cover is gorgeous, and the summary makes it sound wonderfully magical.
Agency, William Gibson (Jan. 21, 2020)
They call Verity ‘the app-whisperer’, and she’s just been hired by a shadowy start-up to evaluate a pair-of-glasses-cum-digital-assistant called Eunice. Only Eunice has other ideas. Pretty soon, Verity knows that Eunice is smarter than anyone she’s ever met, conceals some serious capabilities and is profoundly paranoid – which is just as well since suddenly some bad people are after Verity. Meanwhile, in a post-apocalyptic London a century from now, PR fixer Wilf Netherton is tasked by all-seeing policewoman Ainsley Lowbeer with interfering in the alternative past in which Verity and Eunice exist. It appears something nasty is about to happen there – and fixing it will require not only Eunice’s unique human-AI skillset but also a little help from the future. A future which Verity soon fears may never be.
Gibson is another author that is new to me, but ooh this sounds good. It’s been a hot minute since I’ve read anything like this – cyberbunk science fiction, so count me in!
What books are you most excited to read in 2020?