The 2010s were filled with excellent reading, from YA and fiction, to fantasy and sci-fi. Books lovers had many choices when visiting their local library or bookstore.
As 2020 begins, take a look back at the best books of the decade that defined literature.
The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin (2014)
The story follows the titular character through grieving his dead wife, poor sales at his bookstore, and solving a mystery in which a rare collection of poems by Edgar Allen Poe is stolen. Any novel that includes a romp through a bookstore is a sure win among bookworms.
The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah (2015)
Vianne Mauriac is left behind in 1939 France as her husband goes to fight in World War II. The Nazis invade her country, and she is forced to house an enemy soldier, her every move under constant surveillance. Meanwhile, her 18-year-old sister Isabelle runs recklessly into the Revolution against the Nazis.
The Selection by Kiera Cass (2012)
The first in a series about a society that pits young women against one another as they vie for the affections of Prince Maxon, Cass’s young adult dystopian novel contains elements of romance, science fiction, and fantasy. It follows America Singer as she becomes one of the Selected, forced to turn her back on her secret love back home.
Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward (2011)
This heart-wrenching book follows a family of children with an absent mother and alcoholic father as they struggle to survive everyday life when Hurricane Katrina hits. Esch is fourteen and pregnant, Skeetah tries to save his pitbull’s babies, and the two youngest, Randall and Junior, simply try to make their presence known in the parentless family.
A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara (2015)
Yanagihara’s literary novel about four friends who move to New York to create a life is considered a must-read among the canon of queer books. As the four friends finish college and go off to start their careers, they become stronger together every day, but always getting darker, and one of the friends descends into a chaotic spiral brought on by unspoken childhood trauma.
Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates (2015)
Coates gained traction as a reporter at The Atlantic, but his memoir turned him into a household name. This autobiography explores America’s history and how entangled it is with race. His smart essay writing comes through with his signature prose that forces readers to think beyond the page.
Cover image: @_myfictionalworld