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TS’s Top 20 Books Read in 2020

TS’s Top 20 Books Read in 2020


2020 has been such a strange, stressful and complicated year.  I took a one-year sabbatical leave from work from mid-2019 and managed to do quite a bit of travelling for about six months before the world got completely turned upside down.  I’ve read/listen over 120 books this year, 73 of which was completed during the first half when I wasn’t working and the entire world was on lockdown.  Getting back to work during the second half in the midst of a global pandemic and a new challenging role did affect my ability to read and also write reviews on a regular basis.

Despite 2020 being such a watershed/dumpster year, it’s been an incredible one for my reading as I’ve completed a lot books ranging from great to masterpieces.  In fact, I can’t remember the last time I’ve added so many books onto my favourites shelf (many of which were from the same series).  If you’re curious/interested, you also can see my year in books for 2020 right here.

Similar to my previous list, I do not limit this to only books released this year.  There are simply too many great books that have been published prior and that I’ve yet to read, so there will always be older books included.  Below are the parameters that I’ve set for the list.

  • Rereads don’t count
  • One book per author
  • Not limited to books which are released this year.

None of these are ranked except for the top five.  The rest, I’ve listed them in the chronological order of when I’ve read them this year.  Almost all of these have been reviewed by me on Novel Notions and Goodreads, albeit some are quite brief.

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Petrik’s Top 20 Books of the Year (2020)

Petrik’s Top 20 Books of the Year (2020)

The featured image above was specifically designed by Felix Ortiz for Novel Notions’ Top 20 Lists. Check out his portfolio, he’s brilliant.


This list is also available on my Booktube Channel if that’s what you preferred: https://youtu.be/1gXaV7SQVio

 

Click here if you want to see the list of all the books I’ve read this year: Petrik’s Year in Books (2020)

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Book Review: A Fool’s Hope (The Last War, #2) by Mike Shackle

Book Review: A Fool’s Hope (The Last War, #2) by Mike Shackle

I have a Booktube channel now! Subscribe here: https://www.youtube.com/petrikleo

ARC provided by the publisher—Gollancz—in exchange for an honest review.

Cover illustration by: Tomas Almeida

A Fool’s Hope by Mike Shackle

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: The Last War (Book #2 of 3)

Genre: Fantasy, Epic fantasy, Grimdark Fantasy

Pages: 608 pages

Published: 3rd December 2020 by Gollancz


A Fool’s Hope wonderfully surprised me; it is one of the finest middle installment I’ve ever read.

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Book Review: The Crippled God (Malazan Book of the Fallen, #10) by Steven Erikson

Book Review: The Crippled God (Malazan Book of the Fallen, #10) by Steven Erikson

The Crippled God by Steven Erikson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars.

Series: Malazan Book of the Fallen (Book 10 of 10)

Genre: Epic fantasy, grimdark fantasy, fantasy

First published:  March 2011 by Bantam (UK) and Tor (US)


The Crippled God is a breathtaking conclusion to an outstanding series; Malazan Book of the Fallen is a masterpiece of its genre and has affirmed its place as my favourite epic grimdark fantasy series.

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Book Review: The Trouble With Peace (The Age of Madness, #2) by Joe Abercrombie

Book Review: The Trouble With Peace (The Age of Madness, #2) by Joe Abercrombie

I received an ARC of The Trouble with Peace (Gollancz) in exchange for an honest review.

Cover illustration by: Tomás Almeida

The Trouble with Peace by Joe Abercrombie

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: The Age of Madness (Book #2 of 3), First Law World (Book, #9 of 10)

Genre: Fantasy, Epic Fantasy, Grimdark fantasy

Published: 15th September 2020 by Gollancz (UK) & 15th September 2020 by Orbit (US)


A savagely stunning sequel. 

The Trouble With Peace takes place shortly after the events of A Little Hatred and its ominous conclusion. Whilst peace has been hard-won, it is a peace built on shaky foundations and the title for this second book in The Age of Madness trilogy is not coy about the direction of this story.

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Book Review: A Little Hatred (The Age of Madness, #1) by Joe Abercrombie

Book Review: A Little Hatred (The Age of Madness, #1) by Joe Abercrombie

A Little Hatred


Cover illustration by: Tomás Almeida

A Little Hatred by Joe Abercrombie

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: The Age of Madness (Book #1 of 3), First Law World (Book, #8 of 10)

Genre: Fantasy, Epic Fantasy, Grimdark fantasy

Published: 17th September 2019 by Gollancz (UK) & 17th September 2019 by Orbit (US)


As ferocious and fun as ever.

It’s been a while since I read a Joe Abercrombie novel, and the truth is that it has been too long. This dawned on me when I recently read one of his short stories in an anthology and was instantly reminded that he is one of the greatest fantasy writers of our era, with a writing style and tone of his own, and a gift for bringing words, thoughts and emotions to life like no other. A Little Hatred moved up on my TBR and when I saw that his latest book, The Trouble with Peace, was releasing soon I decided that there was no time like the present for catching up.

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Book Review: Kings of Heaven (Ash and Sand, #3) by Richard Nell

Book Review: Kings of Heaven (Ash and Sand, #3) by Richard Nell

ARC provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

Cover illustration by: Derek Murphy

Kings of Heaven by Richard Nell

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: Ash and Sand (Book #3 of 3)

Genre: Fantasy, High Fantasy, Grimdark Fantasy

Pages: 411 pages

Published: 1st September 2020 by Richard Nell (Self-published)


Kings of Heaven has carved Ash and Sand as one of the best fantasy trilogies I’ve ever read.

“A man fails in only two ways, my son. He quits, or he dies.”

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Book Review: The Trouble With Peace (The Age of Madness, #2) by Joe Abercrombie

Book Review: The Trouble With Peace (The Age of Madness, #2) by Joe Abercrombie

ARC provided by the publisher—Gollancz—in exchange for an honest review.

Cover illustration by: Tomas Almeida

The Trouble with Peace by Joe Abercrombie

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: The Age of Madness (Book #2 of 3), First Law World (Book, #9 of 10)

Genre: Fantasy, Epic Fantasy, Grimdark fantasy

Pages: 512 pages (UK Hardback)

Published: 15th September 2020 by Gollancz (UK) & 15th September 2020 by Orbit (US)


Incredibly mesmeric and brilliant. The trouble with reading Abercrombie’s newest book is that there’s no more new Abercrombie book to read.

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Book Review: Ash and Bones (City of Sacrifice, #2) by Michael R. Fletcher

Book Review: Ash and Bones (City of Sacrifice, #2) by Michael R. Fletcher

ARC provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

Cover illustration by: Felix Ortiz

Ash and Bones by Michael R. Fletcher

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Series: City of Sacrifice (Book #2 of 3)

Genre: Fantasy, Grimdark Fantasy, Post-Apocalyptic Fantasy

Pages: 661 pages

Published: 1st August 2020 Michael R. Fletcher


Ash and Bones is a sequel filled with battles, narcotics, magic stones—especially obsidian—and moral dilemmas.

“There are two means of convincing a population to police itself: Religion, and Economy. Faith and greed.”

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TS’s Top 11 Books Read in 2020 So Far (1st Jan to 30th June)

TS’s Top 11 Books Read in 2020 So Far (1st Jan to 30th June)


2020 has so far been a truly strange, stressful and complicated year, but reading wise it has been pretty incredible for me.  I’ve read/listen to 73 books during this first six months of the year and quite a sizeable chunk of these garnered 4-stars and above.  In fact, I can’t remember the last time I’ve added so many books onto my favourites shelf in the same period of time.  If you’re interested, you can see my year in books for 2020 right here.

Similar to my previous list, I do not limit this to only books released this year.  There are simply too many great books that have been published prior and that I’ve yet to read, so there will always be older books included.  Below are the parameters that I’ve set for the list.

  • Rereads don’t count
  • One book per author
  • Not limited to books which are released this year.

None of these are ranked except for the top three, of which two are tied for first place.  The rest, I’ve listed them in the chronological order of when I’ve read them this year.  All of these have been reviewed by me on Novel Notions and Goodreads.

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