New York Public Library

Need Some COVID Winter Reading? NY Public Library Releases Best of 2020 Lists

Everyone says you're supposed to stay closed to home these next few months to keep the coronavirus pandemic under control and wait out a vaccine - so you might as well read a good book while you're at it.

The New York Public Library released its Best Books of 2020 lists on Tuesday, covering a variety of age ranges and languages.

The lists come just in time for holiday gifting, with book sales already reported to be up double digits this year, a side effect of people staying at home and entertainment venues being closed.

Some of the library system's top-10 lists are below. For the full, searchable and filterable list, click here.

Top 10 Children’s Books 

  • Black Heroes of the Wild West by James Otis Smith
  • Evelyn Del Rey Is Moving Away by Meg Medina, illustrated by Sonia Sánchez
  • Go with the Flow by Lily Williams & Karen Schneeman
  • Honeybee: The Busy Life of Apis Mellifera by Candace Fleming, illustrated by Eric Rohmann
  • Land of the Cranes by Aida Salazar
  • Magnificent Homespun Brown: A Celebration by Samara Doyon, illustrated by Kaylani Juanita
  • Planet Omar: Accidental Trouble Magnet by Zanib Mian, illustrated by Nasaya Mafaridik
  • When Stars Are Scattered by Victoria Jamieson & Omar Mohamed
  • When You Trap a Tiger by Tae Keller
  • You Matter by Christian Robinson

Los 10 mejores libros para edades 0–12 / Top 10 Books for Ages 0–12 (in Spanish) 

  • ¿Cómo lo ves? by Vera Galindo
  • Amigas by Lauren Ace, illustrated by Jenny Lovlie
  • La bañera by Lisa Biggi, illustrated by Paloma Corral
  • La belleza del final by Alfredo Colella, illustrated by Jorge González
  • Los carpinchos by Alfredo Soderguit
  • Manos a la tierra: Crea tu propio jardín by Kirsten Bradley, illustrated by Aitch
  • Mi abuelo by Émilie Chazerand, illustrated by Nicolas Duffaut
  • Mi lazarilla, mi capitán by Gonzalo Moure, illustrated by Maria Girón
  • Música en el jardín by Mariana Ruiz Johnson
  • Los tomates de Mila by Sanne Dufft

Top 10 Teen Books 

  • All Boys Aren’t Blue: A Memoir-Manifesto by George M. Johnson
  • Displacement by Kiku Hughes
  • Legendborn by Tracy Deonn
  • The Magic Fish by Trung Le Nguyen
  • Not So Pure and Simple by Lamar Giles
  • Poisoned Water: How the Citizens of Flint, Michigan, Fought for Their Lives and Warned the Nation by Candy J. Cooper with Marc Aronson
  • Punching the Air by Ibi Zoboi & Yusef Salaam
  • Raybearer by Jordan Ifueko
  • We Are Not Free by Traci Chee
  • We Are Not From Here by Jenny Torres Sanchez  

Top 10 Adult Books

  • The City We Became: A Novel by N.K. Jemisin
  • Hamnet: A Novel of the Plague by Maggie O’Farrell
  • Hood Feminism: Notes from the Women That a Movement Forgot by Mikki Kendall
  • Interior Chinatown: A Novel by Charles Yu
  • The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab
  • Luster by Raven Leilani
  • The Midnight Library by Matt Haig
  • The Sacrifice of Darkness by Roxane Gay & Tracy Lynne Oliver
  • The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires: A Novel by Grady Hendrix
  • Temporary: A Novel by Hilary Leichter  

Top 10 Poetry Books

  • Finna: Poems by Nate Marshall 
  • Galleons: Poems by Rick Barot
  • Grimoire by Cherene Sherrard
  • Gut Botany by Petra Kuppers
  • Homie by Danez Smith
  • Kontemporary Amerikan Poetry by John Murillo
  • My Baby First Birthday: Poems by Jenny Zhang
  • Nail the Evening Hangs On by Monica Sok
  • Nancy Reagan Collection by Maxe Crandall
  • Postcolonial Love Poem by Natalie Diaz
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