Love her or lose her

2020 Goodreads Choice Award Nominations

Today starts the nomination process for the Goodreads Choice Awards. I try to participate every year, but like most years, I haven’t read most of the books initially nominated. For those new to the awards to be nominated, the book has to be published this year. Goodreads uses their algorithms to come up with fifteen books in the twenty categories to start the process off. Considering some of the books nominated don’t come out until this month, I’m not sure how fair their algorithms are.

Each year I discover books I’ve overlooked or never heard of, but I also get incredibly frustrated. How am I supposed to take all the books I’ve read and narrow them down to the categories provided?? There’s only one romance category?? There’s no Juvenile Non-Fiction category?? There’s a sci-fi category, a fantasy category, a young adult fantasy category, but no young adult sci-fi category?? How am I supposed to vote when I still haven’t read all of the books from this year?? Why is this being held now when there are still almost two months left in the year?????

It’s too much!

So, I’m just going to post my favorite books of 2020, so far, here. None of them have been nominated, but the best part of the awards is that you can select them yourself. So if you too liked these books, then please head over to Goodreads and do your duty.

First, The Constant Rabbit by Jasper Fforde. I nominated this one under the fiction category, though it could probably go under the humor category as well. It was a fantastic satire novel that called out racism using absurd creativity.

I’ve got two historical romances, and I wish I could nominate both. The Care and Feeding of Waspish Widows by Olivia Waite and The Duke Who Didn’t by Courtney Milan. Waspish Widows is the story of two older women who fall in love in a time when women didn’t even have the right to vote. The Duke Who Didn’t had a hero and heroine fall in love despite their incredibly different backgrounds. The backdrop was a small village in England that was predominantly people of Asian descent. Plus, there was a lot of good food mentioned.

Undercover Bromance by Lyssa Kay Adams, Love Her or Lose Her by Tessa Bailey, and The Tourist Attraction by Sarah Morgenthaler were the contemporary romances that I wanted to nominate. Undercover Bromance is the second book in a series that I fell in love with earlier this year. The concept of a book group of men reading romance novels is one I love. Love Her or Lose Her made me realize I was missing out on an entire trope of married couples learning to fall back in love with each other. I absolutely loved the sweetness and humor in The Tourist Attraction.

Five romances, and I can only nominate one. It’s horrible. I ended up going with The Duke Who Didn’t because, well, it came down to the food. Lol It was really close, though. The Tourist Trap nearly edged it out for the coveted top spot. If only there were historical and contemporary romance categories.

The science fiction and fantasy categories were easier. The only five-star fantasy book that I’ve read this year was Emerald Blaze by Ilona Andrews. I did think about nominating N.K. Jemisin’s  The City We Became, I liked it, but I liked Emerald Blaze better. Jemisin’s book was one of the fifteen nominated by Goodreads, so she will probably make it to the next round. If Andrew’s book doesn’t make it will make my next vote easier.

At first, I didn’t think I had a science fiction pick. Not only have I not read many this year, but I haven’t rated the ones I did read highly. I’m trying only to nominate books I rated five stars. I’ve started reading Christopher Paolini’s To Sleep in a Sea of Stars, but there’s no way I’ll finish it in time. So I decided to go with Sweep with Me by Ilona Andrews. Yes, it’s another Ilona Andrews book, but they’re my favorite authors.

Last, but certainly not least, is my non-fiction selection. I’ve slacked on non-fiction this year. I could not concentrate like I need to to read non-fiction. So I ended up nominating This Book is Anti-Racist by Tiffany Jewell. It’s a juvenile non-fiction book, so I don’t believe it stands a chance, but it was an excellent book. It clearly explained the issues for young people as well as adults with limited knowledge of the issues.

There are many categories where I didn’t nominate any books, which always bugs me. I don’t have enough time to read everything I want to unfortunately. I’m curious what books everyone else will be voting for, and I’m looking forward to the weeks ahead. Even though I know most of the books I love, if not all, will not win their much-deserved awards.

2020 Review So Far

First off, I’ve been reading a lot in 2020. It’s been an absolute shit year, for everyone, everywhere, and one of my major comforts was reading. My Goodreads Reading Challenge Goal was 60 books. I’m currently sitting at 79. I’m not going to go back and review everything I’ve read, but I’m going to list my favorite of the year so far, and I’m going to try to review all the books from here on out.

 

2020 Favorite Books So Far (in no particular order)

Castles Ever After

  • Castles Ever After series by Tessa Dare. I like this series and absolutely love books one and three. They made me laugh. The characters were great, and I really enjoyed the story. The final book was a crossover with her Spindle Cove series and didn’t have much to do with a castle, but it was still good. (I wasn’t much of a fan of the rest of the Spindle Cove books, which was a bit of a bummer). I’m enjoying going back and reading Tessa Dare’s back catalog.

Turner Courtney Milan

  • Turner series by Courtney Milan. For a time, there was a box set available of the entire series, and I was able to snatch it up for a fantastic price. I’m a huge Courtney Milan fan, and I was super happy to be able to get this entire series. I wasn’t as much of a fan of the second book, but the others in the series were very entertaining.

Girl Meets Duke

  • Girl Meets Duke series by Tessa Dare. This series is ongoing, but there are currently three books out. A seamstress, a governess, and a wallflower all find love. They do it on their terms too, which I enjoy. They’re all at least a tiny bit odd and are able to find men who accept them. It’s lovely.

Bromance Book Club

  • Bromance Book Club series by Lyssa Kay Adams. I absolutely love the idea of this series. A group of high power men get together to figure out how to make their women happy. The first book is about a baseball player whose marriage is on the rocks, so a friend reaches out and invites him to join the book club. It’s all men and they read romance novels to help them figure out what women want since they can’t seem to figure it out. I love it. The second book is out, and I enjoyed it as well. I am looking forward to the rest of this series.

Love Her or Lose Her

  • Love her of Lose Her by Tessa Bailey. I wasn’t as big a fan of the first book in the series. I found the heroine a bit odd and un-relatable, but I thought the second was excellent. It’s once again about a married couple on the rocks (I had no idea I would enjoy this trope) and how they fall back in love.

The Right Swipe

  • The Right Swipe by Alisha Rai. There’s a woman in tech dealing with all the misogyny in that sector. A pro football player that stands up against the NFL for their disregard for the health and safety of their players. I loved it.

 

I have a long list of books to read. I’m also hoping to finally tackle my ever growing stack of non-fiction books, but I’m not putting any pressure on myself. I’m reading a lot of romance books because I find comfort in them. That’s what my reading has been all year, comfort. I’ve re-read most of Ilona Andrews catalog because of that.

I need something with a happily ever after, where the world isn’t always dark, and people aren’t always dying. If you have any recommendations I’m open to them.

Good luck to everyone surviving the rest of the year.