Adventures - Best Books of 2020

Margaret Stanger
For the2020 book of the it year was difficult to choose between a worthy book about people having a worse time than us, or something shallow and quirky to take my mind off things. I chose the latter, ‘Don’t Let The Coffee Get Cold’ by Toshikazu Kawaguchi, about a back street Tokyo café with limited time travel facilities.

Sharon Holden
My favourite read this year was 'The Elegance of the Hedgehog' by Muriel Barbery. A wonderful poignant story which left me in tears at the end. So different from anything else I have read this year. Note: Several of us enjoyed this book. My Worst book was the 'The Cyclist Conspiracy' by Svetislav Basara, definitely not reading that again. Note: I agree, Chris

Jim Byrne
My best novels of 2020 are:
'The Mirror and the Light', by Hilary Mantel.
The third and final book based on the life and death of Thomas Cromwell.
'Hamnet' by Maggie O'Farrell. A fictional account of the life of Shakespeares wife and the short life of their son who died of the plague. Chris loved this book too, definitely on his shortlist

Alison White
‘The Beekeeper of Aleppo’ by Christy Lefteri

I absolutely loved this book; it was so informative about how refugees have so much to endure to travel from their homeland to a place of safety. In this case about Nuri and Afra, from Syria to the UK. They had money though and so they travelled to Athens as emigrants on the emigrant trail then managed through people smugglers to get a flight from Athens to London and then were put in a refugee hostel on the south coast so the book gives this journey of this couple who just before they leave Aleppo in Syria, their teenage son Sammy is killed and they meet en-route a boy called Muhammad who I think it's actually a figment of Nuri's imagination and was not real he was the same age as Sammy the book is interesting in that it's just constantly switching time and location and when it does this it has a picture with the location in it and the picture is usually something to do with the story at the time the author has worked refugee camps in Athens and so presumably the Athens part of the book is correct. There is quite a lot about people smugglers and how they make money and how people lose money but at the moment there is no direct way of refugees getting from their home to the country of their choice the UK was chosen because their friends have going there.

I also liked 'Mornings in Jenin' by Susan Abulhawa

Chis chose 'The Mars Room' by Rachel Kushner; see Chris Book of the Year