If you ask anyone they'd probably tell you that 2020 wasn't their best year. I won't get into all the ways in which it was not good and really it was probably not good for each of you in different ways. But what was good was the books that were published. It's really been a stellar year for reading as demonstrated by all the awesome "best" lists that are coming out. If you don't believe me - and I'll admit to being a bit biased as I was on a panel that helped select some of the titles on one of these lists - take a look at a few of the lists that have come out so far.**
NPR's 2020 Book Concierge - Though this one is not titled a "best" list, it really does cover the gamut of bests in genre and theme and is really just fun to play with. Want to see which history books are also funny? You can do that. History books for kids? That's here. Mysteries and thrillers centered on women? Yep. I was even able to get a title that was both funny and "rather long". Whatever your bent, you can probably find something to please you here.
Library Journal's Best Books of 2020 - 144 titles across 15 categories and if I do say so myself, some really great selections in these diverse lists ( and yes, this is where my expertise was put to use on a category). There's everything from Cooking to Crime and a lot in between.
The New York Public Library's Best Books - NYPL has done something similar to the Book Concierge and you can explore great lists and categories of books for adults, kids and teens, though I haven't figured out how to combine categories yet.
Book Riot's Best Books - The readers at BR are some of the most knowledgeable out there nowadays and they've included some nicely currated lists in a bunch of genres.
Publishers Weekly Best Books - They describe their selections as "a powerful mix of books that speak to the times, and some that are timeless" and while I think that's a description that fits all of these, it's very nice.
These are just a small sampling of all the "bests" out there, but hopefully they'll get your brain percolating and your holds list growing.
**Hint, hint: some great suggestions here for gifts (for your friends and family, or maybe yourself).