On the hunt for the perfect books to gift fam and friends this holiday season? From debut novels to prize-winning bestsellers, The New York Public Library is on hand to help with its freshly published lists of Best Books of 2020 for kids, teens, and adults.
Expert librarians from the New York institution selected over 280 books, sorted by genre, format and age. This round-up of the year’s best literature spans almost all genres, ranging from fiction to graphic novels to biographies. All in all, there should be something to please any beloved bookworm this holiday, whether they read in English or in Spanish.
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“2020 brought unexpected challenges around the world, which we have had to face together. Despite these obstacles, the Library and its staff remain committed to our patrons, offering resources, recommendations, and services in new and innovative ways. The Library’s Best Books lists reflect an inspiring mixture of the services our readers need from their library. Our Best Books Committees read hundreds of books, sought out titles both physically and digitally, determined to create a great list of books that readers can enjoy despite the difficulties of 2020,” said Lynn Lobash, associate director of the Library’s Readers Services team in a statement.
Books for adults
Books for adults recommended by The New York Public Library include “The City We Became” by N.K. Jemisin, the first urban fantasy novel in her “Great Cities” series. In it, the Afro-American writer tells the story of five New Yorkers who must come together in order to save their city from destruction. Authors Hilary Leichter and Maggie O’Farrell also feature on the list, with “Temporary: A Novel” and “Hamnet: A Novel of the Plague,” two books that were both acclaimed by The New York Times.
Children’s books that champion diversity
When it comes to children’s books, the Californian author and illustrator, Christian Robinson features with his bestseller, “You Matter.” The book helps parents teach their kids about empathy and community with the help of a series of colourful illustrations. “Magnificent Homespun Brown: A Celebration” by Samara Doyon and “Evelyn Del Rey Is Moving Away” by Meg Medina also found favour with The New York Public Library’s experts. Both books feature black characters — something that’s still all too rare in children’s literature, according to a recent British study.
The New York Public Library has also compiled a list of the top Spanish-language books for kids. The selection includes “¿Cómo lo ves?“ in which Vera Galindo presents some of the biggest names in contemporary art, as well as the ode to diversity and friendship, “Amigas” by Lauren Ace.
The New York Public Library’s full selection of Best Books of 2020, including lists for kids, teens and adults, as well as a poetry selection, can be found on the official website of the American institution.