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Kirsty Logan

Hello! I’m Kirsty Logan, a writer of novels and short stories. My books are Things We Say In The Dark, The Gloaming, The Gracekeepers, A Portable Shelter, and The Rental Heart & Other Fairytales.

Latest News

Kirsty Logan

Hello! I’m Kirsty Logan, a writer of novels and short stories. My books are Things We Say In The Dark, The Gloaming, The Gracekeepers, A Portable Shelter, and The Rental Heart & Other Fairytales.

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Best Books of 2020

31st Dec 2020 in Books, News

Well, friends, it’s been a year! I don’t know about you, but my reading habits really changed in 2020. I started off reading a lot, as I was travelling and researching a novel, and then – well, you know what happened. For a few months I found it hard to focus on reading at all, and then I flipped around and was entirely losing myself in books, chain-reading novels as a way to escape from reality. That settled down as winter set in, and I enjoyed slowing my pace and getting absorbed in some longer books.

In total I read 242 books this year, which is about the same as last year. But unlike last year, it was over half novels (123), with a little more non-fiction (41), and significantly fewer short story collections and anthologies (25), young adult/kids’ books (37), and almost no poetry or graphic novels (8 of each). I also read a lot of genre novels, largely horror and romance, and also a good chunk of fantasy/sci-fi at the start of the year when reading for the Kitschies award. I think this heavy emphasis on novels is because this year, not surprisingly, I just wanted escapism. I wanted horror and romance because I wanted to feel something other than low-level anxiety and worry. For me, novels provided a much-needed escape from the real world. Thank you to every writer who worked hard to create other worlds for readers who needed them in 2020.

I don’t know what 2021’s reading will look like, because there’s no way to know what 2021 will bring. I can say that there’s some good reading ahead of us, though, as I read several books this year that will be on next year’s best-of list.

So in no particular order, here is my Top 25 of the year:

 

Books out in 2020:

Best Dark (And I Mean Really Dark) Fairytale: You Let Me In, Camilla Bruce

Best Historical Queer Romance: Spirited, Julie Cohen

Best Retro Horror: Harrow Lake, Kat Ellis

Best Haunting Exploration of the Aftermath of a Murder: Nothing Can Hurt You, Nicola Maye Goldberg

Best Mystery at a Claustrophobic Girls’ School: The Temple House Vanishing, Rachel Donohue

Best Black Queer Ghost Novella: The Silence of the Wilting Skin, Tlotlo Tsamaase

Best Analysis of Masculinity: I’m Afraid of Men, Vivek Shraya

Best Poetry Collection From a Poet Who’s Brilliant Both on the Page and Performing: My Darling From the Lions, Rachel Long

Best Poetry Collection That I Got Because it’s About Wrestling and Found it Was About So Much More: Tapping Out, Nandi Comer

Best Book That’s Kind of a Cheat Because I’m in it But Also All the Other Stories Are Too Brilliant Not to Include It: Outsiders, Alice Slater (editor)

Best Deeply Unsettling Story Anthology: The New Abject, Sarah Eyre & Ra Page (editors)

Best Queer Feminist Horror Graphic Novel: The Low, Low Woods, Carmen Maria Machado & Dani

 

Books Out Before 2020:

Best Book That You Don’t Need Me to Tell You is Great: Misery, Stephen King

Best Book About Delightfully Monstrous Teenage Girls: Wilder Girls, Rory Power

Best Deep-Sea Horror: Ningen, Laura Mauro

Best Short Stories That Make Me Wildly Envious as a Writer: Dark Tales, Shirley Jackson

Best Wholesome Historical Poly Romance: The Threefold Tie, Aster Glenn Gray

Best Lesbian Romance Novella That’s Also Spot-on About the Life of a Writer: A Perfect Balance, Laura Ambrose

Best Book Read for Teenage Scream Podcast: The Forbidden Game trilogy, LJ Smith

Best Kids’ Book About a Bitter, Rage-Filled Goddess: The Monstrous Child, Francesca Simon

Best Poetry I Read Aloud to My Wife in the Sunshine While Sitting on Our Windowsill: The Emma Press Anthology of Love

Best Graphic Novel That Made Me Laugh Out Loud: Dungeon Fun, Colin Bell & Neil Slorance

Best Essay Collection About Blackness, Whiteness and the Gothic: Darkly, Leila Taylor

Best Book About Writing: The Science of Storytelling, Will Storr

Best Book I Read as Novel Research But Then Found Applicable to Most of My Life and Friends and Family: Surviving Survival, Laurence Gonzalez

What were your favourite books of 2020?

Want to keep up with what I’m reading? Follow me on GoodReads

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