Top 10 Most Anticipated Books of 2020; Part One (Top Ten Tuesday)

Title in white on pale starry skies

Thank goodness I can split this list, as 2020 is such a promising year of exciting releases. Even getting it down to these 10, despite the many caveats, was tricky.

This list only contains books in the first half of 2020, as release dates are so uncertain later in the year – or completely unannounced. Also, it only contains books I haven’t been lucky enough to read yet, because that helped cut the list down a little. All dates are UK publication where they differ from the US, and may of course change.

I’m not sure if there will be a “part two” for the first half of the year, or if part two will simply be the second half of the year, released sometime in June/July once the release dates are finalised.

This is another post that qualifies for Top Ten Tuesday. It’s a weekly mean, hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Everyone is welcome to join in the fun.

1. HOLD BACK THE TIDE, by Melinda Salisbury


Published: 5th March

It’s a Melinda Salisbury book, need I say more?

HOLD BACK THE TIDE is set in the fictional Scottish Highlands and deals with disaster capitalism. When the lake runs low thanks to water mismanagement in the town below. It’s timely and has Mel’s brand of unique and quirky written all over it., Alva must fight for her home.

As ever, the cover is gorgeous (possibly the best yet?), and we can expect the writing inside to be just as lovely. I got the first few chapters sampler at YALC, and it made me all the more desperate for this book.

2. THE EMPIRE OF GOLD, by S.A. Chakraborty


Published: 30th June

Scraping onto this list by the skin of it’s teeth, THE EMPIRE OF GOLD releases at the very end of June, and it promises to be one the summer’s biggest fantasy releases.

After the events of THE KINGDOM OF COPPER, this finale cannot come soon enough. Promising to be an even fatter book than the last two, THE EMPIRE OF GOLD will wrap up the world of Daevabad, and I have no idea what to expect. There are so many twists in this complicated trilogy, that I’m not sure who will survive and which goals will be achieved – though the cost will be horribly high.

3. A HEART SO FIERCE AND BROKEN, by Brigid Kemmerer

a heart so fierce and broken

Published: 7th January

This is one of the most talked about YA books at the moment, so I am wondering if that is why I’m so excited for it. However, I’ve had to stop myself reaching for A CURSE SO DARK AND LONELY throughout the past month (I want to re-read just before HEART, so I’ve been waiting until just before release). I’ll take that for genuine excitement.

This follows Grey (the character who stole all our hearts in the first book) and a new character, rather than Harper and Rhen. I’m excited to see the world expanded, and little hints of Harper and Rhen throughout.

4. GOOD GIRL, BAD BLOOD, by Holly Jackson

good girl bad blood.jpg

Published: 30th April

I loved A GOOD GIRL’S GUIDE TO MURDER, so much so that it was my favourite book of 2019. I can’t wait for the sequel, having squealed when it was announced. I’m expecting another edge of the seat thriller set in UK, and more time with a character who feels more like me than any other I’ve read recently.

Pip thinks that her investigating days are over but when a friend goes missing, she and Ravi must seek out the truth. However, after the publicity around her last case, the world is watching and there are secrets others don’t want getting out…

5. THE EMPIRE OF DREAMS, by Rae Carson

the empire of dreams.jpg

Published: 7th April

We get another book in the Fire and Thorns world!!!!

I’m so excited to return to this world and spend more time with Elisa and her friends. I’ve missed it, and this promises to spend more time with the Royal Guard – plus more Elisa and Hector!

This book follows Red, the half Joyan half Invierne girl we met in THE BITTER KINGDOM. She’s a teenager now, fighting to prove she has a part to play in the world now Elisa’s opponents have blocked an official adoption. But those enemies may put the entire world at risk.

6. STORM FROM THE EAST, by Joanna Hathaway

storm from the east.jpg

Published: 11th February

I loved Joanna Hathaway’s debut, DARK OF THE WEST, and the sequel promises to pit Ali and Athan against one another as war engulfs the south. Their backgrounds and loyalties will test their friendship – and summer romance – as ambitions and secrets make peace almost impossible.

The world is World War One inspired, and the main combat depicted takes place in the air, which helps set this book apart. It’s so under the radar, but deserves more love. I can’t wait to see Ali and Athan play a larger role in the politics of their world, as they were a little more reactionary in the first book.

7. THE NOTORIOUS VIRTUES, by Alwyn Hamilton

the notorious virtues.jpg

Published: 5th May

While THE NOTORIOUS VIRTUES is set in the same world as REBEL OF THE SANDS, it’s a century later (I think), in another country that I think is inspired by 1920s Germany. It’s a new series, that can standalone from her debut (I’m guessing the links are less than minimal from her hints). The book promises intrigue, glamour and secrets galore. Not to mention a new cast of characters to fall in love with.

There’s a contest between heirs to inherit the largest fortune in the country, and the characters aren’t going to live up to their virtuous namesakes with so much at stake.

8. THE OBSIDIAN TOWER, by Melissa Caruso

the obsidian tower

Published: 4th June

Another book set in the same world but a century or so after the debut, THE OBSIDIAN TOWER is centred in Vaskandar While its a part of the world that was visited – and certain regions were critical locations in the second and third books, it was secondary to Raverra in THE TETHERED MAGE trilogy. I’m excited to see more of it, and get a Vaskandran perspective on the world.

The new main character has magic, and I’m excited to read about magical difficulty from the perspective of a wielder. In fact, her magic is so uncontrollable that she kills a dignitary and has to flee, seeking for answers as a mysterious artifact activates…

9. THIS VICIOUS CURE, by Emily Suvada

this vicious cure.jpg

Published: 23rd January

This book was on my most anticipated releases for the second half of 2019, but the release date was pushed back to January 2020, so I get to squeal about it again!

THIS VICIOUS CURE is the finale to Emily Suvada’s THIS MORTAL COIL trilogy, about gene hacking that is so rooted in science it makes me beam.

With gene hacking now letting people control behaviour and organisations on both sides of the gene hacking community after her, Cat and her friends have a job ahead of them if they want to save the world.

10. THE TRAITOR QUEEN, by Danielle L. Jensen

Audiobook cover for THE TRAITOR QUEEN: two painted figures, a man and a woman, hold weapons in the desert beneath a green title

Published: TBC

So technically only the audiobook is being released in the first half of 2020, with other editions coming in the second half, but I’m still super excited for this book!

I loved THE BRIDGE KINGDOM more than I expected, and want to see where it goes next. The writing is wonderful, bringing the humidity and lush islands to life, as well as the imposing bridge. But the steamy romance, that even I got invested in!

BONUS: 2020 releases I’ve already read

I was lucky enough to read some of my most anticipated books early, and these are three January releases you need on your radar.

  1. A THRONE OF SWANS, by Katharine and Elizabeth Corr
  2. ONE OF US IS NEXT, by Karen M. McManus
  3. LOVEBOAT, TAIPEI, by Abigail Hing Wen

What 2020 books are you looking forwards to in the next six months?

8 thoughts on “Top 10 Most Anticipated Books of 2020; Part One (Top Ten Tuesday)

    1. Hopefully!

      I’m accumulating the list of books I want to re-read (and fire and thorns is on there!), which is doing no good for my TBR of unread books!


  1. I like the way you formatted this, with your “why you want to read it” before the descriptions. Wish I had thought of that- d’oh! I loved One of Us Is Lying and didn’t realize McManus had a new one coming out, or that it included some of the old characters. Definitely adding that one to my TBR!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks. My thinking was mostly “this is mainly a list of very popular hyped books (and I kinda wish I had more under the radar books on it) so people probably know what it’s about so I should talk more about why I want to read than the plot many are aware of”


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