Best Books for Book Clubs


Best book club books for 2020

If there’s one good thing about a pandemic, I think it’s safe to say that a lot of us have reignited a love of reading! That’s why 2020 is THE year to start up a book club! With the weather getting warmer, you can get together at a safe social distance to discuss the book outside, or you can schedule a virtual book club through Zoom, Google Hangouts, House Party or any other video meeting app.

I LOVE to read and have been reading a TON this year (let’s just say I’m obliterating my Goodreads Reading Challenge, HA!) Below are my recommendations for the best book club books based on things my book club has read this year and on books I’ve read on my own. These are not necessarily the best book club books of 2020, as many of these were published several years ago, but they are some good suggestions if you’re thinking of starting one up in the near future.

Here are our Top 10 books for book clubs in 2020:

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Book Club Suggestion #1: American Dirt by Jeanine Cumins

It makes me sad that this book had so much unnecessary controversy around it to the point that the author had to cancel her book tour. This book is very well-written and I couldn’t put it down! This fictional novel describes a Mexican family’s harrowing tale about living with and running from cartel violence. We read this for one of our book club selections and every single person enjoyed the book! We had a lot to talk about and there are plenty of reading guides and questions available online that you can use for your book club discussion.

Book Club Suggestion #2: My Dark Vanessa by Kate Elizabeth Russell

I’ll lead with this…I could not put this book down and blazed through it in two days. This was one of the most interesting books I read this year and I was drawn into it very quickly. What I will caution about this is that it’s not a feel-good story, and anyone who has been a victim of sexual abuse may be triggered by this book. However, it’s a very intriguing read that will allow for plenty of interesting book club discussions.

Book Club Suggestion #3: The Alice Network by Kate Quinn

Although this book did not come out this year, The Alice Network is hands-down my favourite book! This book explores the female side of WWII and the critical role female spies played in helping bring down the Nazis in WWII. This book is full of twists and turns that will leave your book club with plenty of topics to discuss. Plus, Kate Quinn has so many other excellent books that you will also likely want to pick for a future book club after reading this one!

Book Club Suggestion #4: Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

We read this earlier in the fall for my book club and the whole group enjoyed it. This book really does a great job developing characters throughout the book and will leave you guessing the entire time. 

Book Club Suggestion #5: The Wives by Tarryn Fisher

Can you say ‘plot twist?’ This book will literally have you eagerly awaiting to turn each page to find out what happens next. Full of twists and turns, The Wives will leave you wanting to read one more chapter while also leaving plenty of things to talk about at book club.

Book Club Suggestion #6: Bear Town by Fredrik Backman

Disclaimer: this book took me a while to get into and it’s quite long. I was almost ready to give up until about halfway through, and then I was hooked and COULD NOT PUT THIS DOWN. It ended up being one of my all-time favourite books ever! Like most of Backman’s novels, I was slow to get into it, but that’s really because he takes his time for character development. Backman’s writing and perspective will leave you with so much to talk about that you may not even have time to drink as much wine as usual.

Book Club Suggestion #7:  If I Never Met You by Mhairi McFarlane

Normally, I don’t recommend ‘fluffier’ rom-com books for book clubs because I find there’s not enough substance to talk about for an entire book club (but make no mistake, I LOVE a good rom-com read!) However, that is not the case at all with If I Never Met You. There are plenty of topics to touch on and discuss for book club while being a lighter, feel-good read. I really enjoyed this book and found one of my new favourite authors as a result!

Book Club Suggestion #8: Out of the Shadows: A Memoir by Timea E. Nagy

You won’t find this book on any best-seller list or other book club recommendation lists, most likely, which is extremely unfortunate because it was a fascinating and well-written memoir that I think everyone should read. The book explores how the author got trapped into sex trafficking in Canada (yep, it’s a thing – hard to believe, right?!) and all the obstacles she faced along the way. I was fascinated by this memoir and could not put it down. 

Book Club Suggestion #9: The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris

With a unique perspective about what life was like in a prison camp during WWII, the Tattooist of Auschwitz offers a different historical fiction perspective based partially on a true story. There are plenty of reading guides and questions available for book clubs, and the follow-up sequel, Cilka’s Journey, could also be used as a future book club read for your group.

Book Club Suggestion #10: The Things We Cannot Say by Kelly Rimmer

I love historical fiction books and read a TON of them. So when I come across one that shows things from a different historical perspective I’m not used to, I get excited. This book flips between narratives of two characters: one in the past, one in the present. Their stories are intertwined and tell an interesting perspective about how things were during WWII in Poland. Coupled with a romantic story, this is an enjoyable read that will leave you with a lot to talk about at your book club!

Book Club Suggestion #11: Dear Wife by Kimberly Belle

A thrilling tale about a wife trying to escape her abusive husband, Dear Wife will leave you wondering and questioning everything that happens. If you enjoy a good suspense book with tons of twists you didn’t see coming, I highly recommend this book for a book club selection. It leaves you with a lot of topics to think about, especially when asking yourself what you would do in several scenarios throughout the book.

We’ll be adding to our suggestions as we keep reading, so be sure to pin this post and check back often for updates!

In addition, all of these books are available as audiobooks through Audible by Amazon! Gift yourself an audible membership or send one as a great gift idea for someone you love.

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