Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag: 2020 Edition 

I think out all of the years I’ve done the Mid-Year Freak Out tag, I think 2020 is the year it’s officially okay to say that I can’t believe it’s June. This year has felt like the longest and fastest year yet. I spent some time this weekend with my best friends and as we were reminiscing, it’s really crazy to think what we thought June and summer would look like in January vs. March vs. even a month ago.

I plan on having my If We Were Having Coffee for June posted this week, where I’ll probably talk about how busy I’ve been lately between graduate school and starting remote work. I was so excited then that the Mid Year Freak Out tag was starting to float around the book community over the past week because I think it’s a nice to reflect on the reading I’ve done and some of my reading plans for the rest of the year. The first 2020 version I saw was from Jessica of Peace Love Books. At the time of this post, I’ve read 50 books so far this year – I think there might be at least two novellas in there, but I’m not getting technical until the end of the year. 

Best book you’ve read so far in 2020

Who really thought I’d be able to pick one book? Check back at the end of 2020 if I could choose just one book, but for right now I’m going with a toss-up between all of the books below (blame my indecisiveness and current tiredness):

Today Tonight Tomorrow by Rachel Lynn Solomon

More Than Maybe by Erin Hahn

Chasing Lucky by Jenn Bennett

House of Earth & Blood by Sarah J. Maas

Best sequel you’ve read so far in 2020

It’s technically a companion novel, but 10 Things I Hate About Pinky by Sandhya Menon was such a fun return to the Dimpleverse.

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SUMMER READING TO-DO: Summer 2020 Most Anticipated Releases

Summer is one of my favorite times of the year to dive into a new pile of books because it’s beach and poolside reading season! My anticipated Summer 2020 releases list is definitely different than what I had imagined it would be at the start of 2020. Many spring books got pushed back to summer, so you might see a few repeats from my Spring 2020 anticipated releases posts.If you want to refresh on what books came out this spring, I shared my anticipated adult and YA releases. Some new books that were originally scheduled to release this summer also were moved to the fall. The following books are scheduled to release from June through August 2020.

The Dare (Briar U #4) by Elle Kennedy | Release Date: June 16

Elle Kennedy made my April when she announced that there would be a fourth book in the Briar U series, The Dare! I cannot recommend the Off-Campus and spin-off series, Briar U, enough! This hockey romance follows crowd-favorite hockey player, Conor. I have all of the Briar U books in paperback, and I believe the paperback version is available for preorder on Amazon.

The Marriage Game by Sara Desai | RD: June 9

The enemies-to-lovers storyline is one of my favorites in rom-coms, which makes me even more excited for Sara Desai’s The Marriage Game. Working above her father’s restaurant, Layla is getting her new business up and running while also deciding to join the world of online dating (even though her father decides to set her up on a bunch of blind dates). CEO Sam unexpectedly ends up sharing the office space with Layla, and the two spar off over their shared space and Layla’s blind date suitors.

The Sullivan Sisters by Kathryn Ormsbee |RD: June 23

After really enjoying Kathryn Ormsbee’s Tash Hearts Tolstoy back in 2017, I was instantly intrigued by her upcoming release, The Sullivan Sisters. Painful events have kept the Sullivan sisters from confiding in each other like they used to, but a letter about their dead uncle and an inheritance they knew nothing causes them to work together to solve a family mystery. I’m also up for a mystery or thriller to break up my contemporary reading game!

Head Over Heels by Hannah Orenstein | RD: June 23

I feel like we’re starting to see gymnastics more and more across genres. The one I’m most excited for? Hannah Orenstein’s Head Over Heels! After a disastrous performance that ended her hope to get into the Olympics and career, Avery is asked to help coach a young gymnast with Olympic aspirations. While sparks fly with her fellow coach, Ryan, Avery’s world is turned upside down yet again when a scandal breaks out in the sport.Read More »

FOODIE ROM-COM: Tweet Cute Review & Inspired Recipe

Summary (from the publisher):

81AFV9waKfLMeet Pepper, swim team captain, chronic overachiever, and all-around perfectionist. Her family may be falling apart, but their massive fast-food chain is booming ― mainly thanks to Pepper, who is barely managing to juggle real life while secretly running Big League Burger’s massive Twitter account.

Enter Jack, class clown and constant thorn in Pepper’s side. When he isn’t trying to duck out of his obscenely popular twin’s shadow, he’s busy working in his family’s deli. His relationship with the business that holds his future might be love/hate, but when Big League Burger steals his grandma’s iconic grilled cheese recipe, he’ll do whatever it takes to take them down, one tweet at a time.

All’s fair in love and cheese ― that is, until Pepper and Jack’s spat turns into a viral Twitter war. Little do they know, while they’re publicly duking it out with snarky memes and retweet battles, they’re also falling for each other in real life ― on an anonymous chat app Jack built.

As their relationship deepens and their online shenanigans escalate ― people on the internet are shipping them?? ― their battle gets more and more personal, until even these two rivals can’t ignore they were destined for the most unexpected, awkward, all-the-feels romance that neither of them expected.

 

My Rating: 5/5 Stars

My Thoughts:

You’ve probably had everyone and their mother screaming- or tweeting- over their love for Emma Lord’s YA debut, Tweet Cute, on your timelines this year… and now it’s my turn!!

There are a few early 2020 releases I need to get to, but Tweet Cute was on the top of my list because it spoke to my bookish and foodie soul so much. The book is told from the perspective of high school seniors, Pepper and Jack. In between being swim team captain, overall overachiever, and running a baking blog with her sister, Pepper pretty much runs her family’s fast chain’s Twitter account. Her classmate, Jack, class clown and secret app developer, does the same for his family’s NYC classic deli, Girl Cheesing. When Big League Burger starts selling a grilled cheese sandwich very similar and with the same name as Girl Cheesing’s specialty sandwich, a Twitter war breaks out with Pepper and Jack running the show.

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I guess Tweet Cute ultimately does fall into the hate-to-love category, but Pepper and Jack really don’t see each other as ultimate enemies. There are some tense moments between Jack and Pepper, but there’s never any true animosity or rivalry between them. Their chemistry is instantaneous, and their banter carries throughout the story. It was just so refreshing and was such a YA enemies-to-lovers romance done absolutely right! I don’t want to spoil it here, but their ultimate ship name was just so, so clever and fit the book perfectly.Read More »

SPRING SHELFIE: Spring 2020 YA Anticipated Releases

I can’t believe it’s already time to talk about the books I’m looking forward to this spring! Many readers look to fall for their absolute most anticipated books of the year, but this spring might just be my most anticipated season! I didn’t realize how many books I can’t wait to have my hands on until I was putting this list together. I originally was going to combine my most YA releases with my anticipated adult releases… until I realized I had a 20+ book list. That being said, while today I’ll be focusing on YA releases, I’ll be sharing my anticipated adult fiction spring releases next week.

I’m especially excited for Spring 2020 because there are SO, SO many amazing contemporary books coming out from some of my all-time favorite authors and debut voices!

March

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The Kingdom of Back by Marie Lu 

Although contemporary seems to be the name of my reading game this spring, I am of course looking forward to Marie Lu’s upcoming musically-inspired historical fantasy.

Release Date: March 3

 

 

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Anna K: A Love Story by Jenny Lee

While I haven’t read Anna Karenina, Anna K has been described as a dark and diverse take with major Gossip Girl vibes, following Anna K.’s life as a Korean-American teen in Manhattan society.

Release Date: March 3

 

 

harley-in-the-sky-9781534437128_hrHarley in the Sky by Akemi Dawn Bowman

Having been fortunate enough to receive an advance copy of Harley in the Sky, I can 110% confirm that this YA contemporary release is a must read book of the year! Following Harley’s life growing up in circus life and dream of being a trapeze artist, Akemi Dawn Bowman completely nailed the setting while exploring family, friendship, and mental health.

Release Date: March 10

 

46404346Girls with Razor Hearts (Girls with Sharp Sticks #2) by Suzanne Young

If you haven’t jumped on the Girls with Sharp Sticks train yet, you have a month to catch up before the sequel comes out! I absolutely cannot put these books down, following an all-female private school where the girls are taught be perfect women, until Mena and her classmates start questioning the school’s strange occurrences.

Release Date: March 25

 

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We Are the Wildcats by Siobhan Vivian

I feel like I’ve been talking about my anticipation for Siobhan Vivian’s next YA contemporary, We Are the Wildcats, since I finished Stay Sweet two years ago. I’m really looking forward to this one because it features members of a high school field hockey team – as a former high school field hockey player myself, I’m excited to see how much it delves into the sport because it’s not really a sports book- and focuses on female friendship and empowerment. Siobhan Vivian slayed these two themes in Stay Sweet. 

Release Date: March 31

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2020 5 Star Predictions: 2020 Releases Edition

One of my new favorite ways to ring in the bookish year is by choosing new releases that I believe will earn 5 stars upon reading them. In 2019, I was pretty accurate about the books that I predicted would be 5 star reads, and even the books that didn’t get a full 5 stars were mostly pretty close.

We Are the Wildcats by Siobhan Vivian

Release Date: March 31

We Are the Wildcats is currently my most anticipated contemporary release of the year! I loved everything about Siobhan Vivian’s previous release, Stay Sweet. The book is told over 24 hours, following a high field hockey team’s sleepover/initiation.

Chasing Lucky by Jenn Bennett

Release Date: May 5

I haven’t met a Jenn Bennett that I haven’t LOVED, so I’m sure Chasing Lucky will be no exception. I always love the character growth, relationships, and maturity in her books. Chasing Lucky also takes place in New England at a family-run BOOKSTORE.

House of Earth & Blood (Crescent City #1) by Sarah J. Maas

Release Date: March 3

Sarah J.Maas is another favorite author of mine whose books I haven’t ever not loved. I’m so excited for her to enter the adult fantasy world with Crescent City. I’d read this book regardless of its synopsis, but I’m so intrigued by this one. I’m also excited to see SJM take on a contemporary fantasy setting, although Fae will of course be involved.

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Most Anticipated 2020 TV & Movies

Right after reading of course, my favorite way to relax and unwind is with a good binge-worthy TV show or ten. While there are plenty of books I am looking forward to in 2020, today I’ll be discussing the TV shows and films that I can’t wait to hit the big screen and my small screen this year.

TV

Schitt’s Creek S6 (Pop TV)

Release Date: January 7

Although I just discovered Schitt’s Creek in 2019, I know the final season of the show will be bittersweet because it’s just so well-done and it will be so sad to know that it’s over!

Zumbo’s Just Desserts (Netflix)

Release Date: January 10

Everyone knows that I love a good baking competition show. One of my favorites is Zumbo’s Just Desserts. I’ve been honestly waiting for a second season since finishing the first one in October 2018.

Grace and Frankie S6 (Netflix)

Release Date: January 15

Grace and Frankie just might be the show I am anticipating the most on this list! After binge-watching the first five seasons this summer, Grace and Frankie absolutely stole my TV-loving heart.

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MEET THE BOOKS: 2020 Reading Goals

My main reading goal of 2020 is no different from any bookish fangirl’s: read ALL the amazing books as possible!

My 2020 reading goals primarily revolve around the amount of books that I want to read and specific books that I want to pick up in the new year. I really want my 2020 reading to really focus on specific titles I have been wanting to pick up and titles I have selected for review, but also be as stress-free as possible.

I love the premise and creativity behind yearly reading challenges – maybe one year I’ll actually complete POPSUGAR’s annual challenge– but I find that I don’t like adapting my TBR and picking up certain books at a specific time to mark off a check box.

Read at least 60 books

My 2020 reading challenge of 60 books is lower than my normal reading goal. For example, in 2019, I set my reading challenge on Goodreads to 70 books, knowing that I personally wanted to reach 100 books. While I successfully reached my goal at 127 books, it might seem weird that I don’t set my challenge to a higher amount. With my college graduation ahead in May, I really don’t know what life is going to look like in 2020, hence I don’t know what my free time aka reading time will be this year. Reading will always be a part of my life for sure, but I don’t know if I’ll be able to have months where I can get to 15 books a month. Although I’ve proven that I am able to read a lot during super busy periods of life, I don’t want to set a “high” number because I don’t want to put pressure on myself to read.

Read more new adult and adult fiction

Although I read more YA books than not, I started picking up more and more new adult and adult fiction titles between May and the end of the year. Specifically, I found myself reaching for contemporary and contemporary romance titles. Since so many of the new adult and adult books that I picked up earned 5 stars, I really want to continue to pick up more of the same type of books. I’d love to read more books from the authors that I did read and find new-to-me authors and books. My favorite sub-genre within new adult and adult contemporary romance was sports romance.

Some 2019 favorites were:

The Books

I feel like I’ve gotten better and better about re-reading each year. I’ve discovered that challenging myself to reread specific books does not work, having done so in both 2018 and 2019 and failing to reread most of the books on those reread TBRs. Much of my rereading in 2020 is focusing on rereading books in anticipation for the next book in the series.

Reread The Royal We for The Heir Affair

Royal-inspired reads has become one of my favorite contemporary subgenres over the past few years. One of the reads that inspired my love for this ‘genre’ back in 2015 was Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan’s The Royal We. The Royal We follows an American college student studying abroad in England who happens to fall in love with the crown prince. It was announced in 2019 that there would be a book #2, The Heir Affair, coming out on June 16, 2020. Since I absolutely loved the first book and haven’t read it since 2015, I’m in definite need of a reread before summertime.I know a lot of people will be checking out both books from the library, so the sooner I check The Royal We out for my reread, the sooner I’ll have it. Unless I break out my holiday Barnes & Noble gift cards…

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Anticipated 2020 Releases: The Contemporary Edition

Is it that much of a surprise that this reader and fangirl has an anticipated releases list solely dedicated to contemporary books? As per usual, I am excited for SO many new contemporary books in 2020 across YA, new adult, and adult fiction. And never fear, I have another anticipated releases list with all the upcoming non-contemporary books I’m most excited about coming next week.

YA

The Map From Here to There by Emery Lord

Release Date: January 7

The much anticipated sequel to The Start of Me and You, I have a feeling I’ll be rereading The Map From Here to There (live love my love for Max Watson) at some point in the new year, after reading it for review in 2019.

 

Tweet Cute by Emma Lord

Release Date: January 14

Hype for Emma Lord’s Tweet Cute has (appropriately) been all over YA Twitter, and I really want this one to be one of the first 2020 releases I pick up early next year.

The Gravity of Us by Phil Stamper

Release Date: February 4

I’m so excited to read The Gravity of Us because it sounds super unique! It follows two teenage guys who are the sons of the astronauts involved in NASA’s first mission to Mars.

 

Of Curses and Kisses (St. Rosetta’s Academy #1) by Sandhya Menon

Release Date: February 18

Sandhya Menon is seriously blessing us contemporary YA readers in 2019 with two new books! Of Curses and Kisses is the first book in her new fairytale retelling series set at an elite boarding school.

Anna K by Jenny Lee

Release Date: March 3

An Anna Karenina retelling, Anna K sounds so extravagant. Many bloggers have especially loved its Gossip Girl and Crazy Rich Asians vibe.

Harley in the Sky by Akemi Dawn Bowman

Release Date: March 10

Many readers absolutely love Akemi Dawn Bowman’s Starfish, making me even more excited to pick up that and her upcoming release, Harley in the Sky. After a huge fight with her parents, Harley joins her family’s rival circus group to perform as a trapeze artist.

 

We Are the Wildcats by Siobhan Vivian

Release Date: March 31

The most anticipated book on my list, I have been basically waiting for another Siobhan Vivian book since I finished Stay Sweet in 2018. We Are the Wildcats has me especially intrigued thanks to my field-hockey playing self.

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