See Ya 2020

I know, it’s been a while.  With everyone home watching everything, I sort of felt like my “guidance” was not really needed.  For example, I really enjoyed “The Queen’s Gambit” on Netflix, but since it’s their most-watched scripted limited series ever, you probably did, too.  


So, with the understanding that you probably watched more than I did, I’m still going to make some recommendations.  I just re-read my last two posts from 2020 and I stand by those recommendations – particularly “Normal People” and “Schitt’s Creek.”  Both fantastic.  

Periodically, I have mentioned “Bridgerton,” beginning with my 2nd ever post when I listed Julia Quinn as one of my favorite authors in the historical romance genre.  I have read all of the books in the series (8 – each focusing on a different sibling) so I am hopeful that this show will continue past season 1.  Although the books are wittier (you will laugh out loud), I thought they did a wonderful job with the adaptation. It was especially lovely to see the era (the production design and costumes are A+) and it was educational (I now know how to properly say the word “viscount!”). If you do decide to read all the books (I hope you do!), you will thoroughly enjoy yourself.  My favorite of them is #6, but I don’t want you to skip ahead to it so I’ll let you figure them all out on your own.  If, after reading, you decide you like this type of book, please go back to my 2nd post where I list other wonderful romance authors.  Don’t discount them just because of the category they fall under. A well written book is a well written book.


I normally list the movies I gave As to the year before, but I mentioned those in the post that’s 2 back and they are all from last year’s Ocsar’s time so nothing really new to mention.  I had high hopes for a couple recent major releases but they didn’t really do it for me, unfortunately.  


Here are the books I read (in order) in 2020. If I recommend them, there will be an *.  I went through a weird period at the beginning of Covid where I just COULD NOT read so the list is not as long as usual.

  1. *Twice in a Blue Moon – Christina Lauren
  2. *Smooth Talking Stranger (reread) – Lisa Kleypas
  3. *The Secrets We Kept – Lara Prescott
  4. *The Overdue Life of Amy Byler – Kelly Harms
  5. *The Flatshare – Beth O’Leary
  6. *Chasing Cassandra – Lisa Kleypas
  7. The Tattooist of Auschwitz – Heather Morris
  8. One Hundred Reasons – Kelly Collins
  9. *The 7 Husbands of Evelyn Hugo – Taylor Jenkins Reid
  10. *Beautiful – Christina Lauren
  11. *The Giver of Stars – Jojo Moyes
  12. *Inside Out – Demi Moore
  13. *The Unbreakables – Lisa Barr
  14. *The Dutch House – Ann Patchett
  15. *Well Met – Jen DeLuca
  16. The Regrets – Amy Bonnafons
  17. Midnight Sun – Stephenie Meyer
  18. The Friend Zone – Abby Jimenez
  19. *Rodham – Curtis Sittenfeld
  20. *Red, White & Royal Blue – Casey McQuiston
  21. *Beach Read – Emily Henry
  22. *The Two Lives of Lydia Bird – Josie Silver
  23. *The Hating Game – Sally Thorne
  24. *In Five Years – Rebecca Serle
  25. Get A Life, Chloe Brown – Talia Hibbert
  26. *Dance Away With Me – Susan Elizabeth Phillips
  27. *Untamed – Glennon Doyle
  28. Well Played – Jen DeLuca
  29. *A Very Punchable Face – Colin Jost
  30. *Such a Fun Age – Kiley Reid
  31. 99 Percent Mine – Sally Thorne
  32. Here’s Looking at You – Mhairi McFarlane
  33. The Extraordinary Life of Sam Hell – Robert Dugoni
  34. *Dear Edward – Ann Napolitano

My favorites from this list are (if no commentary follows, please see previous posts):

  • Untamed – Glennon Doyle I can understand why some people may not like this book.  I am just not one of those people; I loved it.  I would like to underline so much of it and gift it to many people because I think it has a lot of important things to say that a lot of people would benefit from hearing.
  • The Hating Game – Sally Thorne I loved reading this book. It was so fun!  Two co-workers REALLY hate each other.  Or do they??
  • In Five Years – Rebecca Serle A very moving story about life not necessarily going the way the main character, Dannie, thinks it would or had planned for.
  • Dear Edward – Ann Napolitano I’m not going to lie; it’s not the easiest book to read as it’s about a plane crash with one survivor.  Stick with it though.  It moves from past to present which alleviates the terror of the crash, it is not overlong (a common complaint I have with many books) and the end will not disappoint.
  • The Dutch House – Ann Patchett This really is a book about a house (more specifically the siblings who live in it) but it is so beautifully written it is hard to not enjoy reading it. 
  • Beach Read – Emily Henry College nemeses-turned-authors live next door to each other at the beach, both saddled with writer’s block.  Not too hard to guess what happens, but also featured is a quirky local bookstore, which I always love (and dream about owning).
  • The Giver of Stars – Jojo Moyes Very unlike her other books, this one is a Depression-era tale about a group of women who battle just about everything and everyone to keep a traveling library going.
  • The Flatshare – Beth O’Leary
  • The Overdue Life of Amy Byler – Kelly Harms
  • Inside Out – Demi Moore I’m not sure what I thought her life was like, but it wasn’t this.  At one point she was the highest paid actress in Hollywood (I LOVED About Last Night) but she was always weighed down by doubt and insecurity thanks to her very rocky childhood.  I really feel like she laid it all out there and I like her all the more for it.

Side note: I’m sure I’m the last one aboard the train for this, but there are all these reading challenges out there!  I had no idea.  Here is a link to a ton of them, a fun way to pass the time!  You’re welcome :  )

I know we’re all happy 2020 is behind us. So here’s to 2021 – may this year be a healthy and happy one for all of you!


3 thoughts on “See Ya 2020

  1. elizabeth j levine

    Great blog. I read several of the books you listed. Agree on Dutch House and The Hating Game, Was disappointed in Rodham.


  2. Jerry Friedman

    Julie –

    Another amazing blog writing. I don’t know how you do it all. Very impressive.

    Love, Dad

    On Mon, Jan 4, 2021 at 9:46 AM entertainmentjunkieblog wrote:

    > julieflevine posted: ” I know, it’s been a while. With everyone home > watching everything, I sort of felt like my “guidance” was not really > needed. For example, I really enjoyed “The Queen’s Gambit” on Netflix, but > since it’s their most-watched scripted li” >


  3. Linda Shad

    Love your referrals! I’ve read many of the books you recommended—The Extraordinary Life of Sam Hell is my favorite book I read in 2020…gave it to all my family for Xmas.
    💉Happy New Year💉



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