The 10 Most Popular Lit Hub Stories of 2020
What You Read During the Darkest Timeline
Another year of Lit Hub has come and gone. In 2020, we shared fascinating excerpts, beautiful poems, enormous and correct lists, snarky blogs, heartfelt essays, eulogies, cover reveals, advice and jokes and brain food and everything in between. But we couldn’t have done it without you, the readers. Below is a list of what millions of you read and shared the most. Thank you for spending a piece of this terrible, terrible year with us.
You can order today from these Black-owned independent bookstores,
by Corinne Segal (June 3)
In which Lit Hub’s Senior Editor Corinne Segal compiled a massive list of Black-owned independent bookstores across the country taking phone and online orders.
The first lines of 10 classic novels, rewritten for social distancing,
by Jessie Gaynor (March 16)
In which Lit Hub’s Social Media Editor Jessie Gaynor proved that with a little elbow grease, any book can be a coronavirus book.
In 2019, more Americans went to the library than to the movies. Yes, really,
by Dan Sheehan (January 24)
In which Dan Sheehan, editor of Book Marks, shares the surprising news that visiting the local library was the most common cultural activity for Americans by far.
How Ramona Quimby Taught a Generation of Girls to Embrace Brashness,
by Rachel Vorona Cote (February 24)
In which Rachel Vorona Cote, author of Too Much: How Victorian Constraints Still Bind Women Today, on the cultural impact of Beverly Cleary’s most beloved character, who “loves the world with ferocity; she does not so much want to disturb it as she yearns to discover, to turn it over, examine every piece and crook and marvel at why each creature, commodity, and substance exists the way it does.”
On Not Meeting Nazis Halfway,
by Rebecca Solnit (November 19)
In which Rebecca Solnit reminded Democrats that they won.
Lake Michigan Thinks It’s Still an Ocean,
by Jill Sisson Quinn (August 28)
In which Jill Sisson Quinn reflected on the strange allure of one of our Great Lakes.
Prince Was One of the Loneliest Souls I’ve Ever Met,
by Neal Karlen (October 8)
In which Neal Karlen unpacked his complicated relationship with an American icon, whose only fear was dying alone.
Big-hearted strangers turn Little Free Libraries into Little Free Pantries,
by Dan Sheehan (March 18)
In which Dan Sheehan registered the changes some neighborhoods made in their Little Free Libraries during the pandemic.
Did Tolkien Write The Lord of the Rings Because He Was Avoiding His Academic Work?,
by John M. Bowers (January 27)
In which John M. Bowers asked the important questions—and told us what Tolkien felt guilty about.
Lit Hub’s Most Anticipated Books of 2020 (January 14)
In which we told you the future. But, um . . . not very precisely.