It is time for another 2020 top five countdown! Today I am looking back on the best and most character-driven books I read over the course of this year.
For me, there are not many things better when reading a book than connecting strongly with a character or just seeing life through their eyes. Sometimes a book is made what it is by the characters and their nuances, or maybe the story itself is one massive character portrait.
Each of the books on my list fulfils at least one of these requirements, so without further ado, let’s take a look…
Circe by Madeline Miller
Books rarely come much more character driven than this one. It is a book all about Circe herself, and she owns every page with her magic and independence and personality. The writing is incredible, and the story – as the title suggests – truly belongs to her.
You Should See Me In A Crown by Leah Johnson
This book effortlessly brought a smile to my face, and a lot of that was down to the protagonist, Liz. She is so likeable and down-to-earth and made for a fantastic narrator.
The Confessions Of Frannie Langton by Sara Collins
This was an extremely detailed character portrait, telling the powerful and complex story of Frances through her very unique perspective. She reflects on her experiences – many of them quite tragic – in a compelling way and this forms the basis of the book.
The Lion Tamer Who Lost by Louise Beech
This was beautifully bittersweet story in which the strength of the character development lifts it up several notches. The characters totally leave their mark and leave you feeling a strong emotional connection towards the book. In Ben, Andrew, and Will, you have three extraordinary perspectives.
The Whisper Man by Alex North
I have rarely come across a thriller with such an emphasis on character development, and that is what I admired most about this one. It may be spooky and dark, but at the heart of it is a powerful family relationship seen across multiple narratives.
Have you read any of these books? What are your most character-driven reads of 2020? Let me know in the comments!