Books I read in 2020

4 min readOct 11, 2020


This year, as college and the era of required reading ended, I decided to start being more mindful of my casual reading habits.

I have been writing short reviews of most of the books I read, linked in-line with the book entry.

Between 2016 and 2019, I aimed to read 36 books per year. You can find my reading list here, and here for 2021.

Over the years a lot of people have asked me how I find books to read, how to get (re)started with reading, and gain momentum. I made a post covering my thought process.

I am also trying to slowly read my way around the world and reduce the dominance of books set in U.S., U.K., and India in my reading list. Here is where I stand right now.

Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash
  1. The Great Smog of India, Siddharth Singh
  2. Black Warrant: Confessions of a Tihar Jailer, Sunil Gupta & Sunetra Chaudhary (Review)
  3. Weapons of Math Destruction, Cathy O’Neil (Review)
  4. Milkman, Anna Burns (Review)
  5. Buddha of Suburbia, Hanif Kureishi
  6. Ants Among Elephants, Sujatha Gidla (Review)
  7. A Pale View of Hills, Kazuo Ishiguro (Review)
  8. [COVID-19 Escapism Read] Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, J.K. Rowling
  9. [COVID-19 Escapism Read] Harry Potter and the Order of Phoenix, J.K. Rowling
  10. Three Body Problem, Cixin Liu (translated by Ken Liu, Review)
  11. How to do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy, Jenny Odell (Review, Reading list)
  12. Billion Dollar Whale, Tom Wright & Bradley Hope (Review)
  13. Evicted, Matthew Desmond (Review)
  14. Give People Money, Annie Lowrey (Review)
  15. After Dark, Haruki Murakami (Review)
  16. Little Fires Everywhere, Celeste Ng (Review)
  17. Watchmen, Alan Moore & Dave Gibbons (graphic novel)
  18. Lake, Banana Yoshimoto (Review)
  19. A.I. Superpowers: China, Silicon Valley, and the New World Order, Kai Fu Lee (Review)
  20. Capital, Thomas Piketty (Review)
  21. Billionaire Raj, James Crabtree (Review)
  22. Goldfinch, Donna Tartt (Review)
  23. The Free Voice: On Democracy, Culture and the Nation, Ravish Kumar (Review)
  24. Native Speaker, Chang-Rae Lee (Review)
  25. Are Prisons Obsolete, Angela Davis (Review)
  26. Wuhan Diary, Fang Fang (Review)
  27. The Art of Statistics: Learning from Data, David Spiegelhalter (Review)
  28. Buddha in the Attic, Julie Otsuka (Review)
  29. Dark Towers: Deutsche Bank, Donald Trump, and an Epic Trail of Destruction, David Enrich (Review)
  30. What If?, Randall Munroe (Review)
  31. Free Food for Millionaires, Min Jin Lee (Review)
  32. Daily Rituals, Mason Currey (Review)
  33. The Perfect Nanny, Leila Slimani (Review)
  34. Dear Ijeawele; or, A Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  35. Ghachar Ghochar, Vivek Shanbagh
  36. Becoming, Michelle Obama (Review)
  37. Origin, Dan Brown (Review)
  38. Less, Andrew Sean Greer (Review)
  39. Secret History, Donna Tartt (Review)
  40. Maid, Stephanie Land (Review)
  41. Underland: A Deep Time Journey, Robert MacFarlane
  42. Strangers Drowning: Voyages to the Brink of Moral Extremity, Larissa MacFarquhar
  43. Kill All Normies: Online Culture Wars from 4chan and Tumblr to Trump and the Alt-Right, Angela Nagle (Review)
  44. Poor Economics, Esther Duflo & Abhijit Banerjee (Review)
  45. The Hidden History of Burma: Race, Capitalism, and the Crisis of Democracy in the 21st Century, Thant Myint-U (Review)
  46. The Price of Admission, Daniel Golden (Review)
  47. An Absolutely Remarkable Thing, Hank Green (Review)
  48. The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains, Nicholas Carr (Review)
  49. Remains of the Day, Kazuo Ishiguro (Review)
  50. Shadow Armies: Fringe Organizations and Foot Soldiers of Hindutva, Dhirendra K. Jha (Review)
  51. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, Michael Chabon
  52. Six Four, Hideo Yokoyama (Review)
  53. A Small Place, Jamaica Kincaid (Review)
  54. Minor Feelings, Cathy Hong
  55. Everything I Never Told You, Celeste Ng (Review)
  56. One Day We’ll All Be Dead and None of This Will Matter, Scaachi Koul (Review)
  57. Utopia for Realists: How We Can Build the Ideal World, Rutger Bregman (Review)
  58. Calling Bullshit: The Art of Skepticism in a Data-Driven World, Carl Bergstrom and Jevin D. West (Review)
  59. A Gentleman in Moscow, Amor Towles (Review)


  1. Homegoing, Yaa Gyasi (Review)
  2. I Contain Multitudes: The Microbes Within Us and a Grander View of Life, Ed Yong (Review)
  3. Permanent Record, Edward Snowden (Review)
  4. Why We Are Polarized, Ezra Klein (Review)
  5. The Age of Surveillance Capitalism, Shoshana Zuboff (Review)
  6. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry, Neil deGrasse Tyson
  7. Seven Brief Lessons on Physics, Carlo Rovelli
  8. The Tangled Tree: A Radical New History of Life, David Quammen (Review)
  9. Behave, Robert Sapolsky (Review)
  10. Being a Dog: Following the Dog Into a World of Smell, Alexandra Horowitz (Review)
  11. Midnight in Chernobyl: The Untold Story of the World’s Greatest Nuclear Disaster, Adam Higginbotham (Review)
  12. Life 3.0, Mark Tegmark
  13. Man’s Search for Meaning, Viktor Frankl
  14. The Privileged Poor: How Elite Colleges Are Failing Disadvantaged Students, Anthony Abraham Jack (Review)
  15. Inside of a Dog: What Dogs See, Smell, and Know, Alexandra Horowitz (Review)
  16. The Ocean at the End of the Lane, Neil Gaiman
  17. The Great Influenza: The Story of the Deadliest Pandemic in History, John Barry (Review)
  18. Hunger, Roxane Gay (Review)
  19. Gratitude, Oliver Sacks (Review)
  20. The Color of Law: The Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America, Richard Rothstein (Review)
  21. The Uninhabitable Earth, David Wallace-Wells (Review)
  22. The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Milan Kundera
  23. In Defense of Food, Michael Pollan (Review)
  24. The Man Who Solved the Market, Gregory Zuckerman (Review)

In progress / on the reading list

  1. The Old Drift, Namwali Serpell
  2. Darkness Visible, William Styron
  3. The Tsar of Love and Techno, Anthony Marra
  4. Trick Mirror, Jia Tolentino
  5. When Crime Pays, Milan Vaishnav
  6. The Great Glass Sea, John Weil
  7. Death and Life of Great American Cities, Jane Jacobs
  8. Life Between Buildings: Using Public Space, Jan Gehl
  9. Everything is Illuminated, Jonathan Safran Foer
  10. The South Side, Natalie Moore
  11. Their Eyes Were Watching God, Zora Neale Hurston
  12. Half of a Yellow Sun, Chimamanda Adichie
  13. The Norton Reader: An Anthology of Nonfiction, Goldwaithe et al *