My First Book Of The Year 2020

Today I’m posting what My First Book of the Year will be with Sheila of the blog Book Journey and others. 

Most years, my first book of the year is a self-improvement book. Last year was a rare exception with The Library Book by Susan Orlean that wasn’t one. This year, I’m jumping back on the self-improvement bandwagon with my choice:

A couple of weeks ago, I was leaning towards two other possibilities:

  • Almost Everything: Notes on Hope by Anne Lamott
  • Your Erroneous Zones by Wayne W. Dyer.

Then I remembered Meditations by Marcus Aurelius, which I had borrowed a few months ago for free from Prime Reading. The only thing was that when I tried it I was having a difficult time getting into it with the archaic translation. Last week while looking at Amazon reviews, I happened to come across several reviews that mentioned a modern translation by Gregory Hays, who also wrote an extensive introduction on the classic. Even though it wasn’t free, I decided to go ahead and purchase it.

I may or may not get to the other two this coming month, but I’m looking forward to reading Meditations for my first book of 2020. (Since I drafted this, I have added a few other books to the TBR pile, including a couple more self-improvement books.)

My last book of the year was The Lord God Made Them All as I continued to make my way slowly (but enjoyably) through James Herriot’s All Creatures Great and Small series.

I probably will be taking an extended break before getting to Every Living Thing, the last in the series, but most likely will get to it sometime in 2020.

Do you have a first book you plan to start out the year with? If so, what is it? If not, what are you looking forward to reading in 2020? To see what Sheila and others selected, visit Sheila’s blog post (link to be added later today).

15 thoughts on “My First Book Of The Year 2020

  1. I’m with you that I find self-improvement books to be great books to start a year with! I didn’t quite pick one this year (but mostly because much of my 2019 reading was self-help). You’ll have to share how you find Meditations. I’m not daring enough to pick it to read but I can change my mind.


    1. I’ll be honest that my first book of the year isn’t working out as planned. With all the aphorisms, I think it is a book that I will be reading over the next month or more, to meditate and maybe journal on. I think that will work better than devouring it in one sitting.


  2. I started 2020 reading The Fountains of Silence by Ruta Sepetys (YA historical fiction set in Spain under Franco) and, like all her others, it is very good.


    1. I think the introduction will be more challenging in terms of reading than the actual meditations themselves. I checked out a side-by-side comparison with this translation and another. There was a huge difference.


      1. You’re right… translation is SO important! I’ve compared translations of classics side-by-side like that. Sometimes it’s hard to believe they’re the same novel. Glad you found a good one.


    1. The Meditations themselves are short. The introduction this particular translator has is extensive. But yes, the new translation simplifies a lot, puts in very easy to understand language.


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