Dianas Notes from the City

12 Books I Highly Recommend You Read

It’s been quite a year huh? But I have been trying to focus on the good things that did come out of this year. One of them was exceeding my reading list. It’s been a while since I did a blog post about my favorite books, so I decided to put together a list of the best books I read in the past two years:


If you are into true crime you’ve probably heard about the Golden State Killer. This book portrays a woman’s obsession and her pursuit of discovering the truth. In this book, you’ll read about most of his victims, how he planned/performed his attacks. Interesting for anyone who is into true crime while at the same time a bit disturbing to read how this psychopath committed his crimes.

Amber Patterson is fed up. She’s tired of being a nobody: a plain, invisible woman who blends into the background. She deserves more – a life of money and power like the one blond-haired, blue-eyed goddess Daphne Parrish takes for granted.

To everyone in the exclusive town of Bishops Harbor, Connecticut, Daphne – a socialite and philanthropist – and her real-estate mogul husband, Jackson, are a couple straight out of a fairy tale.

Amber’s envy could eat her alive…if she didn’t have a plan. Amber uses Daphne’s compassion and caring to insinuate herself into the family’s life – the first step in a meticulous scheme to undermine her. Before long Amber is Daphne’s closest confidante, traveling to Europe with the Parrishes and their lovely young daughters and growing closer to Jackson. But a skeleton from her past may undermine everything that Amber has worked toward, and if it is discovered, her well-laid plan may fall to pieces.

A book full of dark secrets and a little twist at the end. If you enjoyed “The woman in cabin ten”, “The woman in the window”, or “Gone Girl”. You would also enjoy this book.

I decided to read this book because everyone was talking about it. I had to say I could not put it down. The story was just so beautifully written, I did not want it to end. Just to provide a quick synopsis, the main character is abandoned at a very young age and is trying to survive by herself. Along the way, two men come into her life and teach her a little about the good and bad in life. The book is so filled with emotion and the end is quite unexpected. Or is it?

I loved loved this book. It’s probably one of my favorites and I consider it a great book club discussion. The author does a really good job bringing each character to life. This book explores the weight of long-held secrets, motherhood, and complex family dynamics.

This book is my number one favorite of all the books I read in 2019. So hard to believe that this is the author’s debut novel. I have so many words that can be used to describe this novel- hilarious, unique, heartwarming, heartbreaking, charming, inspiring, and completely unforgettable. Eleanor is a little bit.. odd. She’s very intelligent and well-spoken but she lacks the ability to filter what she says and therefore she will tell you exactly what she is thinking, which leads to very awkward situations and makes the book kind of funny for me. At thirty- years old, Eleanor is alone in this world and lacking social skills.

I had a few favorite books in 2020 but they all fall in different genres. However, I loved loved this book. I think it was so nicely written. Educated is a testimony of following one’s ambitions and dreams while overcoming overwhelming obstacles and hardships. It is an inspiring story of the drive for self-realization and while overcoming doubts, guilt, self-worth, and dealing with unhealthy family and beliefs.

Every year I read one to a few self-improvements books and since my yoga retreat, I kept hearing about Eckhard Tolle and the Power of Now. If you are seeking inner peace, this is a great place to start. I think this is the type of book that requires multiple readings to truly grasp what he is saying on a deeper level. The book talks about how important it is to live in the NOW. How the NOW is all there is. This is very important and very true because our minds are currently stuck in the past or focus on the future. Would we ever learn to be happy if happiness it’s aways somewhere else (when things are better when things were better)?

I actually read this book in Spanish because I wasn’t able to find the English version out there. More often than not, I tend to pick books about grief and loss. Don’t ask me why lol. Maybe cause if anyone that knows me knows I like to have those deep conversations and to talk about those mysterious things in life. This book is about Paula Cid, a forty-two-year-old neonatologist with an organized and uneventful life. Passionate about her work, she now finds herself immersed in the routine of a broken relationship. She loses her husband in a traffic accident just a few hours after he informs her that, after fifteen years of marriage, there is another woman in his life. Along with the pain of death, she must face the bitterness of feeling abandoned, mourning, and resentment at the same time.

I don’t think this book is available in English at least in the USA. It might be available in the UK but I have to say that I am obsessed with this author and her way of writing. So if you are looking for a book to read in Spanish I highly recommend this one. Laura deja su pareja y abandona Espana para mudarse a Nueva York. Su juventud ha estado marcada por la relacion con su padre, un hombre intolerante; su madre, que desaparecio para regresar cinco anos despues; y su hermano, que tiene que luchar contra la enfermedad mental que padece.

En Nueva York, Laura empieaza a trabajar en una editorial y a asistir a las clases de Gael. Quien es Gael?

A story about family, secrets, resentment.

If you like psychological thrillers I would highly recommend this book! It is highly addictive and it really takes you into the minds of its characters. Alex Michaelides’s writing draws you into the story as the protagonist, Theo Faber, attempts to break the silence of convicted murderer, Alicia Berenson who has been mute for six years and has spent that time in The Grove, a psychiatric unit. Theo has become obsessed with her case, but can he finally be the one to find out what really happened the night she shot her husband dead when he gets the opportunity to work at the Grove?

This had to be one of my favorite books of 2020! Even though this is a fiction book the book has realistic character analysis. There are three key people in this book. Richard Bowmaster, a lonely university professor in his sixties. Evelyn Ortega, a young undocumented immigrant from Guatemala, and Lucia Maraz, a fellow academic from Chile who is also Richard’s tenants. During the biggest Brooklyn snowstorm in living history, the lives of these three people intertwine, each talks about how they have been shaped by the tragedies they have witnessed. This book provides an insight into some of Chile’s and Central America’s history. Some history that as a Central American, myself, is very true and sad but very eye-opening. A book about immigration, finding the meaning of home, and love.

At the age of thirty-six, on the verge of completing a decade’s worth of training as a neurosurgeon, Paul Kalanithi was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer. He went from one day being a doctor treating the dying, to the next he was a patient struggling to live. And just like that, the future he and his wife has imagined evaporated. So what makes life worth living in the face of death?

This memoir made me cried I remember being in the middle of a music festival in 2019 with tears in my eye. The book was so beautifully written. The book is a tale of frank reflections on what matters in the end and I resonate with them.

So that’s a wrap! Have you read any of these books? If so, did you like it or not? I would love to hear your thoughts.

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