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Celeste’s Top 21 Books of the Year (2021)

Celeste’s Top 21 Books of the Year (2021)


At last, 2021 is drawing to a close.  Or, as I like to call it, 2020 part 2.  While the year wasn’t the best, I did have a pretty great reading year.  According to Goodreads, I read 110 books this year.  According to my own spreadsheet, I read 192.  That 82 book difference is comprised largely of various long, spicy romance series that I didn’t want to have to review because I was consuming them so quickly, so I made the decision to not include them on Goodreads.  But I wanted to acknowledge them here.  This was the year of the romance novel for me.  Romance has never been my genre of choice, but I found so much solace in it this year.  For the first time, I truly understand why there are so many dedicated romance readers out there, and now I happily consider myself one of them.  Four novels on this list are romances, in fact.

While I read a metric ton of romance, I think I read fairly widely this year.  This list includes fantasy, mystery, thriller, horror, sci-fi, and literary fiction.  One of the biggest common denominators on this list is actually Greek mythology.  I’ve always loved mythology, and this year I read some amazing books retelling some of those myths in fun and refreshing ways.  This is something I hope to find even more of next year.

As always, I’m following Petrik’s example here.
– One entry per author. (But not always only one book.  I’m cheating this year.  You’ll see what I mean.)
– Rereads aren’t included.
– The books on this list were new to me, not necessarily new. They might not have been published this year, but this was my first time reading them.
– All of these books were either 4.5 or 5 star reads for me.

Links to my Goodreads reviews of each book will be included below. And now, without further ado, here are my favorite books of 2021!


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Petrik’s Top 20 Books of the Year (2021)

Petrik’s Top 20 Books of the Year (2021)

This list is also available on my Booktube Channel if that’s what you preferred: https://youtu.be/wZY-JG9HUgQ

Click here if you want to see the list of all the books I’ve read so far this year: Petrik’s Year in Books (2021)

It’s that time of the year again, y’all. 2021 is ending in a week. This year, I managed to read 130 books. This number includes 72 traditionally published books, 21 self-published/indie books, 37 manga volumes (I’ve read so many more manga volumes but I’ve decided to only include 37 here.)

In comparison to the previous years, whether it’s by pages count or the number of books, this is my lowest reading performance so far. There are details behind this reason, but really when it comes down to it, it’s because this is the first full year I became a Booktuber. In addition to reading and writing reviews, now I also record, edit, and upload videos to my YouTube Channel. My reading “performance” definitely suffers because of it, but not going to lie, I’m happy to make that sacrifice. As for the quality of the books I read, this is another incredible reading year, so let’s get to it immediately. As usual, I will be applying a few rules into this list:

Please read this first. There will be three rules I set in this list in order for me to give appreciation to more authors rather than having only a few authors hoarding this list. These rules allow me to highlight more authors, and at the same time, I’ll also be able to include both new and older books (many of them still need attention) that I read within this year.

  • Rereads aren’t included.
  • One book per author.
  • The books listed here are not all exclusively published this year; the list consists of the top books I read for the first time within this year. Non-2021 published books on this list will have their first date of publication included.

Do note that although there’s a rank to this list, I HIGHLY recommend every book/series listed below because I loved all of them immensely, and they received a rating of 4.5 or 5 out of 5 stars from me. Without further ado, here are the top 20 books I’ve read in 2021! (All full reviews of the books listed can be found on Novel Notions and my Goodreads page

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Book Review: The Death of Dulgath (The Riyria Chronicles, #3) by Michael J. Sullivan

Book Review: The Death of Dulgath (The Riyria Chronicles, #3) by Michael J. Sullivan

The Death of Dulgath by Michael J. Sullivan

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: The Riyria Chronicles (Book #3)

Genre: Fantasy, High Fantasy

Published: 3rd November 2015 by Riyria Enterprises (self-published)


It should come as no surprise that I absolutely loved The Death of Dulgath, which was just as good if not even better upon reread.

Aside from Sanderson, I have one other major fictional addiction, and that is Riyria. I could never get enough of reading about the duo of Hadrian Blackwater and Royce Melborn, and have read The Riyria Revelations and the first two books of The Riyria Chronicles three times.

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Book Review: The Disappearance of Winter’s Daughter (The Riyria Chronicles, #4) by Michael J. Sullivan

Book Review: The Disappearance of Winter’s Daughter (The Riyria Chronicles, #4) by Michael J. Sullivan

Cover art illustrated by: Marc Simonetti

The Disappearance of Winter’s Daughter by Michael J. Sullivan

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Series: The Riyria Chronicles (Book #4)

Genre: Fantasy, High Fantasy

Pages: 480 pages (Kindle edition)

Published: 5th December 2017 by Riyria Enterprises, LLC (Self-published)


As always, another great book in the series, and now I’m fully caught up with The Riyria Chronicles. I hope it won’t be too long for Drumindor to come out.

“Things will change, but not all at once… You can’t obtain respect at the point of a sword, not from people who despise us. Respect needs to be earned. Trust needs to be built up over time, over generations.”

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Book Review: The Death of Dulgath (The Riyria Chronicles, #3) by Michael J. Sullivan

Book Review: The Death of Dulgath (The Riyria Chronicles, #3) by Michael J. Sullivan

Cover art illustrated by: Marc Simonetti

The Death of Dulgath by Michael J. Sullivan

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: The Riyria Chronicles (Book #3)

Genre: Fantasy, High Fantasy

Pages: 408 pages (Kindle edition)

Published: 15th October 2015 by Riyria Enterprises, LLC (Self-published)


The Death of Dulgath is the best volume in The Riyria Chronicles so far.

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Book Review: The Rose and The Thorn (The Riyria Chronicles, #2) by Michael J. Sullivan

Book Review: The Rose and The Thorn (The Riyria Chronicles, #2) by Michael J. Sullivan

The Rose and The Thorn by Michael J. Sullivan

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: The Riyria Chronicles (Book #2)

Genre: Fantasy, High Fantasy

Published: 17th Sept 2013 by Orbit


My third time reading The Rose and The Thorn, and it still felt just as wonderful to be back.

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Petrik’s Top 10 Books of the Year So Far (1st January-30th June 2021)

Petrik’s Top 10 Books of the Year So Far (1st January-30th June 2021)

Click here if you want to see the list of all the books I’ve read so far this year: Petrik’s Year in Books (2021)

Between 1st January 2021 until 30th June 2021, I’ve read and reviewed 51 books (25k pages).

Please read this first. There will be three rules I set in this list in order for me to give appreciation to more authors rather than having only a few authors hoarding this list. These rules allow me to highlight more authors, and at the same time, I’ll also be able to include both new and older books (many of them still need attention) that I read within this year.

  • Rereads aren’t included.
  • One book per author.
  • The books listed here are not all exclusively published this year; the list consists of the top books I read for the first time within this year. Non-2021 published books on this list will have their first date of publication included.

Do note that although there’s a rank to this list, I HIGHLY recommend every book/series listed below because I loved all of them immensely, and they received a rating of 4.5 or 5 out of 5 stars from me. Without further ado, here are the top 10 books I’ve read this year so far! (All full reviews of the books listed can be found on Novel Notions and my Goodreads page.)

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Book Review: The Rose and the Thorn (The Riyria Chronicles, #2) by Michael J. Sullivan

Book Review: The Rose and the Thorn (The Riyria Chronicles, #2) by Michael J. Sullivan

Cover art illustrated by: Larry Rostant

The Rose and the Thorn by Michael J. Sullivan

My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

Series: The Riyria Chronicles (Book #2)

Genre: Fantasy, High Fantasy

Pages: 372 pages (Kindle edition)

Published: 17th September 2013 by Orbit


The cover art to The Rose and the Thorn is atrocious, but let’s not judge a book by its cover.

“The right word, said at the right moment, can work magic, he was fond of saying. You merely need to understand power, where it comes from, and the direction it flows.”

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Book Review: The Crown Tower (The Riyria Chronicles, #1) by Michael J. Sullivan

Book Review: The Crown Tower (The Riyria Chronicles, #1) by Michael J. Sullivan

The Crown Tower by Michael J. Sullivan

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: The Riyria Chronicles (Book #1)

Genre: Fantasy, High Fantasy

Published: 6th August 2013 by Orbit


If ever there was a prequel story which I thought was perfection, The Crown Tower absolutely fit the bill.

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Book Review: The Crown Tower (The Riyria Chronicles, #1) by Michael J. Sullivan

Book Review: The Crown Tower (The Riyria Chronicles, #1) by Michael J. Sullivan

I have a Booktube channel now! Subscribe here: https://www.youtube.com/petrikleo

Cover art illustrated by: Larry Rostant

The Crown Tower by Michael J. Sullivan

My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

Series: The Riyria Chronicles (Book #1)

Genre: Fantasy, High Fantasy

Pages: 422 pages (Kindle edition)

Published: 6th August 2013 by Orbit


Rather than The Crown Conspiracy, I personally think The Crown Tower is a greater starting point to Royce and Hadrian’s story.

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