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!
I received an advance copy of this book from the publisher, Macmillan Audio, via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
We Begin at the End has been on my radar since my co-blogger Emma read it and loved it last year. Petrik and TS decided to pick it up as well, even though it’s not something within their usual genre wheelhouses. Again, they loved it. But they warned me that it was heartbreaking and, since I had been going through a particularly rough patch in my life, I held off until I felt like I was emotionally strong enough to handle it. I’m so glad I did, because I can say without a single qualm that it will be only my list of favorite books read in 2021, but the heart-wrenching emotion of it would have kept it from the same list last year. It really pays to wait until the right moment to read this type of book, and I’m glad I had friends to caution me in that regard. …
Chris Whitaker is one of those authors whose every release makes me wonder just how much better he can get. He’s only on book 3 and I’m wondering if this time he might have created something unmatchable. Honestly, I’ve been sitting on this review for ages because I can’t seem to write anything that’s not offensively superlative. We Begin at the End is a triumph. Spectacularly plotted, gut-wrenchingly genuine, and memorable in that way that sits heavy on your heart.