Top Ten Tuesday: Best Books I Read In 2021

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Best Books I Read In 2021.

According to Goodreads, I have over 40 books that I rated 5 stars in 2021! I guess it truly was an excellent year for reading. Excluding all the re-reads in the mix, that still leaves me with way more than 10 — and since this is a situation where my list, my rules apply, I’m going to go with 20 of my favorite reads (and even that hurts my heart, having to leave out so many others!).

In no particular order, my top TWENTY books of 2021:

  1. The Fall of Koli by M. R. Carey: A fabulous wrap-up to a compelling trilogy. (review)
  2. Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir: Everyone raved about this book, and with good reason! (review)
  3. The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah: This book about the Dust Bowl and the Great Depression was a tough read, but so moving and powerful. (review)
  4. This Tender Land by William Kent Krueger: Simply a beautifully written historical novel — and yet another reason to be thankful for my book group’s terrific reading choices.
  5. That Summer by Jennifer Weiner: Totally engrossing contemporary fiction. (review)
  6. Flash Fire by TJ Klune: Book #2 in the author’s Extraordinaries YA series moved me to tears and to hysterical bursts of laughter. I love these books. (review)
  7. The Apocalypse Seven by Gene Doucette: I feel like this was an under-the-radar book for 2021, but I thoroughly enjoyed this strange apocalyptic sci-fi tale. (review)
  8. The Exiles by Christina Baker Kline: Another powerful historical novel, with a focus on transportation of British prisoners to Australia. (review)
  9. Emily of New Moon trilogy by L. M. Montgomery: These books are beautiful and optimistic and just all around wonderful. (review)
  10. Tokyo Ever After by Emiko Jean: This YA novel, kind of like The Princess Diaries but set in Japan, is sweet and funny and just so good. (review)
  11. The Beautiful Ones by Silvia Moreno-Garcia: This author writes in so many genres, and while I’ve enjoyed quite a few of her books, I think this one is my favorite. (review)
  12. The Sweetest Remedy by Jane Igharo: Sensitive and sweet contemporary romance about family and heritage and connecting the past with the present. (review)
  13. Instructions for Dancing by Nicola Yoon: Another great YA read! (review)
  14. The Echo Wife by Sarah Gailey: Ooh, this sci-fi thriller really got to me! (review)
  15. Dava Shastri’s Last Day by Kirthana Ramisetti: I’m actually at about 90% as of when I’m writing this post, but I’m loving this book enough to include it on my “best of” list!
  16. Horseman by Christina Henry: Terrific, spooky retelling of the Headless Horseman legend. (review)
  17. So Many Beginnings by Bethany C. Morrow: As the subtitle says, this is a “remix” of Little Women, and it’s wonderful. (review)
  18. Day Zero by C. Robert Cargill: The aftermath of a robot uprising, starring an animatronic tiger nannybot. What more do you really need to know? (review)
  19. A Night in the Lonesome October by Roger Zelazny: This is going to be my new annual Halloween tradition. (review)
  20. The Mystery of Mrs. Christie by Marie Benedict: Fascinating historical fiction about a real event in the life of Agatha Christie. (review)

I could go on… but this gives you a sense of what books I loved best in 2021.

What were your favorite books of 2021? Do we have any in common?

Share your link, and I’ll come check out your top 10!

Top Ten Tuesday: The long & the short of it

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is a freebie — so we all come up with whatever topic we feel like writing about.

My topic this week is the long & the short of it — the longest and shortest books I’ve read in the past year. Keeping it simple!

My five longest books were:

1. Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone (Outlander, #9) by Diana Gabaldon: 960 pages. Just finished this week!

2. Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes: 940 pages. My book group’s classic read — took us about a year, but we made it.

3. Written in My Own Heart’s Blood (Outlander, #8) by Diana Gabaldon: 825 pages. This was a re-read, but so necessary in preparation for book #9.

4. Any Way the Wind Blows (Simon Snow, #3) by Rainbow Rowell: 579 pages. I really wish this wasn’t the end of the story — I want more!

5. The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley: 544 pages. Another re-read, but it had been many years since the first time I read it, and I loved it all over again.

And the shortest:

1. The Wickeds (Faraway Collection) by Gayle Forman: 32 pages. This is really just a short story, but I’m including it anyway! This collection of fairy tales was fun, and I liked this one best of all.

2. A Doll’s House by Henrik Ibsen: 122 pages. Another book group classic read, with such great discussions.

3. A Spindle Splintered by Alix E. Harrow: 128 pages. Wonderful fairy tale novella.

4. Rizzio by Denise Mina: 128 pages. Another novella, historical fiction this time, telling the story of a real-life murder in the court of Mary, Queen of Scots.

5. One Day All This Will Be Yours by Adrian Tchaikovsky: 144 pages. Great sci-fi novella.

What were your longest and shortest reads this year?

If you wrote a TTT this week, please share your links!