What I Read this Month

Top 10 Books of 2021

2021 was a phenomenal year of reading. I managed to read 137 books– a personal best, and I truly loved each one! As you read this post, you’ll notice my favorite genres pretty quickly– fantasy and contemporary romance– but I promise that I actually read a variety of genres this year. Trying to narrow down my top 10 books of 2021 was nearly impossible, and I did cheat a little by clumping a few series together, but let’s not worry about that, m’kay?

What were your favorite books that you read this year? Let me know in the comments! I am always looking for new books recommendations, so please send them all my way! Now let’s get into some of my top books of 2021:

1. Crescent City: House of Earth & Blood

Author: Sarah J. Maas

Genre: NA Fantasy

Book #1 in the Crescent City series

The Crescent City world was by far the most amazing “fantasy world” I’ve ever read about. SJM’s world-building is phenomenal! Oh, and Bryce and Hunt are endgame. I refuse to believe anything else.

2. A Court of Silver Flames

Author: Sarah J. Maas

Genre: NA Fantasy

Book #5 in the A Court of Thorns and Roses series

I know most people hated Nesta throughout the A Court of Thorns and Roses books; however, I personally related to her a lot and I loved her sarcasm and no-care attitude. I was so excited that she and Cas got their own book to work through their barriers and struggles.

3. Crave, Crush, and Covet

Author: Tracy Wolff

Genre: YA/NA Fantasy

Books #1-3 in the Crave series

Tracy Wolff’s writing is magical. I love the sarcasm and wit that she weaves into her characters. She can break my heart so thoroughly, yet I keep coming back for more, so if that isn’t a sign of a great writer, I don’t know what is!

4. Gild, Glint, and Gleam

Author: Raven Kennedy

Genre: Indie Adult Fantasy

Books #1-3 in The Plated Prisoner series

The Instagram caption pretty much sums up my feelings about this series, even several months removed from reading it. My love for this series is so strong, and I have to thank the bookstagram community for introducing me to indie authors like Raven Kennedy.

I will caveat this by saying that these books have adult themes and I highly recommend reading the trigger warnings before reading. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that they are YA or even NA. They are most definitely Adult.

5. A Shadow in the Ember

Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout

Genre: Adult Fantasy

Book #1 in the Flesh and Fiere spinoff series of her original series, Blood and Ash

For those who’ve read the FBAA series, ASITE is a must-read! If you haven’t read the series yet, I would recommend waiting to read ASITE until you read the entire FBAA series; otherwise, you’re likely to be very confused by the characters and their world.

I can honestly say that Armentrout’s worlds are unlike any I’ve ever read. She also knows how to make me feel every emotion within 50 pages, and that’s just TALENT!

6. Verity

Author: Colleen Hoover

Genre: Psychological Thriller Fiction

I really don’t have to say much about Verity, because as Taylor Swift would say, “my reputation precedes me”. For those who are CoHo fans, it’s the pinnacle of her writing skill and probably the most favored of her books.

This book isn’t for the faint of heart– that ending will have you reeling. I still think about this book,k and I think it will always stick with me. Have you read a book like that before?

7. Once Upon A Broken Heart

Author: Stephanie Garber

Genre: YA Fantasy

Book #1 in the spinoff series of her original Caraval trilogy

I fell in love with Jacks in the Caraval series, so I was over the moon when I heard that he was getting his own series! I know, I know, he’s a villain, but if there’s one thing you should know about me, it’s that I have a soft spot for morally-grey “bad guys”. I can’t help it.

Also, I love how Garber writers such empowered female characters. Evangeline is amazing!

8. The Love Hypothesis

Author: Ali Hazelwood

Genre: Contemporary Romance

This book is probably one of the most popular contemporary romance releases in 2021, but honestly, it’s worth the hype! I read *a lot* of contemporary romance this year, and I just had to put The Love Hypothesis at the top of my list.

For those nerdy souls who are looking for a CUTE “sciency” (wow, I’m such a wordsmith) fake dating trope, then this one is for you!

9. Kingdom of the Wicked & Kingdom of the Cursed

Author: Keri Maniscalo

Genre: NA Fantasy

Books #1-2 of the Kingdom of the Wicked series

I was not expecting to love this series as much as I do– definitely another bookstagram-hyped series that’s well worth it! The Italian influences in these books were a refreshing element that made them feel so original. Wrath and Emilia are some of my favorite enemies-to-lovers that I’ve ever read (and that’s saying a lot since that’s also my favorite trope).

I know there has been some backlash about the second book in particular concerning consent, and I do see the point those people are making. However, I don’t think it was written in a way that is as severe as some have made it out to be, but I just wanted to bring it up for those who may be triggered by that one scene in Kingdom of the Cursed.

10. Ember of Night & Shadow of Light

Author: Molly E. Lee

Genre: YA Fantasy

Books #1-2 of the Ember of Night series

For a YA series, these two books are surprisingly raw, and I love that more YA authors are pushing that boundary. Harley is not the typical heroine, and Draven is definitely not the white knight who saves the day. Molly Lee is another writer that can make me laugh and cry within the same chapter, so I’m automatically her biggest fan.

I know I’ve cheated and listed more than my top 10 books of 2021, but I do have some honorable mentions that I just have to give you: The Brown Sisters series, People We Meet on Vacation, The Prison Healer, and its sequel, The Gilded Cage, and The Woman in the Window.

I’m sure most have clicked off this ridiculously long post, but if you’re still here, THANK YOU! Before you go, let’s be friends on Goodreads! I’d love to see what everyone is reading and reviewing! See y’all in the near year!

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