My Favourite Books of 2021

My 2021 Book Recommendations

Every year, I set a reading goal on Goodreads. This year, I set an ambitious target of 24 books (2 books per month). I tend to go through reading phases and then long gaps of time without picking up a book, which made me feel confident that I could reasonably accomplish my goal. Luckily, I have lots of places where I get my book recommendations – friends, Booktok, and Heather’s Picks at Indigo. 

It’s now mid-November and I have read 19/24 books. Here are my favourites from the year so far:

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Exit West – Mohsin Hamid

The novel is about a young couple, Saeed and Nadia, who live in an unnamed city undergoing civil war and finally have to flee, using a system of magical doors, which lead to different locations around the globe. Saeed and Nadia’s relationship develops over time and captures them both in an authentic way that keep me captivated until the end of the novel.

The Book of Lost Names – Kristin Harmel

During WW2, Eva, a Polish Jew refugee, flees from Paris to the free zone in France and helps the war effort by becoming a document forger. The novel is based on real events, which adds to the depth of the storyline. 

If you liked the Alice Network, you’ll definitely enjoy this novel as well. 

It Ends With Us – Colleen Hoover

I read this book in one sitting on the couch (barely taking a break for lunch). Colleen paced this book in a way that made you want to keep reading and it showed a new perspective on a complicated issue of domestic violence. 

Malibu Rising – Taylor Jenkins Reid

This book immerses you in 1980’s Malibu (as a surfer, I couldn’t stay away!). The story focuses around the Riva Family – and their epic annual end of summer party.

The connection between the siblings and the love behind family is what led me to love this book. 

Mexican Gothic – Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Halloween is over but this spooky gothic horror novel will keep you on the edge of your seat! Noemí Taboada, a debutant in Mexico, receives a letter from her cousin to come help her in her isolated mansion in small-town Mexico, Noemi embarks on an adventure to help save her cousin. 

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo – Taylor Jenkins Reid

Another Taylor Jenkins Reid… can you tell I am a fan?

You might think Evelyn Hugo is a flighty Hollywood scarlet but that is far from truth. Learn the real story behind Hollywood’s most wanted woman through the lens of a career reporter. 

The Vanishing Half – Brit Bennett

The Vignes twin sisters will always be identical. They grew up together in a small, southern black community and ran away at age sixteen. As time goes on, it’s not just the shape of their daily lives that is different as adults, it’s everything: their families, their communities, their racial identities.

Bennett explores not just the concept of race, but of identity, human desire, the decisions we make to feel safe and loved. 

White Ivy – Susie Yang

A book that captured me from the first line… “Ivy Lin is a thief and a liar—but you’d never know it by looking at her.”

A young woman’s crush on a privileged former classmate becomes a story of love, lies, and dark obsession, offering stark insights into the immigrant experience, as it hurtles to its electrifying ending.

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