Best Books I Read in 2021


“Books” by shutterhacks is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Ryley Douglass

2021 was a crazy year. Through the return to in-person school and crazy weather over the summer, the world really threw a lot at us. It was a lot to handle, but books were a way to escape for many people, including myself. In 2021, I read a total of 100 books. Crazy, right? It gave me an opportunity to figure out what I really liked and what genres were fun for me to read. 

Of all of the 100 books, here are the best ones that I read: 

5.) We Were Liars by E. Lockhart

This book was a mind-boggling adventure. It took me through the rollercoaster story of Cady Sinclair regaining her memory after a tragic event that resulted in her getting brain damage. This book is one that drives you crazy, but in a way that really no other book can. It takes you into the mind of someone going through recovery from amnesia, the doubt Cady has in her own mind and her struggles with her own mental health. I couldn’t put this book down.

If this sounds like something you would like, click here. 

4.) I Want to Eat Your Pancreas by Yoru Sumino

This manga was one of the most powerful things I read all year. It is about a boy who doesn’t have a name, not one that people ask for anyway. He is the social outcast of the school who doesn’t bother talking to any of his peers. He feels like no one cares who he is and that he could just disappear and no one would notice. He discovers that his classmate, Sakura, is suffering from a fatal illness that disables the functions of the pancreas. Sakura teaches the main character that he isn’t alone and having friends is worth it, even if they’re not for forever. 

This manga left me in tears, and it is one that I’d definitely recommend. It is a rather quick read. 

If you’re interested in this, click here!

3.) The Love Hypothesis by Ali Blackwood

This book was all over Booktok, being raved about and it certainly delivered. If you’re interested in reading more about Booktok, you can click here for an article about some more Booktok books! This book is about Olive, a Ph.D. student. In order to convince her friend that she is fine, she kisses Adam Carlsen, a professor’s associate with a reputation for being grumpy. After an agreement to fake-date, they begin to develop real feelings for each other. This book is rather spicy, but it is one of the funniest, cutest books I read this year. This book had me laughing, blushing, and smiling at the romance. 

If this sounds like something you’d like, click here! 

2.) The Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller 

This duology follows Captain Alosa Kalligan, who is sent by her father to be kidnapped so she can rob a ship. This book is full of romance, witty banter, and scheming plots. This is a book I’d definitely recommend. I loved this book so much, I read it all within a couple of days, which is pretty fast for me. If you love the enemies to lovers trope, this is going to be the perfect book for you. 

If you’re interested in this book, click here. 

1.) It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover

This book follows Lily, a florist who feels a spark with a charming neurosurgeon, Ryle Kincaid. Everything feels too good to be true to Lily, after she’s worked hard to get everything she has. When a connection to the past comes up, Lily feels as though everything that she has built with Ryle is threatened. This is a book that I heard a lot about before I read it. It was all over Booktok and a lot of friends recommended it to me, but I was still hesitant to read it. When I did finally pick it up, I couldn’t put it down. I was so caught in the story that I read it all in one day. 

If you’re interested in this book, click here! 

All of these stories are amazing and really stuck with me long after reading them. These books really were impactful for me and I hope that these stories can be the same to you.