Hello everybody! So, I decided that it would work better for me to wait a few days into the New Year before writing this and I’m really glad I did, so I think it’ll be a little later than I used to do it every year from now on, around the 5th kind of time.
I have written answers to this tag (originally by Perpetual Page Turner) every year since I’ve had my blog and it takes AGES, but it’s great to have them to look back on, so I hope people enjoy reading them as well. Onto the post!
**2021 READING STATS**
Number Of Books You Read: 285
Number of Re-Reads: I think there’s 5, which shocked me because I thought there would be a LOT more!!
Genre You Read The Most From: I’m not 100% sure but I’d probably guess fantasy
BEST IN BOOKS
1. Best Book You Read In 2021
I have read so many incredible books this year and I’ve found many new all time favourites, but two that gave me back pieces of my soul that were stolen from me are Show Us Who You Are and Destination Anywhere, so I feel like it has to be those because they were just so special to me as wel as phenomenal reading experiences. Either the Appeal, Pretending or Daisy Jones and the Six would win my favourite adult book of the year I reckon.
2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?
There are, sadly, a few this year. I thought the Nightsilver Promise would be a five star favourite, and it wasn’t. I was super excited about the Summer Job, which I hated for many reasons, but most of all because it suggested that stupidity is a symptom of brain tumours?! And How Do You Like Me Now? wasn’t a hit for me, which was a shock as I adore Holly Bourne’s writing.
3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?
Let’s go for a positive one, given the last question. I expected to like the Appeal. I did not expect to be overcome with my all-encompassing love for it, and want to reread it ASAP.
4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)?
I’ve asked a few people what they’ve picked up because of me, and got loads of different answers, so I don’t really know for this to be honest!
5. Best series you started in 2021? Best Sequel of 2021? Best Series Ender of 2021?
Buckle in for the first (but certainly not last) tangent of this post. Best series I started were Amari and the Night Brothers and also Eva Evergreen. Some sequels I loved were a Vanishing of Griffins, Beyond the Mountains, the Stolen Prince of Cloudburst and A Tangle of Spells. Best series ender goes to the Storm Keeper’s Battle and Nightfall in New York, but the Battle for Roar also deserves a mention cause it’s great!
6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2021?
Hands down, it’s Nicola Skinner. Has been since the day I picked up Bloom last January, to be honest! Although, I’ve also developed a massive love for Hilary McKay this year so I guess she counts too.
7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?
I do not read much dystopian fiction at all, but I love Nicola Penfold’s writing so I’ll go for Between Sea and Sky.
8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?
This Can Never Not Be Real wins this by a fell swoop, it is SO tense and the action does not let up for a second. It’s a difficult book to read, but it’s so brilliantly written and the trauma is so sensitively handled. I would love to reread it at some point but I don’t know if I’m brave enough! And an MG book with brilliant atmosphere and tension was Waiting for Murder!
9. Book You Read In 2021 That You Would Be MOST Likely To Re-Read Next Year?
Probably Daisy Jones and the Six or the Appeal or Show Us Who You Are or Destination Anywhere. But honestly, I’d reread a lot of my 5 stars from last year in a heartbeat if I had enough time. Narrowing it down to 4 was horrible.
10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2021?
A tough one given the abundance of beautiful covers, but I think it has to be When You Trap a Tiger! Although I REALLY LOVE Lightning Falls as well!!
11. Most memorable character of 2021?
I feel like Eva from Girl, in Real Life and Billy from How I Saved the World in a Week were very memorable, especially if I’m trying to use different books for each prompt.
12. Most beautifully written book read in 2021?
I think this has to go to October, October, just speaking objectively! Although the writing in Wild Blue Wonder was stunning as well.
13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2021?
I’m trying so hard not to repeat books in questions but there’s a few where it’s just impossible not to, so my answers are Show Us Who You Are and Destination Anywhere.
14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2021 to finally read?
I mean, I can’t answer anything other than the Frozen Telescope 😂
15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2021?
The one in Pretending about not allowing other people to use your issues to make them feel better about their own lives struck a real chord with me.
16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2021?
Goodreads tells me it’s Blossom and As Good As Dead. Both of which I enjoyed!
17. Book That Shocked You The Most
My favourite twists of the year were in the Appeal and Amari and the Night Brothers!
18. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)
Iris and Nick from A Single Thread of Moonlight. It’s a bloody exceptional read in general as well.
19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year
I don’t know what my specific one would be, but it’s animal/child relationships. I love them 🥰. And I can’t think of any I love more than April and Bear this year, so I guess I’ll say them (they’re from the Last Bear!)
20. Favorite Book You Read in 2021 From An Author You’ve Read Previously?
I’m only allowing standalones here,and the first answer is the Week at World’s End. Emma Carroll is the queen of MG historical and I think she always will be! And I also loved Lauren St John’s Wave Riders! Although, a prequel I also want to give a shout out is Skyborn by Sinéad O’ Hart, so I’ll mention it as well. It made me cry HEAPS! My blog, my rules 😈
21. Best Book You Read In 2021 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure/Bookstagram, Etc.:
Okay, so I feel like this is maybe cheating, but a book I picked up because of someone’s social media was the Boyband Murder Mystery. It just happened that it was the author’s, who did some threads about rewatching Grey’s Anatomy and then viewing my absolute fave This Is Us for the first time. I cannot WAIT to chat about season 6 with Ava as well!
22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2021?
I think I have to go for Elliott from Dear Emmie Blue. I’m a sucker for an indie music boy! And if I was still a teenager, Brougham from Perfect on Paper would be another new book boyfriend.
23. Best 2021 debut you read?
I’d like to preface this by saying I read some fabulous debuts this year that weren’t quite 5 stars for me, which I’m absolutely planning to continue to read the authors of and the authors of which I LOVE chatting to online, and wish I could mention every single one because it’s been such a strong debut year and I want more people to read them!
I think my absolute favourite debuts were Fireborn by Aisling Fowler, Every Line of You by Naomi Gibson, The Weather Weaver by Tamsin Mori, Me, My Dad and the End of the Rainbow by Benjamin Dean and Wishyouwas by Alexandra Page. Longest answer ever but there are just SO MANY I wanted to mention! And I only included ones I’ve not mentioned in other answers.
24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?
I know I’m repeating myself a bit again, but I think Amari’s worldbuilding was incredible and I also really loved the world Aisling created in Fireborn.
25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?
Again, I have a good few for this! So, first off, His Royal Hopeless was pure comedy goodness and I’d LOVE to see it as a Disney/Pixar movie because it just has that vibe, and the same goes for Rules for Vampires as well actually. The Super Miraculous Journey of Freddie Yates is another middle grade that made me laugh a lot, and a YA pick would be Simon James Green’s You’re the One That I Want, and a much more recent read was Merry Kissmas to You by Jenni Jennings! For adult my most joyful reads were the Secret Bridesmaid and the Winter of Second Chances. Oh, and the Road Trip was just ridiculous
26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2018?
I cry at literally almost everything. One I didn’t think would make me cry was Last Night, but I was in absolute pieces.
27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?
I said a Janae Marks book for this last year so I’ll try and think of another book in the interests of originality, but honestly I can’t believe more people have not picked up A Soft Place to Land. I just love the way she writes. Ooooh, Almost Flying was a great one and I’ve not seen ANYONE talking about it.
28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?
I don’t read a lot of soul crushing books, it’s just not really my vibe. I like my books to have at least a smidge of hope, if they’re sad or about trauma etc.
29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2021?
There are loads I could pick for this but I think it has to be Tumble and Blue. WHAT a book! Fledgling is also unlike anything I’ve ever read before! Oh, and the Ash House was very different as well!
30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?
Nothing annoys me more in books than bad disability rep!! So that is vague and not naming and shaming, but you’ll probably be able to guess based on other answers what I mean here.
1. New favorite book blog/Bookstagram/Youtube channel you discovered in 2021?
In terms of blogs, I’ve started reading Erin’s this year and I’m very grateful to have met her! And I got VERY into Instagram so I’ve found loads of new book accounts, a few favourites are Christine, Sophie and Izzy. But I would like to emphasise I’ve met loads of amazing people online this year and I wish I could list each and every one.
2. Favorite post you wrote in 2021?
The debut spotlight I did back in November was super fun!! I’ll definitely be doing another one in 2022, possibly even a few so I can mention ’22 debuts I didn’t know about back when I wrote the first post. We’ll see, I guess!
3. Favorite bookish related photo you took in 2021?
I think this one, of the wonderful, witchy YA book Hexed, the YA comedy-fantasy hybrid of my actual dreams! And I love my earrings I won in a giveaway run by the author!
4. Best bookish event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, etc.)?
Easily Jennifer Killick’s launch for Crater Lake: Evolution. It was so warm and inviting and friendly and fun.
5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2021?
My answer to this last year was very vague but I was referring to writing interview questions for Emma Carroll, which I FINALLY got to publish in January 2021 after a very long wait caused by the pandemic. This year I’d have to say organising blogmas/A Golden Christmas/whatever you want to call it, because in November I got not so brilliant MRI results and planning this was a lobely distraction.
And then December was also not a super fun month personally as I had exams and hospital appointments and was feeling even more ill than usual because my condition flares up even more when I’m stressed, and those posts and chatting to people about them were such a lovely spot of light and joy for me.
7. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?
8. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?
I have two, both music posts: my reviews of What Were You Hoping to Find? by my beloved Vistas and also W.L by the Snuts. I love writing those kinds of posts
9. Best bookish discovery (book related sites, book stores, etc.)?
I never have an answer for this one. I did find some pretty new bookmarks but that’s about it!
10. Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?
I think I only had my Goodreads goal, which I exceeded so many times I changed it like 5 times.
1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2021 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2022?
I really want to catch up with the Dragon Realm series!! I loved the first and yet have just failed to get to the second and third books in 2021.
2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2022 (non-debut)?
I have 6 main ones for middle grade: Like a Charm, The Secret Sunshine Project Dread Wood, the Ministry of Unladylike Activity, the Houdini Inheritance and Silverborn. A YA I’m mega excited for is Gina Blaxill’s YA You Can Trust Me, and also whatever Simon James Green is releasing! And my most anticipated adult books are the Twyford Code and the Wedding Season!
3. 2022 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?
I think it has to be my friend Tasha’s book the Miraculous Sweetmakers and the Frost Fair! Although I’m dying to get my hands on everything in the debut Spotlight post and many more that I want to include in another one…
4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2022?
A Thunder of Monsters was one that popped straight into my mind, and I don’t know if it’s the last book in the series but I’m also highly anticipating the new Starfell book, Willow Moss and the Magic Thief. Oh, and obvs Silverborn for a sequel as well!!
5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2022?
I say this every year and it’s still never happened, but I would REALLY love to host a cover reveal someday. Also hoping to get to do more author interviews because I love writing those and I’d ideally like to do a Golden Christmas (my add a little sparkle to December blogmas) again, and hopefully get to host cool guest posts from authors as part of that again because I am so proud of 2021’s.
6. A 2022 Release You’ve Already Read & Recommend To Everyone (if applicable)
In fairness I’ve only read one at the time of starting to write this post (3rd Jan, and I didn’t finish till the evening of the 4th!!), but I reckon it’ll still be the Secret of Haven Point if I were to read 100 more!
I started it on the first of January and finished the following day, just because I was watching films with my family/tidying books etc on New Year’s Day and didn’t have time to devour it which was honestly good because I didn’t want to leave the characters behind after 2 days with them so I would have been bereft after one.
Thank you so much for reading, especially if you’ve made it here to the very end! I know it’s been a VERY long post. I’d love to hear about parts of your reading year you’d like to share, or your thoughts on the books I’ve mentioned in the comments!