2021 was a busy year of reading! Overall I read 194 books with a large majority of those being children’s books that I received for review. I had set a goal of reading 80 adult fiction/nonfiction books and I almost met my goal. I read 77 books which were less than last year, but more than I read in 2018 and 2019.
I love keeping specific stats about my reading because it helps me see what I like and don’t like as well as maybe where I need to change my reading. For example, for the first time this year, I kept track of the number of books I read from diverse authors. I think this is always an area I can improve on and will continue to look for books that fit this category. I also like to see how many books I’m reading written by male vs female authors. It’s no surprise that I read considerably more female authors.
I was happy to see that I read from my own shelf even if it was only 16 books. This year my goal is to read 22 books off of my overflowing to-read shelf. Click HERE to see how I’m making this goal a fun challenge.
2021 Book Stats
Total Books Read: 194
Adult Books: 77
Children’s Books: 117
Review Books: 149
Own Enjoyment: 45
Total Pages of Adult Books: 23,725
Total Pages of All Books: 29,658
Average Pages: 309
Average Star Rating of Adult Books: 4 Stars
Total 5 Star Adult Books: 23
Percentage of 5 Star Adult Books Read: 30%
Best Reading Months: June, October, December with 9 Adult Books Each
Best Reading Month Overall: September with 26 total books
Of all 194 Books…
Audiobooks: 29 – 36%
eBooks: 23 – 25%
Physical books: 142 = 21% Hardcover and 18% Paperback = 39%
66% Female Authors
34% Male Authors
Diverse Authors: 23
Adult Book Genres – 77 Books – 48 Fiction/29 Nonfiction
General Fiction: 23 books
NonFiction: 18 books
Historical Fiction: 17
Young Adult: 4
Read My Own Shelf: 16 books
Library Copies: 28
Most pages in an adult book: 560 pages in THE WOMAN THEY COULD NOT SILENCE
Least pages in an adult book: 64 pages in ADDRESS UNKNOWN
14 Books over 400 Pages
Now I’m sure you want to find out my FAVORITE BOOKS of 2021!
There were some definite standouts that I had no doubt would be on my favorite list as soon as I read the last word. But, some other choices were more difficult since I wanted to keep my list to just ten books. So, in no particular order, because really, who can choose an absolute favorite, here are my…
TOP TEN BOOKS OF 2021!
Without intending to, six of these books are historical fiction. Only one is nonfiction, which is rare for me. All but one are by female authors and five of them are by authors I already love. So, it really should be no surprise what made my favorites list. I also noticed that six of these books were sent to me for review and the other four I chose for my own reading enjoyment. I do think I am getting better about saying no to books that don’t sound like my usual reading style which means the books I do receive are more likely to be winners.
Clicking the photo will take you to Amazon (affiliate link), and clicking the title will take you to my review, except for THE BOYS, which is coming up this month.
THE BOYS by Ron Howard and Clint Howard
The only nonfiction to make my list this year. I had a few that were close, but fiction won my heart this year.
If you were a fan of The Andy Griffith Show or Happy Days or just like celebrity memoirs, then this is the book for you. Ron and Clint narrate the audio version which made the listening/reading experience even better.
THE FOUR WINDS by Kristin Hannah
This book is set during the Great Depression along with the drought and dust storms of the plains. It’s not a happy story, but one that moved me to tears numerous times and had me rooting for the main character all the way through. Hannah doesn’t disappoint with this one.
THE NATURE OF FRAGILE THINGS by Susan Meissner
If you know me at all, you know I love Meissner’s books. Her early 2021 release is set during the 1906 San Francisco earthquake and a family affected by secrets and the devasting damage of the earthquake.
THE PARIS LIBRARY by Janet Skeslien Charles
It should be no surprise that a WWII novel made my favorites list. This one shares the story of Americans trying to keep the library open in Paris while the world is shattering around them. Book lovers will love this one.
THE INVISIBLE WOMAN by Erika Robuck
Another WWII novel, this one sharing a fictional account of the life of WWII spy, Virginia Hall. Robuck is known for her impeccable research and character building and this one is a must-read for history lovers. Erika Robuck is a must-read for me and she has a new novel coming out in March 2022, SISTERS OF NIGHT AND FOG.
ONE TWO THREE by Laurie Frankel
A mother and her triplet, teen daughters deal with the ramifications of contaminated water in their community. Told from each of the triplets’ perspectives, you’ll fall in love with each of them and their reason for fighting for their town.
THE SOCIAL GRACES by Renée Rosen
I never expected to love reading about the Astors and the Vanderbilts, but I could not put this one down. NYC society in the late 1800s and early 1900s was so much fun to read about.
DOVETAILS IN TALL GRASS by Samantha Specks
One of my favorite things about reading historical fiction is learning something I had no idea happened in history. This book is inspired by the Dakota-Sioux hanging of 38 men in Minnesota in 1862. This is Specks’ debut novel and I hope there is more to come from her.
FIREKEEPER’S DAUGHTER by Angeline Boulley
Don’t let the fact that this is YA keep you from reading this one. I listened to the audio and read the physical copy because I couldn’t wait to find out what happened. Eighteen-year-old Daunis becomes an undercover informant in her Native American community in Northern Michigan to help save her family and her town. When the secrets reveal something more than she expected, her life and those she loves are in danger.
WISH YOU WERE HERE by Jodi Picoult
I have been RAVING about this one as soon as I finished it to anyone who would listen. Set during the early days of COVID in NYC, Diana leaves for the Galapagos Islands while her boyfriend is saving lives in an NYC hospital. What she doesn’t realize is that this is more than a two-week issue and her trip to the Galapagos isn’t exactly what she imagined it to be.
I always find it interesting to see other readers’ lists of favorite books. The only book I’ve read on your Top 10 is The Four Winds. I enjoyed it, but it wasn’t my favorite of hers. I really liked The Nightingale and The Great Alone. Firekeeper’s Daughter and The Nature of Fragile Things are ones I’m very interested in reading. You helped move them up my list!