My Top Reads of 2021

Hey, everyone. With 2021 rapidly coming to a close, I wanted to take time to share my top reads for the year.

I’ll preface this post by saying I’ve read many enjoyable books this past year, but there are a few that really stood out for me—ones I’ll remember in the days and months to come.

These are listed in the order I read them.

An Unwanted Guest

This was my first time reading anything by Shari Lapena. The setting is an old-fashioned hotel where there are no modern amenities such as cell phones during the middle of a winter storm. It was a mere coincidence that I finished the book just prior to being stuck at home because Snowmageddon hit Texas in February.

The Curse of Deadhorse Canyon

I’ve been fascinated by Native American culture for quite some time, so this book particularly intrigued me. Co-written by Marcha Fox and Pete Risingsun, the book has elements of murder, a government conspiracy, greed, environmental issues, and Native American legends. The second book of this series was recently released, and I’ve already snagged my copy.

She Lies Alone

I discovered the author of She Lies Alone in early 2021 and have since read four of her psychological fiction books. When a writer keeps me guessing as to the killer’s identity, it’s a big plus for me. Laura Wolfe has become one of my auto-buy authors

Death in Panama

I enjoy reading a good legal thriller on occasion. I learned of Death in Panama through fellow author Jan Sikes sometime last year. I had the book on my Kindle for several months, but when I did read it, I wasn’t disappointed. William Venema is a retired attorney and I look forward to more from this author.

The Guilty Husband

I discovered this book through Book Bub. This debut novel of author Stephanie DeCarolis did not disappoint. While I don’t condone extra-marital affairs, I couldn’t help but root for the main character, Vince. And the ending totally surprised me.

Iron Lake

When Judi Lynn wrote a review of this book, I was intrigued enough to buy a copy. William Kent Kruger’s Iron Lake was written and first published in the late 1990s. It’s the first of his Cork O’Connor mysteries and also includes elements of Native American folklore.

Home Before Dark

I read Riley Sager’s latest release, Survive the Night, and it didn’t do much for me. But Mae Clair encouraged me to try Home Before Dark, so I checked out a copy from my local library. How can you go wrong where the setting is a house with a mysterious past that’s been abandoned for twenty-five years and is possibly haunted?

You Can Run

After reading Staci Troilo’s review of this upcoming release by Rebecca Zanetti, I was fortunate enough to receive an advanced reader copy. There is mystery and suspense (my favorite genre) with a touch of romance. The book releases in January, and I highly recommend it. It’s the first of Zanetti’s Laurel Snow series and you can bet I’ll be reading the next book.

We Live Next Door

Wrapping up the list is another novel from Laura Wolfe. This was another page-turning psychological thriller set in a small-town neighborhood where things aren’t always as they seem.

That’s it for my top 2021 reads. What are some favorite books you’ve read this year?

36 thoughts on “My Top Reads of 2021

  1. What a great list, Joan 🙂 I have a few on my TBR list, but absolutely loved, The Curse of Deadhorse Canyon. I can’t wait to read the second book either. Congrats to the authors and thanking for sharing these books.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. What a great list! I thoroughly enjoyed The Curse of Deadhorse Canyon and look forward to reading the sequel. I love Native American lore and spirituality. Thank you for sharing these reads, Joan. I’m adding them to my list. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ve read two of these and loved them, but they all sound good.
    Don’t you just love when books stay with you long after you read them? I’m glad you gave Riley Sager another try. I devour everything he writes.
    I need to put together an end of year Best Reads list too!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Good list, Joan! In the Garden of Spite by Camilla Bruce (historical serial killer crime fiction) and This Thing Between Us by Gus Moreno (AI horror but so much more) and Nightb*#ch by Rachel Yoder (feminist weird-light-horror) are three of my favorite 2021 reads.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Wow, this is a great list, I’ll be adding several of these to my TBR for sure!
    A recent five star favorite of mine was ‘The Noise’ by James Patterson..
    Have a beautiful week and thanks so much for sharing some of your favorites with us!

    Liked by 2 people

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