I’m SO late in writing this, I know. I wasn’t even sure if I was going to, but after seeing so many posts from other bloggers, I decided to go ahead. Here’s my list of the best books I read in 2021.

I usually make it a goal to read at least 3 books every month, if not more. With blogging and doing more of my own writing, I’ve noticed I haven’t read as much as I’d like. But, still, I was able to amass a fair number of reads last year. And of those, these 6 were my favorites.

Related Read: Autumn Reading List: Best Books to Read This Fall

My 6 Best Books of 2021

Everyone has their favorite genres when it comes to reading. For me, I gravitate heavily towards psychological thrillers, contemporary fiction, and women’s lit. I’m not huge into romance novels or chick-lit, but every so often, it’s a nice escape. Particularly in the summer-time.

Normally, though, I love a good psychological or domestic suspense novel. But when looking at what I consider the best books, I pick the ones that stay with me long after I close the last page.

Below are my six favorites from last year – in no particular order. And keep reading for a closer look at each of them.

Best Books of 2021 - The Push
The Disappearing Act: A Novel by [Catherine Steadman] - Best Books of 2021
Shoulder Season: A Novel by [Christina Clancy] - Favorite Books of 2021
The Other Black Girl: A Novel by [Zakiya Dalila Harris] - Best Books of 2021
A Special Place for Women by [Laura Hankin] - Favorite Books of 2021
Malibu Rising: A Novel by [Taylor Jenkins Reid] - Best Books of 2021

1. The Push • Ashley Audrain

Genre: Psychological Thriller; Domestic Fiction

Alright, I know I said that this list isn’t in order. And that’s mostly true. Except for this first one. The Push was by far the best book I read in 2021. In fact, it’s probably the best book I’ve read in a while.

There are elements of both domestic suspense and psychological thriller in this one. But there are also elements of literary fiction. Audrain writes beautifully – especially considering that this is her debut novel. I’m eagerly awaiting what she does next.  

2. The Disappearing Act • Catherine Steadman

Genre: Psychological Thriller; Women’s Fiction

I’m a huge fan of books set in Hollywood. That alone was the reason I picked this one up. And it did not disappoint.

Click the image to purchase

3. Shoulder Season • Christina Clancy

Genre: Historical Fiction; Domestic Fiction; Coming-of-Age Novel

Technically, I finished this one the first week of January. But since I started it in December, I decided to count it as a 2021 read. It’s another one that had a captivating premise: the Playboy restaurant scene of the 1980’s. Even though it was fiction, it was a fascinating peek inside part of our cultural history.

4. The Other Black Girl • Zakiya Dalila Harris

Genre: Psychological Thriller; Magical Realism; Satire

This book gave me major Get Out vibes and I was so here for it! Without giving too much away, I’ll just say it’s got one of the most unique premises I’ve come across.

Click the image to purchase
The Other Black Girl: A Novel by [Zakiya Dalila Harris] - Best Books of 2021

5. A Special Place for Women • Laura Hankin

Genre: Suspense; Humorous Fiction; Women’s Fiction

In 2020, I read Laura Hankin’s debut novel, Happy and You Know It. I absolutely devoured it and couldn’t wait to get my hands on her follow-up. And I gotta say, A Special Place For Women was even better.

6. Malibu Rising • Taylor Jenkins Reid

Genre: Women’s Fiction; Historical Fiction

Taylor Jenkins Reid is one of those authors whose books I’ll always pick up. While this one wasn’t as good as Daisy Jones or The Seven Husband’s of Evelyn Hugo, it was thoroughly entertaining.

Click the image to purchase

Most Anticipated Books of 2022

There are a ton of great books coming out in 2022. My TBR list grows longer by the minute. But here are a few that I’m the most excited about.  

The Paris Apartment
The Paris Apartment – February 2022
Nine Lives: A Novel by [Peter Swanson]
Nine Lives – March 2022
The Younger Wife: A Novel by [Sally Hepworth]
The Younger Wife – April 2022
The It Girl by [Ruth Ware]
The It Girl – July 2022
Mad Honey: A Novel by [Jodi Picoult, Jennifer Finney Boylan]
Mad Honey – October 2022

Have you read any of these? What were the best books you read last year? Make sure to share in the comments below!


Pin this Post for Later!

Best books of 2021 - Pin this For Later


  1. avatar
    wombatjambalayaoberon31620 says:

    I am always looking for new books to read. A few of these sound amazing. I will check them out. Thank you for sharing.

    1. avatar

      I’m sure you’ll love them!

  2. avatar

    I will admit, I haven’t heard of any of these books previously. You have me intrigued about some of the ones you read in 2021 along with those 2022 releases. I will have to add some of them to my TBR so I can check them out. It’s hard for me to remember all the amazing books I read in 2021 but I would put Theif’s Magic by Trudi Canavan near the top of a list of my favorites.

    1. avatar

      Oh, interesting, I haven’t heard of that one actually. I would definitely recommend any of these books – they were all fantastic.

  3. avatar

    The Push and Malibu Rising are two books I heard nothing but amazing things about. I NEED to pick these up at some point!

    1. avatar

      The Push was probably my favorite book in recent memory. It was SOO good.

  4. avatar

    I haven’t heard of the other books but we share Malibu Rising on our best books of 2021 list! Hope you have a really good reading year in 2022 as well 🙂

    1. avatar

      Yes, it was so good!

  5. avatar

    i love a good psychological thriller! can’t get enough. malibu rising has been in my TBR for a while now.

    1. avatar

      You definitely need to check it out! It’s a good read

  6. avatar

    I’ve heard so many good things about Malibu Rising, I need to get myself a copy and start reading! Thank you for sharing these Katie x

    1. avatar

      You definitely won’t be disappointed – especially if you liked Daisy Jones or Evelyn Hugo

Let me know your thoughts!

About Author

30ish Lifestyle blogger, relationship "expert," and modern-day agony aunt.
Sometimes humorous, always honest.