Books of the Year–well everyone else does it, and with over 60 books read last year, I feel I should tease out some virtual award-winners.

But what is coming up in 2022? Well, I already have six books from Netgalley to read, with release dates from February to June. I’m going to be doing the usual Reading Challenges: Mount TBR, Alphabet Soup, Spacetime Reading Challenge, and continuing the Non-Fiction Adventure. You can see my near-successes on all of these (missed X on the Alphabet, but achieved all the others). In 2022 I’m going to be Finishing the Series–between five and eight of them– for the challenge of that name. You can see details of all these Challenges in their respective pages. Just click the highlighted links.

Books of 2021 by Category

It’s only fair to divide these into categories:

  • Science fiction (including space opera, spec fiction and time travel)
  • Crime/Mystery
  • Historical (inc. mystery and spec fiction mainly in historical settings
  • Middle Grade
  • Non-fiction
  • Special mentions

And then give you the short-lists, those I rated five stars or was very mean with an otherwise excellent four-star read (one qualifier for that this year)

This year I had 21 five-star reads out of 60 books read, which is about normal. Four are indie published, which is probably lower than previous years (I didn’t count the reread, which was an indie five star), but also reflects the number of books I had from Net-galley in 2021: 10 out of 21 achieved five stars.

Science fiction



Middle Grade


Special Mentions

Both of these are essential reading for anyone who needs some peace and positivity, or just acceptance of their part in this troubled world.

Is it possible to pick a Book of the Year?

Yes. For the first time…

the boy the mole the fox and the horse

Note: I also read Finishing the Hat after Christmas. I just can’t squeeze it in at the last moment. It needs a category for itself, really. See the review 15th January.

Books of the Year 2021 – looking back and looking forward

7 thoughts on “Books of the Year 2021 – looking back and looking forward

  • 1 January, 2022 at 10:49 am

    Hi Jemima – Happy New Year – some excellent choices here … you are a good reader – a New Year resolution for me … I just don’t settle down to read – but must do this year.

    I so agree re The Boy, The Mole, The Fox and the Horse – loved it and it makes a wonderful present …

    All the best – cheers Hilary

  • 1 January, 2022 at 12:22 pm

    You read some amazing books last year!! Happy reading for 2022.

  • 1 January, 2022 at 8:47 pm

    Wow, I managed 18! Though that was a particularly poor year for obvious reasons. My standout was The Dictionary of Lost Words by Pip Williams (historical),

  • 1 January, 2022 at 10:52 pm

    You have inspired me to pick a book of the year. If you can do it, friend, so can I!

    • 2 January, 2022 at 11:00 am

      It’s hard. I think this is the first year I managed just one!

  • 2 January, 2022 at 4:55 pm

    Gae the Charlie Mackesy book as Christmas presents!

  • 8 January, 2022 at 6:00 pm

    I am honored to be in some pretty heady company on your short list! You also are making me add more books to the TBR… not sure how I missed some of these. Well, okay, maybe because I spend big chunks of 2021 in the wilderness and never caught up on all the posts I missed?

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