Top 16 Favorite Books of 2021

best books 2021 lailiving



2021 was the best reading year for me. I read 108 books and found soooo many favorites, yet I chose only 16 books to talk about in this blog post. I never finished more than 20 books a year, so this number of 108 books in 2021 is a surprise for me. So here is the list of my top 16 favorite books which is sorted by the recent to the oldest read throughout the year.

1. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

MASTERPIECE. If I have all the stars in the sky, all of them belong to this book. I don’t know what term to give to this book. It’s weird, funny, and relatable. Don’t lose your attention even for one second because you won’t which one is which since there are hundreds of Aurelianos inside this book, haha. Magical realism at its best.

2. The Midnight Library by Matt Haig

INTERESTING. Even though it has heavy topic to discuss, this book made me laugh because it’s another book I can deeply relate.

3. Daughter of the Deep by Rick Riordan

I laughed a lot reading this book. I love seeing Ana’s thoughts because her way of thinking and her sarcasm can be accepted by my own sarcasm and way of thinking. I love the adventure, the teamwork, and also Jupiter!

4. Musim Kupu-Kupu Kuning (Nella Stagione Delle Farfalle Gialle/In the Season of Yellow Butterflies) by Vanni Puccioni

AMAZING! I rarely read a historical fiction especially set around World War, because I think I can’t read people suffering and died. But this book changed that. I love how this book translated beautifully so the beauty of Nias and the nature can be delivered. So many messages and moral value I can learn from this book. The ending is the most beautiful ending I’ve ever read in a book.

5. Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery

BEAUTIFUL! I love Anne and her red hair. The scenery, the people, and events inside the book are all healing, like you have been tired for a day’s work, then Anne of Green Gables heals you by giving you this beautiful story in a beautiful place with beautiful people.

6. Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley

It’s difficult to understand the book in the first few pages because of new terms it introduced. This book is not only about a girl who is confused about her identity but also culture and the problem inside the community which sometimes is difficult to track because it has been rooted and so many people involved and made it so complicated.

7. Under the Whispering Door by T. J. Klune

A book about death and hardship of life but still made me laugh because I can relate to the jokes inside this book. The main point of this book is to give time to someone to think and then decide for themselves. The romance is not like any other romance I read on other books, it’s sweet, natural and healing.

8. Saving Fable (Talespinners #1) by Scott Reintgen

MIND BLOWING. This book is about fiction book, everything about behind the scene of writing and author world, how a character tried so hard to be noticed by an author to get their own book. How the main character thought and acted were different from any main character you’ve ever met in other books.

9. Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe (Aristotle and Dante #1) by Benjamin Alire Saenz

I don’t know, I can deeply relate to Ari in everything he did, even his anger and hate. He’s just felt like a real person living somewhere who told his story to us.

10. After/Math by Emily Barth Isler

I got the ARC of this book in audiobook form narrated by the author herself. I love her narration! This book is smart and told from the main character POV whose thoughts always resonate with mine. The one thing that I caught from this book is that everyone has their own wounds and trauma, no matter how old they’re. This book is labeled as middle-grade, yet I think it’s a book for parents or teacher or adults who want to understand how kids bring their wounds and deal with trauma in their everyday life. I bought the physical copy and I’m so happy that I finally added a new favorite book to my shelf.

11. Love & Gelato (Love & Gelato #1) by Jenna Evans Welch

I laughed a lot reading this book. Lina was super fun and interesting main character. This book has successfully made me laugh, hungry and falling in love at the same time.

12. Wundersmith : The Calling of Morrigan Crow (Nevermoor #2) by Jessica Townsend

A whole new experience in another world with some unique and smart names. I love Hotel Deucalion and Fenestra. As a main character, I like how Morrigan behaved carefully, so there’s no unnecessary drama around her. I love the friendship in this book, especially when it comes to the hotel people, they’re all so sweet and unique and fun to talk with. I read all the 3 books in the series this year too. My most favorite book is Wundersmith, I love all of them so I put all the 3 covers here too.

13. The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill

BEAUTIFUL BOOK. I love how this book unveiled the truth one by one through some different POVs. I cried a lot here because the characters were so sweet, caring and lovable.

14. Piranesi by Susanna Clarke

I read this book because the title is intriguing. I love Piranesi, how he saw life and people around him. The world where Piranesi lived was interesting and I never thought about this kind of world, so it’s something new for me to picture in my mind.

15. The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran

This is a world treasure. I made a review video about this book on my channel.

16. Nightfall (Keeper of the Lost Cities #6)  by Shannon Messenger

I read all 9 books (book 1 – 8.5) in this series on March and April this year. 2020 was the year of reading non-fiction for me. I don’t remember why I avoided fiction books throughout 2020, but that year was a year where I was in the lowest part of my life so far, so maybe a non-fiction book can help me figure out my life. I fell in love with this book from the very first chapter where there was a student with a unique T-shirt, then someone appeared, and my reaction was exactly the same with Sophie when Fitz revealed who she really was (I didn’t read the blurb nor reviews, I just got into the book without knowing anything). This book (or this series) is super crowded with mysteries and unanswered questions, so I took so many notes on my reading journal in case I forget any important conversation. My favorite character is Keefe! Blonde, tall, gorgeous just like Mac Fries (sorry, Keefe, but I love you) that reminds me of someone else. I love all 9 books I read this year, but my most favorite is Nightfall. I want to put all the 9 book covers here, because I love them all, especially the jokes between Keefe and Dex. Ah I miss them. I think I want to re-read this series while waiting for the next book.


SOOOOO THAT’S ALL MY 16 FAVORITE BOOKS OF 2021! (even though the last book consist of 9 books, let’s assume it’s a list of 16 books). So, which books are your favorite for 2021? Tell me down below! Also, I hope this list can help you to find a new book to read on 2022. Have a wonderful reading experience wherever you are.

Bookshelf photo by CHUTTERSNAP on Unsplash

Infographic and title picture edited by lailiving


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