Robin Camille Davis
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Books I read in 2021

February 04, 2022

I read 58 books in 2021, which is fewer than last year but still nothing to sneeze at!

I didn’t do a lot of rereading this year, oddly. I usually love rereading books, but I guess this year my brain wanted to explore new literary territory (unlike 2020 when I did a lot of comfort reading). And once again, I read more books by women than by men, a goal I’ve had since a few years ago when I looked at my book list and realized the ratio was skewed heavily in the opposite direction.

Two changes to my reading habits this year:

  • I joined two book clubs! Both meet over Zoom. Some of the best books I read this year were book club choices — thanks, book club friends!
  • As a New Year’s resolution, I started teaching myself how to read Italian using a handful of self-paced learning materials. I got good enough to read two Harry Potter books in translation. If you’re learning a new language and remember a lot from that book series, I highly recommend reading the translated editions — remembering plot points is a great way to get context clues about words or sentence structures that you’d be unsure about otherwise.

The list

Bold = faves (doesn’t include rereads)
* = rereads

Book club choices

  • Beautiful World, Where Are You (Sally Rooney)
  • Detransition, Baby (Torrey Peters)
  • Disappearing Earth (Julia Phillips)
  • In Five Years (Rebecca Serle)
  • My Sister, the Serial Killer (Oyinkan Braithwhite)
  • Oak Flat (Lauren Redniss)
  • Station Eleven (Emily St. John Mandel)
  • The Beautiful Ones (Silvia Garcia)
  • The Giver of Stars (Jojo Moyes)

Graphic novels

  • British Ice (Owen D. Pomery)
  • El Deafo (Cece Bell)
  • Factory Summers (Guy Delisle)
  • Familiar Face (Michael Deforge)
  • The Secret Life (Theo Ellsworth, Jeff Vandermeer)
  • The Raven Girl (Audrey Niffenegger)
  • The Trojan Women: A Comic (Anne Carson)
  • Antigonick (Anne Carson)*
  • Year of the Rabbit (Tian Veasna)


  • Harry Potter e la Camera dei Segreti (J.K. Rowling, trans. Marina Astrologo)
  • Harry Potter e la Prigione di Azkaban (J.K. Rowling, trans. Beatrice Masini)
  • Short Stories in Italian for Beginners (Olly Richards)

Science fiction & fantasy

  • Big Fish (Daniel Wallace)
  • Borne (Jeff Vandermeer)
  • Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (Philip K. Dick)
  • Johannes Cabal the Necromancer (Jonathan L. Howard)
  • Klara and the Sun (Kazuo Ishiguro)
  • Mad Ship (Robin Hobb)
  • Ship of Destiny (Robin Hobb)
  • Ship of Magic (Robin Hobb)


  • Act Your Age, Eve Brown (Talia Hibbert)
  • Get a Life, Chloe Brown (Talia Hibbert)
  • Take a Hint, Dani Brown (Talia Hibbert)
  • Just Last Night (Mhairi McFarlane)
  • Merry Inkmas (Talia Hibbert)
  • One Last Stop (Casey McQuiston)
  • One to Watch (Kate Stayman-London)
  • Someday at Christmas (Lizzie Byron)
  • The Duke Who Didn’t (Courtney Milan)
  • The Heart Principle (Helen Hoang)
  • The Soulmate Equation (Christina Lauren)
  • To Have and To Hoax (Martha Waters)
  • To Love and to Loathe (Martha Waters)
  • While We Were Dating (Jasmine Guillory)


  • A Court of Thorns and Roses (Sarah J. Maas)
  • Ruin and Rising (Leigh Bardugo)
  • Shadow and Bone (Leigh Bardugo)
  • Siege and Storm (Leigh Bardugo)

Historical fiction

  • The Other Boleyn Girl (Phillippa Gregory)
  • The White Queen (Phillippa Gregory)

Other literary

  • And Now We Have Everything (Meaghan O’Connell)
  • Death on the Nile (Agatha Christie)
  • Luster (Raven Leilani)
  • Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (John Berendt)
  • The Lying Life of Adults (Elena Ferrante)
  • The Rules of Civility (Amor Towles)
  • The Ten Thousand Doors of January (Alix E. Harrow)
  • The Vanishing Half (Brit Bennett)
  • When No One Is Watching (Alyssa Cole)

Previously: Books I read in 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009.