Top 10 of 2021, part one

I make this list with the caveat that there’s ten days left in this year and it’s theoretically possible that I could find a book that would knock another off of this list. However, I don’t see it as being likely, so here we go:

10. The Good Sister – Sally Hepworth
Why it makes top 10: This was one of the most intense thrillers I’ve ever read, because the characters felt so realistic. I knew something was off from pretty early on (and knowing that this wasn’t just a book about two happy sisters was an obvious clue) but I had no idea how much the revelation would knock me off my feet. If nothing else, it’s one of the BEST examples of an unreliable narrator I’ve ever read.

9. Six of Crows – Leigh Bardugo
Why it makes top 10: This one took me a little while to get into. When I listened to it on Audible, I hadn’t read anything else in the Grishaverse, which put me at a disadvantage. But once I got my bearings, it became an incredibly fun fantasy heist novel. Bardugo builds some very compelling characters, and you’re rooting for them even when they’re working against one another.

8. Hour of the Witch – Chris Bohjalian
Why it makes top 10: Hour of the Witch punched me in the gut several times. It has some intense spousal abuse and gaslighting. But through it all, I was rooting for the main character like none other. The story had me guessing which way it was going to turn out until the very end, and it was a very I MUST FIND OUT HOW THIS ENDS read.

7. The People We Keep – Allison Larkin
Why it makes top 10: Simply put, one of the best “found family” books I’ve read. Even when the main character is making absurdly frustrating decisions, your love for the supporting cast will keep you rooting for her.

6. For The Wolf – Hannah Whitten
Why it makes top 10: I read this book in less than 48 hours. Unless it’s a very tiny book (and this wasn’t), that deserves some recognition. It’s a wonderfully twisted fairy tale that takes Little Red Riding Hood and fleshes it out into a super interesting mythos. Never did I think I would be wanting Red to get together with the Wolf, but this book made that happen. I CANNOT WAIT for the sequel.

I’ll be back with my top 5 soon!