Hello friends and fellow book lovers! After much waiting and finally sitting down to do this, I’m going to be talking about my favorite books of 2021. I was going to make it a top 10 but I honestly had SO many books I read and loved this year that it wasn’t happening. Instead, I’m going to be featuring a top 15 and honestly, it might surprise some people.
Either way, this is going to be a long post so I won’t talk much but let’s get into my top 15.
15. Sweat and Soap Vol 1
Originally, I was going to do a top 10 but since I decided to do a top 15, I could feature this book. I decided to pick this up because a Booktuber I adore LOVES this series so I picked it as a Hoemance selection. This is a romance manga about two co-workers, one who works in the accounting department and one who is head of the scent department for this perfume company. It’s super steamy and fun, definitely a favorite manga series.
14. There Are No Saints
My next favorite book of 2021 was one I read in December and I was obsessed. This is a romance between two artists: the heroine who is poor and struggling and the hero who is rich and successful yet a serial killer. It’s basically a toxic romance between the two and the drama that comes from his rival who wants to kill the main character. It’s dramatic and over-the-top but I adored it.
13. A Worthy Opponent
My next favorite is A Worthy Opponent by Katee Robert. This is book 3 in her Wicked Villians series and it follows Hook and Tinkerbell. This one is super steamy and features such a lovely dynamic between the two with Tink being a brat and Hook being a “brat tamer.” Honestly, this was super hot, super fun, and was another one I read while at my boyfriend’s so it holds a place in my heart.
12. Battle Royal
The next favorite of 2021 is Battle Royal by Lucy Parker. This is a romance between two bakers who are competing to make a wedding cake for the royal wedding. It’s a lot of fun and features the sunshine-grumpy dynamic that I love. Even though it was a bit long, this book made me so happy and I felt like it was the perfect book I read during that time.
The next favorite of mine in 2021 was a major sleeper because it’s historical and that’s Bombshell by Sarah MacLean. This is a romance book focused on Sesily who is a “wild child” and is known for having many lovers and Caleb, her sister’s best friend. It was super fun, steamy, and honestly, didn’t feel bogged down like historicals can be for me.
10. Wolf Gone Wild
The next favorite on my list is Wolf Gone Wild by Juliette Cross. This is a paranormal romance between a witch and a werewolf. The major conflict of the story is that Mateo can’t shift and he asks for help from Evie and it snowballs from there. This is a lot of fun, features tons of nerdy references and honestly, just made me SO happy. It’s relatively long but I LOVED it.
9. The Professor Next Door
The next favorite of 2021 is The Professor Next Door by Jackie Lau. Since I decided to dive into her backlist in 2021, I knew that one of her books would end up on this list. This one is book 3 in the Cider Bar Sisters series and it follows a group of friends who each have a romance. This one is super fun as it’s about a girl who ends up having a romance with her neighbor who overhears her having sex. This was steamy, short and yet featured an incredible romance. Jackie Lau just keeps getting better and better.
8. Truth or Dare
The next book is one I read early in 2021 and it stuck with me. This one is a friends-to-lovers romance between Simone and Kingston who reconnect at an old college friend’s wedding. This one is another relatively short yet super-steamy story. It’s also Black love, too. Honestly, this book was one I finished on Valentine’s Day and I LOVED it.
7. Run Posy Run
The next favorite of mine for 2021 was Run Posy Run by Cate C. Wells. This is a mafia story between Dario, a sociopath, and Posy, who gets wrongfully blackmailed and it’s basically him chasing her to the ends of Earth to have her. It’s a dark romance but honestly, it didn’t really bother me. This was super fast-paced with a few steamy scenes but it impressed me SO much.
6. Twisted Love
Moving onto another sociopath romance, this one is between Alex, a wealthy businessman/sociopath, and Ava, his best friend’s sister. This is another case of the grumpy-sunshine trope and I adored it. It really felt like Alex melted when Ava came into the picture and I loved it. While the family drama was a bit much at times, this book was super fast-paced and kept me entertained the entire time. Plus it was another super-steamy read.
5. Ever After Always
The next favorite on my list is Ever After Always by Chloe Liese. In 2021, I decided to read her entire Bergman Brothers series and was a delight it was. My favorite of the bunch was Ever After Always which is actually their sister, Freya’s story, and her husband, Aiden, making it a marriage-in-trouble story. It was super angsty, emotional and dealt with SO much while showcasing a beautiful romance redeveloping between the two. While I didn’t love all the talk about pregnancy and fertility during this one, it was still the best of the bunch for me.
4. A Dowry of Blood
The next favorite of mine might come as a surprise since it’s not a romance. Rather, it’s a Dracula’s Brides retelling and it follows one of his brides, writing him a letter after something happened. It’s such a beautifully written story. It’s so short yet doesn’t spare any details and it just made me so happy when I was reading it. While it does focus a lot on abuse and toxic relationships, it captured my heart immediately. I honestly can’t wait to get a physical copy of this one, either.
3. Her Soul To Take
Moving onto my top 3 reads, Her Soul To Take by Harley LaRoux was such a sleeper hit for me. I never thought a book as long as this one would capture my heart. However, the romance mixed with the horror elements really worked for me. It was amazing seeing Rae’s character develop and seeing her relationship with Leon bloom. This was another super dark romance and I LOVED it. I’m so excited to see what Harley LaRoux does next.
2. Act Your Age, Eve Brown
The next favorite book of 2021 has to be Act Your Age, Eve Brown by Talia Hibbert. This one is the third book in the series and it follows Eve’s romance with Jacob. It’s a grumpy-sunshine story along with a workplace romance. It’s incredibly fun, steamy, and honestly, featured some of my favorite steamy scenes in a book ever. Honestly, I love Talia Hibbert and I can’t wait to see what she does next.
1. The Reinvention of the Rose
My favorite book of 2021 is easily The Reinvention of the Rose by Christina C Jones. This is a major surprise for me as I picked this book up on a whim. This one follows Tempest who is a former Rose who was basically a secret organization and it’s her rebuilding her life along with the romance she has with Tristan. This book really gut-punched me and made me feel so connected to Tempest and rooting for her happiness. This cemented two things for me which is that CCJ is a new favorite author and that sometimes a side romance isn’t always bad.
Those are my top reads of 2021!!! If you have any thoughts, I’d love to know them below or if you have some books you read in 2021 you want to rec. 😀