Off The TBR’s Best of 2021

Hey. How are ya’ll doing? I thought I’d ask before I got into my “Best of 2021” list because this has been another crazy year and sometimes it is nice to just do a little check-in. Even more so this year since the dumpster fire that is the current world plague shows no signs of letting up anytime soon and from what I can see on social media most of us seem to be coping but it’s getting on our last nerves. So yeah, I thought I’d just do a little check-in.

Well now that we’ve got that out of the way how about something positive? It’s that time again…the time when all the book bloggers are posting their year end, best reads of the year. I like to wait for the year to finish out before posting my list just in case a last minute read squeaks its way in. 2021 (like 2020 before it) sucked in so many ways, but for me it was still a good year for reading. As usual I enjoyed the vast majority of the books I read, and there were only a very few I didn’t. I still feel like we are experiencing that new golden age of science fiction and fantasy with so many great books to choose from both in traditional publishing or from indie/self-published authors and I hope it never ends.

So here it is, my top reads of 2021. Note, this is my list of top reads of 2021, meaning it is a list of my favorite books I read during the year, not necessarily my favorite books published in 2021. I’ve intentionally left off any #SPFBO finalists I may have already read as the competition is still undeway and the judging team I’m a part of has not posted any of our scores as of yet.

I managed to read 37 books this year (exceeding my Goodreads Challenge) and this list comprises those I rated as 4.5 Stars or 5 Stars and even includes a short story. I’ve arranged them mostly in order they were read by rating.

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Book Review: The Shadow of The Gods by John Gwynne

Banner image featuring the cover of Shadow of The Gods by John Gwynne superimposed over zoomed in image of same cover. Text reads "Book Review" and "Off The TBR"

When I first received a copy of The Shadow of The Gods in the mail I can’t tell you how excited I was. I’d never read a John Gwynne novel before but I’ve seen pretty much nothing but acclaim for his work. And the reviews from those other books had me thinking any story by Gwynne would be right up my alley. Friends, those thoughts were not wrong.

The Shadow of The Gods is a violent, bloody, Norse inspired saga that I didn’t want to set down. I was disappointed at the end not because it was bad, but because I hungered for more. My tastes in fantasy vary, and I like to think they are wide ranging, but that gritty, battle filled epic is definitely a favorite of mine.

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What I’m Reading: The Shadow of The Gods by John Gwynne

Banner image featuring cover of The Shadow Of The Gods by John Gwynne superimposed over zoomed in and blurred image of same cover. Text says "What I'm Reading" and "Off The TBR."

It’s been almost a month since my last “What I’m Reading” post. That’s due in part to the fact my reading slowed down significantly recently. It’s something I’m not happy about but what ya gonna do? I also had a couple reviews I really needed to take care of as I was getting behind. I’m still behind (but so are many of you so we’re all in the same boat).

Anyway, that’s not really the point of all this. The point is to introduce my current read…The Shadow of The Gods by John Gwynne.

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The TBR Short Stack: Dec 19, 2017 (And A Quick Update)


So what’s the TBR short stack? For me it’s my small to be read pile; the one sitting in the cabinet beside my reading chair. This is the pile of books I’ve selected to read next in no particular order. The short stack is not to be confused with all the other books in the house that are on my to read list. Those other books will sit on shelves collecting dust until I finish the short stack, and until I quit adding to it with other books that catch my eye and I pick up week to week. I’m like a dog seeing a squirrel that way.

So…there’s twelve more days before the end of the year and here’s all the books I still have to read and review in no particular order. Continue reading