We – the blog – has gone a bit quiet over the last few months. Well, with the world currently being even weirder than it was last year this time, I’d say you can certainly relate.

The good thing about this weird situation is, I read so much more than I had anticipated, or believed possible. My Goodreads Challenge says 452 books read – on 29th December. That includes books I bailed on, but also books I have read more than once, but didn’t add more than once, and doesn’t include books I read with my children but didn’t enter into the database. Neither does it include all the essays I have read on- and offline over the past year. I don’t want to brag. Truly. I read a lot. Stop.

As I have mentioned, I bailed on books, i.e. Did Not Finish. Just like all those years ago, when I first dared to not finish a book, it felt exhilarating. And, of course, I also felt like a snob, felt that something was wrong with me when so many other people liked a certain book, until I remembered:

“‘Does this spark joy?’ If it does, keep it. If not, dispose of it.”

Marie Kondo

Which books sparked joy in 2021 – for me that is, your list might look much more different:

  • The Kingdoms – Natasha Pulley
  • Get a Life, Chloe Brown – Talia Hibbert
  • Unnatural Causes – Richard Shepherd
  • A History of What Comes Next – Sylvain Neuvel
  • Great Circle – Maggie Shipstead
  • Stranger Times – C.K.McDonnell
  • The Dinner Guest – B.P. Walter
  • Cultish – Amanda Montell
  • Hard Reboot – Django Wexler
  • The Calculating Stars – Mary Robinette-Kowal
  • The Man Who Died Twice – Richard Osman
  • Prosper’s Demon – K.J. Parker
  • The Guncle – Steven Rowley
  • A Master of Djinn – P. Djèlí Clark
  • Fugitive Telemetry – Martha Wells
  • The Butchering Art – Lindsey Fitzharris
  • Project Hail Mary – Andy Weir
  • The Galaxy, and the Ground Within – Becky Chambers
  • The Love Hypothesis – Ali Hazelwood
  • The Chronicles of St Mary’s series – Jodi Taylor

This Harpy Eagle has, of course, already set her sights on what she might read next year. Among the books that are expected to be published in 2022 are the next instalments in series like Neuvel’s History of What Comes Next, The Chronicles of St Mary’s by Jodi Taylor, Ali Hazelwood might publish another RomCom set in STEM, and Mary Robinette-Kowal’s The Martian Contingency. Apart from that, I am hoping to make my way through the literally thousands of books I have piled onto my TBR.

Wishing you all a Happy New Year with lots of good books to read and the courage to bail on the ones that don’t spark joy.