The Best and Worst of 2021 + New Reading Goal

The Best and Worst of 2021 + New Reading Goal

Hello everyone! Welcome back to Cover to Cover. I am starting to wrap up for the end of the year which means I can start posting about the books I liked or disliked, overall stats, and a new yearly reading goal. I love being able to see different trends in my reading, and I feel like this year I was kind of all over the place. This was the first full year I wasn’t in school which means I theoretically had all the time in the world for reading.

My reading goal for this year was to read 30 books. I ended up reading 33 books, not counting the book I’m reading now which I will probably finish before the end of the year. Hopefully. I keep track of the books I finish in my notes app on my phone, and then I divide it into sections by month so that I can see how many books I read each month. And it’s much easier to see any trends.

Let me tell you, I started off the year strong in January and then March and April were a little rough. In March, I was in a huge reading slump. I read one book, and it was a struggle to get through that one. But once May hit, I was on a roll…until July when I hit another reading slump. I didn’t read anything in August. Don’t even get me started about that, it’s so sad. But after that things were smooth again. I did a lot of holiday reading in November. But overall, I do feel like I read a lot, and I am really happy with meeting my goal.

Now for next year, I’m not sure what my goal should be because I really want to focus on reading certain books. My main goal is to read The Lord of the Rings series. That’s what I care about the most. I read 33 books this year, and I feel like bumping it to 35 is too small. But 40 might be a stretch. So, I was thinking of adding five onto the number I read this year so my new goal would be 38. And if I’m feeling it then maybe I’ll be an overachiever and reach 40. Who knows? If I put too much pressure on myself then I won’t want to read for fun. BUT my boyfriend gave me the idea to have a page count goal instead of a book goal. Both Goodreads and Storygraph will total the page count of all the books you read for the year. Someone help me figure this out.

While I contemplate my goal for 2022, let’s talk about the books I loved and hated. To start on a brighter note, I had a few books this year that I couldn’t put down. One of them being Lovely War by Julie Berry. I read this back in January, but I just remember this book having a really cool concept. It was a fictional WWI book narrated by the Greek Gods. The God of love and war would tell the story of several different characters through their eyes. I highly recommend it.

Another book I thoroughly enjoyed was A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J. Maas. This is very self-explanatory. I love this series and after reading this, I was in a big reading slump for most of March.

In May, I read SO MANY great books starting with Jar of Hearts by Jennifer Hillier. This was a rather gruesome/graphic thriller. But the ending and the TWIST. This is one my mom read and was like “you have to read it!” I also read The People we Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry. I’m sure pretty much everyone has heard of or seen this book. It’s very popular and for good reason. It was such a cute summer book. Also highly recommend. And the other May book I want to talk about is Meet You in the Middle by Devon Daniels. I loved this book. I read it in literally one day. I couldn’t put it down. I HIGHLY recommend it if you want a fast-moving, steamy romance. But also, don’t mind some talk about politics.

June was when I finally read Crescent City by Sarah J. Maas. Again, such a great book. That one put me in a reading slump for a long time. I didn’t read much in July, and I read nothing in August.

The next great read wasn’t until October when I read Rock Paper Scissors by Alice Feeney. It’s a thriller that really keeps you on your toes. I loved it so much. The writing was so detailed and beautiful, and the major twist ending had me. If you pick one book to read from this post, pick this one. Or read the blog post on this at least.

Now for the not-so-great- books of 2021. Overall, I want to say that I don’t have a lot that fall in this category. And by not-so-great I mean I rated them a 2/5 or below. The first one is 56 Days by Catherine Howard. This was from BOTM and it was about quarantining during COVID and then someone ends up dead. A COVID thriller, if you will. I mean it was okay, it wasn’t my favorite. Reading about COVID didn’t bother me too much; it was actually kind of interesting seeing it in a book for the first time.

The other book that I was really a fan of was Girl A by Abigail Dean. I believe this was kind of a thriller, but I use the term very loosely. It was alright but it took me a whole month to get through this book. The only reason it wasn't a DNF was because I was determined as hell to finish it and because it was also another BOTM pick. There just wasn't’ enough going on or enough twists to keep me pulled in. There was a twist at the end, but I saw it coming.

Overall, I have to say it was a pretty good year. The only books that I remember not finishing were The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue and The Hating Game. The movie for hating game is out and it honestly looks really good. I’m still mad that I couldn’t get through the book. But I digress.

That’s all I have for today, folks! Come back next week for another blog post! And let me know if you met your reading goal for this year!