There are many books that I am excited about that are releasing in 2021, which makes it difficult to narrow down, but here are my top 5 most anticipated reads for 2021. I included an Honorable Mention and a Tentative Hype as two bonus books I am anticipating. Every book on this list is by an author I have read from before and am obviously hoping to love. Several of my favorite series are continuing and I am so excited!
Of note: Two of these books are the third in a series and two of them have the word Rising as the second word in their title. Just a neat little thing I noticed while compiling this list.
HONORABLE MENTION: “The Righteous (The Beautiful #3)” by: Renée Ahdieh
Expected Publication: 2021
No Cover Yet
There isn’t an expected date on this one beyond just 2021. No cover yet and no Goodreads description. I read the first two in this series this year and so if it *does* wind up releasing in 2021, I will absolutely be picking it up!
We don’t have one yet!
TENTATIVE HYPE: “All’s Well” by: Mona Awad
Expected Publication: August 3rd, 2021
I read and absolutely ADORED Bunny (See my reading vlog here) this year and so I am tentatively hype for this one as I’m not quite sure on if I will love it or not based on the genre. I am not a horror reader, but man there is just something incredible about the writing style of Mona Awad that resonates with me and so I am obviously hoping for another amazing work from her!
Miranda Fitch’s life is a waking nightmare. The accident that ended her burgeoning acting career left her with excruciating, chronic back pain, a failed marriage, and a deepening dependence on painkillers. And now she’s on the verge of losing her job as a college theater director. Determined to put on Shakespeare’s All’s Well That Ends Well, the play that promised, and cost, her everything, she faces a mutinous cast hellbent on staging Macbeth instead. Miranda sees her chance at redemption slip through her fingers.
That’s when she meets three strange benefactors who have an eerie knowledge of Miranda’s past and a tantalizing promise for her future: one where the show goes on, her rebellious students get what’s coming to them, and the invisible, doubted pain that’s kept her from the spotlight is made known.
With prose Margaret Atwood has described as “no punches pulled, no hilarities dodged…genius,” Mona Awad has concocted her most potent, subversive novel yet. All’s Well is the story of a woman at her breaking point and a formidable, piercingly funny indictment of our collective refusal to witness and believe female pain.
Now for the rest! These are in order of what I am most excited for countdown style.
I have included the covers, expected publication dates, and the synopsis from Goodreads for these as well.
5. “Malibu Rising” by: Taylor Jenkins Reid
Expected Publication: May 27th, 2021
At this point I pretty much auto-read works by TJR. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo was my second favorite read of 2020 and I adored Daisy Jones and the Six, Maybe in Another Life, One True Loves, and Evidence of the Affair by her. I am anticipating this one to be another great work, but it is hitting at number 5 for me on this list because the plot isn’t really something I am super looking forward to. Like I know it will be by an author I have enjoyed, I just am not as hype over the plot. Hopefully I get into the story and really love it!
Malibu: August, 1983. It’s the day of Nina Riva’s annual end-of-summer party, and anticipation is at a fever pitch. Everyone wants to be around the famous Rivas: Nina, the talented surfer and supermodel; brothers Jay and Hud, one a championship surfer, the other a renowned photographer; and their adored baby sister, Kit. Together, the siblings are a source of fascination in Malibu and the world over-especially as the offspring of the legendary singer, Mick Riva.
The only person not looking forward to the party of the year is Nina herself, who never wanted to be the center of attention, and who has also just been very publicly abandoned by her pro tennis player husband. Oh, and maybe Hud-because it is long past time to confess something to the brother from whom he’s been inseparable since birth.
Jay, on the other hand, is counting the minutes until nightfall, when the girl he can’t stop thinking about promised she’ll be there.
And Kit has a couple secrets of her own-including a guest she invited without consulting anyone.
By midnight the party will be completely out of control. By morning, the Riva mansion will have gone up in flames. But before that first spark in the early hours before dawn, the alcohol will flow, the music will play, and the loves and secrets that shaped this family’s generations will all come bubbling to the surface.
Malibu Rising is a story about one unforgettable night in the life of a family: the night they each have to choose what they will keep from the people who made them . . . and what they will leave behind.
4. “Such a Quiet Place: A Novel” by: Megan Miranda
Expected Publication: July 13th, 2021
I have read everything by Megan Miranda and have reviewed several of her books here on my blog. I am overall a fan of her work and am looking forward to this next installment. I think I settled at number four here on this list with this one because I am not in a Mystery/Thriller mood at the time of writing this, but I am sure I will fall right into this story easily just as I have with her prior work!
We had no warning that she’d come back.
Hollow’s Edge used to be a quiet place. A private and idyllic neighborhood where neighbors dropped in on neighbors, celebrated graduation and holiday parties together, and looked out for one another. But then came the murder of Brandon and Fiona Truett. A year and a half later, Hollow’s Edge is simmering. The residents are trapped, unable to sell their homes, confronted daily by the empty Truett house, and suffocated by their trial testimonies that implicated one of their own. Ruby Fletcher. And now, Ruby’s back.
With her conviction overturned, Ruby waltzes right back to Hollow’s Edge, and into the home she once shared with Harper Nash. Harper, five years older, has always treated Ruby like a wayward younger sister. But now she’s terrified. What possible good could come of Ruby returning to the scene of the crime? And how can she possibly turn her away, when she knows Ruby has nowhere to go?
Within days, suspicion spreads like a virus across Hollow’s Edge. It’s increasingly clear that not everyone told the truth about the night of the Truett’s murders. And when Harper begins receiving threatening notes, she realizes she has to uncover the truth before someone else becomes the killer’s next victim.
Pulsating with suspense and with the shocking twists that are Megan Miranda’s trademark, Such a Quiet Place is Megan Miranda’s best novel yet—a twisty locked-box thriller that will keep you turning pages late into the night.
3. “Reign (Stormheart #3)” by: Cora Carmack
Expected Publication: July 6th, 2021
Right in the middle of my Anticipated Reads is Reign because I want to wait until closer to release date to do a reread of Roar and read Rage for the first time. I feel like I want to binge the entire series all in one go next year!
Aurora Pavan wanted to change her world.
She wanted to protect her people, not because they paid taxes, but because they deserved to live without fear. She wanted Pavan to be a home that welcomed everyone–remnants, stormhunters, and witches included.
For the first time in her life, she did not dread the duty into which she was born. She wanted it.
Then she met him. The Stormlord–the man who wielded the same magic as she, but with the intent to destroy rather than save. The Aurora Pavan who came home from that confrontation was not the same girl that had braved the wildlands and joined a rebellion. She was no longer the girl who was ready to change the world, ready to rule.
But she’s the queen now all the same. And her kingdom needs her.
If only she can keep the new darkness inside her at bay.
The series that USA Today called “bright, electric, and imaginative” continues: Aurora Pavan rises to take her throne in this third installment of the Stormheart series by New York Times bestselling author Cora Carmack.
2. “You Love Me (You #3)” by: Caroline Kepnes
Expected Publication: April 6th, 2021
I LOVED the first two works in this series. Hubby and I watched the Netflix adaptation of You when it first came out and haven’t made our way to watching season two, but we plan to do so before this third book comes out. I adore Joe as a character in that he never does what I expect him to. I wouldn’t want to actually know someone like him in real life, but man is he ever an engaging character study into the psyche! Caroline Kepnes is such a talented author and while I loved her writing style of the entire book being in second person with You, I still very much enjoyed the shift in style in Hidden Bodies. I am excited to find out what will happen next in this third installment of the series!
Joe is done with the cities. He’s done with the muck and the posers, done with Love. Now, he’s saying hello to nature, to simple pleasures on a cozy island in the Pacific Northwest. For the first time in a long time, he can just breathe.
He gets a job at the local library—he does know a thing or two about books—and that’s where he meets her: Mary Kay DiMarco. Librarian. Joe won’t meddle, he will not obsess. He’ll win her the old-fashioned way . . . by providing a shoulder to cry on, a helping hand. Over time, they’ll both heal their wounds and begin their happily ever after in this sleepy town.
The trouble is . . . Mary Kay already has a life. She’s a mother. She’s a friend. She’s . . . busy.
True love can only triumph if both people are willing to make room for the real thing. Joe cleared his decks. He’s ready. And hopefully, with his encouragement and undying support, Mary Kay will do the right thing and make room for him.
1. “Anna K: Rising (Anna K #2) ” by: Jenny Lee
Expected Publication: April 27th, 2021
HYPE HYPE HYPE!!!!! Ahhhhhh! I am very highly anticipating this next installment by Jenny Lee in the Anna K series. I fell in love with the characters when I read the book on audio earlier this month and I cannot wait to see what happens next in the life of all of the characters!
How the mighty have fallen. Anna K, once the golden girl of Greenwich, CT, and New York City, has been brought low by a scandalous sex tape and the tragic death of her first love, Alexia Vronsky. At the beginning of the summer, her father takes her to the other side of the world, to connect with his family in South Korea and hide her away. Is Anna in exile? Or could this be her chance to figure out who she really is?
Back in the U.S., Lolly has forgiven Steven for cheating on her, and their relationship feels stronger than ever.
But when Lolly meets a boy at her beloved theater camp, she has to ask herself how well Steven will ever really know her. Meanwhile, in Manhattan, everything between Kimmie and her new boyfriend, Dustin, is easy–except when it comes to finally having sex. And Bea escapes to LA, running away from her grief at her beloved cousin’s death, until a beautiful stranger steals her heart. Is Bea ready to finally forgive Anna, and let herself truly fall in love for the very first time?
Set over the course of one unforgettable summer, Jenny Lee’s Anna K Away is full of the risk, joy, heartbreak, and adventure that mark the three months between the end of one school year and the beginning of the next.
There you have it! my top 5 (plus 2 bonus) Most Anticipated Reads of 2021.
What are YOU most looking forward to?