2021 – A year in books

It is said that the world belongs to those who read, and 2021 (and 2020) made that literally true, and how!  Confined to our homes and immediate localities for the most part, reading is what opened the doors to far away lands for me these 2 years. I know, it always does, but it was much more noticeable now.  From modern Europe to ancient India, from future dystopian Africa to California of the 70s, from the present political mess of DC to inter-generational conflicts in Turkey and Malaysia and wherever, the books I read this year allowed me to travel through time and space and have a very interesting time while I did it! 

My year began with a bang with some wonderful books, and carried on beautifully. My reading pace always ebbs and flows; there was a time in fall when I thought I would get to extend my goal of 50 books to may be 60 this year. But eventually, I had to scramble to finish reading all 50 books by the end of December. But finish, I did. And gladly so, because few other things bring me joy as reading does. Here’s the full  list of All the books I read in 2021. Many of these were a fascinating read, some of them were major disappointments, and a few were complete surprise packages.

As for my top 3 books of this year, here goes the list, in no particular order: 

  • Fairytales of Fearless Girls – I wrote a detailed post about this here.
  • Sapiens: a Graphic History Volume 1, The Birth of Humankind – Have always been a Yuval Noah Harari fan, but this graphic novel hit differently! It was entertaining, had unexpected elements, but also retained the original philosophy of the book. The illustrations were superb, too!
  • The Stranger in the Lifeboat: Mitch Albom made a beautiful masterpiece again, after a long time. I have always been fascinated by magic realism and human instincts, so the whole discourse about how a group of survivors from a shipwreck deals with the seesaw between hope and a certain death fascinated me to no end. 

I already have my first few books of 2022 lined up. I have been meaning to read a few of these for a long time, and others were recent additions based on book recommendations for 2022:

  • Sapiens : a graphic history. volume two, the pillars of civilization (Yuva Noah Harari)
  • The Glass Palace (Amitav Ghosh) 
  • Caste: the origins of our discontents (Isabel Wilkerson)
  • Norwegian Wood (Haruki Murakami) – Only because I was fascinated by the synonymous sociopathic song by the Beatles
  • 1984 (George Orwell) – Can’t believe I still haven’t read this!
  • 1Q84 (Haruki Murakami)
  • The Overstory (Richard Powers)
  • Manufacturing Consent (Herman and Chomskey) – Have been reading this book for a year now, and really need to complete it!
  • Anxious people – Again, because hopefully my new project will be translating this amazing book for my mom
  • Violeta (Isabel Allende) – I have an advance copy of this book and it will be my first Allende book too! Very excited for this!

Obviously I am also hoping to reading many other amazing books in 2022, too! 
What books did you guys love this year, and which ones are you planning to read next year? Do let me know!

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