Top 10 Tuesday: 2021 Releases I Was Excited to Read But Didn’t Get To

I didn’t do a great job of reading my anticipated releases last year so there are quite a few 2021 books that I really wanted to read but didn’t get round to. Here are ten of them! Hopefully I will get to some, if not all, of these this year.

Top 10 Tuesday was originally created by The Broke and the Bookish, but has now moved to That Artsy Reader Girl. If you’re interested in taking part click here.

Iron Widow by Xiran Jay Zhao

The Gilded Ones by Namina Forna

Blade of Secrets by Tricia Levenseller

Six Crimson Cranes by Elizabeth Lim

The Wolf and the Woodsman by Ava Reid

Thronebreakers by Rebecca Coffindaffer

Vespertine by Margaret Rogerson

Gods & Monsters by Shelby Mahurin

The Ones We’re Meant to Find by Joan He

Broken Web by Lori M. Lee

What releases were you excited for in 2021? Are there any you didn’t get round to reading? Chat with me in the comments!

Top 10 Tuesday: Most Anticipated Releases for the First Half of 2022

There are some exciting looking sequels coming out this year but I am so behind on reading 2021 releases so there are very few sequels on this list! There are, however, many debuts and new releases by familiar authors that I am very excited for this year.

Top 10 Tuesday was originally created by The Broke and the Bookish, but has now moved to That Artsy Reader Girl. If you’re interested in taking part click here.


Scorpica by G. R. Macallister

A centuries-long peace is shattered in a matriarchal society when a decade passes without a single girl being born in this sweeping epic fantasy that’s perfect for fans of Robin Hobb and Circe.

Five hundred years of peace between queendoms shatters when girls inexplicably stop being born. As the Drought of Girls stretches across a generation, it sets off a cascade of political and personal consequences across all five queendoms of the known world, throwing long-standing alliances into disarray as each queendom begins to turn on each other—and new threats to each nation rise from within.

Uniting the stories of women from across the queendoms, this propulsive, gripping epic fantasy follows a warrior queen who must rise from childbirth bed to fight for her life and her throne, a healer in hiding desperate to protect the secret of her daughter’s explosive power, a queen whose desperation to retain control leads her to risk using the darkest magic, a near-immortal sorcerer demigod powerful enough to remake the world for her own ends—and the generation of lastborn girls, the ones born just before the Drought, who must bear the hopes and traditions of their nations if the queendoms are to survive.

The synopsis for this book gives me Priory of the Orange Tree vibes and I would love to read more epic fantasy with queendoms, so I am highly anticipating this one’s release.


Castles in Their Bones by Laura Sebastian

A spellbinding story of three princesses and the destiny they were born for: seduction, conquest, and the crown. Immerse yourself in the first book in a new fantasy trilogy from the author of the New York Times bestselling Ash Princess series.

Empress Margaraux has had plans for her daughters since the day they were born. Princesses Sophronia, Daphne, and Beatriz will be queens. And now, age sixteen, they each must leave their homeland and marry their princes.

Beautiful, smart, and demure, the triplets appear to be the perfect brides—because Margaraux knows there is one common truth: everyone underestimates a girl. Which is a grave mistake. Sophronia, Daphne, and Beatriz are no innocents. They have been trained since birth in the arts of deception, seduction, and violence with a singular goal—to bring down monarchies— and their marriages are merely the first stage of their mother’s grand vision: to one day reign over the entire continent of Vesteria.

The princesses have spent their lives preparing, and now they are ready, each with her own secret skill, and each with a single wish, pulled from the stars. Only, the stars have their own plans—and their mother hasn’t told them all of hers.

Life abroad is a test. Will their loyalties stay true? Or will they learn that they can’t trust anyone—not even each other?

I’ve not read Laura Sebastian’s previous books, but something about this cover and description caught my attention. I love multi perspective stories, and the concept behind this one sounds really intriguing.


Gallant by V. E. Schwab

Sixteen-year-old Olivia Prior is missing three things: a mother, a father, and a voice. Her mother vanished all at once, and her father by degrees, and her voice was a thing she never had to start with.

She grew up at Merilance School for Girls. Now, nearing the end of her time there, Olivia receives a letter from an uncle she’s never met, her father’s older brother, summoning her to his estate, a place called Gallant. But when she arrives, she discovers that the letter she received was several years old. Her uncle is dead. The estate is empty, save for the servants. Olivia is permitted to remain, but must follow two rules: don’t go out after dusk, and always stay on the right side of a wall that runs along the estate’s western edge.

Beyond it is another realm, ancient and magical, which calls to Olivia through her blood…

From the Sunday Times-bestselling author of The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue, and A Darker Shade of Magic comes a standalone novel where The Secret Garden meets Stardust.

I only discovered V. E. Schwab a couple of years ago (I know, very late to the party) and have loved both of her books I’ve read so far, so of course I’ll be snapping up her latest release.

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Top 10 Tuesday: Best Books I Read In 2021

I cannot believe it’s nearly the end of the year and it’s time to pick my 10 favourite reads of 2021! I read some great books this year and it’s always hard to narrow it down, but here are my 10 best reads.

Top 10 Tuesday was originally created by The Broke and the Bookish, but has now moved to That Artsy Reader Girl. If you’re interested in taking part click here.

Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir – This is hands down my favourite book of the year. It was so imaginative and unique, and I was totally hooked on the mysterious story. The audiobook narration was brilliant as well and brought all the characters to life so vividly.

Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor – I can’t get enough of Laini Taylor’s writing. It’s so lyrical and emotive, I get drawn into every book of hers I read, and Days of Blood and Starlight was no exception.

The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon – I finally tackled this chonky book this year and I’m so glad I did because I loved it. The worldbuilding is incredibly detailed and although it is very long, it didn’t feel slow, and I found myself propelled through the pages.

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Top 10 Tuesday: Most Anticipated Releases for the Second Half of 2021

So today’s top 10 is actually going to be a top 12 because I just couldn’t decide which two to cut from this list! There are so many books I’m excited for in the second half of 2021!

Top 10 Tuesday was originally created by The Broke and the Bookish, but has now moved to That Artsy Reader Girl. If you’re interested in taking part click here.


Six Crimson Cranes by Elizabeth Lim  

Shiori, the only princess of Kiata, has a secret. Forbidden magic runs through her veins. Normally she conceals it well, but on the morning of her betrothal ceremony, Shiori loses control. At first, her mistake seems like a stroke of luck, forestalling the wedding she never wanted, but it also catches the attention of Raikama, her stepmother.

Raikama has dark magic of her own, and she banishes the young princess, turning her brothers into cranes, and warning Shiori that she must speak of it to no one: for with every word that escapes her lips, one of her brothers will die.

Penniless, voiceless, and alone, Shiori searches for her brothers, and, on her journey, uncovers a conspiracy to overtake the throne—a conspiracy more twisted and deceitful, more cunning and complex, than even Raikama’s betrayal. Only Shiori can set the kingdom to rights, but to do so she must place her trust in the very boy she fought so hard not to marry. And she must embrace the magic she’s been taught all her life to contain—no matter what it costs her.

I really enjoyed the Spin the Dawn duology so I’m really looking forward to Elizabeth Lim’s next book!


Gods & Monsters by Shelby Mahurin

The spellbinding conclusion to the New York Times and IndieBound bestselling trilogy Serpent & Dove. This stunning fantasy take on French witches and forbidden love is perfect for fans of Sarah J. Maas.

Evil always seeks a foothold. We must not give it one.

After a heartbreaking loss, Lou, Reid, Beau, and Coco are bent on vengeance more than ever before—and none more so than Lou.

But this is no longer the Lou they thought they knew. No longer the Lou that captured a chasseur’s heart. A darkness has settled over her, and this time it will take more than love to drive it out.

Honestly I didn’t expect to enjoy this series as much as I did! But I ended up loving both the first and second books, and I need to know what happens in the last book!


Defy the Night by Brigid Kemmerer 

The kingdom of Kandala is on the brink of disaster. Rifts between sectors have only worsened since a sickness began ravaging the land, and within the Royal Palace, the king holds a tenuous peace with a ruthless hand.

King Harristan was thrust into power after his parents’ shocking assassination, leaving the younger Prince Corrick to take on the brutal role of the King’s Justice. The brothers have learned to react mercilessly to any sign of rebellion–it’s the only way to maintain order when the sickness can strike anywhere, and the only known cure, an elixir made from delicate Moonflower petals, is severely limited.

Out in the Wilds, apothecary apprentice Tessa Cade is tired of seeing her neighbors die, their suffering ignored by the unyielding royals. Every night, she and her best friend Wes risk their lives to steal Moonflower petals and distribute the elixir to those who need it most–but it’s still not enough.

As rumors spread that the cure no longer works and sparks of rebellion begin to flare, a particularly cruel act from the King’s Justice makes Tessa desperate enough to try the impossible: sneaking into the palace. But what she finds upon her arrival makes her wonder if it’s even possible to fix Kandala without destroying it first.

A Curse So Dark and Lonely was a surprise favourite to me, so I’m excited to see what Brigid Kemmerer writes next.

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Top 10 Tuesday: Books On My Spring 2021 TBR

This was actually last week’s topic but I missed it so decided to post it this week instead!

Top 10 Tuesday was originally created by The Broke and the Bookish, but has now moved to That Artsy Reader Girl. If you’re interested in taking part click here.

Legendborn by Tracey Deonn

Goddess in the Machine by Lora Beth Johnson

Malice by Heather Walter

The Unbroken by C. L. Clark

Crownchasers by Rebecca Coffindaffer

A Vow So Bold and Deadly by Brigid Kemmerer

The Deck of Omens by Christine Lynn Herman

Bone Crier’s Dawn by Kathryn Purdie

Unravel the Dusk by Elizabeth Lim

Muse of Nightmares by Laini Taylor

Considering how I am notoriously bad at sticking to a TBR, we’ll see how many of these books I actually get round to reading! I’m currently reading The Priory of the Orange Tree and I am loving it, but it’s taking me so long to read it.

What books are you excited to read this spring? Chat with me in the comments!

Top 10 Tuesday: Books Written Before I Was Born

Today’s top 10 is all about the older books we’ve read, rather than recent releases! This list will have five classics and five sci-fi and fantasy books. So here are some of my favourite books written before I was born, which was in the 90s!

Top 10 Tuesday was originally created by The Broke and the Bookish, but has now moved to That Artsy Reader Girl. If you’re interested in taking part click here.

Emma by Jane Austen

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë

Tess of the D’Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy

Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? By Philip K. Dick

Dragons of Autumn Twilight by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman

The Cygnet duology by Patricia A. McKillip

The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien 

What are some of your favourite books from before you were born? Chat with me in the comments!

Top 10 Tuesday: New-To-Me Authors I Read in 2020

Today’s Top 10 Tuesday is all about new authors I discovered in 2020! While I read quite a few books by favourite authors last year, I also found some new authors that I want to read more from!

Top 10 Tuesday was originally created by The Broke and the Bookish, but has now moved to That Artsy Reader Girl. If you’re interested in taking part click here.

Elizabeth Acevedo – I got into novels in verse a few years ago and The Poet X was really good so I want to read more of Elizabeth Acevedo’s books.

Tricia LevensellerThe Shadows Between Us was an unexpected favourite from me last year. I haven’t read any of the authors other books but will definitely be looking out for them now.

Kiersten White – I absolutely love Arthurian legend so I was really excited when Kiersten White’s retelling came out. The Guinevere Deception was my first time reading her work but she’s had a lot of other books published that I haven’t checked out yet.

Elizabeth Lim – The gorgeous cover of Spin the Dawn is what drew me to Elizabeth Lim’s first book and I absolutely loved her writing style so can’t wait to read more.

Shelby Mahurin – After all the hype around Serpent & Dove, I caved and read it and I’m so glad that I did!

Brigid KemmererA Curse So Dark and Lonely is another book that I read because of all the hype and ended up loving. Brigid Kemmerer has previously written contemporary books but I haven’t read any of them.

Lori M. Lee – I wasn’t sure if I would like Forest of Souls but I ended up loving it and am so excited for the sequel!

V. E. Schwab – One of the biggest fantasy authors around at the moment, and I hadn’t read any of her books until last year. The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue was such a phenomenal book, I’ll definitely be checking out more of her work.

Zoraida Córdova – I was lucky enough to get an eARC of Incendiary which was my first time reading one of Zoraida Córdova’s books.

Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff – I really can’t believe I hadn’t heard of Illuminae before last year. It instantly became one of my favourite books and I’ve loved every book I’ve read by this duo so far.

What new authors did you read in 2020? Are there any you’re excited to read for the first time in 2021? Chat with me in the comments!

Top 10 Tuesday: Books I Meant to Read In 2020 but Didn’t Get To

This week’s Top 10 Tuesday is all about books I had planned to read last year but didn’t end up getting round to.

Top 10 Tuesday was originally created by The Broke and the Bookish, but has now moved to That Artsy Reader Girl. If you’re interested in taking part click here.

Unravel the Dusk by Elizabeth Lim – I read Spin the Dawn last year and planned to read the sequel in 2020 as well. I will definitely be reading it this year though.

The Midnight Star by Marie Lu – I loved the first two books in this series, but for some reason haven’t read the last book yet, which I really need to rectify soon!

Blood & Honey by Shelby Mahurin – I have to say, I was kind of putting this one off since I’ve seen a lot of mixed reviews. I loved Serpent & Dove and I really didn’t want to be disappointed with the sequel! But I am now reading this one at the moment and hope to finish it soon.

Shadow Kiss by Richelle Mead – I started reading the Vampire Academy books a while ago and liked the first two books so I would like to continue with this series at some point.

The Deck of Omens by Christine Lynn Herman – I really need to read this book before I completely forget what happened in The Devouring Gray!

Star Daughter by Shveta Thakrar – This book came in a Fairyloot box and I’d planned to read this as part of their readalong, but Illumicrate had a readalong at the same time and I couldn’t read both books.

The Gilded Ones by Namina Forna – I got this as an early finished copy in Fairyloot’s June box last year and was really excited to read it, but didn’t want to read it too early and have to wait ages for the sequel. So I planned to read it at the end of 2020 but just didn’t end up getting to it. I’ll be reading this one soon for sure!

A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab – I’ve been meaning to get into V. E. Schwab’s books for ages since there is so much love for them.

Furyborn by Claire Legrand – I bought this at YALC back in 2019 and can’t believe I still haven’t read it yet.

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard – This has been sitting on my Kindle for so long! I plan to read this every year but just never end up picking it up.

What books did you mean to read last year but didn’t get to? Are you planning on reading them this year instead? Chat with me in the comments!

Top 10 Tuesday: Most Anticipated Releases for the First Half of 2021

Yet again there are so many new releases I’m excited for! Here are 10 of the ones I’m most looking forward to coming out in January-June 2021.

Top 10 Tuesday was originally created by The Broke and the Bookish, but has now moved to That Artsy Reader Girl. If you’re interested in taking part click here.


Lore by Alexandra Bracken

From the No.1 New York Times bestselling author of The Darkest Minds comes a high-octane story of power, destiny and redemption. A lifetime ago, Lore Perseous left behind the brutal, opulent world of the Agon families – ancient Greek bloodlines that participate in a merciless game every seven years. A game that is about to begin again…

For centuries, Zeus has punished the gods with a game called the Agon, which turns them mortal for one week, and at the mercy of being hunted by those with godly ambitions. Only a handful of the original Greek gods remain, the rest replaced by the mortals who killed them and ascended.

After her family’s sadistic murder by a rival bloodline, Lore escapes and vows to repay her parents’ sacrifice by doing one thing – surviving. For seven years, she has pushed back dark thoughts of revenge against the man responsible for their murder, a man by the name of Wrath who has attained unimaginable power. Except for one week, every seven years. A week that is fast approaching …

When Lore comes home on the first night of the Agon to find Athena gravely wounded on her doorstep, the goddess offers her an alliance; they have a mutual enemy, after all. But as the world trembles under the force of Wrath – a god with the power to destroy all of humanity – will Lore’s decision to bind her fate with Athena’s come back to haunt her?

I have loved anything to do with Ancient Greek mythology since I was a kid so this book sounds right up my street.


A Vow So Bold and Deadly by Brigid Kemmerer

Emberfall is crumbling fast, torn between those who believe Rhen is the rightful prince and those who are eager to begin a new era under Grey, the true heir. Grey has agreed to wait two months before attacking Emberfall, and in that time, Rhen has turned away from everyone—even Harper, as she desperately tries to help him find a path to peace.

Meanwhile, Lia Mara struggles to rule Syhl Shallow with a gentler hand than her mother. But after enjoying decades of peace once magic was driven out of their lands, some of her subjects are angry Lia Mara has an enchanted prince and magical scraver by her side. As Grey’s deadline draws nearer, Lia Mara questions if she can be the queen her country needs.

As two kingdoms come closer to conflict, loyalties are tested, love is threatened, and an old enemy resurfaces who could destroy them all, in this stunning conclusion to bestselling author Brigid Kemmerer’s Cursebreaker series.

Even though I didn’t love A Heart So Fierce and Broken as much as A Curse So Dark and Lonely, this is still one of my most anticipated releases this year. I have no idea how the story is going to end but I have a feeling it will break my heart.


The Gilded Ones by Namina Forna

The start of a bold and immersive West African-inspired, feminist fantasy series for fans of Children of Blood and Bone and Black Panther. In this world, girls are outcasts by blood and warriors by choice.

Sixteen-year-old Deka lives in fear and anticipation of the blood ceremony that will determine whether she will become a member of her village. Already different from everyone else because of her unnatural intuition, Deka prays for red blood so she can finally feel like she belongs.

But on the day of the ceremony, her blood runs gold, the color of impurity–and Deka knows she will face a consequence worse than death.

Then a mysterious woman comes to her with a choice: stay in the village and submit to her fate, or leave to fight for the emperor in an army of girls just like her. They are called alaki–near-immortals with rare gifts. And they are the only ones who can stop the empire’s greatest threat.

Knowing the dangers that lie ahead yet yearning for acceptance, Deka decides to leave the only life she’s ever known. But as she journeys to the capital to train for the biggest battle of her life, she will discover that the great walled city holds many surprises. Nothing and no one are quite what they seem to be–not even Deka herself.

If I remember correctly this book was originally due to come out in 2020 but was one of many releases pushed back by the pandemic. I got an early finished copy in a Fairyloot box which I was very excited about since the premise sounds so good, but haven’t got round to reading it yet!

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Top 10 Tuesday: Favourite Books of 2020

I’ve read a lot of books this year and narrowing it down to just 10 of my favourites was so hard! So here are my favourite 14 books I read in 2020, in no particular order. Links take you to my reviews!

Top 10 Tuesday was originally created by The Broke and the Bookish, but has now moved to That Artsy Reader Girl. If you’re interested in taking part click here.

Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo – I loved this book even more than Six of Crows! It was a brilliant conclusion to the duology.

Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor – As I loved Daughter of Smoke and Bone, I had high expectations for this one, and it didn’t disappoint. Laini Taylor’s writing is just so magical, imaginative and captivating.

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff – I didn’t expect to love this book as much as I did, but it instantly became one of my favourite books ever.

Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff – This book was just so much fun and action-packed. I loved going on an adventure with Squad 312 and can’t wait for the third book to come out.

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