My 2021 in Reading: That’s a Lot of Things, Jo

I read 198 books this year in a split of: 39 ARCs, 59 audiobooks, 85 manga volumes, 9 physical copies, 2 light novels, and 6 eBooks. As my boyfriend said, “That’s a lot of things, Jo.” It is that time of year where I want to share my favorites, so please enjoy my top 20 2021 books, top 20 books from before 2021, and, a new feature, 5 manga.

I realize that I make lists for books I’m excited for and book I want to read, and failed on both those lists. So, my lists for 2022 books is mostly about boosting others works regardless of if I personally get around to reading them. That’s just how it is when you’re employed and vastly mis-measure what kind of focus you’ll have as the year goes on. Moving also robbed me of a bunch of my focus, which should not have been as surprising as it is. On top of working full time. On top of being in a relationship and trying to participate in the communities I’m a part of.

“That’s a lot of things,” indeed, self.

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December 2021 Reading Recap

December went by like a flash. I attended Dis Con III, visited my family for Christmas, and write you from Chicago. Please enjoy this final reading recap of 2021. What a year it’s been.

Tomorrow, we have my annual recap coming up. I hope you’re excited.

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Author to Author with Juliet Kemp

The Marek series is about the eponymous city-state whose magic flows through a contract with a being known as the cityangel. From an attempted coup to a demon on the run to a civil war, there is no shortage of intense set pieces, tender character moments, big magic, and other epic fantasy delights.

I’m thrilled to host Juliet Kemp on the blog to celebrate the paperback release of The Rising Flood. They talk about putting the series together, the inspiration behind the world, and what they’re working on next.

Buy Link: Elsewhen Press

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Trio Review: The Marek Series by Juliet Kemp (2018-2021)

From left to right, all by Juliet Kemp: The Deep and Shining Dark (2018); Shadow and Storm (2020); The Rising Flood (2021)

Genre: Queer Adult Fantasy
Year Release: 2018-2021
Buy Links: Elsewhen Press

I basically read this trilogy in one sitting. In the city-state of Marek, magic is siphoned through a contract with a being called the cityangel. In the land of Teren, however, it’s done by blood-letting and demon contracts. The series focuses on Marek and its ragtag team of sorcerers and governmental officials. In the first book, there’s a plot to destabilize the government by replacing the cityangel. In the second, there’s a demon on the loose for multiply nefarious plans. And in the third, both magical and political conflicts come to a stressful head. Overall, the politics within Marek and Teren are intricate with a clear sense of morals, values, and compromises. The journeys these characters go on as it relates to the past and, more evocatively, with their parents, tug at the heartstrings. The magic is awesome and these characters will stick with me for a long time.

Join me on the blog on December 7th where I’ll be interviewing author Juliet Kemp.

Note: I had read free copies provided by the author, Juliet Kemp

Rating: 5 out of 5.
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