Are you like me and have an ever-growing TBR list?! Do you keep purchasing books even when you have HANDFULS of books sitting on your shelves…. waiting for you to read them….? Honestly, I freaking get it!!! It’s addicting to head to Barnes and Noble, grab a coffee, and browse the aisles for hours! Or how about the influence BookTok has…. I know I have made DOZENS of book purchases, thanks to BookTok!!
Well, 2021 was the year I decided to take up reading again (I was an avid reader when I was little all the way to high school!) and just HOT DAMN. I really sparked my obsession and addiction to fictional worlds again!!
Here’s a list of ALL the books I have read in 2021 AND FELL IN LOVE WITH!!!
(and don’t @ me for loving spice 🤣🤣🤣)
WOWWWWWWW. I don’t even know where to begin with this series!!! ACOTAR was a book I was seeing all over BookTok, and then I just couldn’t stop thinking about it! I really was never a big fantasy reader, so I was very skeptical. (I did love the Maximum Ride series when I was younger though!) But the moment I picked up the first book, a Court of Thorns and Roses, I couldn’t put it down. I want you to envision me trying to work on important things throughout the day and all I could think about was this damn series!
I’m also quite upset that we don’t live in a world with such magical things and faeries. 😅
There’s 5 books in the series (with hopefully at least one more on the way!) and I read them all within 2-3 weeks… I became super enthralled with the Fae-world, the main characters, and all the things. (And let me just say that Rhysand, Azriel and Cassian can all ruin my life and I would say thank you….)
The sexual tension, the romance, the enemies to lovers trope, the badass female characters, the world building – I absolutely loved and adored EVERYTHING about this series – and I was DEVASTATED to have finished it!
I will say that the last book, A Court of Silver Flames , has much more smut then the rest of the series – so if that’s not your thing, you may not like that one as much.
“Feyre’s survival rests upon her ability to hunt and kill – the forest where she lives is a cold, bleak place in the long winter months. So when she spots a deer in the forest being pursued by a wolf, she cannot resist fighting it for the flesh. But to do so, she must kill the predator and killing something so precious comes at a price …
Dragged to a magical kingdom for the murder of a faerie, Feyre discovers that her captor, his face obscured by a jewelled mask, is hiding far more than his piercing green eyes would suggest. Feyre’s presence at the court is closely guarded, and as she begins to learn why, her feelings for him turn from hostility to passion and the faerie lands become an even more dangerous place. Feyre must fight to break an ancient curse, or she will lose him forever.”
I’m going to start by saying that this series is for 18+!! The trigger warnings for this series are: bully romance, abduction, rape, attempted rape, grey area consent, violence, child abuse, murder, drug use/addiction, underage sexual content, underage drinking, and death of parents. (There’s a LOT of spice in this series!)
This is NOT a light-hearted series, but a very dark, romantic one. It is NOT for the faint of heart.
That being said, this was the FIRST book series to really get me out of my few-year long reading slump! I finished this series in about 2-3 weeks as well! I wasn’t sure what to expect with this series, but I became absolutely enthralled with the first book, Corrupt!!
For me, this series was HOT. HOT. HOT. (Like, needed to drink holy water hot)
There’s just something about enemies to lovers that really gets me!! But just imagine that there are these 4 elite, rich, attractive, alpha males that want to get their revenge on Erika Fane, the one who put 3 of them in jail. There’s one book for each of the horsemen (our lovely alpha males) so you get to dive into each one of their stories. This series has 4 books and 2 novellas!!
One thing I really loved about this series is the dual POV’s and going from past to present to tell the story of the past to make all the pieces connect. I thought it was written SO insanely well!!
(Kai and Damon can break my back, thank you!)
Erika Fane is in love with Michael Crist, her ex-boyfriend’s older brother. Michael was a big deal when he was at school, and now he’s a professional basketball player. Erika is about to go off to her second year of college in another city and she can’t wait to get away from her mother, who has been in a drug-induced lethargy since Erika’s father died, and her ex.
Erika has always believed that Michael hates her, especially after what happened when she was sixteen and she ended up hanging out with Michael and his three besties Kai, Will and Damon, collectively known as The Four Horseman. Their Devil’s Night pranks landed Kai, Damon and Will in jail for three years, but now they’re out and they’re looking for revenge. That’s where Michael comes in: he’s going to help them because, after all, he hates Rika, too. But does he…. ?
If you love murder mysteries, this one is for you!!!
I have a really hard time reading ADULT murder/mystery books, because I usually find the writing wayyyy to bland for me!! This is a YA book (there’s also a sequel!)
Some of it was definitely predictable, but there were a few parts of the story that had incredible twists and turns!!! I also really loved how the author, Holly, included visual evidence references so you can really try to solve the murders and piece it together yourself!!
The case is closed. Five years ago, schoolgirl Andie Bell was murdered by Sal Singh. The police know he did it. Everyone in town knows he did it.
But having grown up in the same small town that was consumed by the murder, Pippa Fitz-Amobi isn’t so sure. When she chooses the case as the topic for her final year project, she starts to uncover secrets that someone in town desperately wants to stay hidden. And if the real killer is still out there, how far will they go to keep Pip from the truth?
If you’re looking for a more emotional book, I would definitely recommend this one!!
This book was written by the same author of Five Feet Apart, so if that tells you anything… 😭❤️😭
This was a romantic, emotional book that had me doubting and thinking!! I really can’t go to much into it without spoiling, so just read the synopsis 😉
Kyle and Kimberly have been the perfect couple all through high school, but when Kimberly breaks up with him on the night of their graduation party, Kyle’s entire world upends—literally. Their car crashes and when he awakes, he has a brain injury. Kimberly is dead. And no one in his life could possibly understand.
Until Marley. Marley is suffering from her own loss, a loss she thinks was her fault. And when their paths cross, Kyle sees in her all the unspoken things he’s feeling.
As Kyle and Marley work to heal each other’s wounds, their feelings for each other grow stronger. But Kyle can’t shake the sense that he’s headed for another crashing moment that will blow up his life as soon as he’s started to put it back together.
And he’s right.
This Hades and Persephone re-telling is CHEF’S. KISS. 🤌🏻🤌🏻🤌🏻🤌🏻
I finished this book in like 4 days. Neon Gods is definitely more spice-focused so the plot wasn’t 100% solid to me (the ending seemed rushed), but THE SPICE?? IMMACULATE.
This book had me questioning if I found certain….. things…. hot?!?! Like…. Hades… SIR….
(really exposing myself here)
Society darling Persephone Dimitriou plans to flee the ultra-modern city of Olympus and start over far from the backstabbing politics of the Thirteen Houses. But all that’s ripped away when her mother ambushes her with an engagement to Zeus, the dangerous power behind their glittering city’s dark facade.
With no options left, Persephone flees to the forbidden undercity and makes a devil’s bargain with a man she once believed a myth… a man who awakens her to a world she never knew existed.
Hades has spent his life in the shadows, and he has no intention of stepping into the light. But when he finds that Persephone can offer a little slice of the revenge he’s spent years craving, it’s all the excuse he needs to help her—for a price. Yet every breathless night spent tangled together has given Hades a taste for Persephone, and he’ll go to war with Olympus itself to keep her close…
Okay, I’m going to start this one off by saying this book is BRUTAL. VIOLENT. So if you can’t stand violence/brutality, this one probably isn’t for you!!
BUT HOLY FRICK. THIS BOOK. WAS A WILD RIDE.
The feminism in this book is honestly so incredible. The twists and turns were amazing. I finished this in literally TWO DAYS, it was so good!! It was very fast-paced and riveting – but also made your blood boil at certain points. (Especially as a woman)
If you liked The Hunger Games, you’ll probably enjoy this one!
In Garner County, girls are told they have the power to lure grown men from their beds, to drive women mad with jealousy. They believe their very skin emits a powerful aphrodisiac, the potent essence of youth, of a girl on the edge of womanhood. That’s why they’re banished for their sixteenth year, to release their magic into the wild so they can return purified and ready for marriage. But not all of them will make it home alive.
Sixteen-year-old Tierney James dreams of a better life—a society that doesn’t pit friend against friend or woman against woman, but as her own grace year draws near, she quickly realizes that it’s not just the brutal elements they must fear. It’s not even the poachers in the woods, men who are waiting for a chance to grab one of the girls in order to make a fortune on the black market. Their greatest threat may very well be each other.
With sharp prose and gritty realism, The Grace Year examines the complex and sometimes twisted relationships between girls, the women they eventually become, and the difficult decisions they make in-between.
This is another 18+ only book, but this one definitely left me REELING!!!
Did I agree with everything that went on in this book? WELLLLLLL…..
But the spicy scenes were…. 🥵🥵🥵
Tiernan de Haas doesn’t care about anything anymore. The only child of a film producer and his starlet wife, she’s grown up with wealth and privilege but not love or guidance. Shipped off to boarding schools from an early age, it was still impossible to escape the loneliness and carve out a life of her own. The shadow of her parents’ fame followed her everywhere.
And when they suddenly pass away, she knows she should be devastated. But has anything really changed? She’s always been alone, hasn’t she?
Jake Van der Berg, her father’s stepbrother and her only living relative, assumes guardianship of Tiernan who is still two months shy of eighteen. Sent to live with him and his two sons, Noah and Kaleb, in the mountains of Colorado, Tiernan soon learns that these men now have a say in what she chooses to care and not care about anymore. As the three of them take her under their wing, teach her to work and survive in the remote woods far away from the rest of the world, she slowly finds her place among them.
And as a part of them.
She also realizes that lines blur and rules become easy to break when no one else is watching.
One of them has her. The other one wants her.
But he… He’s going to keep her.
18+ Only!!! Trigger warnings: non-consensual consensual (gray area) sex, questionable content for some readers!
SOOOO…. If you want to keep your thoughts pure when it comes to your classic Disney stories…. I would maybe not recommend reading any books from the Wicked Villains series including this one… 🤣
Desperate Measures is a dark Aladdin re-telling with the focus being on Jasmine and Jafar! I have to say I really enjoyed this kind of dramatic and dark re-telling, because it brings such a different light and twist onto the classic Disney tale. (I am a HUGE Aladdin fan!)
The ending was EXTREMELY satisfying as well!!!
THIS BOOK WAS UNDENIABLY HOT.
THAT’S ALL I HAVE TO SAY.
I MAY NEED THERAPY.
IT IS WHAT IT IS. 🤣🤣🤣
My Savior… Or My Ruin?
One night, and my entire life went up in flames. All because of him. Jafar. As my world burned down around me, he offered me a choice. Walk away with nothing but my freedom… Or rise to his challenge and win my fortune back.
I bargained. I lost.
Now Jafar owns me, and even as my mind rails against his rules, my body loves the punishments he deals out when I break them.
But a gilded cage is still a prison, I’ll do anything to obtain my freedom. Even betray the man I’m falling for.
18+ Only!!! Trigger Warnings: Reverse Harem, gray area sex, graphic sex scenes, brutality, violence, kidnapping, torture, death, blood, domestic abuse!! THIS BOOK IS EXTREMELY DARK AND VIOLENT. NOT FOR THE FAINT OF HEART. (Like I’m talking torture + sex in the same scene.)
If you’re still interested in reading this book after the trigger warnings, you’re my person 😉
Okay so this extremely dark mafia romance was GREAT – However, I feel like the plot of the actual book moved very slow and that this book was longer then it should have been! Definitely felt like it dragged on…
However, I do love that even though these men kidnap the main character, Roxy, there’s still a lot of bad-ass moments from her.
That being said, the spice was…. DROOL-WORTHY. There’s one scene with Diesel that literally had my mouth open for the ENTIRE chapter… And another scene that was just… hot damn…
But again… I should probably be in therapy after reading this one and actually finding it HOT. Also, dear husband, please threaten me because it’s hot, okay thank you, bye…
(“Hey God, it’s me again….”)
They run this town and everyone in it. Their deals are as sordid as their business, and their reputation is enough to bring a grown man to his knees, forcing him to beg for mercy. They are not people you mess with, yet my dad did. The old man ran up a debt with them and then sold me to cover his losses.
Yes, sold me. They own me now.
I’m theirs in every sense of the word. But I’ve never been meek and compliant. These men, they look at me with longing. Their scarred, blood-stained hands holding me tight. They want everything I am, everything I have to give, and won’t stop until they get just that. They can own my body, but they will never have my heart.
The Vipers? I’m going to make them regret the day they took me. This girl? She bites too.
AND NOW…. MAY I PRESENT TO YOU…… THE BOOKS I’D LIKE TO READ + FINISH BY THE END OF 2021!!
From Blood and Ash Series by Jennifer L. Armentrout
One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston
Tryst Six Venom by Penelope Douglas
People We Meet On Vacation by Emily Henry
The Rest of the Wicked Villains Series (Spicy Disney Villain Retellings) by Katee Robert
We Hunt the Flame by Hafsah Faizal
A Touch of Darkness (Hades x Persephone) by Scarlett St. Clair
Red, White, & Royal Blue by Casey Mcquiston
The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller
A Fate of Wrath & Flame by K.A. Tucker
To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo
It Ends with Us by Colleen Hoover
Samantha Burke is a traveling adventurous elopement photographer for the wild and goofy soulmates that’s based out of Minneapolis, Minnesota! She’s also an educator for fellow photographers that are wanting to grow their business! Samantha is also a traveling addict that’s always looking for somewhere to travel too! Sam is also obsessed with Star Wars, Marvel, and Chai Tea! Please contact Sam if you would like to have her be your elopement photographer or if you have any questions!! She is always here to answer any questions you may have!
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