My Top Stand-alone’s of 2021!

Hello! Time for my final ‘top books of the year’ post and this one is focusing on all the amazing stand-alone’s I read in 2021. Out of the 40 stand-alone’s I read last year, I’ve managed to narrow down my list to 9 which was so incredibly hard. They below are a mix of fantasy, sci-fi, thrillers as well as historical romance. They’ve made me laugh, cry, get irrationally angry, had me a little scared to go to sleep, but the one thing they have in common is they are all exceptionally well written and I loved every single one. Did any of these make your top reads of 2021? Let me know in the comments.

The House in the Cerulean Sea by T.J Klune

“Have you ever read a book where each line makes you feel like you’re being wrapped in a warm hug? If not then I insist you read this book immediately. I can’t tell you how much I needed this book in my life. This book filled with found families, a slow burn m/m romance where they’re both idiots in love, and a cast of characters that have no trouble pulling on every single heart string. I defy you reading this to not get emotionally invested, in fact I would go to say it is virtually impossible.”

A Psalm for the Wild Built by Becky Chambers

“Well… it seems that all I’ve been missing from my life is a Tea Monk and his Robot companion. Sibling Dex and Splendid Speckled Mosscap absolutely made this story for me, their interactions were hilarious, heartfelt, educational and sometimes emotional…Chambers’ descriptions and writing style absolutely bring Panga and the beings that inhabit it to life, and I could have stayed in that world following Dex and Mosscap for a lot longer.”

The Ones We’re Meant to Find by Joan He

“You could say this story has been told before, and you would be right. This story of humanity destroying earth and the desperate solutions having to be made to ensure survival. And while this story differs in many way from the ones that have come before, it’s the emotional impact of this story that really makes it stand out. There were certain parts of this book where my heart simply broke in two for the characters, characters who’s lives I felt entwined with, whose goals had become my goals. “

Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir

Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir

“The story really picked up when Grace finds his ‘unexpected ally.’ I just wish I could talk more about this without giving away major spoilers because it was by far my favourite part of the book. As soon as this ally appeared I couldn’t put the book down, and stayed up waaay past my bedtime. Weir’s writing style makes the story really flow, and once it get’s going there is no good part to put it down. Exciting, emotional and hilarious things happen in every chapter and it makes it an easy read to fly though.”

Mirrorland by Carole Johnstone

“Mirrorland is a true genre bending novel. Though it is a psychological thriller at it’s heart there are elements of horror as well as magical realism all of which help bring El and Cat’s story to light. I will admit to getting freaked out on more than one occasion, but the magical element at the start of the book help ease us as the reader, as well as Cat, into the truth of the story. Though a little slow starting, it’s not until the last part of the book that you realise the set up was absolutely necessary in telling El and Cat’s story, and once we hit the big plot twist I found myself uttering ‘Fuck’ at pretty regular intervals”

The Inheritance of Orquídea Divina by Zoraida Córdova

“Cordova’s prose is incredibly lush, I have so many sections highlighted because it was so beautifully written. It seriously adds to the atmosphere of the novel, creepy, romantic and wishful when needed and I just found myself re-reading passages because of how much they impacted me. I know this is a novel about magic, but Cordova’s writing is a kind of magic of it’s own, and it’s certainly a book I will find myself re-reading.”

The Beautiful Ones by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

The Beautiful Ones

“I can’t stress enough how much I love Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s writing! She is one of the few authors who keeps me gripped no matter the genre, and even manages to get me out of my comfort zone every once in a while. The Beautiful Ones is an intoxicating story of manners, first love and first heartbreak, but also of how appearances can be deceiving, and the personality someone shows to the masses may not also be who they truly are inside.”

In the Watchful City by S. Qiouyi Lu


“If there was one word I could use to describe this book it would be unique, everything from the world, the magic system and the inclusion of non-binary characters were just so far from books I have read before that I found myself wanting to devour every piece of information. It’s not a light and easy read by any means, the story deals with multiple dark themes such as suicide and grief, but told through Amina’s lens means we get to see them from a previously unseen viewpoint.”

Black Water Sister by Zen Cho

“Cho’s descriptions and writing style absolutely transported me to Malaysia. I had read little to nothing about Malaysian culture and beliefs before reading this and I adored getting a deep dive not only into their mythology and culture, but their familial dynamics. We see the struggle of Jess parents, wanting a better life for their daughter but having to return to the place they left after her fathers job fell through, and how they felt they had let her down.”

12 replies »

  1. Hey Becky, great list. I can’t remember the last time I listened to or read a standalone. I’m going to try to find some in my genres this year. Lol!

    Liked by 1 person

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