Book List

The 50 Most Anticipated Books of 2021

  • FICTION

    BURNT SUGAR

    JAN. 26, 2021

FICTION

BURNT SUGAR

by Avni Doshi

A landmark portrait of toxic parenting and its tangled aftermath. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • FICTION

    THE REMOVED

    FEB. 2, 2021

FICTION

THE REMOVED

by Brandon Hobson

A slim yet wise novel boils profound questions down to its final word: "Home." Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • FICTION

    NO ONE IS TALKING ABOUT THIS

    FEB. 16, 2021

FICTION

NO ONE IS TALKING ABOUT THIS

by Patricia Lockwood

An insightful—frequently funny, often devastating—meditation on human existence online and off. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • FICTION

    THE SLAUGHTERMAN'S DAUGHTER

    FEB. 23, 2021

FICTION

THE SLAUGHTERMAN'S DAUGHTER

by Yaniv Iczkovits

As witty as it is wise, Iczkovits’ novel is a profoundly moving caper through the Russian empire. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • FICTION

    WHAT'S MINE AND YOURS

    MARCH 2, 2021

  • FICTION

    KLARA AND THE SUN

    MARCH 2, 2021

FICTION

KLARA AND THE SUN

by Kazuo Ishiguro

A haunting fable of a lonely, moribund world that is entirely too plausible. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • FICTION

    THE COMMITTED

    MARCH 2, 2021

THRILLER & SUSPENSE

THE COMMITTED

by Viet Thanh Nguyen

A quirky intellectual crime story that highlights the Vietnam War’s complex legacy. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • FICTION

    HOW BEAUTIFUL WE WERE

    MARCH 9, 2021

FICTION

HOW BEAUTIFUL WE WERE

by Imbolo Mbue

A fierce, up-to-the-minute novel that makes you sad enough to grieve and angry enough to fight back. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • FICTION

    THE ELEPHANT OF BELFAST

    APRIL 6, 2021

  • FICTION

    EARLY MORNING RISER

    APRIL 13, 2021

FICTION

EARLY MORNING RISER

by Katherine Heiny

A heartwarming novel with a small-town vibe that sparkles like wine sipped with friends under backyard fairy lights. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • NONFICTION

    WALKING WITH GHOSTS

    JAN. 12, 2021

NONFICTION

WALKING WITH GHOSTS

by Gabriel Byrne

A melancholy but gemlike memoir, elegantly written and rich in hard experience. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • NONFICTION

    THE CROOKED PATH TO ABOLITION

    JAN. 12, 2021

NONFICTION

THE CROOKED PATH TO ABOLITION

by James Oakes

Many books discuss Lincoln and abolition, but this is among the best. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • NONFICTION

    THE DEVIL YOU KNOW

    JAN. 26, 2021

NONFICTION

THE DEVIL YOU KNOW

by Charles M. Blow

Valuable as a thought experiment alone but also an “actual plan” for effecting lasting political change. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • NONFICTION

    LET ME TELL YOU WHAT I MEAN

    JAN. 26, 2021

  • NONFICTION

    JUST AS I AM

    JAN. 26, 2021

NONFICTION

JUST AS I AM

by Cicely Tyson with Michelle Burford

A forthright self-portrait of a determined woman and iconic cultural figure. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • NONFICTION

    SURVIVING THE WHITE GAZE

    FEB. 2, 2021

  • NONFICTION

    FLOATING IN A MOST PECULIAR WAY

    FEB. 2, 2021

NONFICTION

FLOATING IN A MOST PECULIAR WAY

by Louis Chude-Sokei

A beautifully written contribution to recent work of the African diaspora. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • NONFICTION

    STRANGE BEDFELLOWS

    FEB. 2, 2021

NONFICTION

STRANGE BEDFELLOWS

by Ina Park

A fresh, funny, sex-positive book that effectively destigmatizes sexual disease. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • NONFICTION

    SMALLTIME

    FEB. 2, 2021

NONFICTION

SMALLTIME

by Russell Shorto

A lively addition to the history of Italian American immigration and its discontents. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • NONFICTION

    NUESTRA AMÉRICA

    FEB. 9, 2021

NONFICTION

NUESTRA AMÉRICA

by Claudio Lomnitz

A masterpiece of historical and personal investigation, perfect for anyone trying to uncover their family’s past. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • TEEN

    YOUR HEART, MY SKY

    MARCH 23, 2021

TEENS & YOUNG ADULT

YOUR HEART, MY SKY

by Margarita Engle

A deeply touching read that will stay with readers long after they turn the last page. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • TEEN

    THE GIRLS I’VE BEEN

    JAN. 26, 2021

  • TEEN

    THE PROJECT

    FEB. 2, 2021

TEENS & YOUNG ADULT

THE PROJECT

by Courtney Summers

A powerful, suspenseful, and heartbreaking thriller about identity, sisterhood, and belonging. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • TEEN

    THE BEAUTIFUL STRUGGLE (ADAPTED FOR YOUNG ADULTS)

    JAN. 12, 2021

  • TEEN

    PERMANENT RECORD (YOUNG READERS EDITION)

    FEB. 9, 2021

TEENS & YOUNG ADULT

PERMANENT RECORD (YOUNG READERS EDITION)

by Edward Snowden

An absorbing read about digital privacy and one man’s fateful choice to disclose government secrets. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • TEEN

    THE REBELLIOUS LIFE OF MRS. ROSA PARKS (YOUNG READERS EDITION)

    FEB. 2, 2021

  • CHILDREN'S

    THE YEAR I FLEW AWAY

    FEB. 2, 2021

CHILDREN'S

THE YEAR I FLEW AWAY

by Marie Arnold

Pratchett-like worldbuilding centers immigrant kids in a story filled with culture, humor, and heart. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • CHILDREN'S

    THE MAGICAL REALITY OF NADIA

    FEB. 2, 2021

CHILDREN'S

THE MAGICAL REALITY OF NADIA

by Bassem Youssef & Catherine R. Daly ; illustrated by Douglas Holgate

Readers will cheer for Nadia as she responds to prejudice and affirms her identity. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • CHILDREN'S

    J.D. AND THE GREAT BARBER BATTLE

    FEB. 23, 2021

CHILDREN'S

J.D. AND THE GREAT BARBER BATTLE

by J. Dillard ; illustrated by Akeem S. Roberts

A surefire win of a read expressly made for young Black boys to cherish. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • CHILDREN'S

    THE HOW AND WOW OF THE HUMAN BODY

    MARCH 2, 2021

CHILDREN'S

THE HOW AND WOW OF THE HUMAN BODY

by Mindy Thomas & Guy Raz ; illustrated by Jack Teagle

A clever, high-energy crowd pleaser well founded in facts—the grosser the better. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • CHILDREN'S

    BUTLER FOR HIRE!

    MARCH 30, 2021

  • CHILDREN'S

    MERCI SUÁREZ CAN'T DANCE

    APRIL 6, 2021

  • CHILDREN'S

    UNSPEAKABLE

    FEB. 2, 2021

CHILDREN'S

UNSPEAKABLE

by Carole Boston Weatherford ; illustrated by Floyd Cooper

A somber, well-executed addition to the history as the incident approaches its 100th anniversary. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • CHILDREN'S

    C IS FOR COUNTRY

    JAN. 5, 2021

  • CHILDREN'S

    WE WAIT FOR THE SUN

    FEB. 9, 2021

  • CHILDREN'S

    NICKY & VERA

    JAN. 26, 2021

CHILDREN'S

NICKY & VERA

by Peter Sís ; illustrated by Peter Sís

An extraordinary life memorably and evocatively presented. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • CHILDREN'S

    RECTANGLE TIME

    FEB. 16, 2021

CHILDREN'S

RECTANGLE TIME

by Pamela Paul ; illustrated by Becky Cameron

A sweet story about falling in love with reading. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • CHILDREN'S

    THE TALE OF THE MANDARIN DUCK

    FEB. 16, 2021

CHILDREN'S

THE TALE OF THE MANDARIN DUCK

by Bette Midler ; photographed by Michiko Kakutani ; illustrated by Joana Avillez

A celebration of beauty—in a city, in its people, and in an extraordinary avian visitor. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • CHILDREN'S

    WE BECAME JAGUARS

    MARCH 30, 2021

CHILDREN'S

WE BECAME JAGUARS

by Dave Eggers ; illustrated by Woodrow White

A fresh inversion of expectations told in vivid art and idiom. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • CHILDREN'S

    WONDER WALKERS

    MARCH 30, 2021

CHILDREN'S

WONDER WALKERS

by Micha Archer ; illustrated by Micha Archer

Excellent for enriching vocabulary, developing creative thinking, and enhancing a love of nature. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >
  • CHILDREN'S

    WATERCRESS

    MARCH 30, 2021

CHILDREN'S

WATERCRESS

by Andrea Wang ; illustrated by Jason Chin

Understated, deep, and heart-rending—bring tissues. Full review >

FULL REVIEW >

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