Books I Read in 2021

I didn’t think I read a lot of books last year, but I did manage 42 books (one more than in 2020) which isn’t too bad! And apparently I didn’t read any books in April. Or rather, I didn’t finish any books in April.

This is a list of the books as I finished them and my immediate thoughts about them (if I noted down any!) plus a rating of 1-5 stars. Although, it’s rare to see a rating below 3 because if a book is 1 or 2 stars I’m probably not enjoying it enough to finish it. Do you finish all the books you start?

I’ve added affiliate links to some of the books mentioned. Just in case you want to buy a book from an independent book shop. :-)

Any book recommendations I should check out? xx

Nine of Wands. Mark Hayden. ****
The Boy, The Mole, The Fox and The Horse. Charlie Mackesy. Beautiful. *****
Eight Kings. Mark Hayden. ****

The Golden Thread. Kassia St Clair. Took me ages to read. It was interesting but also kind of boring? ***
The Stubborn Light of Things. Melissa Harrison. Not sure what I was expecting. It was nice. ***
Steal Like An Artist. Austin Kleon. ****
The Living Mountain. Nan Shepard. Interesting. Beautiful. Sense of place. ****

The Art of Gathering. Priya Parker. Such a thought provoking and inspiring book. *****
Show Your Work
. Austin Kleon. It gets better every time you read it. *****
The Midnight Library. Matt Haig. It’s A Wonderful Life vibes mixed with…Kierkegaard? It was ok. ***
Keep Going. Austin Kleon. *****

The Vikings. Else Roesdahl. Interesting to learn more about the vikings. ****
The Seventh Star. Mark Hayden. ****
The Ten Thousand Doors of January. Alix E Harrow. Surprising story. Beautiful, beautiful language. Magical *****
Reasons To stay Alive. Matt Haig. **

Cursed. Benedict Jacka. ***
Six Furlongs. Mark Hayden. ****
Taken. Benedict Jacka. ****
Five Leaf Clover. Mark Hayden. ****
Everyday Matters. Danny Gregory. Beautiful, inspiring book for sketchers and everyone else, really. Have read it several times. *****
Phantom Stag. Mark Hayden. Short novella. ***

Wings over Water. Mark Hayden. Another short story from the king’s watch universe. ***
Ring of Troth. Mark Hayden. Same as above. ***
Fire Games. Mark Hayden. Same as above. ***

The Order of Time. Carlo Rovelli. Very good. Physics and philosophy. Diagrams with Smurfs. :-) ****
What Abigail Did That Summer. Ben Aaronovitch. Quick read. Enjoyable but there were annoying footnotes. Explaining English things to Americans, I guess, so they don’t have to publish a separate version of the book? ***
Andrea’s Book – Carnets du quotidien. Andrea Joseph. Mostly drawings, but some text, translated into French, so it totally counts as A Read Book! ****
Shadow Wings. Sarah Painter. Good! ****
The Venice Sketchbook. Rhys Bowen. Was ok. Pretty obvious what was going to happen. ***

Castelli di Rabbia. Alessandro Baricco. Audio book. Kinda weird to listen to a book I have read several times. But nice to listen to Italian. ****
A Piece of Blue Sky. Mark Hayden. Was ok. I’m not that into thrillers (if that’s its category?) ***
Green for Danger. Mark Hayden. Was ok. ***

In The Red Corner. Mark Hayden. It was ok.. Really only read it because I’m waiting for the next King’s watch book and this one was on Kindle Unlimited. ***
5-Minute Sketching – Architecture: Super-Quick Techniques for Amazing Drawings. Liz Steel. Different from what I thought it would be. **
The Art of Noticing. Rob Walker. Some bits were really good and inspiring, some less so. Liked the book. ****
Helgoland. Carlo Rovelli. Some light reading about quantum physics! Enjoyed it. ****

A serpent in Paradise. Mark Hayden. I’m kinda into this series now? Also it was in Kindle Unlimited. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ ***
Another Place to Die. Mark Hayden. ***
Dessiner un carnet de voyage: Astuces pour tous. Renata Lahalle. Inspiring. Maybe would have been nice with more examples of her work. **(*)

The White Ship. Charles Spencer. It was good, interesting. But I knew most of the big picture already. ***
The Urban Sketching Handbook Understanding Light. Katie Woodward. Felt a bit…light. Would have liked if there were more descriptions of the examples used in the book. In several cases there was plenty of room on the page for more explanations. **(*)
The Witch’s Yearbook. Clare Gogerty. Interesting. Not planning on doing witchy things just read it for inspiration. ***


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