Our top of the best books of the year 2021 to read urgently

Without further ado, here is the list of the best books 2021 

Serge by Yasmina Reza

I don’t know what allowed our siblings to maintain the ties that united us as children. We were all different without any particular resemblance. Often, families disperse, fray over time. But despite the years that have passed, I have remained the middle boy; Nana is still the parents’ daughter, the mannered darling that we always sacrificed during our games; and Serge, my brother, is still the eldest, the leader of our little troop. After Babylone , Renaudot Prize 2016, the famous author marks her comeback on the romantic scene with a touching novel on family ties . Published by Flammarion editions on January 6, 2021.

Those storms by Sandrine Colette

At 30, Clemence realizes the three years she has just lost. She dwells on her habits, her rituals, her concessions to ensure the love of a man who bullied her physically and psychologically. Now free from this toxic relationship, she still has to survive the aftermath. Excruciatingly alone, she picks up the broken pieces of herself, confined to a house that mirrors her being. A test of resilience awaits her, a path on which each step forward is an additional temptation to go back. A novel with a tense atmosphere, perfectly reflecting the obsessive nature of the influence . Published by JC Lattes editions on January 6, 2021.

A brief moment of Ocean Vuong splendor

A child writes a letter to his illiterate mother, a pure product of war. This young man seeks in his family history the essence of his identity, he who remains a stranger in the eyes of Vietnam and America. Inspired by a schizophrenic grandmother, a severe mother and the birth of his own desire, he tries to write and, perhaps, to find a reason, an explanation, a saving forgiveness. A magnificent novel, on the border of the real and the marvelous . The reader is transported by the grandiose pen of Ocean Vuong and, above all, by the treatment of violence, addiction and social issues, evoked with an elegance imbued with poetry. Published by Gallimard editions on January 7, 2021.

La familia grande by Camille Kouchner

Camille Kouchner’s book was undeniably the one not to be missed in 2021! Relentless testimony, but terribly moving, the author will spare nothing and no one. By deciding to come out of her silence, she finally puts words to the unnameable. A cry from the heart that is all the more heartbreaking when you know that the sun was shining on the Kouchner family… Welcome to the daily life of a middle-class family that seemed to enjoy life like any other. But under the veil of happiness hid a disgusting drama… In short, a poignant story about rape and incest which allowed tongues to loosen… A best-selling book which will have had a profound effect on the literary season of January 2021. Published by Le Seuil editions on January 7, 2021.

Salt and Smoke by Agathe Saint-Maur

Among the best books of the year 2021 is undoubtedly the first novel by Agathe Saint-Maur. As powerful as it is overwhelming, we are immersed in the universe of Samuel and Lucas. A world clouded with smoke, tears and irascible love. A world where love makes all prejudice pale. They love each other then hate each other to adore each other even more intensely. But soon, the repercussions of the demo for all are felt and their love is shattered. A bath of tears mixed with the bitter taste of smoke, that’s all Samuel has left after Lucas leaves. Haunted by his body and his mind, a slow and painful process of mourning then begins for the one who remains… In short, a dazzling novel to read absolutely ! Published by Gallimard editions on January 7, 2021.

The Demon of Wolf Hill by Dimitri Rouchon-Borie

Whether it revolts us or subjugates us, one thing is certain, The Demon of Wolf Hill leaves no one indifferent. Here you are immersed in the thoughts of Duke, an inmate with dark and sensitive thoughts. By choosing to use his character’s wonky words, the author endows Duke with an astonishing sensitivity. A nice tour de force when you know that Duke has never been to school, that he uses his own words and that a demon hides in the depths of his entrails. It is from his chaotic childhood that he reveals his dazzling destiny to us. Because yes, there are no other words. Yet behind the darkness of his words is revealed the reflection of the human condition. In short, a stunning story so you will not come out unscathed. And that’s probably what makes it one of the best books of 2021… Published by Le Tripode on January 7, 2021.

Pachinko by Min Jin Lee

One day, a wealthy foreigner passes through Sunja’s village. The young Korean, under the spell, has an affair with him and ends up getting pregnant. Being already married in Japan, the foreigner offers Sunja to become his Korean wife. Rather than dishonor, she chooses to flee and marry Isak to start a new life in Japan. A prodigious and poignant novel that traces the fate of a family of Korean immigrants at the dawn of the 1920s. On the chaotic fabric of the history of the 20th century, eighty years of exile marked by the love, death and survival instinct. Published by Charleston editions on January 12, 2021.

Hummingbird by Sandro Veronesi

Everything seems to smile on Marco Carrera, until tragedy comes back to haunt him. He then sees the family home on the Tuscan coast, the scene of an event that has permanently hurt his family. This summer of 1981, the man, still young, had to face the loss of a loved one, but also discovered the love-passion, the one that transcends the soul. Amid the storms of his life, Marco struggles to hold on. Like a hummingbird. A writing with a salient sensitivity that pays homage to life as it is, in its sweetest and most tragic truth . Published by Grasset editions on January 13, 2021.

Devils and Saints by Jean-Baptiste Andrea

This is the story of Joe, an old man who divinely plays the piano in public places. When it’s not in a train station, you can listen to it in an airport. He wastes his talent as a concert performer in front of an audience of indifferent travellers. He is waiting. But who and why? When he was 16, his parents and sister died in a plane crash. He finds himself in a religious boarding school in the Pyrenees, Les Confins, which welcomes the abandoned and the left behind. The days are all routine, chores and abuse. Until he meets Rose. Published by L’Iconoclaste on January 14, 2021.

Paradise Lost , Volume 1, The Crossing of Times by Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt

Here is Noam’s story. The story of a man born 8,000 years ago, when nature was still lush and our world was still stable. Noam remembers a life where men, animals and plants had strong spiritual ties, until the flood. He remembers the truth that the sacred texts have altered. Above all, he remembers Noura. This new novel presents itself as a philosophical tale , an ontological reflection and a fiction whose poetry draws towards the hieratic. Combining history and mythology, sociology and religion , the first part of an edifying romantic cycle. Published by Albin Michel editions on February 3, 2022.

The unknown of the post office of Florence Aubenas

Reporter for the newspaper Le Monde , Florence Aubenas tackles the case of Catherine Burgot, a postwoman brutally murdered with 28 stab wounds. In this inexplicable affair, Gerald Thomassin is quickly designated as the ideal culprit. But much more than trying to pick up the thread of the affair, the journalist paints a portrait of a France battered by successive economic crises and drug trafficking. In the twists and turns of this story that will never find an end point, Aubenas also gives voice to justice thrown into the spotlight by a local affair with national resonance. A non-fiction book that redraws the destiny of all the protagonists of this sordid affair. Published by L’Olivier editions on February 11, 2021.

Living with Our Dead by Delphine Horvilleur

Maybe it’s the context? Or maybe his sensitivity? But one thing is certain, Living with our dead is one of the event books of this year 2021 . As a female rabbi, Delphine Horvilleur faces death every day. Yet this spares him neither pain, nor the suffering of loved ones, nor fear, nor tears. But that does not prevent her from transforming these powerful feelings into a lesson in life for those who remain … Through eleven chapters, Delphine Horvilleur superimposes stories, reflection and confession to finally give meaning to death. In short, his book reads like a song to all those who have left us which, little by little, turns into an ode to life for those who remain… agreat lesson in humanity and tolerance ! Published by Grasset editions on March 3, 2021.

Children Are Kings by Delphine de Vigan

Melanie, thirsty for fame, launches herself on YouTube with Happy Recre, a channel featuring her two children, Sammy and Kimmy. However, his dazzling success is abruptly shaken by the sudden disappearance of the little girl. While investigating this case, Clara, a police officer with the Criminal Squad, becomes aware of the burden that such notoriety imposes on simple children. How do these stars in spite of themselves survive the ego of their parents? Children are kings is a breathtaking dystopia , cruelly close to our reality. Published by Gallimard editions on March 4, 2021.

The Mermaid, Merchant and Courtesan by Imogen Hermes Gowar

One incredible day, Mr. Hancock becomes the proud owner of a mermaid. The mythical creature goes on presentations, from renowned salons to brothels: everyone wants to see this treasure of the oceans with their eyes. Angelica Neal, a prostitute in debt up to her neck, sees in this improbable fishing the opportunity to get out of it. But such a sensational creature is not so easily tamed. Greed, drunkenness, pride fight over the hearts of extravagant characters whose passions risk bringing them to ruin. A marvelous novel in which radiates the irresistible charm of 18th century London society . Published by Belfond editions on March 4, 2021.

Chuck Wendig’s Sleepwalkers

One evening, as she sees her sister leaving the house, Shana tries to apostrophize her in vain. Unable to hold her attention, she follows her in her nocturnal wanderings until one, two and then a hundred other sleepwalkers join them. Where are they all headed? What phenomenon is at the origin of such an exodus? The global incomprehension gives way to the most extravagant hypotheses and the most violent measures. The fascinating and disturbing reflection of our society, between fear of illness, distrust of otherness and the rise of extremism. A strong novel of its commitment and the quality of its composition. Published by Sonatine editions on March 4, 2021.

Normal People by Sally Rooney

Among the best books of 2021, it is impossible to miss Sally Rooney’s event book. After having been adapted into a series for television, it was the French version of Normal people which finally landed in bookstores. By dealing with first love with great modesty, the author depicts the love story of two beings who refuse to define themselves by their relationship. He is the fashionable high school student, the footballer who knocks off all the girls. She is the young girl from a good family, a little clumsy. But the situation is reversed when they enter university and their world changes… Much more than a love story like there are so many others, Sally Rooney questions the emotional wandering of a generation whose dreams have been shattered,but who never stops hoping… Published by L’Olivier editions on March 4, 2021.

Reality TV by Aurelien Bellanger

New technologies appear and decline at breakneck speed. Television, less and less consumed by the new generations, will nevertheless have marked several decades. From the aura of blue lights to the Plaine Saint-Denis studios, a provincial trainee builds his career on the fragile durability of European television. How to evolve to stand out from other distribution mediums? What credit should be given to reality TV? Aurelien Bellanger, a “child of TV” entertained by talk shows and sitcoms, looks back on this part of culture that threatens to fall into oblivion. Published by Gallimard editions on March 4, 2021.

Instagrammable by Eliette Abeccassis

Today, all it takes is a click to make a difference. A like can launch a cloud of devastating rumors. A post has the power to damage a friendship and destroy a reputation. Sacha, Lou, Leo or Jade use social networks, well aware of the inconceivable issues behind them. Popularity, amorous manipulations and poisonous relationships are also measured by the incomprehension of the parents. The virtualized daily life of young people and the harmful reverse side of social networks appear through a mosaic of characters directly or indirectly affected by the trap of the web. Staggering, distressing truthfulness ! Published by Grasset editions on March 10, 2021.

Three by Valerie Perrin

With her new book, Valerie Perrin once again signs a novel rich in emotions . And this powerful story, it is Virginie who tells it to you. A journalist with a troubled past, she thinks she can breathe new life into her career when she discovers a car at the bottom of a lake in a small remote village. But, one thing leads to another, she follows in the footsteps of Nina, Adrien and Etienne. Three friends who, as children, believed that life would never separate them. Three personalities she will fall in love with. However, while the dramas are linked, their unwavering friendship withers. Rhythmed by the music of the 80s, Valerie Perrin signs an amazing book that paints the portrait of characters as human as they are touching. Published by Albin Michel editions on March 31, 2021.

Beyond the Sea by Paul Lynch

Despite the announcement of a storm, Bolivar, a South American fisherman, convinces the young Hector to go to sea with him as a replacement for his usual teammate. Both quickly find themselves at the mercy of the elements, prisoners of the immensity of the Pacific Ocean. United by this terrifying forced and hopeless intimacy, in this face-to-face encounter of spectacular intensity, Paul Lynch explores the human condition with a force worthy of Hemingway or Camus, and definitively establishes himself as a major author of Irish letters. Published by Albin Michel editions on August 18, 2021.

A shard of eternity by Valerie Tuong-Cong

Between her pharmacy, her villa overlooking the sea and her close-knit family, Anna Gauthier leads a life sheltered from torment, until following an incident, her son Leo, a high school student, finds himself in the taken with justice. She then assists powerless to the collapse of her world so perfect that she had created from scratch. The pretenses give way to reality. Anna’s world may have been, after all, just a utopia. Published by JC Lattes editions on August 18, 2021.

Amelie Nothomb’s First Blood

It all begins in front of the firing squad: the narrator, faced with death, remembers. Over the pages, we realize that he is none other than the father of Amelie Nothomb. He himself lived the hostage experience when he was on a mission in Africa. He recounts here his first experience with death and how he got out of it. Very affected by the death of his father during the first confinement in 2020, the author gives him voice to tell his story from his earliest childhood within the Nothomb family. This very personal novel is a true reflection on death . Published by Albin Michel editions on August 18, 2021. Winner of the 2021 Renaudot prize.

In the Spring of Monsters by Philippe Jaenada

1964. The body of an 11-year-old boy, Luc, is found in a wood. A man who calls himself the Strangler floods the media, institutions and the victim’s parents with letters in which he gives details of the child’s death. Lucien Leger, a young nurse, is finally arrested and confesses to the murder before retracting a year later. He will eventually be sentenced to life. From then on, he never ceased to proclaim his innocence. By taking up the elements of the file, Philippe Jaenada exposes the flaws in the investigation at a time when the country is slowly recovering from the war . Published by Mialet-Barrault editions on August 18, 2021.

Fire by Maria Pourchet

A university professor implicated without passion in conferences on contemporary history, Laure is married and the mother of two daughters, including Vera, the eldest, who organizes high school insurrection movements. At 40, she feels she no longer has control of her life. One day, she meets Clement, a 50-year-old man who is bored in finance and languishes in a world where masculinity no longer has any place. A novel about passion , portrait of a time when men and women seek to give a definition to love . Published by Fayard editions on August 18, 2021.

Christine Angot ‘s Journey to the East

After A Turning Point in Life , which appeared simultaneously in paperback at J’ai lu, Christine Angot returns with a strong novel, mirroring Un amour impossible . She tackles themes that are dear to her such as incest and consent by digging, this time, the point of view of the child, then of the teenager and the young woman victim of her father. Published by Editions Flammarion on August 18, 2021. Winner of the 2021 Prix Medicis.

Anne Berest’s postcard

His past could have remained buried all his life, but fate would have it otherwise. In 2003, Anne Berest finds a strange anonymous postcard in her mailbox. On one side, the Opera Garnier immortalized, on the other, the first names of the grandparents of his mother, his aunt and his uncle. All died in Auschwitz in 1942. Twenty years later, here she is finally ready to discover who is the author of this postcard… But nothing could have prepared her for what she was about to discover… Both an ancestral investigation and initiatory quest , La carte postale is one of the most moving novels of the year 2021. Published by Grasset editions on August 18, 2021.

The most secret memory of the men of Mohamed Mbougar Sarr

When Diegane Latyr Faye, a young Senegalese, discovers the manuscript of a mythical book entitled The Labyrinth of the Inhuman , his life changes. The author of this enigmatic, but nevertheless bewitching, story is called TC Elimane. Nicknamed the “Rimbaud negre” in his day, he disappeared into thin air after his book was accused of plagiarism… But what happened to him? This is what the young man will try to discover by following in his footsteps. In the four corners of the world, from mise en abyme to cul-de-sac, Diegane stumbles, gets up to better lose himself. Literally obsessed with the Emilane mystery, his life turns into a winding labyrinth from which everyone does not know where the exit is… Winner of the Goncourt Prize 2021,The most secret memory of men is one of those books that never leave us, of those novels that creep where no one expected them into the top of the best books 2021… Published by Philippe Rey editions, August 19, 2021.

My Husband by Maud Ventura

There are novels that no one expects, but which nevertheless breathe new life into the literary scene. This is the case of My husband by Maud Ventura. In this breathtaking conjugal face-to-face , built in the form of a humorous thriller, the author tells us about the madness of a woman in love with her husband as on the first day. As original as it is spicy, this first novel brilliantly redraws the contours of love. An exemplary mother during the day, nothing could suggest that she leads a psychotic double life . Indeed, once the household is asleep, it turns into a vengeful demon… And it’s just as funny as it is horrifying! Published by L’Iconoclaste on August 19, 2021.

Klara and the Sun by Kazuo Ishiguro

Klara is an AA, an artificial friend, a high-performance robot, created to keep children and teenagers company. It is exhibited in the window of a store from where it observes passers-by while waiting to be chosen. She harbors the hope that the moment when a human will stop on her is coming soon. The opportunity finally presents itself, but the humanoid could become disenchanted. Should we trust the promises of humans ? Kazuo Ishiguro received the Nobel Prize for Literature. Published by Gallimard editions on August 19, 2021.

Where Joyce Maynard’s Happy People Lived

Eleanor and Cam are a happy and fulfilled couple. They met in the 1970s, were soon married and had three children within four years: Alison, Ursula and Toby. Eleanor feels like she is living a waking dream thanks to her children, she who was abandoned very early on by her own parents. Even if they don’t make love as much as before, it’s not important, family comes first . Until the day when a terrible accident happens that Eleanor does not forgive her husband. Published by Philippe Rey editions on August 19, 2021. Where happy people lived is the winner of the 2021 American literary grand prize.

The door to the journey of no return by David Diop

Island of Goree, Dakar, from where millions of Africans left during the slave trade. It was in these places that the young botanist, Michel Adanson, landed in 1750 to study the local flora with the hope of establishing a universal encyclopedia of living things. When he hears about a young African promised to slavery who has managed to escape, his destiny changes. Inspired by the life of the French naturalist Michel Adanson, David Diop signs a powerful novel with oral transmission and African legends in the background . Published by Le Seuil editions on August 19, 2021.

Fit by Clara Dupont-Monod

In the Cevennes, the balance of a family is upset by the birth of a handicapped child . If the eldest of the siblings becomes deeply attached to this different and fragile brother, the youngest, feeling neglected by her parents and her older brother, revolts and rejects him. It is also the story of the youngest, who arrived after the tragic death of the misfit, and the departure of the two oldest. A last child who carries the harsh legacy of a broken family on his shoulders . Published by Stock editions on August 25, 2021. Winner of the Prix Femina 2021.

If some of these 2021 books prance at the top of the best-selling books, others remain more confidential without this detracting from their charm or their sensitive pen. Whether they’re leading you to rethink your lifestyle, winning a literary prize, or simply entertaining you, we’re willing to bet one of the best novels or essays of 2021 will find favor in your eyes… So? What do you think is the best book of 2021?

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