20 Best Book Club Books of 2021

2021 best book club books anticipated

This is a list of the upcoming 2021 Best Book Club Books, limited to hardcover new releases to be published in 2021. I’ll be updating this list as more titles are announced, so stay tuned for more!

If there’s a book you think belongs on this list of anticipated book club reads, please do drop me a line!

For more books coming soon, see the list of Upcoming New Release Books.

Or for more book club reads, see the Best Book Club Books of 2020 or the Best Book Club Reads of All Time.

The Four Winds
Kristin Hannah

What It's About: An alternative cover edition for this ISBN can be found here.

From the number-one bestselling author of The Nightingale and The Great Alone comes a powerful American epic about love and heroism and hope, set during the Great Depression: a time when the country was in crisis, when millions were out of work and even the land seemed to have turned against them...

See the Full Summary and Review of The Four Winds

Publication Date: February 2, 2021
historical fiction book club audiobook

The Midnight Library
Matt Haig

What It's About: Somewhere out beyond the edge of the universe there is a library that contains an infinite number of books, each one the story of another reality. One tells the story of your life as it is, along with another book for the other life you could have lived if you had made a different choice at any point in your life...

See the Full Summary and Review of The Midnight Library

Publication Date: August 13, 2020
fantasy book club physical tbr

The Rose Code
Kate Quinn

What It's About: 1940. As England prepares to fight the Nazis, three very different women answer the call to mysterious country estate Bletchley Park, where the best minds in Britain train to break German military codes.

Vivacious debutante Osla is the girl who has everything—beauty, wealth, and the dashing Prince Philip of Greece sending her roses—but she burns to prove herself as more than a society girl, and puts her fluent German to use as a translator of decoded enemy secrets...

See the Full Summary and Review of The Rose Code

Publication Date: March 9, 2021
historical fiction book club audiobook

Klara and the Sun
Kazuo Ishiguro

What It's About: From her place in the store, Klara, an Artificial Friend with outstanding observational qualities, watches carefully the behavior of those who come in to browse, and of those who pass on the street outside. She remains hopeful that a customer will soon choose her, but when the possibility emerges that her circumstances may change forever, Klara is warned not to invest too much in the promises of humans...

See the Full Summary and Review of Klara and the Sun

Publication Date: March 2, 2021
sci fi science fiction book club

The Lost Apothecary
Sarah Penner

What It's About: A female apothecary secretly dispenses poisons to liberate women from the men who have wronged them - setting three lives across centuries on a dangerous collision course.

Rule #1: The poison must never be used to harm another woman.
Rule #2: The names of the murderer and her victim must be recorded in the apothecary’s register...

See the Full Summary and Review of The Lost Apothecary

Publication Date: March 2, 2021
historical fiction mystery book club

The Push
Ashley Audrain

What It's About: An alternative cover edition for this ISBN can be found here.

A tense, page-turning psychological drama about the making and breaking of a family–and a woman whose experience of motherhood is nothing at all what she hoped for–and everything she feared.

Blythe Connor is determined that she will be the warm, comforting mother to her new baby Violet that she herself never had...

See the Full Summary and Review of The Push

Publication Date: January 5, 2021
thriller mystery mystery thriller

Stephen King

What It's About: The son of a struggling single mother, Jamie Conklin just wants an ordinary childhood. But Jamie is no ordinary child. Born with an unnatural ability his mom urges him to keep secret, Jamie can see what no one else can see and learn what no one else can learn. But the cost of using this ability is higher than Jamie can imagine - as he discovers when an NYPD detective draws him into the pursuit of a killer who has threatened to strike from beyond the grave...

See the Full Summary and Review of Later

Publication Date: March 2, 2021
horror stephen king thriller

When the Stars Go Dark
Paula McLain

What It's About: Anna Hart is a missing persons detective in San Francisco. When tragedy strikes her personal life, Anna, desperate and numb, flees to the Northern California village of Mendocino to grieve. She lived there as a child with her beloved foster parents, and now she believes it might be the only place left for her...

See the Full Summary and Review of When the Stars Go Dark

Publication Date: April 13, 2021
mystery thriller mystery thriller

Project Hail Mary
Andy Weir

What It's About: Ryland Grace is the sole survivor on a desperate, last-chance mission—and if he fails, humanity and the earth itself will perish.

Except that right now, he doesn’t know that. He can’t even remember his own name, let alone the nature of his assignment or how to complete it.

All he knows is that he’s been asleep for a very, very long time...

Publication Date: May 4, 2021
sci fi science fiction audiobook

Harlem Shuffle
Colson Whitehead

What It's About: From the two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Underground Railroad and The Nickel Boys, a gloriously entertaining novel of heists, shakedowns, and rip-offs set in Harlem in the 1960s.

“Ray Carney was only slightly bent when it came to being crooked…” To his customers and neighbors on 125th street, Carney is an upstanding salesman of reasonably priced furniture, making a decent life for himself and his family...

Publication Date: September 14, 2021
historical fiction dnf book club

Malibu Rising
Taylor Jenkins Reid

What It's About: An alternate cover edition for this ISBN can be found here.

Four famous siblings throw an epic party to celebrate the end of the summer. But over the course of twenty-four hours, their lives will change forever.

Malibu: August 1983. It’s the day of Nina Riva’s annual end-of-summer party, and anticipation is at a fever pitch...

Publication Date: May 27, 2021
physical tbr historical fiction books i own

Jhumpa Lahiri

What It's About: Exuberance and dread, attachment and estrangement: in this novel, Jhumpa Lahiri stretches her themes to the limit. The woman at the center wavers between stasis and movement, between the need to belong and the refusal to form lasting ties. The city she calls home, an engaging backdrop to her days, acts as a confidant: the sidewalks around her house, parks, bridges, piazzas, streets, stores, coffee bars...

Publication Date: August 30, 2018
contemporary literary fiction short stories

My Year Abroad
Chang-rae Lee

What It's About: Librarian note: Please see alternate cover edition for Powells Indiespensable here:

From the award-winning author of Native Speaker and On Such a Full Sea, an exuberant, provocative story about a young American life transformed by an unusual Asian adventure - and about the human capacities for pleasure, pain, and connection...

Publication Date: February 2, 2021
dnf contemporary did not finish

The Maidens
Alex Michaelides

What It's About: Edward Fosca is a murderer. Of this Mariana is certain. But Fosca is untouchable. A handsome and charismatic Greek Tragedy professor at Cambridge University, Fosca is adored by staff and students alike—particularly by the members of a secret society of female students known as The Maidens.

Mariana Andros is a brilliant but troubled group therapist who becomes fixated on The Maidens when one member, a friend of Mariana’s niece Zoe, is found murdered in Cambridge...

Publication Date: June 3, 2021
mystery thriller dark academia

Hamlet Retelling (Hogarth Shakespeare)
Gillian Flynn

What It's About: Coming in 2021. Gillian Flynn, author of the bestseller Gone Girl, is to write a new twist on Shakespeare's Hamlet. Flynn is the latest author to be commissioned by the Hogarth Shakespeare project to rewrite the Bard's works. The series launches in 2016 to mark the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare's death.

Publication Date: Not Available

Richard Powers

What It's About: An alternative cover edition for this ISBN can be found here.

A heartrending new novel from the Pulitzer Prize–winning and #1 New York Times best-selling author of The Overstory.

The astrobiologist Theo Byrne searches for life throughout the cosmos while single-handedly raising his unusual nine-year-old, Robin, following the death of his wife...

Publication Date: September 21, 2021
science fiction sci fi book club

Apples Never Fall
Liane Moriarty

What It's About: #1 New York Times Bestseller
A Peacock Original TV Series–Streaming Soon

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Liane Moriarty comes a novel that looks at marriage, siblings, and how the people we love the most can hurt us the deepest

The Delaney family love one another dearly—it’s just that sometimes they want to murder each other ...

Publication Date: September 14, 2021
mystery audiobook audiobooks

Cloud Cuckoo Land
Anthony Doerr

What It's About: When everything is lost, it’s our stories that survive.

How do we weather the end of things? Cloud Cuckoo Land brings together an unforgettable cast of dreamers and outsiders from past, present and future to offer a vision of survival against all odds.

Constantinople, 1453:
An orphaned seamstress and a cursed boy with a love for animals risk everything on opposite sides of a city wall to protect the people they love...

Publication Date: September 28, 2021
historical fiction fantasy dnf

Beautiful World, Where Are You
Sally Rooney

What It's About: Librarian note: See an alternate cover edition here.

Alice, a novelist, meets Felix, who works in a distribution warehouse, and asks him if he'd like to travel to Rome with her. In Dublin, her best friend Eileen is getting over a break-up, and slips back into flirting with Simon, a man she has known since childhood...

Publication Date: September 7, 2021
physical tbr contemporary romance

Velvet Was the Night
Silvia Moreno-Garcia

What It's About: Mexico in the 1970s is a dangerous country, even for Maite, a secretary who spends her life seeking the romance found in cheap comic books and ignoring the activists protesting around the city. When her next-door neighbor, the beautiful art student Leonora, disappears under suspicious circumstances, Maite finds herself searching for the missing woman—and journeying deeper into Leonora’s secret life of student radicals and dissidents...

Publication Date: August 17, 2021
historical fiction mystery thriller

2021 best book club books anticipated

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