Books of the Month December 2021
For many, December means spending time with friends and family, but some also manage to sneak in some reading. Whether enjoying some light reading on the beach or a cozy novel while sipping eggnog, nothing can beat catching up on reading over the holidays. So, here are the best books of December 2021, as chosen by our readers.
by Melissa McClone
Her Christmas Secret is the second book in the Mountain Rescue Romance series by Melissa McClone. It is the story of Sean Hughes, a mountain rescuer, and Zoe Flynn, a fun-loving snowboarder. Sean likes being single, but his family keeps badgering him to settle down. After giving Zoe a ride to the slopes, he comes up with a plan to throw off his matchmaking relatives. Zoe agrees to be Sean's fake girlfriend for his family's Thanksgiving dinner, which would score her a free meal and take the pressure off Sean. However, their one-night ruse is prolonged by an injury, and make-believe soon becomes a reality as Christmas approaches. Unfortunately, Zoe has a big secret that she has not yet shared with Sean.
Best Action & Adventure
by Leon Langford
StarLion: Thieves of the Red Night by Leon Langford is set in a world where the Gods of Olympus were real. However, many years later, their descendants are not gods but Superheroes. These professional heroes serve alongside humanity and use their powers to fight against others who use their abilities for evil. Jordan Harris is a gravity-manipulating teen who is arrested for vigilante activity. Jordan is used to working on his own in the city's dark but has to choose between jail or going undercover in the nation's most prestigious superhero training academy when he is caught. Jordan's journey leads him from vigilante to criminal to hero as he uncovers a conspiracy that threatens not just the city but the world.
Best Mystery & Thriller
by Victoria M. Patton
Innocence Taken is the first novel in the Damien Kaine series by Victoria M. Patton. It features Lt. Damien Kaine investigating a case where a missing teen's body shows up dismembered on the side of the road. Then, a disturbing pattern emerges when another girl who looks like the deceased teen is abducted. Damien digs into the community's history for answers but is forced to work with a quirky FBI profiler on the case. While Damien has disdain for the agent, he is equally attracted to her. Tensions rise as another girl is abducted, and his team race against time to save her.
Best Children's Book
by Vicky Weber
Gingersnap Snatcher by Vicky Weber is a children's picture book about three children who spent their day at school looking forward to the cookies made by their grandmother. Unfortunately, instead of the wonderful cookies, the trio finds only a trail of crumbs when they rush home. This leads them on a search through their house to find out who snatched their gingersnaps. However, despite speculating about who the thief could be as they search, the culprit is not who they expected at all.
Best Young Adult
by Krista Street
Forgotten is the first book in The Lost Children series by Krista Street. The protagonist, Lena, wakes up in a dark alley with a mysterious tattooed symbol and no recollection of who she is. Lena also discovers that she has the supernatural ability to see evil in people. Her guiding instincts lead her to a small Colorado town where she finds other young people like her with similar tattoos and different extrasensory powers. As the group attempt to figure out who and what they are, they realize that they are being hunted by those who know the answers to their questions.
by Deborah J. Lightfoot
The Warlock is book one in the Waterspell series by Deborah J. Lightfoot. Teenage misfit, Carin, glimpses the place she once called home when she is drawn into the schemes of an angry wizard. Unfortunately, learning where she belongs and how to get there involves an alien book, clues in a bewitched poem, and a pool of magic from which she must conjure a dragon. There is also the small matter of the emotionally scarred sorcerer who can't seem to decide whether to love her or kill her for Carin to deal with.
Best Historical Fiction
by Kathleen Shoop
The Tin Whistle in the 'Tis the Season series by Kathleen Shoop and is inspired by a true story. It is the heartwarming tale of Jacob Gusky, who still remembers growing up poor in a Boys' home. The gift of a tin whistle by a friend teaches Jacob the power of giving as well as the joy in receiving. Many years later, when Jacob is a happily married father of three and owner of a premier department store, he unearths the tin whistle again and is reminded of what it was like to have nothing. This reminder prompts him to try and make a difference in the lives of others, no matter their faith.
Best Literary Fiction
by Panayotis Cacoyannis
The Coldness of Objects by Panayotis Cacoyannis is the tale of Anthony Pablo Rubens, a retired man in his early seventies. It is set in London of 2030, which is just as dystopian as Orwell's 1984. Anthony has mostly shut his eyes to this world, but the delivery of a letter jolts his memory back to the summer of 1984. Anthony remembers all the sorrows and joys of the past from a time when he realized he had fallen in love while navigating London's gay scene. The story shifts between the present of 2030 and the past of 1984 while Anthony contemplates the mystery, excitement, and dread of the invitation he has received in the letter.
Best Science Fiction
by Andy Kasch
Test of Magnitude is the first book in The Torian Reclamation series of science fiction novels by Andy Kasch. Brandon Foss is awakened from cryonic suspension to discover that aliens have been abducting humans over a forty-year period. Along with another abductee, Derek, Brandon is thrust into the spotlight as there are talks about reviving the other humans still kept in cryonic suspension. Although seen as physically frail by the aliens, Brandon proves his worth with quick reflexes and ingenuity during a surprise interstellar attack. His actions draw the attention of the Torian military, who are planning their retaliation against the attack.
by H.P. Mallory
Afraid of the Dark is a paranormal women's fiction novel by H. P. Mallory and the first in her Midlife Spirits series. Peyton is a woman looking for a fresh start after her recent divorce and ends up owning an Antebellum-era two-story house in the Garden District. Its restoration will be a challenge, but she welcomes the distraction. However, after moving into the house, she discovers that it is haunted by the flirtatious spirit of Drake Montague, a handsome 20th-century French policeman. Peyton also grows closer to Ryan Kelly, her charming general contractor, which causes some jealousy from beyond the grave. Naturally, Peyton is interested in Ryan, but as she uncovers the truth behind Drake's death a century ago, she can't get him out of her dreams or heart either.
by Galia Ferdman
The Guru's Suitcase is a spiritual journey in India through the eyes of a western family by Galia Ferdman. They meet an enlightened India guru at one of his unique lectures and decide to follow him on a one-year trip to India for a spiritual journey. Each chapter of The Guru's Suitcase is told by a different family member and deals with essential questions, such as what enlightenment is, do miracles exist, why there is suffering in the world, and much more. Along with a better and deeper understanding of yogic philosophy, this book is also backed with fascinating knowledge about India.