Beat the Backlist 2021

Given that 2020 has somehow been both the shortest and longest year in recorded history, it’s both surprising and somewhat of a relief that the new Beat the Backlist challenge is almost here!

I recently did a tour of my TBR on my BookTube, and going through it (as well as unhauling a few long-termers I know I won’t get to) has made me even more determined to truly beat that backlist in 2021.

Beat the Backlist has a pretty simple concept – read whatever you want, as long as it was published prior to the challenge year. And yes, re-reads count!

There’s some optional prompts – all available on a handy-dandy bingo card – but I’ll probably steer clear of them, since my track record with any kind of challenge based/restrictive readathon isn’t great.

I’m not planning on making pre-2021 books the only thing I read next year, of course, nor am I going to restrict myself to my TBR. But I AM hoping to clear out a good chunk of what’s there right now, and for those of you eagerly plotting ways to keep me accountable, don’t worry! I’VE GOT A LIST!

Let me present to you:

Jodie’s Beat the Backlist List

General TBR

  • The Unspoken Name by A.K. Larkwood
  • Kong: Skull Island by Tim Lebbon
  • Angels & Insects by A.S. Byatt
  • Possession by A.S. Byatt
  • Night Over Water by Ken Follett
  • Daughter of Fortune by Isabel Allende
  • Dragon Teeth by Michael Crichton
  • The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
  • Leia: Princess of Alderaan by Claudia Gray
  • Bloodline by Claudia Gray
  • Interview with the Vampire by Anne Rice
  • Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders
  • Hild by Nicola Griffith
  • Things in Jars by Jess Kidd
  • The Maker of Swans by Paraic O’Donnell
  • Cold Bath Street by A.J. Hartley
  • Cold Skin by Albert Sánchez Piñol
  • The Great Swindle by Pierre Lemaitre
  • The Mercies by Kiran Millwood Hargrave
  • Eye Marty by Marty Feldman
  • A Story Lately Told by Angelica Houston
  • Eggshell Skull by Bri Lee
  • Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson
  • The Spectacular Sisterhood of Superwomen by Hope Nicholson
  • Can We All Be Feminists? edited by June Eric-Udorie
  • The Lost Flowers of Alice Hart by Holly Ringland
  • The Apothecary by Maile Meloy
  • Love, Anger, Madness by Marie Vieux-Chauvet

Ongoing Series/Expanded Universes

  • Red Rising by Pierce Brown (re-read)
  • Golden Son by Pierce Brown (re-read)
  • Morning Star by Pierce Brown
  • Iron Gold by Pierce Brown
  • Dark Age by Pierce Brown
  • The Trials of Apollo: The Burning Maze by Rick Riordan
  • The Trials of Apollo: The Dark Prophecy by Rick Riordan
  • The Trials of Apollo: The Tyrant’s Tomb by Rick Riordan
  • The Trials of Apollo: The Tower of Nero by Rick Riordan
  • The Kane Chronicles: The Red Pyramid by Rick Riordan
  • The Kane Chronicles: The Throne of Fire by Rick Riordan
  • The Kane Chronicles: The Serpent’s Shadow by Rick Riordan
  • Midnight by Derek Landy
  • Bedlam by Derek Landy
  • Seasons of War by Derek Landy

NetGalley ARCs that aren’t quite so… ARCy anymore

  • Jennifer Strange by Cat Scully
  • Ashes of the Sun by Django Wexler
  • Mr Campion’s Séance by Mike Ripley
  • The House of Styx by Derek Künsken
  • In the Realm of Ash and Sorrow by Kenneth W. Harmon
  • Spindle City by Jotham Burrello
  • Latitudes of Longing by Shubhangi Swarup

There’s a few 2020 books on my radar that I’m keen to get stuck into that aren’t on this list yet, but this is a pretty extensive starting point. I’ll be referring to my TBR throughout the year, and hopefully we’ll see a good ol’ dint made in it in 2021.

If you’re planning on taking part in Beat the Backlist – and, honestly, it’s hands down the easiest reading challenge ever – let me know in the comments below! I’d love to find a few buddies to cheer on!

Jodie x

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