The Best Books of 2021, Chosen by Mosaic Authors (Part I)

Five of our writers pick several favorites each, featuring a duke’s children, Jewish treasures, zealots and emancipators, revolts, dual allegiances, spies, and more.


Observation
Dec. 14 2021
About the authors

Elliott Abrams is a senior fellow for Middle Eastern studies at the Council on Foreign Relations and is the chairman of the Tikvah Fund.

Richard Goldberg is a Mosaic columnist and senior advisor at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies. He has served on Capitol Hill, on the U.S. National Security Council, as the chief of staff for Illinois’s governor, and as a Navy Reserve Intelligence Officer.

Neil Rogachevsky teaches at the Straus Center for Torah and Western Thought at Yeshiva University.

Jonathan Silver is the editor of Mosaic.

Ruth R. Wisse is a Mosaic columnist, professor emerita of Yiddish and comparative literatures at Harvard and a distinguished senior fellow at the Tikvah Fund. Her memoir Free as a Jew: a Personal Memoir of National Self-Liberation, chapters of which appeared in Mosaic in somewhat different form, is out from Wicked Son Press.

To mark the close of 2021, we asked several of our writers to name the best three books they’ve read this year, and briefly to explain their choices. We have encouraged them to pick two recent books, and one older one. The first five of their answers appear below in alphabetical order. The rest will appear tomorrow. (Unless otherwise noted, all books were published in 2021. Classic books are listed by their original publication dates.) 

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More about: Arts & Culture, Best Books of the Year, History & Ideas