We had hoped it wouldn’t come to be, but 2021 turned out to be more of the same from the previous year thanks to the pandemic. Lots of hunkering-down isolating or enjoying the great outdoors more often than usual. And once again, books played a big part in helping us all cope and maintain some kind of normalcy. Now more than ever, books in all their various formats will make a great gift this holiday season. This year saw a resurgence of Dune; illustrated versions of J.R.R. Tolkien works; memoirs from the world of rock and heavy metal; graphic novel collections; fun, pop-culture-themed cookbooks; stories from the imaginations of Stephen King, Neil Gaiman, and Grady Hendrix; continuing adventures from the Star Trek, Star Wars, and Marvel universes, and much more.
Check out our Holiday Gift Guide 2021 for Books, eBooks, and Audiobooks for our favorite holiday gift picks for the readers in your life.
Welcome first day of Fall 2021…. and with it come lots of new books!
Last year, aka Pandemic Year 1, while self-isolating and staying indoors as much as possible, I threw myself into reading … print books, magazines, ebooks, and audiobooks. So while it was a stressful year on a whole (for all of us), I really enjoyed being able to prioritize reading. This year, what’s become Pandemic Year 2, I wanted to get outside a bit, but also continue to be on the safe side, which meant road-tripping and hiking the great outdoors. Therefore, I’ve leaned more towards audiobooks.
Below are some titles — with accompanying links to the print, ebooks, and audiobooks editions — that I personally am looking forward to this Fall, presented here in order of release date, starting with those releasing in September 2021. After this main list, I’ve included some titles that came out earlier this year that you might have missed, as well as some themed Cookbooks, Crafts, and Guidebooks, along with an Audiobook Spotlight. And with the Fall comes, of course, Halloween and some spookier picks!
Continue on to check out my Fall 2021 Book Recommendations…
Fans of thrash metal all know that the San Francisco Bay Area is the official birthplace of the genre that saw the rise of legends like Metallica, Megadeth, and Slayer. Now, a new documentary will give everyone a look at those bands and others who played fast and furious in the 1980s.
Watch the trailer here below for Murder In The Front Row: The San Francisco Bay Area Thrash Metal Story, which features over 50 interviews with members of the aforementioned bands, as well as Testament, Death Angel, Exodus (the title of the doc is taken from a line from “Bonded By Blood,” the title track from Exodus’s debut album), and many others.
Wow! What a suck-fest 2016 was, huh? Lemmy goes and dies in the waning moments of 2015 and it’s all gone to hell since then. Bowie, Brexit, Prince, Trump, Mohammad Ali, ISIS, Leonard Cohen, Glenn Frye, Harambe, Keith Emerson AND Greg Lake, Standing Rock… the list of death, destruction, and atrocities goes on. Hell, The Cubs even won the World Series, so you know the end must be near! Thankfully though, we metalheads had a treasure-trove of great new music in which to drown our sorrows. There were so many great albums released that it was more difficult than ever for me to work up my year-end best-of list! Who would’ve though that Anthrax, Megadeth, Metallica, and Darkthrone would all drop their greatest albums in decades? Perhaps another seal of the apocalypse breaking? I’ll let you decide that one for yourself. And as for the younger bands, there seem to be great ones crawling out of the woodwork everywhere.
So, without further ado, I present to you my favorite metal albums of 2016 from across all of the myriad subgenres. Keep in mind please, that this is exactly that… my favorite albums of the year. Yours are undoubtedly different. You probably even strongly disagree with some or all of my selections. Which is perfectly fine. Go write your own damn column!
New York’s Anthrax is considered a part of “The Big 4” of thrash metal (along with Metallica, Slayer, and Megadeth) for a very good reason. They were among the very first purveyors of the genre and even if they can’t take credit for inventing it, they have certainly had a huge hand in refining the form. Through 35 years and numerous lineup changes this quintuplet has been responsible for some of the most iconic thrash songs ever recorded.
Anthrax has recently released its eleventh album via Nuclear Blast Records. The disc is titled For All Kings and it is their strongest offering in years. It is also the first Anthrax record to include the contributions of former Shadows Fall guitarist Jonathan Donais.