23 Brilliant New Books For 2023 To Get Your Reading List Started

New year's resolution to read a bit more? This list should definitely get you excited.
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Building your new year to-be-read (TBR) list is an exciting but sometimes overwhelming task. Having established when your stint as a new or returning reader begins, it’s time to figure out where to start.

Too often, a new year’s resolution to “read more” is easily lost in the flurry of deciding what to tackle first or next, but with so many exciting releases this coming year, I don’t want anyone to fall at this opening hurdle.

I always advocate a balanced TBR list of contemporary and classic fiction across the genres, and some great non-fiction, too – but my biggest advice to all those hoping to read more and consistently throughout 2023 is to tuck into some of the brilliant new books set to be released this coming year

So, in a bid to help readers discover some amazing authors and stories, I’ve curated a list of 23 releases for 2023 and they all come highly recommended.

Books for 2023: Jyoti Patel, Monica Heisey, Jonathan Escoffery
Books for 2023: Jyoti Patel, Monica Heisey, Jonathan Escoffery

A multigenerational saga from Stormzy’s Merky imprint that tells the life of Nik as he uncovers the truth about a father he has never met. Before the death of his beloved grandfather, Nik is sent on a journey through the backstory to his existence via his uncle, Chand, and reluctant mother, Avani. (January 12)

Really Good, Actually by Monica Heisey

This is contemporary fiction written to make you laugh out loud. Beginning with the breakdown of Maggie’s marriage only 608 days after it began, this novel explores what it means to start over as a young divorcee, while simultaneously navigating the maze that is your 20s. (January 17)

If I Survive You by Jonathan Escoffery

A collection of interweaving short stories that trace a Jamaican family struggling to establish their new lives in Miami. Exploring intergenerational relationships, loss and change, If I Survive You is the the tale of a family falling apart despite fighting to do everything they can to stay together. (February 2)

Books for 2023: Jessica George, Munroe Bergdorf, Kevin Jared Hosein
Books for 2023: Jessica George, Munroe Bergdorf, Kevin Jared Hosein

Maame by Jessica George

A funny coming-of-age novel. When Maddie Wright is presented with the opportunity to leave her traditional Ghanaian home to become the type of woman she has always dreamt of being, she leaps into her new life. However, tragedy then strikes, leaving Maddie forced to consider what she’s sacrificing.(February 14)

A compelling non-fiction title from the model and activist that discusses fluidity of identity, sexuality and gender through the experience of transition every human faces at some point in their life. Intended to aid our shared consciousness, this is a guide to how we can use our differences to build a better world. (February 16)

Hungry Ghosts by Kevin Jared Hosein

An atmospheric and immersive historical novel for readers who appreciate Hilary Mantel-esque prose. Set in 1940s colonial Trinidad, Hungry Ghosts centres around the disappearance of the rich and mysterious Dalton Changoor and offers multifaceted narrative of religion, violence, class and family. (February 16)

Books for 2023: Rosanna Amaka, Nicole Flattery, Cecile Pin
Books for 2023: Rosanna Amaka, Nicole Flattery, Cecile Pin

Rose and the Burma Sky by Rosanna Amaka

A powerful and poignant does of historical fiction that tells the story of Black soldiers in the Second World War. Tracing the life of Obi, a young man from Nigeria who enlists in the war to impress Rose, his childhood crush, Rose and the Burma Sky is a heartbreaking novel about untold truths. (February 23)

Nothing Special by Nicole Flattery

A witty and profound contemporary novel that follows the life of a teenage girl called Mae coming of age in late 1960s New York, set against the backdrop of Andy Warhol’s Factory. The opportunity to work with the great artist offers Mae an escape from her dysfunctional upbringing into a new and exciting life. (March 2)

Wandering Souls by Cecile Pin

A heartbreaking but inspiring debut about three orphan Vietnamese siblings seeking refuge in the UK after the fall of Saigon. As grief, displacement and disappointment follow them into their new lives, this is about what it feels like to look for a home that’s already lost. (March 2)

Books for 2023: Cole Kazdin, To My Sisters, Krystle Zara Appiah
Books for 2023: Cole Kazdin, To My Sisters, Krystle Zara Appiah

Merging investigative journalism with her own personal narrative, Kazdin probes the issue of eating disorders and the experience of body anxiety so common to many. In assessing the diet industry as well as all those who capitalise on our insecurities, What’s Eating Us searches for what could free women from body dysmorphia and the aspiration to be perfect. (March 7)

To My Sisters by Renee Kapuku and Courtney Daniella Boateng

This is a book about friendship and platonic love that has emerged from the podcast of the same name. With a focus on the importance of sisterly love and relationships, To My Sisters guides you through the process of building and nourishing these healthy connections. (March 9)

Rootless by Krystle Zara Appiah

A highly relatable novel about motherhood, societal pressures, relationships and family. When Efe falls unexpectedly pregnant, she enters a rough patch in her marriage with husband, Sam. Three years later and in a better place, Sam returns one day only to find Efe missing. Your heart will miss many a beat.(March 16)

Books for 2023: Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah, Im Seong-Sun, Liv Little
Books for 2023: Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah, Im Seong-Sun, Liv Little

Chain-Gang All-Stars by Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah

From the award-winning writer of Friday Black comes this masterful dose of dystopian fiction that explores the depraved justice system in the US. Set in a world where inmates can fight for their freedom instead of serving a full sentence, the novel is an insidious take on what life would look like if the prison system were fully privatised within the wider capitalist structure. (April 4)

The Consultant by Im Seong-Sun, translated by An Seon Jae

A spicy and pacey Korean crime novel in translation. When an unnamed protagonist is presented with the opportunity to murder without getting his hands dirty, the reader is brought along on a thrilling journey that probes the cracks in capitalism by exploring what people would really do for money. (April 13)

Rosewater by Liv Little

A queer novel set in south London from the founder of Gal-Dem, Rosewater follows Elise through the awkwardness and turbulence of adulting. Evicted after falling behind on rent, she moves in with childhood best friend, Juliet. Now housemates, the novel uncovers the brewing love that has always existed between these two women against the backdrop of daily struggles. (April 20)

Books of 2023: Caleb Azumah Nelson, Samantha Irby, R.F. Kuang
Books of 2023: Caleb Azumah Nelson, Samantha Irby, R.F. Kuang

Small Worlds by Caleb Azumah Nelson

Following the success of his bestselling debut, Open Water, winner of the Costa First Novel award, this is Caleb Azumah Nelson’s literary fiction follow up. Set against the landscape of London and Ghana over three summers, Small Worlds follows protagonist Stephen as he ventures outside his passions and comfort zones. (May 11)

Quietly Hostile by Samantha Irby

A fresh collection from the New York Times best-selling essayist that will have you in pieces. Despite exploring tough topics around her upbringing, family, and life struggles, Irby approaches each essay with humour and honesty enough for anyone needing a light-hearted perspective on relatable issues. (May 16)

Yellowface by R.F. Kuang

A thrilling piece of literary fiction that is sure to keep you engaged and wanting more. When Athena dies in a freak accident, Juniper steals her unpublished manuscript and disguises it as her own. However, as Athena’s death is investigated, Juniper’s unearned success is at risk of being exposed. (May 25)

Books of 2023: Harriet Gibsone, Cecila Rabess,Taylor-Dior Rumble
Books of 2023: Harriet Gibsone, Cecila Rabess,Taylor-Dior Rumble

Is This OK? by Harriet Gibsone

A raw and funny memoir exploring mental health, illness and motherhood against the backdrop of obsessive internet and social media activity. When Gibsone is diagnosed with early onset menopause in her late twenties, consuming the lives of exes, potential partners (and their exes) becomes a trivial matter when compared to the illness she will spend the rest of her life nursing. (May 25)

Everything’s Fine by Cecilia Rabess

A contemporary romance novel that delves into what happens when two polar opposites fall in love. When Jess, a pro-Black graduate who has fought discrimination all her life, falls in love with Josh, a white preppy type accustomed to privilege, we learn what qualifies as complicated love. (June 8)

The List by Yomi Adegoke

An entertaining and page-turning debut from the co-author of Slay in Your Lane. Ola Olajide, a high-profile journalist, is set to marry the love of her life, Michael. However, when his name pops up on an anonymous online list of sexual abusers, this perfect love story takes a bitter and biting turn. (July 6)

Nightbloom by Peace Adzo Medie

Following the success of her debut His Only Wife, Peace Adzo Medie returns with a powerful novel about the power of female friendships. Selasi and Akorfa are inseparable growing up, but when Selasi starts to withdraw, their bond also fades. Years later, tragedy brings the two back together and the truth about Selasi’s story is uncovered. (July 6)

The Situationship by Taylor Dior Rumble

A witty romcom that examines the landscape of 21st century dating. When Tia connects with Nate, a handsome photographer who ticks all her boxes, instead of enjoying a blossoming romance, Tia is perplexed by the anxiety-inducing question we’ve all asked ourselves at some point: what are we? (August 17)

If any of these titles get you excited, click the links to pre-order – these valuable sales make all the difference to authors. And finally, happy reading!