7 of the best books released so far this year… and a couple still to come!

Category: News

The arrival of autumn brings perfect book-reading weather. 

As the leaves brown and winter approaches, you might have unpacked your cosy jumpers from storage, apprehensively eyed up the heating dial, and pondered your next read as you curl up for warmth. 

Across 2022, there have been some excellent fiction and non-fiction releases with a few highly anticipated additions still to come out this winter.

If you’re stumped for reading materials and need something to occupy your late nights, lunch breaks, or morning travels, consider this rundown of some of the best releases of 2022.

Read on to learn about seven exciting books perfect for you, or the Christmas gift-giving season.

1. Getting Lost by Annie Ernaux

Annie Ernaux was recently awarded the Nobel prize for literature. The French literary celebrity, now in her 80s, published the English translation of her novel Getting Lost earlier this year.

The memoir covers an 18-month love affair between Ernaux and a married Russian diplomat during the late 1980s. The relationship began in what was then Leningrad, before continuing in Paris.

The book is reminiscent of her earlier, pseudo-memoir, Simple Passion and is a robust read about the nature of desire, human wants, and how we often don’t follow our hearts but opt to settle for the easier option.

2. Fiona and Jane by Jean Chen Ho

Fiona and Jane is a collection of short stories that track the titular characters’ childhood friendships as they progress into adulthood. The friends face up to life’s challenges from romantic betrayal to dealing with grief and realigning their life goals as they drop out of school.

They flick from friends to sisters, to sister-mother, and back again as their lives shift and their relationship perspectives change.

The result of this unusual approach to storytelling – exploring a long and deep relationship through short stories rather than a single linear narrative – is to draw the readers into the nature of their relationship and the moments that defined their lives. 

A fascinating study of the power of female friendship and intimacy.

3. Garbo by Robert Gottlieb

Greta Garbo was a darling of the silver screen during the 1920s and 30s. The Swedish-American actress was known for her sombre, melancholic persona, and she undertook many tragic roles.

Garbo, by award-winning critic and editor Robert Gottlieb, provides a rich biographical account of Greta’s early life through to her success in Hollywood. 

The book contains fascinating stories, interviews with peers and loved ones, and tracks her stellar rise to the top of the Hollywood elite.

4. The Employees by Olga Ravn

Set in the 22nd century aboard the Six-Thousand ship, The Employees is a Danish science fiction novel with a unique structure.

The novel is comprised of interviews with workers aboard the Six-Thousand, some human, others humanoid, as they deal with the melancholy of long-term space travel and lament the loved ones and lives they left back on Earth.

The novel explores issues of purpose and losing hope, as the ship’s leaders enforce measures to encourage work, stimulate the crew, and stave off depression.

Eventually, the book shifts from a study of workplace dynamics in a science fiction setting to a full-blown horror story, the ship’s various employees narrating a suffocating tragedy.

5. Beautiful Little Fools by Jillian Cantor

Jillian Cantor provides a retelling of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, through the eyes of the American classic’s female characters.

This return to the glittering Art Deco era of Fitzgerald’s timeless masterpiece revisits familiar themes of money and power, marriage and friendship, love and desire, as retold by Jordan, Catherine, and Daisy.

Cantor’s novel flicks between the three women’s narratives in the build-up to the murder of Jay Gatsby on a warm summer’s day in 1922.

Beautiful Little Fools offers a fresh take on a familiar story for fans of the original and those in love with the style of the era. 

6. The Passenger and Stella Maris by Cormac McCarthy

If you’re a fan of American writer Cormac McCarthy’s previous work, you’ll be excited to learn that he has not one, but two new releases due out later this year.

McCarthy is well-known for his westerns and the dystopian, post-apocalyptic The Road

No Country for Old Men and The Road were both adapted into critically acclaimed films. The stories aren’t shy about delving into darker elements or force readers to face harsh truths.

The Passenger tackles themes of ethics and haunting family legacies. Bobby Western attempts to evade criminal organizations across the American south while uncovering the truth about a sunken jet and its missing passenger.

Stella Maris deals with Alicia Western’s spiral into a mental health nightmare in 1970s Wisconsin, as she deals with her issues and her unusual relationship with her brother Bobby.

7. The Stolen Heir by Holly Black

The bestselling author, Holly Black, returns to her fantasy world of Elfhame to tackle a quest involving a reluctant prince and a runaway queen.

In a time when House of the Dragon and Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power have returned the fantasy genre to the forefront of television schedules, Black’s richly developed fantasy world provides readers with a whole new kingdom to escape into.

Filled with acts of betrayal, lust, and murder, its central characters struggle to face up to their respective destinies.

The Stolen Heir is due out in early 2023 and will surely be on a lot of fantasy readers’ wish lists.