It is a new year, which we all know means new books! Okay, maybe that’s not the first thing you think of, but it’s pretty high on my list. And I’m very excited to make more time to read them this year. I put together a list of thirteen books coming out in the first half of 2022 that I am very excited about and will most likely actually get around to reading this year.

Because this post is going up a little bit later than I had planned, a few of these have already been released (and I actually already read one of them). But I’m still including them because I am still excited about them. I kept this post brief, but there are still a lot of books on this list. so let’s just get right to it.

Here are the books coming out January through June 2022 that I am most excited about:

Where the Drowned Girls Go by Seanan McGuire – January 4

This is the only book on this list that I have actually already read. I had this preordered and started it pretty much as soon as it arrived. And I loved it. This is the seventh book in the Wayward Children series, and it’s getting really hard to rank them. I don’t think this was my favorite, but it’s definitely up there. I just love this series so much. I’m honestly a tiny bit sad I read this so early in the year because now I have to wait a full year for the next one.

The Maid by Nita Prose – January 4

I feel like this is the book of January 2022 – the one a lot of people are talking about and posting on social media. It’s a mystery thriller set in a hotel with a neurodivergent main character. Which just sounds amazing. I have been craving thrillers lately and love the idea of reading more books with neurodivergent characters (especially main POV characters). This book just sounds like it will be a fun read, and I definitely want to pick it up soon.

No Land to Light On by Yara Zgheib – January 4

This is being advertised as Exit West meets An American Marriage, which I know means this book will probably be sad, but that sounds so good. It’s about an immigrant couple who are separated at the border after one of them flies home when his father dies. His pregnant wife is waiting in the airport, unaware that he’s been detained. Pretty sure this might make me cry, but it feels like a story that isn’t far off from what many immigrants and refugees to the US experience on a regular basis.

To Paradise by Hanya Yanagihara – January 11

I am definitely one of those people who loved A Little Life. Even though it made me ugly cry for like four hours and sort of made me depressed for months afterwards. I have not read anything else by Tanya Yanagihara (to be honest, I’m a little scared). But this one sounds so different that I’m curious. It also sounds like one of those super ambitious novels with a massive scope that will hurt my brain, so I probably won’t be reading this anytime soon, but I’m definitely interested to hear what other people think of it.

How High We Go in the Dark by Sequoia Nagamatsu – January 18

I feel like it’s a bit of a challenge for debut novels to end up on my most anticipated reads of the year list, but this one really caught my eye. It’s about an archeologist who, in 2030 travels to the Arctic to continue the work of his deceased daughter. Researchers are studying things being uncovered as the permafrost melts, including the remains of a girl who appears to have died of an ancient virus. Of course, the virus is unleashed and causes a plague. Which sounds like great 2022 reading. Seriously, though, this book just sounds really good and right up my alley.

This Might Hurt by Stephanie Wrobel – February 22

I really liked Stephanie Wrobel’s debut back in 2020, which tackled Munchausen by proxy and the aftermath of that fraught relationship. This book is a thriller about two sisters – one trapped in a cult and the other stuck in a web of her own lies. When one of them receives an email from the cult threatening to reveal her secret to her sister, she rushes to save her sister from the cult and come clean. I have a weird obsession with cult documentaries and find cults really fascinating, so this looks like a fun thriller. I do have an ARC, and am planning on reading and reviewing this one next month.

Gallant by V. E. Schwab – March 1

It’s Victoria Schwab. We all know I’m going to pick up anything she comes out with. I’ll be honest, young adult fantasy is not something that sounds entirely appealing to me right now. But, I know if I am going to pick one up, V. E. Schwab is a pretty safe bet. I do like that this fantasy also has mystery and horror elements. Schwab does dark really well, and that is making me more intrigued by this book. I probably won’t pick it up right away, but next time I’m feeling YA, this is the one I’m picking up.

The Diamond Eye by Kate Quinn – March 29

I read my first Kate Quinn last year (The Huntress) and definitely need to read more. This one is about a history student working in a library who becomes a Nazi hunter known as Lady Death. Which just sounds so fun. It’s basically the reverse of The Huntress, which was about a woman who hunted for the Nazis. But what really caught my attention about this book in particular is that it is based on a true story. As a former history student and book nerd, it just makes me really happy that a history student/librarian was out there sniping Nazis during WWII. I need this story.

In A Garden Burning Gold by Rory Power – April 5

If you know me, you know I love really weird books. And Rory Power writes some really weird books. This one is a bit of a departure for her in that it’s not only her first adult novel, it’s actually the first book in an epic fantasy series. I’ve been kind of stepping away from reading books in series in recent years and it’s definitely been a while since I’ve read some epic fantasy. But for Rory Power, I am giving it a shot. I actually do have an ARC of this one, so I’m planning to read it sometime in March so I can include it in my wrap up before it is released.

Sea of Tranquility by Emily St. John Mandel – April 5

Station Eleven is one of my favorite books. But after reading The Glass Hotel last year and really not loving it, I am kind of feeling on the fence about Emily St. John Mandel. I’m actually rereading Station Eleven now because I wanted to refresh my memory before watching the adaptation since it’s been about five years. And so far, it’s just as good as I remember. This one seems a lot more like Station Eleven than The Glass Hotel, so I’m hoping I’m right about that because I think I’ll really enjoy it.

When Women Were Dragons by Kelly Barnhill – May 3

Who loves feminist fantasy? This girl! For real, though, this book sounds fantastic. It’s set in an alternate 1950s America where a world-altering event has happened: The Mass Dragoning of 1955, when hundreds of thousands of ordinary wives and mothers sprouted wings and scales and talons and took to the skies. They’ve seemingly gone for good, but no one knows why it happened or why some women were left behind. The main character is the daughter of one of those mothers who did not transform and I think we get a sapphic romance. This is women changing the world epic fantasy and I am here for it.

Seasonal Fears by Seanan McGuire – May 3

I love Seanan McGuire, and I loved Middlegame. I didn’t know we would be getting a series, but I am excited for it. This seems kind of like the Wayward Children series in that it follows a different group of characters in the same world. Which is cool. I honestly don’t feel like I have a particularly good sense of what this book is about after reading the synopsis, but I’m totally okay with that since I know what Seanan McGuire is capable of. This is a “companion” novel to Middlegame, so I’m not sure how much of it will tie in. But I do want to reread it before Seasonal Fears because that book had a lot going on, and I don’t think I remember as much of it as I would like.

You Made a Fool of Death With Your Beauty by Akwaeke Emezi – May 24

I really want to read more by Akwaeke Emezi. I loved Freshwater when it came out a few years ago, and have The Death of Vivek Oji on my reading list for this year. But the real reason this one stuck in my head is the title. Because it’s a line from “Hunger” by Florence and the Machine, which is a beautiful song. So every time I see this title, I have to sing it in my head. But the book itself does sound really good.

And that’s it for my most anticipated reads for the first half of 2022. I plan on doing another one of these in June to cover the second half of the year, but I definitely already have a few books to add to that list.

Are any of these books on your radar this year? Any not on this list I should know about?

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