I do one of these every year – an ambitious reading list of my top upcoming picks and some books I’ve been meaning to read. For 2023, I decided to skip my usual theme of choosing one book per year and instead share my full reading list.
To get these books read, I combine a mix of print and audio books. As a busy parent of 5, it can be tricky to find the time to read! But I also value reading, and love to stay current with trends.
Not only does reading help me relax and feel happier, it makes me a better writer too.
Want to check out my other picks? Here’s my 2021 and 2022 reading lists.
23 Books I’m Reading in 2023
Empire of Pain: The Secret History of the Sackler Dynasty
I just picked this one up on Audible and it’s absolutely fascinating so far. A deep dive not just into the history of how OxyCotin hit the market, but really a deep history of how big pharma, including their advertising, got so big.
By Patrick Radden Keefe | Released April 12, 2021
I’ve had this book preordered since it was first announced and I can’t wait for it to come out this January. On the back of the Oprah interview and recent Netflix documentary, Spare promises to be a gripping tell-all from Prince Harry’s first hand point of view.
By Prince Harry | Releases January 9th, 2023
Daughter of the Moon Goddess
This book actually went viral last year and if I’m being perfectly honest, I’ve had it half read on my shelf since. It’s a lyrical YA fantasy, but not quite my style of book so it’s been a tough read. Still, I want to finish it and hopefully pick up the sequel this year… After all, I’m invested now.
By Sue Lynn Tan | Released January 10th, 2022
Another recent Audible buy (from the 2 for 1 sale), the Orenda is a book I’ve been meaning to read for a long time. Part murder investigation, part historical fiction, the Orenda is written by a Canadian Indigenous author which gives this gripping story an authentic voice.
By Joseph Boyden | Released February 24th, 2014
The second book I bought in the 2 for 1 sale, this one was an impulse buy on the back of finishing up Stephen Fry’s Greek mythology books. It promises to help round my study of cultural myths and legends, and I’m looking forward to learning about some of the lesser known gods and goddesses of the Celtic world.
By Philip Freeman | Released February 13th, 2017
The Atlas Six
Another book I had wanted to read last year, I decided to wait for the paperback edition to come out before picking it up. This trending book combines secret societies, dangerous enemies, and magicians; what more could you ask for?
By Olivie Blaken | Released February 28th, 2022
Who doesn’t love Pamela Anderson? One of my first crushes (alongside Xena, Warrior Princess), this book tells the story of Pamela Anderson’s rise to fame, including the sexist backlash she faced throughout her career.
By Pamela Anderson | Releases January 30th, 2023
The Last Animal
A family of biologists find a perfectly preserved Woolly Mammoth and attempt to bring the beast back to life. This book looks like a cute feel-good family story with major Jurassic Park vibes, so I’m excited to check it out.
By Ramona Ausubel | Releases April 17th, 2023
The Fitful Sleep of Immigrants
Set in 1990s San Francisco, it tells the story of a gay couple facing immigration challenges at a time where their relationship wasn’t recognized legally. As a gay man myself, it breaks my heart to know this book was inspired by true events that forced the author and his partner out of the United States due to marriage inequality.
By Orlando Ortega-Medina| Releases April 25th, 2023
The Daughter of Doctor Moreau
I’m a huge fan of classic sci-fi inspired books, especially when it comes to one of my all time favourite authors H.G. wells. The Daughter of Doctor Moreau is part elaboration on the classic, part feminist re-imagining and I’m here for all of it.
By Silvia Moreno-Garcia| Released July 19th, 2022
I’ve never encountered an Oprah’s book club pick I didn’t like so I’m anticipating Nightcrawling will be no exception. It centers around two teenagers, both high school dropouts, trying to make their way (alone) in an adversarial world.
By Leila Mottley | Released July 6th, 2022
The Fall of Númenor: And Other Tales from the Second Age of Middle-earth
I’m so excited for this book to come out as a Lord of the Rings fan. It’s set in the second age of Middle-earth, which happens before the Lord of the Rings series (that’s the third age.) If you’re a fan of the Prime show you’ll definitely want to check this out, even if you’re not big into LoTR.
By J.R.R. Tolkien | Released December 5th, 2022
Heart of the Sun Warrior
OK look, I know I said the first book was a bit tough for me to get into, but since this is a duology I feel like I have to pick up and read book 2 to really get the full effect. This sequel to Daughter of the Moon Goddess completes the story started in part 1.
By Sue Lynn Tan | Released December 5th, 2022
Our Missing Hearts
I feel bad that I still haven’t read Little Fires Everywhere, but I’m going to make up for it (somewhat) by adding Our Missing Hearts to my reading list in 2023. Released last fall, it’s already topping most book lists meaning it must be something special.
By Celeste Ng | Released October 3rd, 2022
This historical fiction exposes how language and translation helped form the massive reach of the British Empire. Filled with student revolutions and colonial resistance, Babel positions an immigrant against the country he’s studying in a poignant way.
By R. F Kuang | Released August 22nd, 2022
The Inheritance Games
The Inheritance Games is a YA series that’s a couple years old now, but I keep hearing good things about it so it’s time to check it out. There’s Hunger Games inspiration here, but it’s definitely a unique story worth checking out.
By Jennifer Lynn Barnes | Released July 26th, 2021
The Dictionary of Lost Words
Language gives us a voice; but it can also be used to repress. Based on real events, the Dictionary of Lost Words tells the story of the writing of the Oxford dictionary. Or more specifically, what was left out: a female perspective.
By Pip Williams | Released May 2nd, 2022
If you’re not familiar with the story of Pandora’s box, it was a Greek myth where Pandora betrays the rule to open this box that contains all the evils of the world, dooming mankind to an eternity of famine, pain, and suffering. Set in 1799 London Pandora stars a researcher named Dora who finds a box, or in this case vase, of her own and works to uncover its mystery.
By Susan Stokes-Chapman | Releases January 16th, 2023.
Lies we Sing to the Sea
I’m trying to give more YA a chance this year so I’ve added this much anticipated novel to my 2023 reading list. Evoking other Greek mythology books like Song of Achilles, Lies we Sing to the Sea draws inspiration of the story of Ithaca where 12 maidens are sacrificed to Poseidon each year.
By Sarah Underwood | Releases March 6th, 2023.
It’s as if the universe knows I’m on a Greek Mythology kick right now. This one tells the story from the perspective of Medusa, the youngest, and only mortal, of the Gorgon sisters. We all know the unfortunate fate that befalls her by the hands of Heracles, but how did she get there in the first place?
By Natalie Haynes | Releases February 6th, 2023.
The Adventures of Amina Al-Sirafi
Who does love pirates? This is book one in a new trilogy that brings all the high seas mayhem you desire of a swashbuckling pirate adventure. From an already established bestselling author, The Adventures of Amina Al-Sirafi promises to be a great series to get into this year.
By Shannon Chakraborty | Releases March 6th, 2023.
Womb: The Inside Story of Where We All Began
I’m a big nonfiction fan and I always include at least one new title on my reading list for the year. Wombs are where human life begins, but there is so much science has only recently discovered (and still has to answer) about how we grow and develop.
By Leah Hazard | Releases March 7th, 2023.
Emily Wilde’s Encyclopedia of Faeries
I think we’ve all secretly had at least some interest in fairies growing up. There’s something magical about miniature, invisible creature intertwined with the natural world around us. This book takes a unique approach to storytelling through an academic voice and encyclopedic lens.
By Heather Fawcett | Releases January 9th, 2023.
How to Calm Your Mind: Finding Presence and Productivity in Anxious Times
This is the self help book I think we all need this year, especially on the tail end of this (seeming neverending) pandemic. Hopefully this helps shed some light on how to manage the lingering anxiety and move into a more productive 2023.
By Chris Bailey | Released December 26th, 2022.
Described as a Netflix binge watch calibur novel, Ordinary Monsters is perfect for us nerdy folks. With Dickensian vibes and supernatural horror, I’m expecting Ordinary Monsters (part 1 in a trilogy) to become my next obsession. I’m late to this one, but book 2 doesn’t come out until 2024 so I’ll be right with the fanbase soon enough.
By J. M. Miro| Released June 7th, 2022.
More books to Read in 2023
This is my personal 2023 reading list, but if you’re looking for some more ideas for what to read this year here are my favourite books that I read in 2022 but didn’t make it on any of my previous lists:
- I’m Glad My Mom Died by Jennette McCurdy
- Heroes, Mythos, and Troy by Stephen Fry
- Shipwrecks by Akira Yoshimura
PS: The audiobooks for the first two are great because they’re read by the author!