The Best Books of 2022 & 2023 Anticipated Reads

by | Dec 12, 2022 | blog, writing

Whether the end of the year brings joy, dread, apathy, inspiration, or a weird mix of all four, 2022 has taken its final bow. As many of us tuck ourselves in for a long winter’s nap, it’s the perfect time to pad your TBR list for the coming year and discover the best books of 2022. After all, who wants to be stuck indoors all winter with nothing to read? No one, that’s who.

Best Books of 2022

Though I didn’t quite hit my reading goal for this year, I’m happy about the quality of the books I did read. There were a few stinkers, but I read some truly touching stories from these best books of 2022. I’m excited to share my favorites, as I did last year, and do so in the hopes that you find something new to read. However, I always recommend books with the reminder that reading should be fun. If you find yourself begrudgingly picking up your book, it’s time to give up and find a new one. Life’s too short to read things you hate.

Outlawed by Anna North

Though this book came out in early 2021, the magic has not faded one bit. The story follows a group of 1800s outlaws, all of whom were exiled from their communities for their inability or disinterest in having children. The group fends for themselves and goes on wild adventures in a story that is as much about community and finding your people as it is about bank robberies and saloons.

Our Missing Hearts by Celeste Ng

The newest book by Ms. Ng is as poignant and powerful as her other releases. Set in a slightly dystopian United States, this book explores the dangers of rampant nationalism and what happens to certain cultures and people when censorship gets out of control. I found this book to be a haunting reminder of the wide range of experiences of American citizens and a warning of what could happen if we turn a blind eye to injustice.

The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V. E. Schwab

Though this book has been out for a few years, I finally got my hands on a copy this year. The wait was absolutely worth it, as this book was one of the most intriguing, charming, and adventurous books I have ever read. The story follows Addie LaRue, who makes a deal with a demon in exchange for her anonymity. Because demons are never as honest as we want them to be, Addie ends up unable to make an impression on anyone she meets. Once a door is closed between Addie and another person, they immediately forget her.

Though somewhat stressful and lonely at times, I believe that this is one of those books that you’ll remember for a long time, even if the protagonist is doomed to do the opposite.

The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires by Grady Hendrix

I must admit that this book was my first foray into the horror genre, and I was not fully prepared for the number of disgusting plot twists I would find. The story centers on a book club in the southern United States, whose community begins to face strange occurrences and vampire attacks. Each woman goes on her own journey to handle the events of the town, and it’s hard to know whom to trust. This book moved quickly and kept my interest, despite the gag factor.

I chose to listen to the audiobook rather than read this novel, and I yelled “ew!” out loud in my car at least 300 times. Still, it was one of the best books I read this year, and I would recommend it to anyone who appreciates a twisted, weird story.

TW: sexual assault, murder, blood/gore, suicide attempt, racism

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

This book was a rare find. Following a woman who goes on a vacation in the wake of her husband’s passing, this book is the perfect combination of an easy, fun romance and a book with real depth. The settings in this book are vivid, warm, and luxurious, which is definitely a nice mental vacation if you live in the cold. Plus, the plot provided several things to think about and some steamy scenes to boot. I finished it in 24 hours.

Looking Ahead to 2023

Fortunately, 2023 is already shaping up to be a great year for books. With some killer releases to look forward to, it shouldn’t be hard to find something all-consuming to read. These are my most anticipated books of 2023.

In the Lives of Puppets by T.J. Klune

T.J. Klune is one of my favorite writers, and I can’t wait for this new book. Centered around a family of robots who live in a tree, this Pinocchio retelling has a plot as strange sounding as Klune’s other stories. Fortunately, the man is a master storyteller, and I’m sure the book will make me cry.

Strangers in the Night by Heather Webb

In this novelization of the romance between Frank Sinatra and Ava Gardner, Webb tells the story of their tumultuous lives together. Historically accurate novels are my favorite way to learn about the past, and I’m sure this will be no exception.

I Have Some Questions for You by Rebecca Makkai

In this book, the protagonist returns to their boarding school where their roommate had been murdered years earlier, only to find that there are some loose ends to the case. As someone who loves thrillers, I’m excited about this one.

Clytemnestra by Costanza Casati

As I mentioned last year, Circe is at the top of my all-time favorite book list. This is a similar format following queen Clytemnestra, and I absolutely cannot wait.

The Golden Spoon by Jessa Maxwell

I’ve never heard of Jessa Maxwell, but she’s combined The Great British Bakeoff with a murder mystery in this new novel, so I love her already. Celebrity chefs arrive at a competition, and during the filming, someone turns up dead. No soggy bottoms in this plot, that’s for sure.

Get Help from Better Content Matters

I hope there is something on this list that piqued your interest. The best books of 2022 are going to be different for all of us. If these aren’t your favorites, I’m sure you’ll find some books you love throughout the new year. If you love literature but don’t have a knack for writing, you can always trust our team at BCM for your copywriting needs. Happy reading!

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Gabby Vandenavond