books published this year

New Releases in Books

Oath and Honor: A Memoir and a Warning

  • ← Previous page
  • Next page →

Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones

  • Amazon Newsletter
  • About Amazon
  • Accessibility
  • Sustainability
  • Press Center
  • Investor Relations
  • Amazon Devices
  • Amazon Science
  • Start Selling with Amazon
  • Sell apps on Amazon
  • Supply to Amazon
  • Protect & Build Your Brand
  • Become an Affiliate
  • Become a Delivery Driver
  • Start a Package Delivery Business
  • Advertise Your Products
  • Self-Publish with Us
  • Host an Amazon Hub
  • › See More Ways to Make Money
  • Amazon Visa
  • Amazon Store Card
  • Amazon Secured Card
  • Amazon Business Card
  • Shop with Points
  • Credit Card Marketplace
  • Reload Your Balance
  • Amazon Currency Converter
  • Your Account
  • Your Orders
  • Shipping Rates & Policies
  • Amazon Prime
  • Returns & Replacements
  • Manage Your Content and Devices
  • Your Recalls and Product Safety Alerts
  • Conditions of Use
  • Privacy Notice
  • Your Ads Privacy Choices

books published this year

Illustration of people in winter clothing with books and Christmas gifts.

The best books of 2022

From Hanya Yanagihara’s epic novel to a brilliant memoir by Bono … Guardian critics pick the year’s best fiction, politics, science, children’s books and more. Tell us about your favourite books in the comments

Three book jackets - Bournville by Jonathan Coe, I’m Sorry You Feel That Way by Rebecca Wait and The Trees by Percival Everett - and an illustration of a bird shaped bauble

Hanya Yanagihara’s follow-up to A Little Life, Percival Everett’s biting satire and Ali Smith’s playful take on lockdown – Justine Jordan reflects on a year in fiction. Read all fiction

Children’s books

Three book jackets - Dogs of the Deadlandsby Anthony McGowan, Creature by Shaun Tan and Britannia’s Baby Encyclopedia - and an illustration of a woman listening to music.

Imogen Russell Williams picks the best titles for children and teenagers, from a spooky tale by Philip Pullman to the long-awaited new novel from SF Said – plus books for young readers by Oliver Jeffers and Maggie O’Farrell. Read all children’s books

Crime and thrillers

Three book jackets - More Than You’ll Ever Know by Kate Gutierrez, The Twyford Code by Janice Hallett and Wrong Place Wrong Time by Gillian McAllister - and an illustration of two baubles.

Cosy crime from Ajay Chowdhury, a new Rebus novel and a handful of excellent debuts – Laura Wilson rounds up the best page-turners. Read all crime and thrillers

Science fiction and fantasy

Three book jackets - Goliath by Tochi Onyebuchi, Sea of Tranquility by Emily St John Mandel and Deep Wheel Orcadia by Harry Josephine Giles - and an illustration of a bauble.

A verse novel written in Orcadian Scots, a unique UFO story and a distinctive time-travel tale from the author of Station Eleven – Adam Roberts selects five of the best science fiction and fantasy books. Read all science fiction and fantasy

Biography and memoir

Three book jackets - Sins of my Father by Lily Dunn, The Light We Carry by Michelle Obama and Managing Expectations by Minnie Driver - and an illustration of a bearded man with headphones on carrying a book.

Fiona Sturges chooses the best memoirs, from Alan Rickman’s posthumous diaries to Michelle Obama’s follow-up to Becoming, as well as compelling biographies of Agatha Christie and John Donne. Read all biography and memoir

History and politics

Three book jackets - Uncommon Wealth by Kojo Koram, How to Stand up to a Dictator by Maria Ressa and The Curtain and the Wall by Timothy Phillips - and an illustration of a bespectacled man reading a book.

Reflections on the British empire, urgent stories of deadly migrant routes and a Nobel peace prize-winner’s thoughts on the future of democracy – Alex von Tunzelmann ’s choice of books about our past and present. Read all history and politics

Three book jackets - A New Formation by Calum Jacobs, Being Geoffrey Boycott by Geoffrey Boycott and Jon Hotten and God Is Dead by Andy McGrath - and an illustration of a bauble.

Jonathan Liew picks five of the year’s best books about sport, including a thought-provoking history of Black footballers and a fascinating biography of Geoffrey Boycott. Read all sport

Three book jackets - The Metaverse by Matthew Ball, The Facemaker by Lindsey Fitzharris and Elusive by Frank Close - and an illustration of a man in a festive jumper carrying books.

With subjects ranging from the lessons of the Covid-19 pandemic to the potential of digital virtual worlds, Alok Jha selects the year’s top science books. Read all science

Three book jackets - The Trees Witness Everything by Victoria Chang, Unexhausted Time by Emily Berry and Home is not a Place by Roger Robinson and Johny Pitts-  and an illustration of a woman holding one book under her arm and another one held out with her other arm.

Black and queer communities are centred in much of this year’s poetry, including Joelle Taylor’s account of butch lesbian counterculture and Warsan Shire’s captivating take on home and identity – Rishi Dastidar chooses the best collections. Read all poetry

Graphic novels

Three book jackets - The Joy of Quitting by Keiler Roberts, Oxygen Mask by Jason Reynolds and Jason Griffin and Days of Sand by Aimée de Jongh - and an illustration of a man holding a gift box and a book.

James Smart picks out the finest comics and graphic books, from thoughtful memoirs to vividly illustrated fiction. Read all graphic novels

Three book jackets - Denim and Leather by Michael Han, In Perfect Harmony by Will Hodgkinson and The Come Up by Jonathan Abrams - and an illustration of a woman holding a gift box.

Bono’s autobiography, oral histories of hip-hop and heavy metal and a smart reflection on Black women in pop – Alexis Petridis ’s pick of books about music and musicians. Read all music

Three book jackets - Modern Pressure Cooking by Catherine Phipps, West Winds by Riaz Phillips and India Express by Rukmini Iyer - and an illustration of a bauble.

Rachel Roddy on the best food books of the year, from stories of growing up in a Chinese takeaway to pressure cooker recipes and a guide to snacking. Read all food

To browse all of the Guardian’s best books of 2022 visit . Delivery charges may apply.

  • 2022 in Culture
  • Best books of the year

Most viewed

  • Share full article


The Morning

Behind the book review’s best books list.

A conversation with the editors about the painstaking process of selecting the 10 Best Books of the year.

books published this year

By Melissa Kirsch

This past week, The New York Times Book Review published its list of 100 Notable Books of 2023 . On Tuesday, a handful of those titles will be named the Review’s 10 Best Books of the year. The list is a closely guarded secret, the product of many months of passionate closed-door debate presided over by Gilbert Cruz, the editor of the Book Review, and Tina Jordan, his deputy.

Because I cannot bear to be in close proximity to a secret that I am not in on, I have, in a nonchalant — some might say devastatingly subtle — fashion tried my damnedest to get Gilbert and Tina to slip and tell me the five books of fiction and five of nonfiction their team has chosen.

They’re not easily entrapped, these two, and who can blame them for keeping the fruits of their painstaking labor secret? The nominating process begins in October of the previous year, when Review editors begin reading the books slated for publication the following January.

Come March, the staff starts meeting monthly to discuss potential titles. The books discussed in these meetings must be nominated by a staffer and have at least one other reader seconding that nomination.

Some people come with prepared speeches in support of the book they’re nominating. Others speak extemporaneously. The debate is spirited. By the conclusion of each meeting, it’s clear which books are garnering support and which are losing steam. “What you’re trying to do at that early stage,” Gilbert said, “is nominate books, but then also weed out books and keep the strongest ones so that they keep moving through the process.”

The meetings ramp up to once a week when fall arrives. Sometimes the discussions last as long as two hours. Other weeks, everyone in the room seems to quickly agree that the book up for discussion is, or is not, going to make the cut. Gilbert and Tina take anonymous straw polls of the assembled staffers: “If you had to pick three of these five books, which would you choose?”

By early October, they stop adding new books and start looking closely at the selections in relation to one another. The goal is to arrive at a list that reflects the year and is balanced — so it doesn’t have, say, two histories that cover the same time period.

“There’s sometimes an assumption that we are trying to send a statement with the list,” Gilbert said. But both he and Tina were adamant that the list is not political, and the only statement they’re making is “these are the best books of the year and you should read them.”

“We’re not engineering the list in any way,” Tina clarified. “We’re not saying, ‘Oh, gosh, at least three of the books on the fiction list need to be by women.’”

A recent study found that less than half of adults had read one or more books for pleasure in the previous year, which Gilbert called “depressingly low.” He hopes that when the Book Review’s list is published on Tuesday at 10 a.m. Eastern, people will find something they’re excited to read. “If The New York Times can be a guide to anyone who cares about books, about the one or two books that they should be reading out of any given year,” he said, “that is a smashing success.”

The 10 Best Books from each year since 2004 .

In 2021, The Book Review asked readers to choose the best book of the previous 125 years .

Nine new books our editors recommend this week. (These titles were published too late in the year for Tuesday’s list; they’ll be eligible for the 10 Best list for 2024.)


Ridley Scott’s “Napoleon” opened this week. Here’s what to read, listen to, eat, watch and visit before — or after — you watch the movie . ( French critics have panned it .)

Aardman Animations, the studio behind “Wallace and Gromit,” dispelled the rumors that it was running out of clay for its stop-motion films.

Shakira settled a tax evasion case in Spain on Monday before it went to trial, agreeing to pay a fine of over $7 million.

The N.F.L. star (and world-famous boyfriend) Travis Kelce explained how he and Taylor Swift met in an interview with The Wall Street Journal .

Suki Waterhouse and Robert Pattinson announced they are expecting their first child , NBC News reports.

The comedian Matt Rife faced criticism for a joke about domestic violence in his recent Netflix special, Variety reports.

BMI, the licensing agency that represents songwriters including Taylor Swift and Kendrick Lamar, sold itself to a private equity firm .

The TV series “Fargo” returned for a fifth season. Here’s a refresher on the previous four seasons.

The rapper ASAP Rocky will stand trial for shooting a former friend in 2021. He faces up to 24 years in prison, Pitchfork reports.

Jamie Foxx was accused of sexual assault in a new lawsuit, CNN reports.


Hamas freed 13 Israelis, 10 Thais and one Filipino who had been held hostage in Gaza in exchange for 39 Palestinian prisoners on the cease-fire’s first day. More than 130 aid trucks reached Gaza.

“It’s only a start, but so far it’s gone well,” President Biden said of the cease-fire, adding that “the chances are real” that the two sides will extend it further .

Derek Chauvin, the former police officer convicted of murdering George Floyd, was said to have been stabbed in an Arizona prison .

A growing number of Chinese citizens, frustrated with harsh Covid restrictions and Xi Jinping’s government, are entering the U.S. from Mexico .

An advertiser backlash after Elon Musk endorsed a post accusing Jews of “hatred against whites” could cost X $75 million .


Andrew LaVallee

By Andrew LaVallee

📺 “Faraway Downs” (Sunday): Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman star in this six-episode series about an Englishwoman struggling to protect her ranch in the Australian outback with the help of a rugged cattleman. If this reminds you of the 2008 movie “Australia,” there’s a reason: Baz Luhrmann created this new show from footage shot for the nearly three-hour maximalist original, which our chief film critic Manohla Dargis once described as “a testament to movie love at its most devout, cinematic spectacle at its most extreme, and kitsch as an act of aesthetic communion.”

🎬 “May December” (Friday): This movie is loosely based on the life of Mary Kay Letourneau, a woman convicted in 1997 of raping a 13-year-old boy, whom she later married and had children with. Julianne Moore plays Gracie, a woman in a seemingly tranquil marriage. Natalie Portman, playing an actress hired to portray Gracie in a new film, comes to study her. The film is sometimes disturbing and sometimes unexpectedly hilarious. Our pop culture reporter Kyle Buchanan called it the most fun movie at this year’s Cannes Film Festival.


By Melissa Clark

Peanut Butter Blossoms

Now that Thanksgiving is over and December’s upon us, it’s time to shift our thoughts away from turkeys and cranberry sauce and toward cookie season in all its sweet glory. Baking a batch of peanut butter blossoms is a fine way to kick it all off. A classic recipe first popularized by a 1957 Pillsbury Bake-Off, these are simple enough to make with pantry staples and a bag of chocolate kisses, and even easier to devour, one chewy blossom at a time. You can substitute other nut butters for the peanut butter: Almond butter mixed with a few drops of almond extract makes for a delightfully fragrant variation.


Storybook endings: How a Hallmark channel screenwriter secured her dream house.

What you get for $550,000: A midcentury-modern home in Sheffield, Ma.; a two-bed, two-bath condo in Chicago; or an Italianate townhouse in Richmond, Va.

The hunt: Rather than accept a rent increase, a sales representative decided to buy a studio apartment. With a budget of less than $450,000, which one did he choose? Play our game .

Christmas in September: A week after the first day of fall, the new holiday shop from the retailer John Derian started coming together.

“A gateway flaw”: Stretch marks are becoming ubiquitous in lingerie marketing . Some find the strategy disingenuous.

Don’t be that tourist: Learn from these readers’ travel mistakes .

A different kind of proposal: Brides and grooms are asking friends and family to be part of their wedding party with gifts.


We’re in the midst of the biggest gift-shopping weekend of the year. As senior editor of Wirecutter’s gift coverage, I can attest that the only thing better than scoring the perfect present for someone on your list is getting it at a discount. Wirecutter has already done some of the legwork for you: Our editors have spent the year vetting sweet, silly and sentimental gifts, and many of our picks are on sale right now . And if gifts aren’t on your mind quite yet, we’ve got you covered with the best early Cyber Monday deals to browse for yourself. — Jennifer Hunter

For vetted deals sent straight to your inbox, sign up for Wirecutter’s daily newsletter , The Recommendation.


No. 2 Ohio State vs. No. 3 Michigan, college football: Apart from the national championship, this is the biggest game of the season. The rivalry between Michigan and Ohio State is as ancient and fierce as any in college football, and it’s even better when the teams are undefeated, as they both are this year. These are two of the country’s best defenses — Ohio State allows the fewest passing yards of any team, and Michigan gives up the fewest points — so one big play could decide this one. 12 p.m. Eastern on Fox

Michigan’s head coach, Jim Harbaugh, won’t be on the sidelines today as he finishes a three-game suspension over his team’s sign-stealing scandal .


Here is today’s Spelling Bee . Yesterday’s pangram was factotum .

And here are today’s Mini Crossword , Wordle , Sudoku and Connections .

Thanks for spending part of your weekend with The Times. — Melissa

Sign up here to get this newsletter in your inbox . Reach our team at [email protected] .

Melissa Kirsch is the deputy editor of Culture and Lifestyle at The Times and writes The Morning newsletter on Saturdays. More about Melissa Kirsch

The 10 best books of 2023

‘the bee sting,’ by paul murray.

Murray’s novel, shortlisted for the Booker Prize, reads like an instant classic. In it, the gleaming facade of one Irish family — a successful car dealer, his legendarily beautiful wife and their two children — begins to fracture under the weight of long-held secrets. Murray is a fantastically witty and empathetic writer, and he dazzles by somehow bringing the great sprawling randomness of life to glamorously choreographed climaxes. He is essentially interested in the moral conflicts of our lives, and he handles his characters and their failings with heartbreaking tenderness. ( Book World review .)

‘The Heaven & Earth Grocery Store,’ by James McBride

The National Book Award-winning author of “The Good Lord Bird” sets this exuberant novel in a ramshackle Pennsylvania neighborhood before and during the Great Depression. There, Black and Jewish residents come together to hide an orphan from state officials who want to send the boy to a harrowing institution ruled by a violent fiend. Such circumstances might seem to promise a grim tale, but this is a book by James McBride. Vitality and humor thrum through his stories even in the shadows of despair. This vibrant, love-affirming novel bounds over any difference that claims to separate us. ( Book World review .)

‘Loot,’ by Tania James

A real-life object of fascination — an 18th-century automaton depicting a tiger biting into an Englishman’s neck — is the basis for this novel. The story begins in Mysore with a 17-year-old peasant who has a talent for carving mechanical toys, and spans decades as the curiosity he creates changes hands and crosses continents. James moves within the historical record while freely exploiting its considerable gaps and silences. Her prose is lush with the sights, sounds and smells of India, France and England, and always laced with Dickensian wit. ( Book World review .)

‘The MANIAC,’ by Benjamín Labatut

Like Labatut’s last book, “When We Cease to Understand the World” (2021), “The MANIAC” is captivating and unclassifiable, at once a historical novel and a philosophical foray. Its resident genius is the polymath and pioneering computer scientist John von Neumann, who displays “a sinister, machinelike intelligence.” The book’s many narrators offer a polyphonic portrait of the brilliant, frustrating von Neumann, and its extraordinary final segment brings us to the wonder and potential danger of artificial intelligence. Labatut is a writer of thrilling originality. “The MANIAC” is a work of dark, eerie and singular beauty. ( Book World review .)

‘North Woods,’ by Daniel Mason

Mason plants his novel on an expanse of land in western Massachusetts where, over centuries, various absorbing tales unfold and interweave. There’s an illicit marriage between two Puritan runaways, a shocking, brutal murder and an enslaved woman fleeing north. The silent spaces between these stories articulate what the residents can’t, as their errant lives begin locking together in a winding chain of unlikely history. Elegantly designed with photos and illustrations, this is a time-spanning, genre-blurring work of storytelling magic. Mason has a light, mischievous touch, and it’s hard to imagine there is anything he can’t do. ( Book World review .)

‘The Bathysphere Book: Effects of the Luminous Ocean Depths,’ by Brad Fox

In 1930, the naturalist William Beebe descended deep into the ocean in a 4½-foot steel sphere, describing what he saw outside the porthole through a telephone wire that rose to the surface. By turns philosophical and elegiac, Fox’s history of Beebe’s explorations is a hypnotic ode to the world beneath the waves. This is no straightforward narrative but a book built from scraps that belie its intricate engineering. It is also an exceptionally beautiful object, bursting with full-color illustrations and paintings of the creatures Beebe encountered. ( Book World review .)

‘How to Say Babylon,’ by Safiya Sinclair

Born in a seaside Jamaican village near Montego Bay, Sinclair grew up in a strict Rastafarian family on the fringe of a hedonistic tourist mecca. She wanted more than the Rasta wifedom that was mapped out for her, and in this lushly observed memoir, she chronicles how she threw off that yoke. Doing so risked the wrath of her father, a reggae musician who feared that corrupting Western influences would ruin his daughter. The book grabs the reader with the beauty of its words (Sinclair is also a published poet), but it sticks because of the thorniness and complexity of its ideas. ( Book World review .)

‘Judgment at Tokyo: World War II on Trial and the Making of Modern Asia,’ by Gary J. Bass

The post-World War II war crimes trial in Tokyo of leading Japanese military and civilian perpetrators lasted from May 1946 to November 1948 and resulted in 16 life sentences and seven hangings, including that of the wartime prime minister and minister of war, Hideki Tojo. This trial — far more complex, drawn-out and contentious than the Nuremberg proceedings — is the subject of Bass’s comprehensive, landmark and riveting book. Bass employs the complexities of the trial as a fulcrum to sketch a wide canvas, documenting not just atrocities and attempts at justice but the history of World War II in Asia. ( Book World review .)

‘King: A Life,’ by Jonathan Eig

Eig’s book is the most compelling account of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s life in a generation. To write it, he conducted more than 200 interviews, including with scores of people old enough to have known or observed King, and pieced together numerous accounts gathered by other journalists and scholars, some of them never published before. The result might be described as a deeply reported psychobiography — one infused with the narrative energy of a thriller, as Eig vividly reconstructs some of the story’s most dramatic turning points. ( Book World review .)

‘The Life and Times of Hannah Crafts: The True Story of The Bondwoman’s Narrative,’ by Gregg Hecimovich

In 2001, the professor and literary scholar Henry Louis Gates Jr. purchased an unheralded novel of unknown authorship at an auction. He verified that it was authentic and had probably been written by a Black person before 1860. It was published to wide acclaim and robust sales as “The Bondwoman’s Narrative.” Hecimovich’s book tells the incredible story of Hannah Crafts, the woman who wrote it, and of Hecimovich’s tireless efforts to discover her identity and reconstruct her trajectory. The result is an inspired amalgam of genres — part thriller, part mystery and part biography. ( Book World review .)

The best Canadian fiction of 2021

Here are the cbc books picks for the top canadian fiction of the year, social sharing.

Here are the picks by  CBC Books  for the top Canadian fiction of 2021.

What Strange Paradise  by Omar El Akkad

books published this year

What Strange Paradise  is a novel that tells the story of a global refugee crisis through the eyes of a child. Nine-year-old Amir is the only survivor from a ship full of refugees coming to a small island nation. He ends up with a teenage girl named Vanna, who lives on the island. Even though they don't share a common language or culture, Vanna becomes determined to keep Amir safe.  What Strange Paradise  tells both their stories and how they each reached this moment, while asking the questions, "How did we get here?" and "What are we going to do about it?"

What Strange Paradise  won  the 2021 Scotiabank Giller Prize .

Omar El Akkad talks about writing his novel What Strange Paradise

Omar El Akkad is a Canadian journalist and author who currently lives in Portland. He is also the author of the novel   American War , which was defended on  Canada Reads  2018 by actor Tahmoh Penikett.

The Listeners  by Jordan Tannahill

books published this year

In the novel  The Listeners , Claire Devon is one of a disparate group of people who can hear a low hum. No one in her house can hear it, and this sound has no obvious source or medical cause, but it starts upsetting the balance of Claire's life. She strikes up a friendship with one of her students who can also hear the hum. Feeling more and more isolated from their families and colleagues, they join a neighbourhood self-help group of people who can also hear the hum, which gradually transforms into something much more extreme, with far-reaching and devastating consequences. 

The Listeners  was on  the 2021 Scotiabank Giller Prize shortlist .

Jordan Tannahill's latest novel  The Listeners  traces one woman's destructive journey in search for truth

Tannahill is a playwright, filmmaker, author and theatre director. He has twice won the Governor General's Literary Award for drama: in 2014 for  Age of Minority  and in 2018 for  Botticelli in the Fire & Sunday in Sodom . He is also the author of the novel  Liminal .

books published this year

Jordan Tannahill was an acclaimed playwright — but not a dancer. Then he met Christopher House

The son of the house  by cheluchi onyemelukwe-onuobia.

books published this year

The Son of the House  is the story of two Nigerian women, the housemaid Nwabulu and the wealthy Julie. The two live very different lives, but when both are kidnapped and forced to spend days together in a dark, tiny room, they keep hope alive by sharing stories and discovering common ground.

The Son of the House  was on  the shortlist for the 2021 Scotiabank Giller Prize .

  • Cheluchi Onyemelukwe-Onuobia's debut novel  The Son of the House  is a story about gender, trauma & patriarchy

Cheluchi Onyemelukwe-Onuobia is a lawyer, academic and writer who divides her time between Lagos and Halifax.  The Son of the House  is her first novel. It won the SprinNG Women Authors Prize in 2020.

books published this year

Glorious Frazzled Beings  by Angélique Lalonde

books published this year

In the short story collection  Glorious Frazzled Beings , human and more-than-human worlds come together in places we call home. Among other tales, a ghost tends to the family garden, a shape-shifting mother deals with the complexities of love when one son is born with beautiful fox ears and another is not and a daughter tries to make sense of her dating profile after her mom dies. 

Glorious Frazzled Beings  was on the shortlist for the  2021 Scotiabank Giller Prize .

Angélique Lalonde explores the complexities of love in short story collection  Glorious Frazzled Beings

Angélique Lalonde is a B.C.-based writer whose work has been featured in PRISM International, the Journey Prize Anthology, Room and the Malahat Review, among other publications. She received the 2019 Writers' Trust Journey Prize and was nominated for a National Magazine Award. She was awarded an emerging writer's residency at the Banff Centre. She lives in Northern B.C. and holds a PhD in anthropology from the University of Victoria.

Out of Mind  by David Bergen

books published this year

Out of Mind  is a novel about Lucille Black, a mother, grandmother, lover, psychiatrist and analyst of self. While she's fantastic at probing the lives of others, her own life has become untethered. Her ex-husband betrays her by publishing a memoir about the aftermath of their son's death in Afghanistan. She then travels to Thailand to try and free her daughter from the clutches of a cult leader. She's also invited to attend the wedding of a man whom she rejected a year earlier. While Black circles the globe, she's on a quest to reform her identity.

6 lessons David Bergen has learned from 25 years writing fiction

David Bergen is the author of 10 novels and two collections of stories. His work includes  The Time in Between , which won the Scotiabank Giller Prize and the McNally Robinson Book of the Year Award,  The Matter with Morris  and  The Age of Hope , which was championed by Ron MacLean on  Canada Reads  2013. He currently lives in Winnipeg.

books published this year

Linwood Barclay talks about the art of writing crime fiction

Tainna: The Unseen Ones  by Norma Dunning

books published this year

Tainna: The Unseen Ones  is a collection of six stories from Inuk writer Norma Dunning. Each of the stories focuses on a contemporary Inuk character, and explores themes such as homelessness, spirituality, death, displacement, loneliness, alienation and community connection.

Tainna  won the 2021 Governor General's Literary Award for fiction .

'What inspired her was getting mad': Inuk writer tells family's stories in new collection

Dunning is an Inuk writer who currently lives in Edmonton. She is also the author of the short story collection  Annie Muktuk and Other Stories  and the poetry collection  Eskimo Pie: A Poetics of Inuit Identity .  Annie Muktuk and Other Stories  won the 2018 Danuta Gleed Literary Award, which recognizes the best debut short story collection of the year.

books published this year

Second Place  by Rachel Cusk

books published this year

Second Place  is a novel about a woman who invites a famous artist to her remote coastal town. She hopes that his vision and talent will change her life, and her perspective on things. What unfolds is a study of humanity, beauty and connection, as the novel explores how our internal and external lives are connected.

Rachel Cusk on honouring the strangeness of living

Rachel Cusk is a Canadian-born novelist who lives in the U.K. She is best known for her Outline trilogy, which is comprised of the novels   Outline ,   Transit  and  Kudos . Both  Outline  and   Transit  were shortlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, in 2015 and 2017, respectively.

Find You First  by Linwood Barclay

books published this year

Find You First  is the latest thriller from bestselling author Linwood Barclay. Miles Cookson is a millionaire who has been told he only has a short time left to live. He decides it's time to connect with the children that were born with sperm he donated decades before. But as his search unfolds, his offspring vanish, one by one. What is happening? Who is behind it? And can Miles figure it out before it's too late?

Barclay is an American Canadian thriller writer, with almost 20 books to his credit. His books include the adult thrillers  Broken Promise ,   A Noise Downstairs ,   Elevator Pitch   and the middle-grade novels  Escape   and  Chase .

The Strangers  by Katherena Vermette

books published this year

In  The Strangers , readers are brought into the dynamic world of the Stranger family, the shared pain of their past and the light that shines from the horizon. After spending time in foster homes, Cedar goes to live with her estranged father. Being separated from her mother, Elsie, and her sister, Phoenix, is painful, but she's hoping for a new chapter in life. The three women diverge, reconnect and fight to survive in a system that expects them to fail.

The Strangers   won the  2021 Atwood Gibson Writers' Trust Fiction Prize  and was  longlisted for the 2021 Scotiabank Giller Prize .

Read an excerpt from Katherena Vermette's novel  The Strangers

Vermette is a Red River Métis writer from Winnipeg. Her debut poetry collection,  North End Love Songs , won the 2013 Governor General's Literary Award for poetry. Her first novel,  The Break , won the Amazon First Novel Award, Margaret Laurence Award for Fiction, Carol Shields Winnipeg Book Prize and McNally Robinson Book of the Year. It was championed on Canada Reads 2017 by comedian and broadcaster Candy Palmater. Vermette's other works include the poetry book  river woman  and the graphic novel series  A Girl Called Echo .

books published this year

Ring  by André Alexis

books published this year

Ring  completes the quincunx of Scotiabank Giller Prize-winning writer André Alexis. When Helen Odhiambo Lloyd sensed that her daughter Gwenhwfar is in love, Helen gives her a ring that has been passed down through endless generations. The ring lets the bearer change three things about her beloved. It's a blessing, but may also be a curse. 

The other titles in the quincunx are  Pastoral ,  The Hidden Keys ,  Fifteen Dogs  and  Days by Moonlight . The novels in the quincunx each explore one of faith, place, love, power and hatred.  Ring  focuses on love.

André Alexis on the greasiest job he ever had and why he hates writing sex scenes

Alexis was born in Trinidad and grew up in Canada. His novel  Fifteen Dogs  received the 2015 Scotiabank Giller Prize, the Writers' Trust Fiction Prize and won  Canada Reads  2017, when it was defended by Humble the Poet. His other books include  Childhood ,  Pastoral ,  Asylum ,  The Hidden Keys  and  Days by Moonlight .

books published this year

Everyone Knows Your Mother Is a Witch  by Rivka Galchen

books published this year

Everyone Knows Your Mother Is a Witch  takes place in a small German town in 1618, where an elderly widow is accused of witchcraft. In the German duchy of Württemberg, fear is palpable — the plague is spreading, and The Thirty Years' War has begun. So when a woman named Ursula Reinbold accuses widow Katharina of offering her a witchy drink that has made her ill, Katharina is in trouble.

Everyone Knows Your Mother Is a Witch   was shortlisted for the 2021 Atwood Gibson Writers' Trust Fiction Prize . 

Rivka Galchen's Everyone Knows Your Mother Is a Witch reimagines a real-life witch hunt — read an excerpt now

Galchen is a Canadian American writer. She is also the author of the novel  Atmospheric Disturbances . She lives in New York City.

books published this year

We Want What We Want  by Alix Ohlin

books published this year

We Want What We Want  is a short story collection by Alix Ohlin. These stories explore parenthood, lost loves, wasted potential and more, showcasing life's humour, discomfort and beauty.

Alix Ohlin explores the desire for an ending in short story collection  We Want What We Want

Ohlin is a writer from Vancouver and the current chair of the creative writing program at the University of British Columbia. Her books include the novels  Inside,  Dual Citizens  and the short story collection  Signs and Wonders . Both  Inside  and   Dual Citizens  were finalists for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, in 2012 and 2019, respectively.

books published this year

A Dream of a Woman  by Casey Plett

books published this year

A Dream of a Woman  is a collection of short stories revolving around transgender women who are looking for stable, adult lives. Taking place in Prairie high-rises and New York warehouses, during freezing Canadian winters and drizzly Oregon days, these stories explore partnership, sex, addiction, romance, groundedness and love.

A Dream of a Woman  was on  the 2021 Scotiabank Giller Prize longlist .

Casey Plett brings trans love to the forefront in short story collection  A Dream of a Woman

Casey Plett is a Windsor-based writer who was born in Manitoba and has lived in Oregon and New York. Her novel  Little Fish  won the Lambda Literary Award, Amazon First Novel Award and the Firecracker Award for Fiction. Her first collection of short stories,  A Safe Girl to Love , was published in 2014.

Fight Night  by Miriam Toews

books published this year

In  Fight Night , nine-year-old Swiv lives in Toronto with her pregnant mother, who is raising Swiv while caring for her own elderly mother. When Swiv is expelled from school, Grandma gives Swiv the task of writing to her absent father about what life is like in the house during her mother's final trimester. In turn, Swiv tells Grandma, who knows what it costs to survive the world, to write a letter to her unborn grandchild. 

Fight Night  was on the shortlist for the  2021 Scotiabank Giller Prize  and the  2021 Atwood Gibson Writers' Trust Fiction Prize .

Why a 9-year-old girl narrates Miriam Toews's new novel,  Fight Night

Miriam Toews is the author of seven novels, including  Women Talking ,  All My Puny Sorrows ,  A Complicated Kindness   and  The Flying Troutmans .  She has won the Governor General's Literary Award for fiction, the Libris Award for Fiction Book of the Year, the Writers' Trust Fiction Prize and the Writers' Trust Engel Findley Award.  A Complicated Kindness  won  Canada Reads  in 2006, when it was defended by John K. Samson. Toews lives in Toronto.

books published this year

Lost Immunity  by Daniel Kalla

books published this year

In the novel  Lost Immunity , a dangerous bacteria has caused local outbreaks around the world. When it hits Seattle, the local public health officer asks a pharmaceutical company working on the vaccine to release it to the city early. At first, the controversial plan works. But when people start dying from an even more terrible and more mysterious illness, the vaccine gets blamed. Can they figure out what's really happening before it's too late?

Why Daniel Kalla wrote about a modern pandemic

Daniel Kalla is an emergency room doctor, as well as an international bestselling author of 10 books, including  We All Fall Down   and   The Last High .

books published this year

We, Jane  by Aimee Wall

books published this year

We, Jane  is about a young woman named Marthe, who ends up befriending an older woman while living in Montreal. She learns about how the woman used to help young women in rural Newfoundland get abortions, and the two return to the island to continue this cause. But over time, things become more difficult, and more complicated, than Marthe ever imagined.

  • Aimee Wall explores care for women by women and rural access to abortion in her debut novel We, Jane

Aimee Wall is a writer and translator from Newfoundland who now lives in Montreal. Her translations include Vickie Gendreau's novels  Testament  and  Drama Queens.  We, Jane  is her first novel.

All's Well  by Mona Awad

books published this year

In the novel  All's Well , the accident that ended Miranda Fitch's acting career has made her life a living nightmare. She has excruciating, chronic pain, a failed marriage, a dependence on painkillers and she's on the verge of losing her job as college theatre director. She's still determined to put on Shakespeare's  All's Well That Ends Well , even though her cast wants Macbeth. She meets three strange benefactors who know a little too much about her past and are promising her the future she wants. 

Mona Awad's latest novel All's Well explores personal pain, suffering and self-doubt set to Shakespeare

Mona Awad is the author of  13 Ways of Looking at a Fat Girl , which won the Amazon Canada First Novel Award, the Colorado Book Award and was shortlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize. She currently lives in Boston.

books published this year

Probably Ruby  by Lisa Bird-Wilson

books published this year

The novel  Probably Ruby  is about the life of Ruby, a young girl who grows up knowing very little about her Indigenous heritage. Her parents' separation sparks a chain reaction of events — and her life is beset by alcohol, drugs and bad relationships. Left with no support network, Ruby searches for her unknown roots in the most destructive of places. 

Kinship is one of the most important things': Lisa Bird-Wilson's Probably Ruby is about the power of heritage

Lisa Bird-Wilson is a Saskatchewan Métis and nêhiyaw writer. Her book  Just Pretending  won four Saskatchewan Book Awards. She is also the author of the poetry collection  The Red Files .

books published this year

The Spectacular  by Zoe Whittall

books published this year

In  The Spectacular , it's 1997 and Missy's band is touring across America. Every night, she plays the song about her absent mother that made the band famous. As the only girl in the band, she wants to party just as hard as everyone else, but a forgotten party favour strands her at the border. Carola is just surfacing from a sex scandal when she sees her daughter Missy for the first time in 10 years — on the cover of a music magazine. Ruth plans on returning to the Turkish seaside but then her granddaughter Missy crashes at her house. Ruth decides it's time the women in her family try to understand each other again.

How sex, love and riot grrrl music inspired Zoe Whittall's latest novel The Spectacular

Zoe Whittall's three novels have won her a Lambda Literary Award, the Dayne Ogilvie Prize and was shortlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize. Her novel  The Best Kind of People  is currently being adapted for a limited series by Sarah Polley. Her other novels are  Holding Still for as Long as Possible  and  Bottle Rocket Hearts . She has also written for  Schitt's Creek  and the  Baroness Von Sketch Show . 

books published this year

Red X  by David Demchuk

books published this year

In the novel  Red X ,  men are disappearing from the gay village in Toronto. Their disappearances are ignored by the police and media, but they rock the community — the same community dealing with the HIV/AIDS crisis, police brutality and homophobia. This story unfolds alongside author David Demchuk's own story, as he explores the relationship between queerness and horror and how the scariest monsters that move through his community aren't imaginary.

  • The haunted, homophobic history of Toronto is a real-life horror story

Demchuk is a writer and a CBC communications officer. His first book,  The Bone Mother ,  was longlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize.

books published this year

Operation Angus  by Terry Fallis

books published this year

A follow-up to the comedic novels  The Best Laid Plans  and  The High Road ,  Operation Angus  continues to follow the adventures of Angus McLintock, accidental member of Parliament and now the newly appointed junior global affairs minister. After his chief of staff, Daniel Addison, receives a cryptic late-night text and goes to a secret meeting at a pub, the two of them are thrown into a race against the clock to save the Russian president.

Terry Fallis says writing fiction that's geared for laughs isn't as easy as you'd think

Terry Fallis is the author of several novels, including  One Brother Shy ,  The Best Laid Plans ,  The High Road  and  Up and Down . He has won the Stephen Leacock Medal for Humour twice, in 2008 for  The Best Laid Plans , and in 2015 for  No Relation .  The Best Laid Plans  won  Canada Reads  in 2011, when it was defended by journalist Ali Velshi.

books published this year

The Good Father  by Wayne Grady

books published this year

The Good Father   is about a divorced man, Harry, and his daughter, Daphne. Harry is living a quiet life in Toronto with his second wife, while Daphne is a volatile teenager growing up in Vancouver. But when a terrible event takes place, both Harry and Daphne are forced to re-examine their lives, and their relationship to each other.

Wayne Grady's novel examines father-daughter relationships in his new novel The Good Father

Wayne Grady is a writer and translator from Kingston, Ont. His other books include the nonfiction books  The Quiet Limit of the World, Bringing Back the Dodo  and   Tree: A Life Story ,  co-written with David Suzuki, and the novels  Emancipation Day  and   Up From Freedom .   Emancipation Day  won the 2013 Amazon Canada First Novel Award.

books published this year

Hana Khan Carries On  by Uzma Jalaluddin

books published this year

Hana Khan Carries On  is a romantic comedy from Uzma Jalaluddin. Hana is an aspiring radio host who is working at her family's halal restaurant. When her aunt and a cousin come to town, and a rival restaurant opens in their neighbourhood, Hana's life is upended and family secrets are revealed. Fighting for her family is a big battle, one that will put all of Hana's skills to the test. It's a battle that gets more complicated by Hana's growing attraction to the rival restaurant's attractive owner, Aydin.

Uzma Jalaluddin's novel Hana Khan Carries On is a modern day meet-cute inspired by a love of rom-coms

Jalaluddin is a teacher, parenting columnist and author based in Ontario. She is also the author of the novel  Ayesha At Last .

Manikanetish  by Naomi Fontaine

books published this year

In  Manikanetish , a young Innu woman, Yammie, returns to her home in the Uashat nation on Quebec's North Shore after 15 years of exile. She plans to teach language and drama at the local school, but finds a community steeped in despair. When she accepts a position directing the school play, she sees an opportunity for her students to take charge of themselves. 

Naomi Fontaine is a member of the Innu Nation of Uashat. Her debut novel,  Kuessipan , was made into a film that was featured at the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival. The French-language edition of  Manikanetish  was a finalist for a Governor General's Literary Award for French-language fiction and Radio Canada's  Combat des livres  2019 .

A Town Called Solace  by Mary Lawson

books published this year

A Town Called Solace  is a novel told from three different perspectives: Clara, a young woman who sits at her window, waiting for her missing sister to return home, Liam, Clara's new neighbour who Clara watches with suspicion, and Mrs. Orchard, the old woman who owns the house Liam is staying in. As their stories unfold, so does the mystery of what happened to Clara's sister and how Mrs. Orchard and Liam are connected.

  • Mary Lawson's novel  A Town Called Solace  is a mystery about hope and redemption in Northern Ontario

Mary Lawson is an acclaimed novelist who grew up in Ontario and now lives in the U.K. Her other novels include  Crow Lake ,  The Other Side of the Bridge   and  Road Ends .  Crow Lake   won the Amazon Canada First Novel Award.

books published this year

Return of the Trickster  by Eden Robinson

books published this year

Return of the Trickster  is the third book in celebrated writer Eden Robinson's Trickster trilogy, after  Son of a Trickster   and  Trickster Drift .  In  Return of the Trickster ,   Jared is coming to terms with his trickster powers — and with the havoc they create for him and everyone he loves. His mom, Maggie, is coming to terms with them as well. But when his power-hungry Aunt Georgina comes to town, it's the beginning of a magical war — with Jared in the middle of it all.

  • Eden Robinson's novel Return of the Trickster completes the story of a teen named Jared

Robinson is an award-winning writer from Kitamaat, B.C. She is also the author of the novels  Monkey Beach ,   Son of a Trickster   and  Trickster Drift .  Son of a Trickster   was a finalist for the Scotiabank Giller Prize and was championed on   Canada Reads  2020 by actor Kaniehtiio Horn.

books published this year

Gutter Child  by Jael Richardson

A portrait of Jael Richardson.

Gutter Child   is about a young girl growing up in a world divided: the Mainland, where people of privilege live, and the Gutter, a police state where the most vulnerable reside. A social experiment results in 100 babies born in the Gutter being raised in the Mainland. One of those babies is Elimina Dubois. But when Elimina's Mainland mother dies, she is sent to an academy with rules and a way of life Elimina doesn't understand.

Read an excerpt and see the trailer for  Gutter Child  by Jael Richardson

Jael Richardson is the founder and the artistic director of the Festival for Literary Diversity (FOLD) and the books columnist for  Q  on CBC Radio. She is also the author of the nonfiction book  The Stone Thrower , which was adapted into  a picture book of the same name .   Gutter Child   is her first work of fiction.

books published this year

Velvet Was the Night  by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

books published this year

Set in the 1970s in Mexico City,  Velvet Was the Night  follows a secretary named Maite who lives to read the latest issue of Secret Romance. She escapes into stories of passion and danger, ignoring the student protests and political unrest that consume the city. When her next-door neighbour, Leonora, a beautiful art student, disappears under suspicious circumstances, Maite searches for her and uncovers her secret life as a student radical and dissident. Eccentric criminal Elvis, at the request of his boss, is also looking for Leonora. As Maite and Elvis come closer to finding out the truth behind Leonora's disappearance, they can no longer escape the danger that threatens to consume their lives. 

Why Silvia Moreno-Garcia likes to write genre-bending novels

Silvia Moreno-Garcia is a Canadian writer born and raised in Mexico. She's the author of novels  Mexican Gothic ,  Gods of Jade and Shadow ,  Signal to Noise ,  Certain Dark Things  and  The Beautiful Ones . She has previously won the Goodreads Readers Choice Award, the Copper Cylinder Award and Aurora Award.

books published this year

Swimming Back to Trout River  by Linda Rui Feng

books published this year

In  Swimming Back to Trout River , Junie is a 10-year-old living in a village in China with her grandparents. Her parents left for America several years before. Her father has written her a letter saying that he will come back to get her before she turns 12. But Junie doesn't want to go and she doesn't know how much her parents have changed. They have broken up, and are dealing with trauma from their past. But Junie's father is determined to make things right, and make sure Junie's future is brighter than his ever was.

Swimming Back to Trout River  was on  the 2021 Scotiabank Giller Prize longlist .

Linda Rui Feng explores music, history and immigration in novel  Swimming Back to Trout River

Linda Rui Feng is an academic and writer, who is currently a professor of Chinese cultural history at the University of Toronto.  Swimming Back to Trout River  is her first novel.

The Book of Form and Emptiness  by Ruth Ozeki

books published this year

The Book of Form and Emptiness  is about a young boy dealing with the aftermath of his father's death. A year after his musician father dies, 13-year-old Benny Oh begins to hear voices in the random household objects around him. Some are pleasant, while others are angry and full of pain. When his mother starts hoarding things, the voices grow more intense. To keep the voices from following him everywhere, he seeks refuge in a public library, where objects are well-behaved. Oh meets mesmerizing new faces, and he discovers his own book, who narrates his life and teaches him to listen to the things that truly matter.

Ruth Ozeki, Chris Abani and Tash Aw on faces and identity

Ruth Ozeki is a novelist, filmmaker and Zen Buddhist priest. She is the author of  My Year of Meats ,  All Over Creation  and  A Tale for the Time Being , which was shortlisted for the 2013 Booker Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction. Ozeki teaches creative writing at Smith College.

books published this year

Ghost Forest  by Pik-Shuen Fung

books published this year

The unnamed protagonist of  Ghost Forest  struggles to process the death of her father, in the face of her family's silence. Her father was one of Hong Kong's "astronaut fathers," a man who worked in Hong Kong while his family started a new life in Vancouver. 

  • Turning the page on summer: Book lovers name their must-reads for fall

Pik-Shuen Fung is a Canadian novelist based in New York City.  Ghost Forest   is her debut book.

The Snow Line  by Tessa McWatt

books published this year

In the novel  The Snow Line , a wedding in India brings four unlikely people together: a yoga instructor named Yosh, a cousin of the bride named Monica, a childhood friend of the bride named Reema and an elderly guest named Jackson, who has brought his wife's ashes with him. As the wedding festivities unfold, the characters come together in unexpected and moving ways. They end up travelling together to scatter the ashes, complicating the dynamics and revealing even more secrets.

Tessa McWatt's novel The Snow Line captures how the 2008 financial crisis forever changed who we are

Tessa McWatt is the author of several works of fiction. Her novels include  Dragons Cry ,  Vital Signs  and  Higher Ed . She is also the co-editor of the anthology  Luminous Ink: Writers on Writing in Canada  and is the author of the memoir  Shame on Me.

books published this year

State of Terror  by Louise Penny & Hillary Rodham Clinton

books published this year

State of Terror  is a thriller co-written by Canadian writer Louise Penny and former U.S. secretary of state Hillary Rodham Clinton. The president of a newly sworn in administration has chosen Ellen Adams, a political enemy, as his secretary of state, effectively silenced one of his harshest critics. As the new president addresses Congress for the first time, with the secretary in attendance, a young foreign service officer receives a baffling text. The terrorist attacks that follows is revealed to involve the volatile politics of Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran, the Russian mob and an American government weakened on the world stage. Now, it's up to Adams and her team to defeat it.

'This is a cautionary tale': Hillary Rodham Clinton & Louise Penny on writing an international thriller

Penny is the author of the bestselling series of Chief Inspector Armand Gamache novels. She's won numerous prestigious literary awards focused on mystery fiction. In 2017, she received the Order of Canada for her contributions to Canadian culture.

Clinton served as the 67th U.S. secretary of state and was the first woman in United States history to become the presidential nominee of a major political party. She has been in public service for nearly four decades advocating for children and families as an attorney, first lady and senator.

books published this year

Astra  by Cedar Bowers

books published this year

Born and raised on a remote British Columbia commune, Astra Brine has long struggled to find her way in the world. As her path intersects with others over the years, she uncovers difficult truths about who they are and what they yearn for.  Astra  explores what we're willing to give and receive from others — and how well we ever really know the people we love the most. It reminds us of the profound impact that a woman can have on those around her and the power struggles at play in all our relationships. 

  • What would your life look like through the eyes of others? That's the question in Cedar Bowers' novel Astra

Bowers is a B.C.-based author. Her fiction has been published in Joyland and Taddle Creek.  Astra  is her first novel. Bowers divides her time between Victoria and Galiano Island.

The Push  by Ashley Audrain

books published this year

The Push  is a thriller about a woman who is experiencing motherhood for the first time, but it's not like anything she expected — in fact, it's everything she was terrified it would be. When Blythe's first child, Violet, is born, she feels no connection to the baby — and Violet isn't anything like other babies. But Blythe's husband is convinced it's all in her head, and everything will be fine if she just relaxes. But what if he's wrong? And if he's right, what does that say about Blythe?

  • Read an excerpt from  The Push  by Ashley Audrain

Ashley Audrain is a writer living in Toronto and the former publicity director of Penguin Canada.  The Push  is her first novel.

books published this year

Accidentally Engaged  by Farah Heron

On the left is a green book cover that has a drawing of a house, and a woman at the top of the house, and a man at the bottom of the house. They are looking at each other. There is white and pink text overlay that is the book's title and author's name. On the right is an author headshot of a woman wearing a straw hat and glasses and smiling at the camera.

In  Accidentally Engaged ,  Reena Manji refuses to be attracted to the man her parents have set her up with — the charming and attractive Nadim. But when Reena gets the opportunity to enter a cooking competition, she will do anything to win — including pretending to be engaged to Nadim.

Farah Heron on why conflict is key when writing a romantic comedy

Farah Heron is a writer from Toronto. She is also the author of the romantic comedy  The Chai Factor . 

books published this year

Em  by Kim Thúy, translated by Sheila Fischman

Composite photo. White book cover on left with illustrated patches of pink, green, and purple. Black and white photo of smiling woman on the right.

Em  follows the story of a young boy named Louis, the child of an American soldier, who takes care of an abandoned baby. Louis calls the baby em Hồng,  em  meaning "little sister" or "beloved." Although Louis lives on the streets of Saigon and holds the baby in a cardboard box, em Hồng's life opens a realm of possibilities. The novel is inspired by historical events, including Operation Babylift, which evacuated thousands of orphans from Saigon in April 1975. 

Em  was on  the 2021 Scotiabank Giller Prize longlist . 

Kim Thúy revisits the horror and beauty of Vietnam's past in novel Em

Born in Saigon, Kim Thúy left Vietnam in a boat at 10 years old and settled with her family in Quebec. Her other novels include  Vi ,  Man  and  Ru .  Ru  won the Governor General's Literary Award for French-language fiction and was a finalist for the Scotiabank Giller Prize in 2002. It also won  Canada Reads  2015, when it was championed by Cameron Bailey. Her books have been translated into 29 languages and are available in 40 countries and territories. 

books published this year

The Apollo Murders  by Chris Hadfield

books published this year

The Apollo Murders  is a thriller about the Cold War and the space race between Russia and America. Three astronauts aboard Apollo 18 are miles away from home, on a top-secret mission to the Moon. As political stakes are stretched thin, Houston flight controller Kazimieras Zemeckis must do everything to keep the NASA crew together, while staying ahead of the Soviets. But not everyone on Apollo 18 is who they seem.

Fact meets fiction in Chris Hadfield's new space thriller

Chris Hadfield is one of the most accomplished astronauts in the world, serving as NASA's director of operations in Russia and commander of the international space station. He gained worldwide acclaim for his photographs and educational videos about life in space. His other books include  An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth ,  You Are Here  and the picture book  The Darkest Dark .

The Octopus Has Three Hearts by Rachel Rose

books published this year

From a goat farmer to a suburban adulterer, a violent child to a polyamorous marine biologist, the diverse characters in Rachel Rose's  The Octopus Has Three Hearts  have little in common except a life-sustaining connection to the animal world. The octopus, dogs, pigs, chameleons, bats, parrots, rats and sugar gliders in their lives extend a measure of compassion and solace that their human communities lack.

The Octopus Has Three Hearts  was  longlisted for the 2021 Scotiabank Giller Prize . 

  • Rachel Rose grapples with redemption and forgiveness in short story collection The Octopus Has Three Hearts

Rose is the author of four poetry collections and a memoir called  The Dog Lover Unit . She is the poet laureate emerita of Vancouver and a poetry editor at Cascadia Magaz.

What Storm, What Thunder  by Myriam J.A. Chancy

books published this year

What Storm, What Thunder   is a novel that delves into the lives of characters affected by the 2010 earthquake in Haiti. As markets and businesses begin to close down after a long, sweltering day, an earthquake of 7.0 magnitude hits the capital of Haiti, Port-au-Prince. Survivors and victims of the tragedy share their stories of heartbreak, trauma and resilience. 

Myriam J. A. Chancy's powerful new novel explores the tragedy of the 2010 earthquake in Haiti

 Myriam J.A. Chancy is the author of four novels and four books of literary criticism. Her novel  The Loneliness of Angels  won the Guyana Prize for Literature Caribbean Award in 2011 and was shortlisted for the 2011 OCM Bocas Prize in Carribbean Literature for fiction. Chancy was raised in Haiti and Canada and now resides in the U.S.

Dark Roads by Chevy Stevens

books published this year

Dark Roads  is a thriller novel by Canadian author Chevy Stevens. Set in the wilds of British Columbia,  Dark Roads  is about a an isolated and vast stretch of road called the Cold Creek Highway which has earned a reputation for crime and malicious activity. A killer has silently gone undetected for years — but tragic events involving protagonists Hailey and Beth take them on a journal of survival and vengeance. 

  • Chevy Stevens on why wanderlust is an effective procrastination tool

Stevens is the author of eight novels, which combine her interest in family dynamics with her love of her home on Vancouver Island. Her books include the novels Still Missing and Never Let You Go .

Sufferance  by Thomas King

books published this year

Sufferance  is about Jeremiah Camp, a man who can look into the "heart of humanity" and see what's really causing society's biggest problems. But when he's seen one too many problems, he decides to go into hiding. But he can't escape his past — he once made a list of 12 billionaires for a past job. When the men on this list start dying, one by one, people want to know why.

Thomas King is hopeful that his writing has changed the world — but he's still not sure

King is a Canadian American writer of Cherokee and Greek ancestry. He delivered the 2003 Massey Lectures,  The Truth about Stories . His other books include  Green Grass, Running Water ,  Truth & Bright Water ,  The Inconvenient Indian  and  The Back of the Turtle . He also writes the DreadfulWater mystery series.  Green Grass, Running Water   was defended by Glen Murray on  Canada Reads  2004 and   The Inconvenient Indian  was defended by Craig Kielburger on  Canada Reads  2015. 

August into Winter  by Guy Vanderhaeghe

books published this year

The first novel in nearly a decade from Guy Vanderhaeghe,  August into Winter  takes place in 1939 in a world right before a global war. After Constable Hotchkiss confronts the spoiled, narcissistic Ernie Sickert about the disturbing pranks in their small Prairie town, Ernie commits an act of unspeakable violence. What follows is a course of events that will change many lives forever. 

August into Winter  was on the  shortlist for the 2021 Atwood Gibson Writers' Trust Fiction Prize .

A sordid crime in Guy Vanderhaeghe's hometown inspired August into Winter — his first novel in nine years

Vanderhaeghe is a novelist, short story writer and playwright. His debut short story collection,  Man Descending , published in 1982, earned him the Governor General's Literary Award for fiction and later Faber Prize in Britain. He would go on to win two more Governor General's Literary Awards: in 1996, for the novel  The Englishman's Boy , and in 2015, for the short story collection   Daddy Lenin and Other Stories .

Related Stories

  • Fall Reading List 34 great Canadian books to check out in fall 2021
  • Gift Guide 12 books for the outdoor enthusiast on your holiday shopping list
  • The CBC Arts holiday gift guide: 2021 edition
  • Gift Guide 20 books for the music lover on your holiday shopping list
  • Gift Guide 21 books for the sci-fi and fantasy lover on your holiday shopping list
  • Gift Guide 23 funny books for your holiday shopping list
  • Gift Guide 18 Canadian books for the memoir lover on your holiday shopping list

Add some “good” to your morning and evening.

A variety of newsletters you'll love, delivered straight to you.

Fact-based journalism that sparks the Canadian conversation

Canadian Authors Pick Their Favourite Books of 2022

From historical fiction to arresting poetry, the best books of the year picked by some of the country’s leading writers.

books published this year

  • Animal Person
  • Holden After and Before
  • Parasitic Oscillations
  • The Sleeping Car Porter
  • Lost in the Valley of Death
  • In the City of Pigs
  • The Next Age of Uncertainty
  • Hail, The Invisible Watchman

Animal Person by Alexander MacLeod

books published this year

“The Slip ’N Slide waited. Its rubbery skin stretched down the hill, beading with water, and it could not be resisted.” This image from “The Dead Want,” the second story in Alexander MacLeod’s arresting, versatile, and wise sophomore short story collection, is characteristic; here, nonhuman figures serve as an uncanny mirror for the human experience, rendering characters puny and helpless yet more lovable for it. In Animal Person , rabbits, sharks, trampolines, tobacco farm equipment, and ATVs create an atmosphere of unease that lingers long after the book is closed. In the twelve years since publishing his first collection, Light Lifting , a finalist for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, MacLeod has published some of these stories in prestigious magazines like Granta and The New Yorker and won an O. Henry Prize for the book’s stunning opener, “Lagomorph.” Readers will find a writer building on his trusted themes (family, work, aging, animals, the outsider) and expanding these concerns with remarkable dexterity and rare range. Elegant and athletic, these eight stories deke expectations and repeatedly reinvent the possibilities of the short story form. Treat this book like a good shampoo: read, rinse, repeat.

— David Huebert has published two award-winning story collections. His debut novel, Oil People , will be published by McClelland and Stewart in 2024.

Holden After and Before: Love Letter for a Son Lost to Overdose by Tara McGuire

books published this year

The best way for me to gauge how I feel about a book is to count up how many lines from it I jotted down on the pad of paper I keep next to my bed to read back to myself later. How many lines from the book I carried with me after, kicking them around behind my eyelids when I closed them. How many lines I read back to myself, over and over, until they morphed into memories, into keepsakes, like a lucky coin you slip into that little pocket in your jeans that sits under your right hip. I’ve been packing lines from Holden After and Before with me for three weeks now—and counting. Documenting the beautiful life and tragic opioid overdose of her son, a twenty-one-year-old graffiti artist, Tara McGuire uses fiction, supposition, and speculation to sculpt a loving memory of an artist, an addict, a boyfriend, a friend, and a son. This book will haunt you in the very best and most terrible of ways.

— Ivan Coyote is a storyteller and the author of thirteen books. Coyote was born and raised in, and recently moved home to, Whitehorse, Yukon.

Parasitic Oscillations by Madhur Anand

books published this year

It’s not easy to walk around in that foggy place where science and art cross paths. There have been many times when I’ve read poetry or prose where the writer seems to have skimmed the Wikipedia entry on quantum mechanics just long enough to find grist for a metaphor. Sometimes it’s a good metaphor, but there’s still a kind of thinness to it. Parasitic Oscillations is the opposite of that. Madhur Anand is both a brilliant poet and an ecology professor, and the things she does with this collection—in style as well as structure—are things I’ve rarely, if ever, seen before: mutilated research, technological trickery, wonderful trips to the artistic hive mind. There are poems in this book that are rooted in grieving, both personal and world sized. To be able to pull off that kind of intimacy while also being this inventive, this out there—I can think of very few writers who have the skill and the spine. It’s one of those books that say something piercing about where we are as a species and what we’ve done.

— Omar El Akkad is an author and a journalist.

Helpmeet by Naben Ruthnum

books published this year

I read Naben Ruthnum’s unsettling gothic love story at the start of the year, in a single sitting, transfixed, pausing only to look out at the whirling snow. His lush and elegant prose drew me deep into the troubled and troubling marriage of Louise and Edward Wilks in upstate New York in the early 1900s—a loyal wife, a bitter, faithless husband, a vile disease that provokes a floridly grotesque transformation. How do you care for someone who is changing so horribly that they are rendered unrecognizable, perhaps even inhuman? Many months later, as another winter approaches, this slender story still lives with me. Ruthnum’s portrait of a spouse’s tender devotion in the face of unimaginable horror evokes the masters of the Edwardian weird tale but resonates across time—an evanescent bloom made more beautiful by the tinge of rot at its heart.

— David Demchuk’s most recent book is the horror novel/queer memoir RED X , published in 2021 by Strange Light.

The Sleeping Car Porter by Suzette Mayr

books published this year

If you’re unfamiliar with the history of Black attendants on overnight trains, you should read Suzette Mayr’s recent novel, The Sleeping Car Porter . The Calgary author’s work hits all the right notes: Black history, wry delivery, and complex social dynamics, all wrapped up in a poignant drama. The narrative features R. T. Baxter, a Black porter trying to earn his way to dentistry school, his path to freedom. In 1929, being a porter was one of the few jobs a Black man in Canada could do, and it came with its challenges: emasculation, whimsically racist passengers and colleagues—“Find that smile, the bigger the better, and push the button, turn it on, but don’t Uncle Tom it. Don’t grin. Sing, dance, do magic tricks if they ask you. Maybe other things if the money’s worth it, but don’t Uncle Tom.” These and the sleepless grind persistently torment Baxter and, as his resolve crumbles, force him to face self-incriminating secrets. The fear of being fined or fired by the supervisor looms always, threatening to end his dream of becoming a dentist. A moving and engaging work, this novel deservedly won the 2022 Scotiabank Giller Prize.

— Bertrand Bickersteth was born in Sierra Leone and raised in Alberta. His first book of poems, The Response of Weed , won the Gerald Lampert Memorial Award.

Lost in the Valley of Death: A Story of Obsession and Danger in the Himalayas by Harley Rustad

books published this year

A young man walks into the wild to find the meaning of life—or at least of his own existence. It’s a familiar story, the plot of several blockbuster books and films, but Harley Rustad’s Lost in the Valley of Death is the best exegesis of the phenomenon yet. Rustad, a features editor at The Walrus, investigates what sent American traveller Justin Alexander Shetler into India’s Parvati Valley and why he never came back. In many ways, Shetler embodies the anxieties and paradoxes of our age: he performed his life for thousands of online followers yet was stalked by loneliness; he longed for authentic experiences yet staged himself having them; he tried on a dozen different lives yet none fit. Without romanticizing his protagonist but with deep compassion and reportorial rigour, Rustad explores the blurred lines between individual realization and selfishness, spiritual tourism and genuine seeking. The result is a nuanced page-turner that doubles as a cautionary tale, one that testifies to the true meaning of freedom: it’s not found in infinite choice or a rugged independence but in a commitment to something—anything—beyond the self.

— Kate Harris’s first book, the travel memoir Lands of Lost Borders , won the RBC Taylor Prize, the Kobo Emerging Writer Prize for Non-fiction, and the Edna Staebler Award for Creative Non-fiction.

In the City of Pigs by André Forget

books published this year

I am always looking for books by Canadian writers with hard literary chops and a desire to burst the seams of a parochially defined national literature. I was lucky to find all of this in André Forget’s Giller-longlisted In the City of Pigs , a novel that unfurls within your mind like a metapuzzle. The story follows Alexander Otkazov, who leaves the world of avant-garde music performance behind, only to become entangled with the moneyed interests financing it, in his capacity as a music journalist. His mettle is soon tested when he becomes romantically attached to a powerful impresario’s wife and is faced with a Sophoclean ethical dilemma. Forget massages the connections between capital, property, and the arts into a mesmeric picture of turpitude (or, as the author phrases it, into a “face that looks like a bowl of porridge an unwell person has spat into.”) A book that will recommend itself to the admirers of Mordecai Richler, André Alexis, and Carol Shields alike, Pigs ’ version of the down-and-out narrator is a bitter tribute to the degradations of modernity.

— Jean Marc Ah-Sen is the author of Grand Menteur and In the Beggarly Style of Imitation . He lives in Toronto.

Hotline by Dimitri Nasrallah

books published this year

In Hotline , Muna Heddad, a single mother and new immigrant, makes her way in 1980s’ Montreal. Trained as a French teacher in Lebanon, Muna finds that she can only get steady work in her new country as an operator for a weight-loss hotline. Dimitri Nasrallah’s novel gives us glimpses into the myriad small indignities—today we might call them microaggressions—immigrants like Muna face. There’s something relentlessly contemporary about a newcomer trying to make her way in a place that feels its identity is under threat. Surely, hunting for affordable winter gear in an unfamiliar city whose denizens do not respect what you have to offer is the quintessential new Canadian experience. We feel the indignation Muna doesn’t let herself show and we feel her triumphs, both at work and in surviving the winter with her son. With its weird intimacy, the weight-loss hotline is itself an engrossing world. Nasrallah’s exploration of a migrant’s double consciousness is potent; so, too, is the disorienting feeling of knowing the place you are in can never comprehend the convulsive violence of the place you have left. This is a book about what haunts us and what keeps us going.

— Anna Mehler Paperny is the author of Hello I Want to Die Please Fix Me: Depression in the First Person .

The Next Age of Uncertainty: How the World Can Adapt to a Riskier Future by Stephen Poloz

books published this year

It’s not often that I would say a former central banker’s book is my favourite of the year, but it’s been no ordinary year. Inflation and interest rates and hardly-even-English terms like “quantitative easing” have leapt to the fore. The Next Age of Uncertainty , written before the current economic chaos, is both prescient and well timed. Former Bank of Canada governor Stephen Poloz offers accessible insights into how factors such as climate change and an aging population—with a dash of pandemic thrown in for good measure—are making the economy more volatile and the world more uncertain. There’s an anecdote where a flight attendant is unable to name the Bank of Canada governor or recognize Poloz. Those days are long gone—Poloz’s successor, Tiff Macklem, probably needs a security detail these days. Even in its little details, Poloz’s book is a stark reminder that the world is changing and that, to survive and thrive, we need to reexamine all that we’ve taken for granted.

— Ethan Lou is the author of Once a Bitcoin Miner and Field Notes from a Pandemic .

Hail, the Invisible Watchman by Alexandra Oliver

books published this year

It’s harder to find contemporary life in poetry than it should be. If you want to ponder the vanishing sadness of dawn or feel the sting of mortality that comes from gazing at the moon, there’s a glut of stuff for you. But, if you want to read uncommonly good poems about former boyfriends or shopping for lipstick or running into an old schoolteacher—you know, the actual content of our everyday, harried lives—then you have few options. Luckily, Alexandra Oliver is one of them, and luckily, she had a new collection out this year: Hail, the Invisible Watchman . Master of the crisp rhyme with a Midas touch for phrasing, Oliver gives us the suburban mindset in rich, satirical precision, such as the councilwoman whose “selfie arm is spangled, / tan and toned and perfect as a pencil” or the doyenne whose smile has “the uniform crispness of linen.” Packed with cinematic and tactile writing, Hail, the Invisible Watchman shows us why Oliver is one of the best English-language poets in Canada.

— Carmine Starnino is editor-at-large at The Walrus. His most recent book is 2021’s The Essential John Glassco .

The Walrus Staff

Related Posts

A photo illustration of a yellow book emerging out of a grey dust jacket.

The Case for Never Reading the Book Jacket

November 28, 2023 November 28, 2023

A photo illustration of a black-and-white photo of Britney Spears, Pamela Anderson and Paris Hilton with handwriting in the background. There is a red border around the image.

When Britney and Pamela and Paris Tell All

November 23, 2023 November 27, 2023

A photo illustration of a bookshelf against an indigo-coloured wall. On the shelves, the books are in black and white while miscellaneous items like mugs, blankets and a portable grill are in colour.

Indigo May Have Lost the Plot

November 3, 2023 November 13, 2023

The Walrus uses cookies for personalization, to customize its online advertisements, and for other purposes. Learn more or change your cookie preferences.

books published this year

books published this year

Joining is quick and easy and FREE! Become a member and enjoy the enhanced features only available to registered members.

  • Rate & track books with BookTrackr™
  • Customize WWEnd to reflect your reading history
  • Submit your own reviews
  • Create your own favorites lists
  • Add your website to our Member Sites page
  • Participate in forum discussions

books published this year

Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Book Lists

Support wwend.

Become a Patron

  - tag the books you\'ve read   - tag your favorite books   - tag books you want to read later   - tag the books you\'re currently reading To use this feature you must be a WWEnd Member and you must be logged in to see the results.', CAPTION, 'BookTrackr™', WIDTH, '350', LEFT)" onMouseOut="nd();"> BookTrackr™ Legend

Books published by year.

Books Published by Year

This list shows all the books in the WWEnd database first published in a specified year. The list is defaulted to 2023, All Genres, and All Book Types. Use the form below to modify the list. Change the year, genre, and book type and you can even specify award nominated books only. The year published is the first year of publication only.

Current Display: All Genres - All Book Types - 2023 Results: 509 Books

BOOK AWARDS Hugo Award Nebula Award BSFA Award Mythopoeic Award Locus SF Award Locus Fantasy Award Locus FN Award Locus YA Award Locus Horror Award August Derleth Award Robert Holdstock Award Campbell Award World Fantasy Award Prometheus Award Aurora Award PKD Award Clarke Award Stoker Award Otherwise Award Aurealis SF Award Aurealis Fantasy Award Aurealis Horror Award Andre Norton Award Shirley Jackson Award Red Tentacle Award Golden Tentacle Award Legend Award Morningstar Award Nommo Award

BOOK LISTS Classics of SF SF Mistressworks Guardian: The Best SF/F NPR: Top 100 SF/F Pringle Best 100 SF Pringle Modern Fantasy SF: 101 Best 1985-2010 Fantasy 100 ISFDB Top 100 Horror 100 Nightmare Magazine 100 HWA Reading List Locus Best SF 200 Significant SF Books by Women David Brin's YA List Baen Military SF List Defining SF Books: 50s  |  60s  |  70s  |  80s  |  90s SF by Women Writers A Crash Course in the History of Black Science Fiction

WWEnd Roll-Your-Own Reading Challenge

Top Publishers All Publishers PUBLISHER LISTS Ace Doubles Series: D  |  F  |  G  |  H  |  M  |  # Conversation Pieces Classic Library of SF Critical Explorations in SF&F EP Masterpieces of SF Fantasy Masterworks SF Masterworks Laser Books Liverpool SF Texts and Studies Author's Choice Monthly Pulphouse Short Stories Winston SF

Podcasts Magazines Conventions eBooks Bookstores SF/F/H Sub-Genres Websites Clubs & Groups WWEnd Member Sites Links Award Sites Author Sites Clubs & Groups Blog Roll -->

BookTrackr™ WWEnd Features --> The Responsible Parties WWEnd Patrons Support WWEnd Advertise on WWEnd FAQ Contact Us

Sign Up now and enjoy the enhanced features only available to members.

2023 World Fantasy Award Winners Ex Libris WWEnd: Zoey Is Too Drunk for This Dystopia by Jason Pargin 2023 Hugo Award Winner Ex Libris WWEnd: A Stroke of the Pen: The Lost Stories by Terry Pratchett 2023 British Fantasy Awards Winners

Become a Patron!

Home   |  © 2023 Tres Barbas, LLC. All rights reserved.

Shipping icon

We only ship within the United States

Toner Buzz

5 Star Rating

Google reviews star

Search for Toner & Ink

How Many Books Are Published Each Year? [2023 Statistics]

Posted by Rob Errera on 08/18/2023

How Many Books Are Published Each Year? [2023 Statistics]

At a Glance: Annual Book Publishing

  • Each year, 500,000 to 1 million new books come out. 
  • Including self-published authors, the count reaches close to 4 million new book titles each year.
  • In 2021, there were about 2.3 million new self-published books in the US, marking a decline compared to the preceding two years.
  • Children's Publishing remains a popular and thriving sector, with a projected growth towards a $11.1 billion market value by 2027, up from $9.086 billion in 2020.
  • In the US alone, the Children's Book Publishing industry achieved a market size of $3.3 billion in 2022.
  • Audiobooks are on the rise too, generating about $5.4 billion in 2022, with the US contributing $1.8 billion. This showcases evolving reading habits.

So, how many books are published every year?

The answer is more complicated than you’d think. Figures range from 500,000 to one million books published annually.

However, if you include self-published authors you’re looking at close to 4 million new book titles published each year.

Millions of books are published every year

With close to 4 million new titles published each year, keeping library shelves stocked with the most current information is a challenge for students and librarians alike.

So Many Books, but Not All Get Printed

That’s a lot of books, even for avid readers (check out the latest book and reading statistics ). But bear in mind, not all published books make it into printed form.

The majority of self-published titles are print-on-demand, meaning paper, ink, and glue are only used to bind a physical book together when one is ordered. 

This differs from traditional book publishers who often print thousands of copies of books in advance.

Traditional book printing requires a lot of resources

A traditional printing plant requires a big space, a lot of resources, and generates tons of waste.

So Many Books, So Little Sales

Even though there are a lot of authors publishing books, most authors don’t sell many. The typical self-published author sells about five copies of his book. 

The average US book now sells less than 200 copies per year and less than 1000 copies over its lifetime.

According to a study conducted by Google Books, there have been 129,864,880 books published since the invention of Gutenberg's printing press in 1440.

There's a catch, however. Google Books doesn't factor in books published after 2010, nor does it include self-published book titles. Digital publishing has risen 246% since 2010, according to Bowker. 

That means a lot more books have been published that are not being accounted for.

Books by the Numbers

Print is still an essential part of book publishing, with people still gravitating toward print editions of books rather than digital editions. 

According to Publisher’s Weekly, Bookscan, which does include Amazon sales, reports 789 million print books were sold in 2022 in the US.

  • A 2020 survey from Statista shows that print is still the most popular book format in the United States with 70% of people surveyed preferring print to e-books or audiobook. Out of those, 39% like to read new books.

Preferred Book Formats Among US Adults (April 2020)

books published this year

  • 826 million physical books were sold in 2021 the US, a growth of 8.9% over the prior year. Trade paperbacks sold 450,000 print units.
  • In 2022, revenue for book sales in the United States generated $9.1 billion , compared to $8.6 billion in 2020. Hardcover books accounted for nearly $3.2 billion of those sales.

How Many Books Are Self-Published?

In the US, there were around 2.3 million new self-published books in 2021, a decrease from two previous years (over 1.6 million in 2018).

But, as stated above, not all self-published authors use trackable ISBNs so that number may be higher. 

But many self-published titles are print-on-demand, meaning that physical copies of the book are not printed until a customer orders one. That greatly reduces the physical resources needed to publish a book .

No paper, no glue, no printing or binding. Most self-published books exist in a purely digital format until physical copies are ordered. 

And, since most self-published books only sell a handful of copies, they don’t use up physical resources the same as traditional publishers, who will print “bulk runs” of books in batches of 1,000 copies, 10,000 copies, 100,000 copies, or more.

On-demand printing

A modern print-on-demand printing press benefits both the consumer and the environment.

How Many E-Books Are Published Each Year?

Research indicates that  191 million eBooks were sold in the US in 2020, generating $1.1 billion in sales in 2020, up from $983 million in 2019.

It’s important to understand that Amazon — arguably the biggest seller of eBooks — was not included in Statista’s latest figures, so the true size of the eBook market is likely much larger than reported. Amazon is the biggest marketplace for e-books followed by the Apple e-book store.

E-books are still a strong market and publishing revenue could reach $7 billion by 2025.

Books for Specialty Markets

Industry Research reports the global Children's Publishing market is expected to grow and be worth $11.1 billion by 2027, a significant rise from its value of $9.086 billion in 2020. In 2022, the Children's Book Publishing industry in the United States had a market size of $3.3 billion .

The major of children's books are physically printed and, since they often use thick paperboard pages and vibrant inks, they often require more raw materials to produce. But who doesn't love Eric Carle 's board books?

In addition to children's books, other areas of publishing that rely heavily on printed and bound books are education/textbooks, science and medical journals, and law reviews. 

These specialty publications are mainstays of traditional publishing that will keep old-school printing presses and book binderies in business for many years to come.

Don’t Forget Audiobooks!

Book purists argue that audiobooks aren’t reading, they’re listening. 

Regardless audiobooks are the fastest growing area of publishing. 

According to the latest report by Grand View Research, audiobooks generated around $5.4 billion in 2022. The audiobooks market was primarily led by the North American region, contributing the largest share of revenue at over 45% .

Audiobooks Market Trends, by Region in 2022

books published this year

People like the portability of audiobooks, as well as the ease of consumption — who doesn’t enjoy listening to a good story? 

In the United States, audiobook sales amounted to $1.8 billion in 2022, compared to about $1 billion in 2018. Nearly half of all Americans have listened to an audiobook at some point and 23% listen regularly, according to Statista.

There were 71,000 audiobooks published in 2020. This is an 8.5% increase over 2019’s 60,303 published audiobooks, and a whopping 23% increase over the 16,309 audiobooks published a decade ago.

The best-selling audiobooks tend to reflect the best-selling list of print and eBooks. Two of the biggest sellers are  James Clear's “Atomic Habits” and Ann Patt-chett's “Tom Lake.”

Readers still prefer paper books over eBooks

E-readers are inexpensive and can hold thousands of low-cost books, but readers are still drawn to traditional print editions.

Book Publishing Gets Greener

The New York Times estimates that print books use three times more raw materials and 78 times more water to produce compared to eBooks.

The rise of e-books, print-on-demand technology, and more efficient digital printers have helped reduce waste in the publishing industry. Massive print runs of books and periodicals created —literally — tons of waste .

According to author Dean Wesley Smith, it was acceptable to have a return rate of 50% or more for traditional printed books during the 1990s. 

That means more than half of the books printed during that time were returned to publishers and destroyed. 

According to Publisher’s Weekly, book return rates for traditional publishers have shrunk to between 20-25% , but it is still a colossal waste of resources.

Perhaps one of the greatest advancements in publishing is the new print-on-demand model, which puts an end to costly bulk print runs and the wasteful returns system. 

In a virtual world, books no longer have a “ shelf life ” where they are displayed in bookstores for 30 days then returned to publishers for recycling.

There’s no need for boxes for printed books to sit in warehouse storage. Now a published book can stay in print forever with no drawbacks to consumers or the environment.

That’s a good thing!

Further Reading:

  • Printing Statistics: The Latest Global Data in CMYK
  • 3D Printing Statistics (2023 Additive Manufacturing Data)
  • Printing Industry Trends: What Do Stats Tell Us?
  • Staggering E-Waste Facts & Statistics 2023
  • Printer Shortage and Deficit of Toner, Ink and Paper: All You Need To Know

IBIS Worlds

Publishers Weekly

Rob Errera

Rob Errera is an award-winning journalist embedded in the world of printers and printing supplies. Rob has nearly two decades of experience writing about cutting edge technology, business trends, and the ever-evolving industry of printing.

Toner Buzz BBB Business Review

  • Entertainment

The 3 Best Books Bill Gates Read in 2023

Bill Gates shares favorite books he read in 2023

I n addition to an online economics course taught by Stanford University professor Timothy Taylor and a Spotify playlist filled with a variety of holiday tunes, Bill Gates' annual list of recommendations—shared in a post on Gates Notes —includes three books published in 2023 that "came to mind right away" as "some of the best" he read this year.

From a deeply reported exploration of cell therapy to a data-driven look at the world's biggest environmental problems, the Microsoft founder and philanthropist selected a range of titles that he found to be "deeply informative and well written."

Here, the three best books that Bill Gates read in 2023.

The Song of the Cell: An Exploration of Medicine and the New Human , Siddhartha Mukherjee

Beginning with the discovery of cells in the late 1600s and taking readers through the evolution of human understanding of cellular biology, oncologist and Pulitzer-winning author Siddhartha Mukherjee delves into the history and current state of cell therapy as a tool for treating leukemia and other deadly diseases. "All of us will get sick at some point. All of us will have loved ones who get sick," Gates writes. "To understand what’s happening in those moments—and to feel optimistic that things will get better—you need a foundational knowledge about the building blocks of life. Mukherjee understands that 'to locate the heart of normal physiology, or of illness, one must look, first, at cells.'"

Buy Now: The Song of the Cell on Bookshop | Amazon

Not the End of the World: How We Can Be the First Generation to Build a Sustainable Planet , Hannah Ritchie

This optimistic take on the state of climate change relies on findings from Hannah Ritchie's work as a leading data scientist to illustrate the ways in which the global environmental crisis isn't necessarily the doomsday scenario that some make it out to be. Set for release on Jan. 9, 2024, Not the End of the World focuses on how humanity is already—and can continue—working to achieve a two-pronged definition of sustainability. "In each chapter, Ritchie provides tangible action that people, companies, and governments can take to build that better world," Gates writes. "One where trade-offs between human well-being and environmental protection, between life today and life tomorrow, no longer have to be made."

Buy Now: Not the End of the World on Bookshop | Amazon

Invention and Innovation: A Brief History of Hype and Failure , Vaclav Smil

A perennial favorite of Gates, who has read all 44 of his books, best-selling author Vaclav Smil is renowned for his ability to shed light on complex subjects. In his latest work, Smil investigates whether we're really living in an age of unrivaled invention—and concludes, according to Gates, that "our current era is not nearly as innovative as we think." While Gates agrees that rapid advances in computing power have inflated people's perception of overall technological growth, he believes that Smil underestimates accomplishments in artificial intelligence. "AI is going to become smart, not just fast," Gates writes. "When it achieves what researchers call 'artificial general intelligence,' that will give humanity incredible new tools for problem solving in almost every domain, from curing disease to personalizing education to developing new sources of clean energy."

Buy Now: Invention and Innovation on Bookshop | Amazon

More Must-Reads From TIME

  • What a Photographer Saw in the West Bank
  • Accenture’s Chief AI Officer on Why This Is a Defining Moment
  • Inside COP28's Big 'Experiment'
  • U.S. Doctors Can't Be Silent About Gaza: Column
  • The Movie Wives Would Like a Word
  • The 100 Must-Read Books of 2023
  • The Top 100 Photos of 2023
  • Want Weekly Recs on What to Watch, Read, and More? Sign Up for Worth Your Time

Write to Megan McCluskey at [email protected]

You May Also Like


NPR's favorite books of the year

Copy the code below to embed the wbur audio player on your site.

<iframe width="100%" height="124" scrolling="no" frameborder="no" src=""></iframe>

Books on a shelf in a bookstore. (Alexander Spatari/Getty Images)

NPR staff and critics have picked nearly four hundred books for all ages and tastes.

Andrew Limbong , host of the Book of the Day podcast, joins us to discuss them.

This segment aired on November 24, 2023.

More from Here & Now

We've been independently researching and testing products for over 120 years. If you buy through our links, we may earn a commission. Learn more about our review process.

12 Most-Anticipated Books Coming Out in 2024

Make room on your bookshelf for irresistible mysteries, memoirs and more.

Headshot of Lizz Schumer

Some authors, like breakout stars Kiley Reid and Xochitl Gonzalez, are returning with fresh takes on our world that are sure to start conversations. Others, like historical fiction master Francis Spufford and thriller expert Alex Michaelides, are serving up new books that are just as great as we'd hoped. Many of these books won't be out yet by the time you're reading this list, which is why we've included the release dates so you know when to expect them to hit shelves. But smash that preorder button anyway: Not only does that mean you'll have a great new read headed your way as soon as its ready, but preorders help books get the attention of bestseller lists and awards committees, so they're a boost for the authors as well.

We'll keep this list updated throughout the year, so keep checking back to discover the best new books of 2024 and head over to see what our GH Book Club has on offer each month to discover even more feel-good reads .

The Storm We Made by Vanessa Chan

The Storm We Made by Vanessa Chan

This refreshing, gripping historical fiction takes place in occupied Malaya during WWII and the decade that led up to it, telling the story of a family brought to the brink both by their oppressors and the guilt of a mother who's kept a crushing secret. Told by four deeply real characters, you'll find yourself rooting for them even as they butt up against the limits of right and wrong.

The Fury by Alex Michaelides

The Fury by Alex Michaelides

From the author of The Silent Patient comes another perfectly-paced thriller that will have you looking at your friends with a hint of suspicion. This classic locked-room mystery follows a former movie star trapped on a private Greek island with her best friends and a murderer, not to mention plenty of simmering grievances and thirst for revenge. It unfolds so satisfyingly well, you just might want to block off a weekend to read it all in one.

Mrs. Quinn's Rise to Fame by Olivia Ford

Mrs. Quinn's Rise to Fame by Olivia Ford

Calling all Great British Baking Show fans: When you've salivated your way through the latest season (and the entire back catalog), this charming novel will fill the cake-shaped hole in your heart. The story of an older woman who enters a televised baking show is as cozy as a night in grandma's kitchen with the kind of feel-good suspense we love from the likes of Paul Hollywood.

Come and Get It by Kiley Reid

Come and Get It by Kiley Reid

If you loved the smash hit Such a Fun Age , don't sleep on Reid's newest. It'll take you right back to college, as a residential assistant finds herself entangled with a visiting professor in more ways than one. This is a story of indiscretions and gray areas, power dynamics and privilege that's wound as tight as a violin string. Just don't forget to breathe while you're reading (go ahead and thank us later).

RELATED: Best Books By Black Authors

Cahokia Jazz by Francis Spufford

Cahokia Jazz by Francis Spufford

Told in prose as intoxicating as a swig of bathtub gin, this 1920s gumshoe novel takes place in the fictional city of Cahokia where indigenous people are major players in the tenuous peace that rules the city. That is, until a body appears butchered atop a skyscraper, arranged in a way that appears to be a symbolic message. When an outcast detective and his partner are put on the case, wheels start turning in gasp-inducing twists through the very last page.

Fifty Beasts to Break Your Heart: And Other Stories by GennaRose Nethercott

Fifty Beasts to Break Your Heart: And Other Stories by GennaRose Nethercott

An eternal staircase that ruins the lives of those who stray too far. A group of middle schoolers who use dark forces to torment a hated classmate. A woman whose allegiance to her artist boyfriend scaffolds her entire life—literally. A glossary of flowers that's really something else entirely. Fans of Karen Russell will love these bizarre, absurdist stories that feel like twisted versions of the fairytales that dance around the edges of nightmares, and might just worm their way into yours.

Splinters: Another Kind of Love Story by Leslie Jamison

Splinters: Another Kind of Love Story by Leslie Jamison

You don't have to be a mother to find bone-deep truth in this memoir. You don't have to have loved hard and then lost, gone through a divorce with a kind man who turns cruel, or weathered the COVID-19 pandemic as a single working mom. You just have to be a person with a heart to feel the beauty, the pain and above all, the humanity that runs through this force of nature in book form.

RELATED: Best Memoirs of All Time

The Book of Love by Kelly Link

The Book of Love by Kelly Link

Three teens come back from the dead (well, sort of), and in order to get back to their lives, they've got a series of magical tasks to complete. They can't tell their families and friends where they've been, or what they're doing, and that causes its own issues. On top of that, their efforts don't go unnoticed by other supernatural forces, and before long, the teens have to solve the mystery of their own passing, or risk losing everything—again. If you've also been waiting for this Pulitzer Prize-winning author to put out a novel, we can promise this rollicking adventure is worth it.

Anita de Monte Laughs Last: A Novel

Anita de Monte Laughs Last: A Novel

When Raquel, a first-gen art history student starts dating a well-connected older beau, her social world gets unexpectedly rocked. And then the rest of her life follows, when she discovers the long-forgotten artist Anita de Monte, who died suspiciously decades before. She can't help but notice strange parallels between Anita's life and her own, in this beautifully woven tale that dances between timelines as it examines who gets access to the hallowed halls of art and legacy.

RELATED: Best Books By Latinx Writers

Expiration Dates by Rebecca Serle

Expiration Dates by Rebecca Serle

Daphne leaves nothing to chance, where her love life is concerned. She can't: Every time she meets someone new, she gets a piece of paper with the length of their relationship on it. She's been dating on a deadline for decades, so when she gets a blank one after a blind date with the charming Jake, she figures he's the one. But Daphne has another secret, one that colors her ability to trust her heart, and might ruin everything. This is a romance novel that feels as sweetly predictable as the California sun, until the shocking moment that will have you reaching for the tissues—don't say we didn't warn you.

The Divorcées by Rowan Beaird

The Divorcées by Rowan Beaird

It's 1951, and divorce is illegal everywhere in the U.S. except Nevada. Women with the means decamp to that state's "divorce ranches" where they must spend six weeks to establish residency before the court will grant them their freedom. At the Golden Yarrow ranch, the ladies form the kind of uniquely tight, time-limited friendships many of us know from summer camp, complete with horseback riding, flirting with boys and card games at a nearby casino. That is, until the enigmatic Greer arrives. A darkness comes with her, one that will speed this story toward an unforgettable conclusion.

Real Americans by Rachel Khong

Real Americans by Rachel Khong

At the precipice of Y2K, Lily and Matthew fall in love. It's a tale as old as time: Lily is the broke daughter of Chinese immigrants; Matthew is the heir to a pharmaceutical company. Fast forward to 2021, and Lily is raising her son Nick alone. When Nick sets out to find his bio dad, the journey raises questions of striving and belonging, race and class, destiny and forgiveness. It's a story as American as its characters that will feel like a homecoming to many.

Headshot of Lizz Schumer

Lizz (she/her) is a senior editor at Good Housekeeping , where she runs the GH Book Club, edits essays and long-form features and writes about pets, books and lifestyle topics. A journalist for almost two decades, she is the author of Biography of a Body and Buffalo Steel. She also teaches journalism as an adjunct professor at New York University's School of Professional Studies and creative nonfiction at the Muse Writing Center, and coaches with the New York Writing Room. 

preview for Good Housekeeping US Section: Life

@media(max-width: 64rem){.css-1yxmhzw:before{background-repeat:no-repeat;bottom:-0.2rem;color:#ffffff;content:'_';display:inline-block;height:1.25rem;line-height:1;margin-bottom:0.5rem;margin-right:0.625rem;position:relative;width:1.25rem;}.loaded .css-1yxmhzw:before{background-image:url(/_assets/design-tokens/goodhousekeeping/static/images/Clover.5c7a1a0.svg);}}@media(min-width: 48rem){.loaded .css-1yxmhzw:before{background-image:url(/_assets/design-tokens/goodhousekeeping/static/images/Clover.5c7a1a0.svg);}} All the Best Books to Read Next

best romance books

The Best New Cookbooks That Make Great Gifts

midnight is the darkest hour book cover

GH+ Reads Review: 'Midnight Is the Darkest Hour'

seafaring sexism

How Women Deal With Sexism on the Open Seas

best fall books

20 Must-Read Fall Books You'll Tear Through

best books for 2 year olds

20 Must-Have Books for 2-Year-Olds

feel good book club reviews

A Full List of Our GH Book Club Picks

best relationship books

The Best Relationship Books

affectionate father reading book with adorable mixed race daughter

Expert-Picked Books for 4-Year-Olds

couple reading food recipe

The Best Healthy Cookbooks

reba mcentire book not that fancy interview

Read Our Reba McEntire Interview

kids' book awards

The Winners of Our 2023 Kids' Book Awards

Cookie banner

We use cookies and other tracking technologies to improve your browsing experience on our site, show personalized content and targeted ads, analyze site traffic, and understand where our audiences come from. To learn more or opt-out, read our Cookie Policy . Please also read our Privacy Notice and Terms of Use , which became effective December 20, 2019.

By choosing I Accept , you consent to our use of cookies and other tracking technologies.

Lego Chewbacca reads a Lego book to a lounging Lego Rose Tico

Filed under:

The best video game books of 2023

You are bound to find the perfect book for you

If you buy something from a Polygon link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement .

Share this story

  • Share this on Facebook
  • Share this on Twitter
  • Share All sharing options

Share All sharing options for: The best video game books of 2023

You might be familiar with the small collection of books about video games that appear in every Barnes & Noble. Blood, Sweat, and Pixels . Masters of Doom . Console Wars . The endless pile of novels set in the Halo universe . And if you’re at a particularly cool bookstore, they might even have Rise of the Videogame Zinesters .

These books have become Gamer Canon for good reason, but every year we get a new crop of great game books that, for whatever reason, don’t get the attention they deserve.

So this year, with the holidays approaching, we want to spotlight the best new video game books of 2023. The collection spans from academia to arcades, including short but powerful calls for industry change and long and relaxed tours of forgotten retro gems.

Have you read something new that’s not on the list, but should be? Let us know in the comments!

A Handheld History

Sonic escapes Dr. Robotnik in beautiful custom art from Lost in Cult’s book A Handheld History.

  • $36 at Amazon
  • $37 at
  • $36 at Target

Lost in Cult produces some of the most beautiful designs in the video game book space. The art avoids the retro cliches, the text is clean and readable, and the games get a presentation that’s pristine but never sterile. Cracking the spine of a Lost in Cult book is like visiting a new modern art museum that hasn’t given way to curatorial stuffiness and decades of established policy.

A Handheld History , in my humble opinion, is its most immediately appealing work. I mean, just look at that layout for Sonic the Hedgehog: Triple Trouble , a game I’m not so certain warrants this much TLC. That’s the trick of Lost in Cult, though. It treats every game with the affection and interest otherwise reserved for the most die-hard fans.

The Stuff Games Are Made Of

A collection of geometric objects rest on sand dunes on the cover of The Stuff Games Are Made of by Pippin Barr.

  • $30 at Amazon
  • $36 at

You can understand a lot about the work of Pippin Barr by reading the description of his latest project: “ Super Mario Nothing is kind of a ROM hack of Super Mario Bros. for the NES. Except the hack is to delete everything while making sure the game still runs.”

Barr falls somewhere between satirist, court jester, and intellectual provocateur, though none of those quite fit. While Barr’s games often have simple premises, his philosophy is both richer and trickier to summarize. That’s why I couldn’t wait to dig into Barr’s latest book. The Stuff Games Are Made Of sees the game designer flexing his equally powerful writing muscles, taking us behind the scenes of his own games to provide insights into how and why people make games.

Game Changers: The Video Game Revolution

Dance Dance Revolution and Dark Souls appear in the art book Game Changers.

  • $52 at Amazon
  • $56 at

Game Changers is the video game coffee table book for folks who got into gaming as adults and want a smart, meaty, mature introductory course to gaming history. Released by art book publisher Phaidon, with a forward from the author, journalist, and podcaster Simon Parkin, the book covers 300 of the most influential video games, providing thoughtful context alongside beautiful photography, art, and composition.

The book features a number of tools to ease newcomers into the genre’s jargon and coterie of characters, including a glossary of keywords, a bundle of bios, and a plethora of glossy screenshots and photos. I’m especially fond of the selection of games, which is neither too obscure nor too familiar. For a book like this, of course, Madden and Grand Theft Auto should make the cut. And it’s no surprise to see artsy classics like Journey .

But am I giddy to find Spelunky and P.T. ? Absolutely. In fact, the book managed to surprise me, a hardened video game journalist. I had never heard of OXO , a piece of software released in the U.K. in 1952 that bends the definition of a video game and stretches its history years earlier than its commonly understood beginning of Tennis for Two in 1958. Now I’m playing it on an emulator!

This is the perfect beginner’s guide for people who know it’s never too late to start a new hobby.

Like a Hurricane: An Unofficial Oral History of Street Fighter II

A photo of interviews in Polygon’s oral history of Street Fighter 2.

  • $30 at Polygon

Yes, this is cheating, but we genuinely believe our own book, Like a Hurricane , is one of the best original works published this year. Polygon’s own Matt Leone spent years collecting the oral histories of the Street Fighter games, most crucially Street Fighter II – a member of The Strong National Museum of Play’s Video Game Hall of Fame . Our book features insights from over 60 people involved in the creation of the Street Fighter series, along with beautiful art. And the design – made through our collaboration with Read-Only Memory — is striking.

Plus, we have a special exclusive offer at Polygon’s merch store! We collaborated with Street Fighter musicians Yoko Shimomura and Harumi Fujita to compose original songs. The tracks have been printed on a custom two-sided vinyl record !

The CRPG Book

The cover of The CRPG Books is filled with fantastical creatures and heroes

  • $45 at Bitmap Books

OK, this isn’t technically new — The CRPG Book was published in 2019 — but 2023 is this book’s time to shine.

Baldur’s Gate 3 is the surprise mega-hit of 2023, winning over countless fans who’d never heard the acronym CRPG, aka computer role-playing game. If, like me, adventuring in the Sword Coast has awoken an interest in the classic genre, then I can think of no better book than the aptly titled The CRPG Book from Bitmap.

For newcomers, the book provides a shame-free introduction to iconic titles and franchises like Fallout, Ultima, The Bard’s Tale, and Nethack. As for hardcore fans, the tome still offers plenty of surprises and discoveries. Did you know about Cobra Mission: Panic in Cobra City , the first erotic Japanese RPG to be localized into English? In fights, you have to rapidly drag your weapon into the enemy’s body parts.

This is the sort of book you keep on your desk for a year, occasionally opening to a random page and learning about — let’s give this a try — Superhero League of Hoboken and Al-Qadim: The Genie’s Curse . With a genre this storied and diverse, there’s always something new to discover. Learning about games: It’s the quest that never ends!

The Videogame Industry Does Not Exist: Why We Should Think Beyond Commercial Game Production

The cover of The Video Game Industry Does Not Exist is a low-res, digital depiction of a mountainside.

  • $40 at Amazon
  • $48 at
  • $40 at Barnes & Noble

Does it irritate you when a talk show host or news anchor insipidly announces that video games make more money than the film industry — as if that’s the metric the medium needed to justify its artistic merits? If yes, Brendan Keogh’s book will soothe you.

Keogh questions the tendency among both game designers and players to substitute all of video game culture for “the video game industry.” With insights from over 400 developers from across the world, he inspects the influence of capital on video game development and conceptualizes alternatives as first and foremost a cultural and social activity, not an economic one.

Of all the books, Keogh’s is the most traditionally academic. It’s also the book that I found, in the best ways, eager to challenge my assumptions about what it means to love and celebrate video games in the era of AAA mega-budgets. As Keogh has said, this is an intervention.

Here’s a great interview with Keogh to give you a taste of what this excellent book has to offer.

Video Game of the Year

A person clings onto falling Tetris tetrominoes in Jordan Minor’s book Video Game of the Year.

  • $25 at Amazon
  • $26 at
  • $28 at Barnes & Noble

One of the benefits of appreciating a comparably young form of entertainment is the speed of progress. Every year since Pong debuted in 1972 has had at least one new release that made a permanent impact on the medium. Text gives way to pixels and polygons. Story evolves from marketing copy on the back of an NES box to procedurally generated open-world adventures. Two-player co-op plants a seed that grows into MMOs.

Jordan Minor’s Video Game of the Year reflects on 45 years of video game history by picking one game per year and providing concise insights into its cultural significance. Minor also invited a small battalion of game critics and journalists to provide some additional insight, so the reader gets the bonus of hearing from folks like Jason Schreier, Rebekah Valentine, and Blessing Adeoye Jr. (and maybe a surprise Polygon writer appearance, too!).

With an abundance of charming art, Video Game of the Year stands somewhere between history and coffee table book, making it an easy option this holiday for anybody in your life who loves games.

The Beauty of Games

The cover for Frank Lantz’s The Beauty of Games is orange dots over a pastoral painting.

  • $22 at Amazon
  • $23 at
  • $25 at Barnes & Noble

Full disclosure: I worked with author Frank Lantz at NYU Game Center, the video game program he founded and oversaw for over a decade. He’s also helped design two of my favorite games of all time: Drop7 and Universal Paperclips . And his lectures in the mid-’00s played a part in inspiring me to dedicate my life, in large part, to this medium. Needless to say, I’m bringing some bias.

That said, what I appreciate most about Lantz is how he communicates with such clarity and passion that even when I disagree with him (which I do with some frequency!) I still relish the opportunity to see the world through his eyes. Sometimes he changes my mind. Other times, I come away more resolute than ever that I’m right. But I always step away more enthusiastic about this weird collision of media we call an art form.

The Beauty of Games is, sure enough, about the beauty of games. Lantz invites the reader to think about what games (and other mediums) do to us, whether it’s profound, pointless, or a bit of both. Forget whether or not games are art. What do they make you feel?

The aforementioned journalist Simon Parkin recently invited Lantz onto his podcast, My Perfect Console , where the two discussed Lantz’s career, from the early days of sponcon video games to academia to what’s next.

The Art of the Box

Art from retro action video games in Art of the Box by Bitmap Books.

  • $44 at Bitmap Books

Why make an art book about the art that sold video games, rather than the video games themselves? Well, The Art of the Box suggests the artwork that caught the eyes of gamers in the ’70s through the ’90s served a greater purpose than marketing.

In these early days of gaming, players needed their imagination to fill in the gaps of text adventures and impressionistic pixel graphics. Great box art gave those imaginations a launching pad.

The book is divided by artist, featuring biographies and portfolios for 26 cover artists. Though you might not be familiar with names like Ken Macklin and Susumu Matsushita, you will know the titles of games covered, from Castlevania to Diablo .

NES Endings Compendium Vol. 1: 1985-89

The cover for NES Endings Compendium features art inspired by classic retro games.

  • $35 at Limited Run Games

Here’s a book that provides exactly what it promises: descriptions of roughly 200 NES game endings .

It would be easy for a book that describes the ending of video games that hardly had stories to become repetitive and tedious, but author Rey Esteban has an infectious love both for these classic games and their era of game magazines.

Esteban takes a free-flowing approach to the entries rather than fitting each into a template. Some are straightforward descriptions, others read like comics, one riffs on the freeze-frame post-credits of 1980s teen comedies. The pages have been loaded with cheeky writing, like describing the story of a game called Trojan as “pretty spartan.”

Esteban pairs each entry with gobs of screenshots. For example, the Bionic Commando entry spans two pages, with eight screenshots of 8-bit Hitler’s head exploding: four screenshots from the game and four pop-art variants to “make Andy Warhol proud.” You’ll find the passwords that unlock secret endings, sidebars contrasting the differences between the American and Japanese versions of games, and even some original pixel art.

But the reason to read this book is stated on the first page. Seeing the ending of a single NES game is difficult and takes a ton of time. However, flipping through the pages of this book on your couch — easy peasy.

Doom Guy: Life in First Person

A screenshot of Doom (1993) in which the player faces four floating Cacodemons in an underground level

  • $26 at Amazon
  • $28 at
  • $30 at Barnes & Noble

David Kushner’s Masters of Doom is arguably the most popular work of nonfiction about video game development. The story follows the creators of Doom from their early days as heavy-metal-loving tinkerers to their brief reign as kings of popular culture with the rise of the modern first-person shooter.

Doom Guy offers the one thing Kushner’s book couldn’t: a direct line into John Romero’s brain meat. Written by the gaming luminary and Doom co-creator, Doom Guy is a rare video game biography. Games history has regrettably few examples of an accomplished game creator reflecting on their life, but between this book and Reggie Fils-Aimé’s Disrupting the Game , that trend may be shifting.

If you want the best gaming memoir (not released in 2023), my pick is Ask Iwata , a pocket-sized collection of wisdom from the late Satoru Iwata, former Nintendo CEO.

From Ants to Zombies: Six Decades of Video Game Horror

An image of Slaughterhouse spans two pages in the book From Ants to Zombies: Six Decades of Video Game Horror.

  • $42 at Bitmap Books

The latest tome from Bitmap Books is like a telephone book’s worth of horror games, from 13 Ghosts to Zombie Raid . I like to think of myself as well read in the horror game genre, but I repeatedly learned about decades-old games like Forbidden Forest and Shark Jaws , the latter an unlicensed Jaws arcade game that had “JAWS” in huge print with an itty-bitty “SHARK” preceding it.

For a book on horror games that’s stuffed with photos and screenshots, From Ants to Zombies is unexpectedly tasteful. You won’t find a bunch of hardcore gore. Instead, its many contributors have filled the book with theories on what makes a game terrifying and juicy bits of underdocumented history about games that go bump in the night.

I don’t know what tools Bitmap uses to create its beautiful, high-resolution images of NES pixel art that would have looked best on a postage stamp. But holy moly, its design team has a tremendous gift for making an Atari game’s title screen or a pixelated Simon Belmont look like fine art.

Loading comments...


  1. The best memoirs of 2020 to read now

    books published this year

  2. The 10 Best Books of 2014, According to Everyone

    books published this year

  3. 30 Must-Read Books for 2017

    books published this year

  4. 25 Best Novels, Memoirs, Story Collections, and Non-Fiction Books to

    books published this year

  5. 12 Most Anticipated Books of 2019

    books published this year

  6. Take a look ahead at all the upcoming releases. Find out what the most

    books published this year


  1. Number of Books Published in Europe

  2. What's the last Book You Read? (Book Recommendations)

  3. My Most Exciting Book Haul of the Year 📚


  1. New Books

    A Curse for True Love (B&N Exclusive Edition) (Once Upon a Broken Heart Series #3) by Stephanie Garber. QUICK ADD. What the River Knows (Barnes & Noble YA Book Club Edition) by Isabel Ibañez. QUICK ADD. Defiant (B&N Exclusive Edition) (Skyward Series #4) by Brandon Sanderson. QUICK ADD.

  2. New Releases in Books

    New Releases in Books #1 Iron Flame (The Empyrean, 2) Rebecca Yarros 43,965 Hardcover 33 offers from $20.29 #2 My Name Is Barbra Barbra Streisand 473 Hardcover 58 offers from $29.99 #3 Murtagh: The World of Eragon (The Inheritance Cycle) Christopher Paolini 821 Hardcover 50 offers from $20.69 #4 Fourth Wing (Special Edition) (The Empyrean, 1)

  3. The Best Books of 2022

    The Best Books of 2022 | The New Yorker The Best Books of 2022 Each week, our editors and critics recommend the most captivating, notable, brilliant, thought-provoking, and talked-about...

  4. Most popular books published in 2023

    # 1 Fourth Wing (The Empyrean, #1) Rebecca Yarros 4.64 754k ratings 1m shelvings Want to read Enter the brutal and elite world of a war college for dragon riders from USA Today bestselling author Rebecca Yarros Twenty-year-old Violet Sorrengail was supposed to enter the Scribe Quadrant, living a quiet life among books and history.

  5. Best books of the year

    3 December 2022 Best books 2022 Five of the best science fiction and fantasy books of 2022 A deep space community, a compelling critique of empire, a UFO novel like no other and more 4:00 AM...

  6. Recently Published Books

    avg rating 3.73 — 7,482 ratings — published 2017. Want to Read. Rate this book. 1 of 5 stars 2 of 5 stars 3 of 5 stars 4 of 5 stars 5 of 5 stars. Hurricane Season (Hardcover) by. Fernanda Melchor (Goodreads Author) (shelved 2 times as recently-published) avg rating 4.07 — 26,836 ratings — published 2017.

  7. The Best Books of 2022

    Stay True: A Memoir, by Hua Hsu. In this quietly wrenching memoir, Hsu recalls starting out at Berkeley in the mid-1990s as a watchful music snob, fastidiously curating his tastes and mercilessly ...

  8. The best books of 2021, according to global tastemakers

    To help readers navigate the inexhaustible list of books published this year, we've asked influential tastemakers - including writers, actors, photographers and creative directors - to share ...

  9. Most popular books published in 2022

    Colleen Hoover. 3.89. 1m ratings. 2m shelvings. Want to read. Before It Ends with Us, it started with Atlas. Colleen Hoover tells fan favorite Atlas's side of the story and shares what comes next in this long-anticipated sequel to the "glorious and touching" (USA TODAY) #1 New York Times bestseller It Ends with Us.

  10. The 100 Must-Read Books of 2022

    The 100 Must-Read Books of 2022. Gripping novels, transporting poetry, and timely nonfiction that asked us to look deeper. Andrew R. Chow, Lucy Feldman, Mahita Gajanan, Annabel Gutterman, Angela ...

  11. The best books of 2022

    Guardian critics pick the year's best fiction, politics, science, children's books and more. Tell us about your favourite books in the comments Sat 3 Dec 2022 04.00 EST Last modified on Tue 2 ...

  12. The 50 best books of the year 2022

    The 50 best books of the year 2022 By Rebecca Laurence and Lindsay BakerFeatures correspondent Sheila Heti/ Getty Images (Credit: Sheila Heti/ Getty Images) From anti-romcoms and horror to...

  13. The Best Books of 2023

    See all 70 of our Best Books of 2023 lists here. QUICK ADD. The Comfort of Crows: A Backyard Year. by Margaret Renkl. QUICK ADD. Flowers and Their Meanings: The Secret Language and History of Over 600 Blooms (A Flower Dictionary) by Karen Azoulay. QUICK ADD.

  14. Behind the Book Review's Best Books List

    Nov. 25, 2023, 6:34 a.m. ET This past week, The New York Times Book Review published its list of 100 Notable Books of 2023. On Tuesday, a handful of those titles will be named the Review's 10...

  15. From Zadie Smith to Anne Enright: 25 of the best books of the year so far

    Mrs S by K Patrick. An unnamed Australian 22-year-old "matron" arrives at an elite boarding school for girls sometime in the early 1990s. She soon becomes infatuated with Mrs S - the headmaster ...

  16. 10 Best Books of 2023

    The 10 best books of 2023, selected by Book World editors and critics ... The story begins in Mysore with a 17-year-old peasant who has a talent for carving mechanical toys, and spans decades as ...

  17. Category:Books by year

    Contents Top 1000 1100 1200 1300 1400 1500 1550 1600 1650 1700 1750 1800 1850 1900 1950 2000 Subcategories This category has the following 200 subcategories, out of 647 total. (previous page) ( next page) Anthologies by year ‎ (105 C) Children's books by year ‎ (134 C) Fiction books by year ‎ (125 C) Non-fiction books by year ‎ (289 C)

  18. 66 works of Canadian fiction to watch for in spring 2022

    When you can read it: March 1, 2022. Dimitri Nasrallah is a writer from Lebanon. He is the author of novels The Bleeds, Niko, which won the 2011 Hugh MacLennan Prize for Fiction, and Blackbodying ...

  19. The best Canadian fiction of 2021

    Her first collection of short stories, A Safe Girl to Love, was published in 2014. Fight Night by Miriam Toews. ... the Libris Award for Fiction Book of the Year, the Writers' Trust Fiction Prize ...

  20. Most Rated Book By Year (233 books)

    Patrick Rothfuss two books The Name of the Wind and The Wise Man's Fear are fine popular books. Name of the Wind was published in 2007 and has 498 thousand ratings. This was the same year that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was published and it has 1.9 MILLION ratings. So Name of the Wind will be removed.

  21. Canadian Authors Pick Their Favourite Books of 2022

    From historical fiction to arresting poetry, the best books of the year picked by some of the country's leading writers December 16, 2022 January 3, 2023 - by The Walrus Staff The Walrus Staff Updated 14:59, Jan. 3, 2023 | Published 13:41, Dec. 16, 2022

  22. Books Published by Year

    This list shows all the books in the WWEnd database first published in a specified year. The list is defaulted to 2023, All Genres, and All Book Types. Use the form below to modify the list. Change the year, genre, and book type and you can even specify award nominated books only. The year published is the first year of publication only. 1. 2.

  23. How Many Books Are Published Each Year? [2023 Statistics]

    In 2021, there were about 2.3 million new self-published books in the US, marking a decline compared to the preceding two years. Children's Publishing remains a popular and thriving sector, with a projected growth towards a $11.1 billion market value by 2027, up from $9.086 billion in 2020.

  24. The Globe 100: The best books of 2022

    From fiction to thrillers to graphic novels and biographies, these are the year's must-read titles. Published December 2, 2022 Updated December 11, 2022. This article was published more than 6 ...

  25. Bill Gates' Favorite Books in 2023

    Bill Gates recommends three books he found "deeply informative" this year. ... Bill Gates' annual list of recommendations—shared in a post on Gates Notes—includes three books published in 2023 ...

  26. The Canadian books we're most excited about in 2022

    When We Lost Our Heads by Heather O'Neill (HarperCollins Canada, Feb. 1) A complicated friendship between two girls in 19th-century Montreal leads to high-stakes consequences. From the Giller ...

  27. NPR's favorite books of the year

    NPR's favorite books of the year. November 24, 2023. Books on a shelf in a bookstore. (Alexander Spatari/Getty Images) NPR staff and critics have picked nearly four hundred books for all ages and ...

  28. 12 Most-Anticipated Book Releases of 2024

    By Lizz Schumer Published: Nov 26, 2023. ... Expert-Picked Books for 4-Year-Olds. The Best Healthy Cookbooks. Read Our Reba McEntire Interview. The Winners of Our 2023 Kids' Book Awards.

  29. The best video game books of 2023

    Photo: Bitmap Books. $45 at Bitmap Books. OK, this isn't technically new — The CRPG Book was published in 2019 — but 2023 is this book's time to shine. Baldur's Gate 3 is the surprise ...