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22 December Releases We’re Excited About

And what you can read in the meantime

By Ashly Moore Sheldon • November 28, 2023

Reading ahead

Our TBR piles may be taking over the house, but we keep finding new books we want to add to the mix. From fabulous fiction to unique art books to captivating kid-lit, December’s most anticipated list is filled with must-reads! Here are 22 upcoming releases across a mix of genres. These titles are available for preorder, but in the meantime, peruse our recommendations for similar reads that you can enjoy now.

Literary fiction 

The Wildest Sun by Asha Lemmie (Dec. 5)

Forced from her home in postwar Paris, aspiring writer Delphine Auber seizes the opportunity to search for the father she has never known—a quest complicated by the fact that she believes him to be the elusive and iconic Ernest Hemingway. A dazzling, unexpected, and transportive story about coming into adulthood.

What to read first:  Fifty Words for Rain by Asha Lemmie

The End of the World is a Cul de Sac: Stories by Louise Kennedy (Dec. 5)

Sarah, abandoned by her partner, sits alone in their brand new house. Peter raises his daughter in rural seclusion. Orla faces the strange revenge of her husband. The political is intertwined with the personal in these stories about ordinary lives getting caught up in a wider, national drama.

What to read first:  Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage: Stories by Alice Munro

Mystery, thriller, and horror 

Never Lie by Freida McFadden (Dec. 5)

Newlyweds Tricia and Ethan are searching for the house of their dreams. They think they've found it when they visit the remote manor that formerly belonged to a renowned psychiatrist who vanished mysteriously years ago. But when a winter storm traps them at the estate, the house begins to lose its appeal.

What to read first: The Housemaid by Freida McFadden

Manner of Death by Robin Cook (Dec. 5)

This standalone medical thriller centers on fan favorites, husband-and-wife medical examiners, Jack Stapleton and Laurie Montgomery. As Jack recovers from a near-death confrontation with a serial killer, the mysterious death of Laurie's colleague introduces a dangerous new inquiry.

What to read first: Night Shift by Robin Cook

Sci-fi and fantasy

The Serpent & The Wings of NIght by Carissa Broadbent (Dec. 5)

Oraya is the adopted human daughter of the Nightborn vampire king. Her only chance of survival is to demand her place in a world designed to kill her. The Hunger Games meets vampires in this epic fantasy romance of dark magic, and bloodthirsty intrigue. Book #1 in a new series from the bestselling author.

What to read first: Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros

Chainsaw Man, Vol. 13 by Tatsuki Fujimoto (Dec. 5)

This dark and twisted manga series has inspired a hit anime series. The story follows Denji, an impoverished young man who makes a deal to fuse his body with that of Pochita, his pet devil. This gives him the ability to transform parts of his body into chainsaws.

What to read first: Chainsaw Man, Vol. 2 by Tatsuki Fujimoto

The Complete Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman (Dec. 12)

In this deluxe boxed set, the beloved author joins forces with comics legend P. Craig Russell to breathe new life into the ancient Norse stories by taking readers through the creation of the Nine Worlds to the epic origin and adventures of Thor, Odin, and Loki all the way to the end of life—Ragnarök.

What to read first: American Gods, Vol. 1 by Neil Gaiman and P. Craig Russell

Ruthless Vows by Rebecca Ross (Dec. 26)

Two weeks have passed since Iris Winnow returned home bruised and heartbroken from the front, but the war is far from over. Roman is missing, and the city of Oath continues to dwell in a state of disbelief and ignorance. This intense YA romantasy concludes the Letters of Enchantment series.

What to read first: Divine Rivals by Rebecca Ross

Valdemar by Mercedes Lackey (Dec. 26)

After ten years in their new home, the exiles have settled in and are thriving, but danger still lurks in borderlands and Kordas and his people will need all the help they can get. The long-awaited story of the founding of Valdemar comes to life in book three of a trilogy from a New York Times bestselling author.

What to read first: Beyond by Mercedes Lackey

Historical fiction 

The Frozen River by Ariel Lawhon (Dec. 5)

Clever, layered, and subversive, this gripping historical mystery was inspired by the life and diary of Martha Ballard, a renowned eighteenth-century midwife. After being called in to examine the body of a man found in the frozen Kennebec River, she is drawn into an investigation into the shocking murder. 

What to read first:  The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd

The Wonder of it All by Barbara Taylor Bradford (Dec. 5)

James Falconer seems to have the world in the palm of his hand. But The Great War looms, and James decides to fight. He returns a changed man, with wounds both physical and mental. His beloved wife is dead, but a new woman returns to help nurse him back to health. Book three in the House of Falconer trilogy.

What to read first: Master of His Fate by Barbara Taylor Bradford


The Gentleman's Gambit by Evie Dunmore (Dec. 5)

Bookish suffragist Catriona Campbell is busy: An ailing estate, academic writer's block, a tense time for England's women's rights campaign—the last thing she needs is to be stuck playing host to her father's distractingly attractive young colleague, Elias. Number four in A League of Extraordinary Women.

What to read first: Bringing Down the Duke by Evie Dunmore

Heartstopper #5: A Graphic Novel by Alice Oseman (Dec. 19)

It's the newest installment in the beloved YA series that inspired the hit Netflix show. Nick and Charlie are in love. They've finally said those three little words and Charlie thinks he's ready to take their relationship to the next level. But with Nick going off to university next year, is everything about to change?

What to read first: Heartstopper #1: A Graphic Novel by Alice Oseman

The Fearless One by Lori Foster (Dec. 26)

Diah came to the Colorado Rockies for one reason: to uncover the truth behind the fire that killed her family. Clues lead her to an isolated campground where she gets a job to see who comes and goes. Getting involved with her boss is definitely not part of the plan. Book two in a sexy, edgy series.

What to read first: The Dangerous One by Lori Foster

The Cowboy Code by Diana Palmer (Dec. 26)

Get two Lone Star romances in one! One: Arabella was eighteen when she first fell for Ethan, but he turned around and married another woman. Will they have another chance at love? Two: Cool, composed rancher Harley Fowler finds his world turned upside down when a beautiful whirlwind bumps into him.

What to read first: Renegade by Diana Palmer


An Atlas of Es Devlin by Es Devlin and Andrea Lipps (Dec. 5)

This unique, sculptural volume of over 900 pages includes foldouts, cut-outs, and a range of paper types documenting over 120 iconic projects. Along with the artist's commentaries on each art work, the volume includes interviews with big-name collaborators like Hans Ulrich Obrist, Bono, and Brian Eno.

What to read first: Dalí. Les dîners de Gala by Salvador Dalí

Doll Couture by Kenneth D. King (Dec. 12)

Doll fashion has a long history within the tableau of clothing construction as the first way many people who sew started their sewing journeys. With this volume a couturier to the stars and famed designer brings his Belle Epoque sensibilities to the world of custom doll clothing construction.

What to read first: Barbie Boutique: Sew 20 Stunning Outfits for Barbie and Ken by Annabel Benilan

John Byrne's X-Men Artist's Edition by John Byrne (Dec. 19)

From one of the most influential and popular comics artists of the 1970s comes this stellar Artist's Edition—a collection for true connoisseurs! An Artist's Edition publishes scans of original art at a high resolution and prints it at the same size it was drawn. It's as if you are standing over the artist's shoulder as they work.

What to read first: Barbie Boutique: Sew 20 Stunning Outfits for Barbie and Ken by Annabel Benilan


Never After: The Missing Sword by Melissa de la Cruz (Dec. 5)

Book four in the middle grade Chronicles of Never After series finds Filomena and her friends on a quest to Camelot to find the sword of Excalibur—the only thing that can save Fil's mother, Olga, from the mysterious illness that has poisoned her body. But Camelot is not all that it seems.    

What to read first: Never After: The Thirteenth Fairy by Melissa de la Cruz

If I Were a Fish by Corook and Olivia Barton (Dec. 5)

The musicians and viral TikTok creators have adapted their signature song into a fun picture book for everyone who's ever had to navigate the highs and lows of the internet. Illustrated by the award-winning Mike Curato, this inspiring book offers the timely reminder that it's always best to be yourself.   

What to read first: One Love by Bob Marley and Cedella Marley

Hornbeam All In by Cynthia Rylant and Arthur Howard (Dec. 5)

Hornbeam is a charismatic moose who loves puzzles and potato salad and, most of all, his friends. It's three stories in one picture book as Hornbeam embarks on adventures with his friends in this new series from the creative team behind the Gooseberry Park, Motor Mouse, and the Mr. Putter & Tabby books

What to read first: Mr. Putter and Tabby Pour the Tea by Cynthia Rylant and Arthur Howard

Winter Turning: A Graphic Novel by Tui T. Sutherland (Dec. 26)

Number seven in the graphic novel adaptations of the bestselling Wings of Fire middle-grade fantasy series continues to set the world on fire! Winter and his friends set out on a dangerous quest to find Winter's sister, Icicle who has run away. Winter hopes that they'll both have a second chance to make things right.   

What to read first: The Dragonet Prophecy: A Graphic Novel by Tui T. Sutherland

Hopefully there’s something here that you want to add to your TBR list! Let us know which new books you’re most excited about this month.

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