My Bookish Top 20 Releasing in 2019 (Jan - June)

Thursday, 3 January 2019

2018 was the year I branched out and read a whole lot more non-fiction, discovering some gems along the way which changed the way I look at life - and isn't that what the joy of reading is all about? This year I've got a heap of new books from my Christmas haul written by some of my favourites (think more Alain de Botton, Brene Brown and good old 'books about books'), but there's always more fiction to be discovered in this next chapter with the start of the new year!


Sally Hepworth has been compared to the likes of Liane Moriarty, and it's great to see Australian women making a hit with their novels. I really enjoyed The Family Next Door so it'll be interesting to see what domestic drama she's concocted in The Mother-in-Law.  I'm all for a moving contemporary, and The Truths and Triumphs of Grace Atherton, centred around a woman who owns a violin shop and faces changes in her relationships while learning some hard truths, seems sure to deliver a compelling read. Can a real relationship develop through text messages? In Emergency Contact, that's the question, and I'm keen to see how it plays out since this book has already created some hype in the YA blogging sphere. I've mentioned it before, and I'll say it again - The Dreamers is a top pick of mine this year! Karen Thompson Walker's writing style captivated me in The Age of Miracles, so I'm ready to see how this latest release compares - it's already been placed in the same category as Station Eleven, Never Let Me Go, and I'd even say some of Cat Patrick's works too. 


Heart of the Grass Tree by debut Australian author Molly Murn is a historical novel about mothers, daughters and the bonds between people and the land they've grown up on. A YA historical novel set at the cusp on the French Revolution, Gita Trelease's first novel Enchantée sounds like a vibrant exploration of Paris at the time.


Lauren James was a success thanks to her 'The Next Together' duology, and The Quiet at the end of the World promises another love story with a sci-fi twist. It's amazing to see more upcoming #LoveOzYA novels hitting the shelves this year, and as a fan of short story collections I'm so excited to read Underdog! Dig by A.S. King, whose books have been described as involving 'imitable surrealism and insight into teenage experience', seems to offer a somewhat twisted yet intriguing family saga about generational divides and the ideas which define them. 


I was fortunate enough to receive an advance reader copy of The Van Apfel Girls are Gone from the 2018 HarperCollins Christmas Roadshow event, and the 'part mystery, part coming-of-age' elements give this book the potential to be super addictive. The cover of The Psychology of Time Travel originally drew me in, but it's the premise of stretching reality and altering it beyond recognition which makes it something I'll definitely have to pick up. Katie Lowe is coming out with The Furiesexploring the deep unsettling undertones of life at an elite girls' school, and has an unexplained death as the backdrop to a thriller reminiscent of Girls on Fire. Suzanne Young, author of The Program series, is returning once again to the YA scene - Girls With Sharp Sticks has been compared to 'The Stepford Wives' for teens with a hint of 'The Handmaid's Tale' - a combination like that makes it hard to miss! 


I actually haven't read anything by Cecelia Ahern before, but a witty short story collection is always a good place to start so Roar has made this list! After loving the heartwarming and quirky novel that is Happiness for Humans last year, I was interested to find a book with a similar take on whether a piece of equipment can predict what's best for us - The Happiness Machine. A suspenseful read complete with obsession, twists and lies, The Cliff House will hopefully deliver on an atmospheric page-turner. Not to be out-done, Aussie author Wendy James is back with another thriller in The Accusation, right off the back of her acclaim with The Golden Child


The rich-girl-clique trope could be given new life in Bunny, a searing novel about social acceptance within the ranks of an elite university. A change of pace, Confession with Blue Horses offers a glimpse into the end of Communism in East Berlin, complete with hidden family secrets waiting to be uncovered. Finally, an endearing meet-cute story never gets old, and Our Stop looks to be the perfect mix of funny, cute and romantic. 

Over to you - what books are you most looking forward to in 2019?