New Books

Hooray, It’s Time for New Books!

Happy Tuesday, star bits! How is your December going so far? I have been spending a lot of time working on updating my 2024 spreadsheet of upcoming releases, and let me tell you, it is going to be an AMAZING year. I know I say it all the time, but there is nothing I love more than helping people find books they want to read. I’m so grateful you join me every week to learn about a few! For this week’s newsletter, I have three books out today that I am really looking forward to reading: a GBBO spoof, a debut steeped in West African mythology, and a chilly Victorian thriller.

At the top of my list of books to pick up for myself this week are Molly by Blake Butler, The Wildest Sun by Asha Lemmie, and Loaded: The Life (and Afterlife) of the Velvet Underground by Dylan Jones. You can hear about more fabulous books on this week’s episode of All the Books! Danika and I talked about December 2023 books that we’re excited about, including Prophet Song, Good Girls, and Game On.

cover of Dazzling by Chikodili Emelumadu; illustration done in gold, pink, and purple of leopard camouflaged by spots

Dazzling by Chikodili Emelumadu

First of all, how stunning is that cover??? It’s…dazzling. (Sorry, not sorry.) This is a fantastical story set in 1990s Nigeria and inspired by West African mythology. It’s about two young women trying to find their way after losing their fathers. Treasure meets a floating man who promises he can bring her father back from the dead — for a horrible price. And Ozoemena is wrestling with fulfilling a promise that she doesn’t want to keep, but she made it to her father before he vanished. Both these situations are going to spiral out of control, causing the girls to cross paths and have to figure out together what they are willing to pay to get what they want.

Backlist bump: The Girl with the Louding Voice by Abi Daré

The Great British Bump-Off cover

The Great British Bump-Off by John Allison, Max Sarin 

Okay, this one I actually did read and it’s great fun! It’s a send-up of the reality baking competition The Great British Bake-Off, and it’s pretty delightful. When someone poisons the most obnoxious, entitled contestant on a baking show just before they are set to start filming, the producers are sure the season is over before it starts. But contestant Shauna Wickle is determined the show must go on and convinces them to let her solve the mystery before anything else bad happens. But with so many suspects, it isn’t going to be (over) easy! (I realize I just wrote that whole paragraph when all I needed to say was that one of the judges is a cat. Automatic buy, lol.)

Backlist bump: Giant Days by John Allison, Max Sarin 

cover of where the dead wait by ally wilkes

Where the Dead Wait by Ally Wilkes

Ally Wilkes sure likes setting thrillers in cold climates! Her first novel was survival horror on an Antarctic expedition. And this one is about two scary Victorian polar expeditions. Like The Endurance, but with more horror! And who doesn’t want a little historical horror for the holidays? William Day is a disgraced ship captain famous for a failed polar expedition in which several crew members were eaten. When his second-in-command from that expedition goes missing in the same area thirteen years later, Day sees it as an opportunity to redeem himself if he can find the missing man. But this trip may prove to be just as doomed as the first. Because as he will learn, the past haunts him still, and the dead are very patient.

Backlist bump: All the White Spaces by Ally Wilkes

It’s happening, readers — we’re bringing paperbacks! Whether you (or a reader you know and love) hate carrying around bulky hardcovers, you’re on a budget, you want a wider range of recommendations or all of the above, you can now get a paperback subscription from TBR, curated just for you by one of our Bibliologists. The holidays are here, and we’ve got three different levels for gifting (to yourself or others) to suit every budget. Get all the details at

orange cat sitting in a silver mixing bowl; photo by Liberty Hardy

This week, I am reading The Other Valley by Scott Alexander Howard and The Kamogawa Food Detectives by Hasashi Kashiwai, Jesse Kirkwood (translator). In non-book things…well, it’s pretty much been all books this week, lol. I’m trying to catch up after being sick for so long! The song stuck in my head this week is “It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue” by Bryan Ferry. And here is your weekly cat picture: It never looks like Zevon could really fit his whole body in that bowl, but I promise you it’s true.

Thank you, as always, for joining me each Tuesday as I rave about books! I am wishing you all a wonderful rest of your week, whatever situation you find yourself in now. And yay, books! See you next week. – XO, Liberty