A month-by-month guide to the most exciting fiction, non-fiction and children’s books out in 2022.
A month-by-month guide to the most exciting fiction, non-fiction and children’s books out in 2022.
Wahala by Nikki May (6 Jan)
Set to be one of the most talked-about books of the year, this debut novel is an explosive tale of love, race and family. Fearlessly political about class, colourism and clothes, Wahala follows three mixed-race friends living in London and is soon to be a major BBC series.
The Book of Sand by Theo Clare (6 Jan)
In this unique, compelling novel a group of extraordinary characters are driven to the very limit of their endurance in two very different worlds. Willing to fight to the death, only the strongest will survive. An audacious standout, The Book of Sand is lyrical and devastating.
Pandora by Susan Stokes-Chapman (27 Jan)
An immersive and gripping historical novel set in Georgian London, the discovery of a mysterious ancient Greek vase sets in motion conspiracies, revelations and romance. Atmospheric and addictive, Pandora is a story of secrets and deception, fate and hope.
Why Has Nobody Told Me This Before? by Dr Julie Smith (6 Jan)
Drawing on years of experience as a clinical psychologist, online sensation Dr Julie Smith shares her expert advice and powerful coping techniques in this warm, insightful book. Written in bite-sized entries on topics from anxiety to low mood to motivation, it tackles issues that affect us all and offers practical solutions to help.
Bigger Than Us by Fearne Cotton (20 Jan)
In her latest book, Fearne Cotton shares the insight of wise minds and what they can teach us about happiness, connection and hope. For anyone seeking a path through life, Bigger Than Us offers inspiration for tapping into the strength and comfort around us and for releasing the blocks and insecurities that hold us back.
Worn by Sofi Thanhauser (25 Jan)
Tracing the origins of garment-making through time and around the world, Worn explores the social, economic and environmental impact of our clothes. Through the stories of linen, cotton, silk, synthetics and wool, it looks beyond care labels to show how clothes reveal the truth about what we really care about.
The Lost Sounds by Robert Macfarlane, Jackie Morris and Chris Watson
From woodland to moorland to the sea, Britain is home to a vast array of natural settings – each with its own unique sounds. With a foreword by Robert Macfarlane, artwork by Jackie Morris and a fascinating ‘making of’ interview with sound recordist Chris Watson, The Lost Sounds is an immersive natural listening experience, taking you across the UK through the sounds of nature.
Children's and YA
Peppa Pig: Peppa’s Royal Party (6 Jan)
It’s the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, and Peppa Pig and her friends have been invited to the royal garden party! They’re so excited but when they arrive, there’s been a huge mix up. Can Peppa help save the day?
The Green Planet by Leisa Stewart-Sharpe & Kim Smith (6 Jan)
Wannabe naturalists will love this non-fiction book that delves into the hidden world of plants. From caring for each other to tricking animals into working for them, plants are truly incredible.
Leonora Bolt: Secret Inventor by Lucy Brandt & Gladys Jose (20 Jan)
Leonora Bolt is only nine years old but she’s already a super talented inventor. She loves spending her days in her top-secret laboratory. But her Uncle Luther has been watching her closely, and has an evil plan for Leonora’s greatest invention yet…
Black Cake by Charmaine Wilkerson (3 Feb)
Juggling lives and crossing continents, Black Cake is an extraordinary story of how the inheritance of secrets, betrayal and memoires can shape a family for generations. Soon to be a major Hulu series produced by Oprah, this unforgettable debut is as moving as it is delicious.
The Herd by Emily Edwards (3 Feb)
A thought-provoking novel set to spark hot debates, The Herd is about two best friends. Godmothers to each other’s daughters, little do they know they differ radically over one very important issue. When one of them, afraid of being judged, tells what is supposed to be a harmless white lie, the consequences are catastrophic.
When We Were Birds by Ayanna Lloyd Banwo (10 Feb)
In When We Were Birds we meet a down-on-his-luck gravedigger and a woman whose mother is dying. Their destinies intertwined, both have something that the other needs. Rich with magic and wisdom, it is an exuberant tale of loss and renewal that explores what it means to love and be loved.
Again, Rachel by Marian Keyes (17 Feb)
Twenty-five years after the iconic bestseller Rachel’s Holiday burst into our lives, Rachel is back in Marian Keyes’ hilarious, heart-warming sequel. These days Rachel thought she was settled… but with the reappearance of a man she’d once loved, is she about to discover that no matter what our age, everything can change?
Run And Hide by Pankaj Mishra (24 Feb)
Run and Hide is the story of three friends who soar from humble beginnings to sky-high success in an age of upheaval and breakdown. But someone is about to pay for their many transgressions. A searing examination of rampant materialism and spiritual bankruptcy, it is a shimmering tale for our times.
Otherlands by Thomas Halliday (1 Feb)
Journey back in time to the dawn of complex life with award-winning palaeobiologist Thomas Halliday’s staggering history of life on Earth. An exhilarating exploration of the worlds that were here before ours, Otherlands immerses us in a series of distant eras and ancient landscapes.
Are You Really OK? by Stacey Dooley (3 Feb)
In this powerful book, Stacey Dooley opens up the conversation about mental health in young people, to challenge the stigma and stereotypes around it. Working in collaboration with medical experts, campaigners and charities, she talks to those directly affected to help tell their stories and shine a light on the factors that play a part.
Block, Delete, Move On by LalalaLetMeExplain (10 Feb)
Good news: it’s not you, it’s them. This is not a dating book that promises to find you a person to love; instead, it will help you to identify the troublesome ones before it’s too late. It will empower you to recognise your worth and see that it’s perfectly possible to be contentedly single, too.
Children's and YA
Bluey: Grannies (3 Feb)
Bluey and her sister Bingo have decided to dress up as grannies. But in the middle of their game, they come across a very important question: can grannies dance? This book is perfect for fans of the hit Aussie TV series.
Hey Duggee: The World Book Day Badge (17 Feb)
The Squirrels are trying to decide which book they’d like Duggee to read to celebrate World Book Day. Trouble is they can’t seem to make up their minds! Should they choose a story about a clown or a detective? Or should they just make up their own story?
Rocket Rules: Ten Little Ways to Think Big! by Nathan Bryon & Dapo Adeola (17 Feb)
Rocket from Nathan Bryon and Dapo Adeola’s award-winning story Look Up! is back and this time, she’s got ten rules for living life in the best way possible. Created for World Book Day 2022, this book will inspire young readers to think big.
The Promise by Damon Galgut (3 March)
Winner of the 2021 Booker Prize, The Promise charts the crash and burn of a white South African family. As time passes, one question hovers over them: can you ever escape the repercussions of a broken promise? In this confident, deft and quietly powerful novel, sharp and tender emotional truths hit home.
The School for Good Mothers by Jessamine Chan (3 March)
In this timely, remarkable debut, the state has decided that a mother is not fit to care for her daughter and must be re-trained. Soon, mothers everywhere will be re-educated. Impossible to put down, The School for Good Mothers is an explosive novel about love and the pressures of perfectionism, parenthood and privilege.
Run Rose Run by Dolly Parton and James Patterson (7 March)
From America’s beloved superstar and one of its great storytellers comes an exciting thriller about a young singer-songwriter on the rise – and on the run. Desperate to escape her troubled past, she’s determined to do whatever it takes to survive.
Stepping Up by Sarah Turner (17 March)
When an unspeakable tragedy turns Beth’s life upside down, it’s not long before she feels seriously out of her depth. But with the help of her best friend and neighbour, this time she’s determined she’s not giving up. Funny and tender, it is a story about digging deep and finding magic in things that were there all along.
French Braid by Anne Tyler (24 March)
The major new novel from Anne Tyler, French Braid is a brilliantly perceptive, painfully true and funny journey deep into one family’s foibles, from the 1950s right up to the changed world of today. Faultless and profound, it is a moving meditation on the small moments that can make up a life and shape the future.
Yinka, Where Is Your Huzband? By Lizzie Damilola Blackburn (31 March)
This hotly anticipated debut is total joy to read. When Yinka’s cousin gets engaged, she forms a plan to find herself a date. Warm, witty and bursting with charm, it’s a story of friendship, family, romance – and learning to love yourself.
Ammu by Asma Khan (17 March)
Asma Khan’s Ammu, her mother, is the centre of their family. This book is a tribute to the simple home-cooking from her kitchen in Calcutta. These Indian dishes will bring warmth to your kitchen when you need a quick meal to share with family and friends – food to comfort, restore and nourish.
Every Family Has A Story by Julia Samuel (17 March)
Every Family Has A Story sees bestselling psychotherapist Julia Samuel turn from her work with individuals to sessions with a wide variety of families. Diving deep into eight case studies, she analyses a range of issues including separation, step-relationships, leaving home and loss. Showing how there can be forgiveness and learning amidst trauma and hardship, this is an honest and compassionate meditation on what we inherit and how we can create the families we wish for.
The Shame Machine by Cathy O’Neil (22 March)
In this revelatory book, Cathy O’Neil argues that shame is being weaponized by governments and corporations to attack the most vulnerable. With clarity and nuance, she dissects the relationship between shame and power. Who does the system serve? And, most importantly, how can we all fight back?
Horizons by James Poskett (24 March)
Horizons is a radical retelling of the history of science. Challenging both the existing Eurocentric narrative and our perceptions of revered individuals, it also celebrates the work of scientists neglected by history. In this ambitious, remarkable read, James Poskett reveals that scientific advancement is, and has always been, a global endeavour.
A Line Above the Sky by Helen Mort (24 March)
A Line Above the Sky blends memoir and nature writing to ask why humans are drawn to danger, and how we can find freedom in pushing our limits. It is a visceral love letter to losing oneself in physicality, whether climbing a mountain or bringing a child into the world, and an unforgettable celebration of womanhood in all its forms.
The Ship Asunder by Thomas Nancollas (31 March)
In this moving and original new history, Tom Nancollas goes in search of 11 relics that together tell the story of Britain at sea. From the swallowtail prow of a Bronze Age vessel to a stone ship moored at Baroque quayside, each one illuminates a distinct phase of our adventures upon the waves and brings us closer to the people, places and vessels that made a maritime nation.
Children's and YA
Gretel the Wonder Mammoth by Kim Hillyard (3 Mar)
After waking up and breaking free from her icy shell, Gretel learns she is the last surviving mammoth in the world. Everyone wants to meet her! But Gretel soon feels overwhelmed and isn’t sure how to talk to her friends about it… This is a sweet story about overcoming anxiety.
The Tale of Peter Rabbit Picture Book by Beatrix Potter (3 Mar)
It’s Peter Rabbit’s 120th birthday this year! And to celebrate, we’re releasing this special picture book edition of Beatrix Potter’s classic tale. It includes all the original drawings and text; it’s just set out in a new format for little children.
The Last Firefox by Lee Newbery and Laura Catalán (3 Mar)
Charlie Challinor has been finding life a bit scary lately. But then he is made guardian of a firefox called Cadno, and things get a whole lot scarier. A wicked hunter is looking for Cadno, so it’s up to Charlie to find the bravery and strength he never thought he had.
Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus (5 April)
Meet the unconventional, uncompromising Elizabeth Zott. In this fresh, funny and tender debut novel, we follow chemist Elizabeth through love, motherhood and TV stardom. An iconic heroine teaching women to challenge the status quo – she’s sure to leave you quite changed, too.
Companion Piece by Ali Smith (7 April)
A celebration of companionship in all its timeless and contemporary, spellbinding and shapeshifting forms, Companion Piece is the follow-up to Ali Smith’s extraordinary Seasonal Quartet. A set of four novels – Autumn, Winter, Spring and Summer which were written and published in as close as possible to real time, between 2016 and 2020, providing commentary on world events.
Elizabeth Finch by Julian Barnes (14 April)
In the latest novel from Julian Barnes, a former student unpacks his teacher’s old notebooks and remembers her uniquely inquisitive mind. A truly original story, it’s also a loving tribute to philosophy, a careful evaluation of history and an invitation to think for ourselves.
No Less The Devil by Stuart MacBride (28 April)
It’s been seventeen months since the Bloodsmith butchered his first victim and Operation Maypole is still no nearer to catching him. Now isn’t the time to get distracted by other cases, but Detective Sergeant Lucy McVeigh soon finds herself without much choice. A dark, gritty and compulsive thriller, it’s a must-read for crime fiction fans.
Theatre of Marvels by Lianne Dillsworth (28 April)
Theatre of Marvels is the story of a Black, British actress’ rise to stardom – and what comes next. A deliciously immersive tale, it whisks you on an unforgettable journey across Victorian London in a bold exploration of race, class and gothic spectacle.
The Journey of Humanity by Oded Galor (7 April)
A landmark, radically uplifting account of our species’ progress from one of the world’s pre-eminent thinkers, The Journey of Humanity offers breakthrough insights into the power of diversity and our capacity to tackle climate change. Its hopeful vision contains the keys not only to the thriving of our species but to our survival.
Emotion by Design by Greg Hoffman (7 April)
Join Greg Hoffman, Nike’s former Chief Marketing Officer, as he helps craft the company’s iconic campaigns for Ronaldo and Serena, Olympic Games and World Cup finals. In this part-guidebook part-memoir, his insights offer a revelatory method that will make any brand more creative: emotion by design.
The Lost Paths by Jack Cornish (13 April)
By 2026, 10,000 miles of undiscovered footpaths around Britain stand to be lost. Jack Cornish has spent the last five years walking these forgotten routes, and The Lost Paths is the result. Written with the hope it will show just how special these rights of way are, and how embedded each path is in our history, the book is a rallying cry to reclaim what has been lost and preserve it for future generations.
The Lives of Brian by Brian Johnson (14 April)
That AC/DC’s legendary front man got to do it all is one of the most cheering and entertaining stories in rock ‘n’ roll history. Warm, vivid and often laugh-out-loud funny, this life-affirming memoir tells the incredible story of one of the world’s most well-loved performers.
Bittersweet by Susan Cain (21 April)
In this inspiring book, author of the bestselling phenomenon Quiet Susan Cain explores the power of “bittersweetness” – a tendency toward sorrow and longing, an acute awareness of passing time, and a piercing joy when beholding beauty. At a time of profound discord and anxiety, Bittersweet brings us together and shows us how to transform our personal and collective pain into creativity, transcendence, and connection.
Portable Magic by Emma Smith (28 April)
The perfect book for bibliophiles, Portable Magic is a fascinating journey into our relationship with the physical book. Exploring the unexpected and unseen consequences of our love affair with books, it illuminates the ways in which this relationship is more reciprocal – and more turbulent – than we tend to imagine.
Children's and YA
It's Time to... Clean Up! by Carly Gledhill (14 April)
Get little hands ready for some spring cleaning! This interactive board book is filled with different sliders and flaps for children to help vacuum, wash the dishes, and hang out the washing.
The Drama Llama by Rachel Morrisroe and Ella Okstad (14 April)
Every time Alex Allen worries a llama appears. And this wouldn’t be a problem, except the more Alex worries, the bigger the llama gets and the more trouble he causes. Will Alex ever be able to control his worries and lose this mischievous llama?
Wilder Than Midnight by Cerrie Burnell (28 April)
Saffy, Aurelia and Wild Rose are three girls who have all grown up to lead very different lives. They do have one thing in common though – Silverthorne. It’s a place filled with secrets and untold terrors, and together, this trio have the power to change everything.
The Good Left Undone by Adriana Trigiani (5 May)
Escape to sun-drenched, mid-century Europe in this poignant new novel about love, family and untold secrets. The Good Left Undone tells the tale of Domenica Cabrelli and the two great loves of her life. Decades later, her daughter Matelda realises she must unpack their family’s legacy and discover the real story of her mother’s wartime years before it’s too late.
Idol by Louise O’Neil (12 May)
This is the story of Samantha, an influencer with a booming career and adoring young fans. When an essay about Samantha’s sexual awakening as a teenager with her female best friend Lisa goes viral, Lisa gets in touch to say that she remembers that night very differently... Riveting and bold, Idol interrogates how well we can ever really know those we follow online, and asks us to consider how effortlessly we choose which stories to believe.
With a Mind to Kill by Anthony Horowitz (26 May)
Discover the explosive new chapter in the world of 007. In a mission where treachery is all around and one false move means death, James Bond must grapple with the darkest questions about himself. But not even he knows what has happened to the man he used to be…
How to Prevent the Next Pandemic by Bill Gates (3 May)
Though the Covid-19 pandemic isn’t over, governments around the world are starting to talk about what happens next. Can we hope to prevent a new pandemic? Bill Gates believes the answer is yes, and in this book he lays out clearly and convincingly what all of us can do to not only ward off another Covid-like catastrophe – but to eliminate all respiratory diseases.
Life Time by Russell Foster (19 May)
Learn how to sleep better, work better and feel better with this fascinating guide to using the science of the body clock to create the optimum personal routine. Illustrating the surprising effects the time of day can have on our health, Russell Foster explains astonishing science that can help us to live healthier, sharper lives.
His Name Is George Floyd by Robert Samuels and Toluse Olorunnipa (19 May)
In His Name is George Floyd we meet the kind young boy, high school football player and loving father constantly in search of a better life in a society determined to write him off. The book reveals the myriad ways that structural racism shaped Floyd’s life and death – and delivers a powerful exploration of how one man ended up touching the world.
Regenesis by George Monbiot (26 May)
In this bracingly original book, George Monbiot shows how we can resolve the biggest of our environmental dilemmas and feed the world without devouring the planet. A breathtaking vision of a new future, Regenesis explores the opportunity we now have to transform not only our food system but our entire relationship to the living world.
The Social Distance Between Us by Darren McGarvey (26 May)
If all the best people are in all the top jobs, then why is Britain such a bin fire? In this brilliant book, Darren McGarvey explores this question alongside society’s biggest issues – from homelessness and poverty to policing and overrun prisons. For anyone who feels that they don’t know where to start with helping to bring about much-needed change, start here.
Good Pop, Bad Pop by Jarvis Cocker (26 May)
We all have a random collection of the things that made us – photos, tickets, clothes, souvenirs – stuffed in a box or drawer somewhere. When Jarvis Cocker starts clearing out his loft, he finds a jumble of objects that catalogue his life. In Good Pop, Bad Pop, he unpacks this debris: evidence of a unique life, Pulp, 20th century pop culture, the good times and the mistakes.
All the Flowers Kneeling by Paul Tran (5 May)
This astonishing poetry collection charts the rebuilding of a self in the wake of extremity. Rich, resonant poems of desire, freedom, control and rebirth reach back into the past to show how it both scars and transforms. At once confessional and profoundly defiant, All the Flowers Kneeling is an essential testament to the human capacities for resilience, endurance and love.
Children's and YA
Baby Touch: Rainbow (5 May)
Introduce first colours to your baby with this board book from the Baby Touch series. Each page features a different colour and textured patch for little hands to touch. A great one for encouraging interaction and stimulating babies’ senses.
The Good Turn by Sharna Jackson (12 May)
Eleven-year-old Josephine Williams has decided to start her own Girl Scout troop with her best friends Margot and Wesley. As the trio head out to earn their camping badges they come across an abandoned factory they just can’t help but explore… A must-read for fans of the Murder Most Unladylike series.
Ten Minutes to Bed: Little Fairy by Rhiannon Fielding and Chris Chatterton (26 May)
This new addition to the hit Ten Minutes to Bed series follows a little fairy called Poppy. Poppy spots a lost gnome looking for his glade, and she’s determined to help him. But will Poppy be able to fly him to safety and get herself back home before bedtime?
Meredith, Alone by Claire Alexander (9 June)
In this gorgeous debut novel, Meredith Maggs hasn’t left her house in 1,214 days. But she insists she isn’t alone. She has her cat Fred, visits from her friend Sadie, an online support group – plus jigsaws, recipes, Emily Dickinson and the internet. But something’s about to change. Does she have the courage to overcome what’s been keeping her inside all this time?
The Whalebone Theatre by Joanna Quinn (9 June)
Get ready to fall in love with this immersive, heart breaking and joyous novel. With her step-parents distracted by their endless party guests, Cristabel Seagrave and her siblings scratch together their own education. As war approaches and the roles they’re expected to play are no longer those they want, they must each find a way to write their own story.
The Poet by Louisa Reid (9 June)
Written in verse and charged with passion and anger, The Poet is a brilliant, beautifully written portrait of a deeply dysfunctional relationship, exploring coercive control, class and privilege. It’s also an utterly compelling tale of female solidarity and survival.
Unlawful Killings by Her Honour Wendy Joseph QC (9 June)
Every day in the UK lives are suddenly, brutally taken away. High-profile murder cases grab our attention in dramatic headlines – but every unlawful death tells a story. In this riveting book, Her Honour Wendy Joseph QC describes how cases unfold and exactly what it's like to be a witness to human good and bad.
I’ll Die After Bingo by Pope Lonergan (16 June)
I’ll Die After Bingo is a no-holds-barred account of what life inside a care home is really like. Featuring night-time drama, incontinence pads and the uniquely dark humour of one double-amputee Alzheimer's patient, it shows us everything there is to know about Britain's care system. Funny and heartfelt, it challenges us to think differently about the value of our elderly and the carers who look after them.
Birdgirl by Mya-Rose Craig (30 June)
One of the most anticipated debuts of 2022, Birdgirl is the story of Mya Rose – birder, environmentalist and diversity activist. To date she’s seen over five thousand different types of bird: half the world’s species. Her journey is defined by her love for these creatures, and in pursuing her passion she has become ever-more determined to campaign for our survival.
Black in Time by Alison Hammond (2 June)
In her new book, TV presenter Alison Hammond journeys back in time to learn about some amazing Black people from history. From Mary Seacole to George Bridgetower, this non-fiction pick is an inspiring read for all children.
Welcome to Dinosaur School by Rose Cobden and Loretta Schauer (23 June)
It’s Jewel the dinosaur’s first day at school and the nerves are kicking in! But once she’s settled in her new classroom, it turns out school isn’t really that scary after all. This charming picture book is perfect for children due to start primary school.
The Midnighters by Hana Tooke and Ayesha L. Rubio (23 June)
Fans of The Unadoptables will love this new tale from author Hana Tooke. There’s the mysterious disappearance of a friend, a large gothic city, a secret society known as the Midnight Guild, and a little bit of magic…
Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin (14 July)
In this magnificent novel, two children meet in a hospital gaming room. When they spot each other again eight years later, their collaborations make them superstars. Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow takes us on a dazzling quest as it examines the nature of identity, creativity, disability, failure, the redemptive possibilities in play and, above all, our need to connect.
The Family Remains by Lisa Jewell (21 July)
Loved The Family Upstairs? Find out what happens next in this gripping sequel. When a bag of human bones is discovered on the foreshore of the River Thames, DCI Samuel Owusu is called to the scene and must follow a trail of clues. These point to four deaths, an unsolved mystery, and a family whose secrets can’t stay buried forever…
The Retreat by Sarah Pearse (21 July)
In the new locked-room thriller from the author of The Sanatorium, guests at a wellness retreat receive a warning that a woman’s body has been found at the bottom of a cliff. With a storm on the way, they’re told not to panic; to stick together and ignore any rumours about the island and its history. When the weather clears they’ll be taken back to the mainland. Until then, they should enjoy their stay…
Femina: A New History of the Middle Ages, Through the Women Written Out of It by Janina Ramirez (21 July)
The Middle Ages are often seen as a bloodthirsty time of Vikings, saints and kings: patriarchal societies which oppressed and excluded women. But if we dig a little deeper, we can see that the 'dark' ages were anything but. With this fascinating book, see the medieval world with fresh eyes and discover why so many remarkable women were removed from our collective memories.
Children's and YA
Trixie Pickle Art Avenger by Olaf Falafel (7 July)
Bullies had better watch out as Art Avenger Trixie Pickle is about! This new story from comedian and author Olaf Falafel follows Trixie as she teaches school bullies a lesson using her art skills. Perfect for fans of Diary of a Wimpy Kid.
Little Seahorse and the Big Question by Freddy McConnell & Rosalind Beardshaw (7 July)
In Little Seahorse and the Big Question, Papa and Little One are exploring what they need most. Clean water, friends and a home are all very important – but they need each other the most. Written by journalist and seahorse dad Freddy McConnell, this touching picture book is for all kinds of families.
That's Not My Name! by Anoosha Syed (28 July)
It’s Mirha’s first day of school and she can’t wait to learn and meet all her new classmates. However, she finds everyone keeps mispronouncing her name and goes home wondering whether she should get another. But her mum helps Mirha see that her name is extra special.
The Last White Man by Mohsin Hamid (11 August)
From the bestselling author of Exit West comes a new novel of love, loss, and rediscovery. It is the story of a man who wakes one morning to find that his skin has turned dark, his reflection a stranger to him. Soon reports of similar occurrences begin to surface. A masterful treatise on race, prejudice and nationalism, The Last White Man invites us to envision a future that dares to reimagine who we think we are, and how we might yet be together.
The Queen of Dirt Island by Donal Ryan (18 August)
The Queen of Dirt Island is a searing, jubilant tale about four generations of women. It is a story of terrible betrayals and fierce loyalties, of isolation and togetherness, of transgression, forgiveness, desire, and love. It is about all the things family can be and all the things it sometimes isn't. And it is a celebration of the powerful stories that bind generations together.
The Long Knives by Irvine Welsh (25 August)
In the second book of Irvine Welsh’s CRIME series, Ritchie Gulliver MP is found dead having been castrated and left to die in an empty Leith warehouse. Vicious, racist and corrupt, many thought he had it coming. But nobody predicted this. As Detective Ray Lennox unravels the truth, and the list of attacks grows, he must put his personal feelings aside. But one question persists... Who are the real victims here?
Children's and YA
A Ladybird Book: The Ancient Egyptians by Sidra Ansari & Anja Sušanj (4 August)
This new addition to the A Ladybird Book series will take you back in time to when the ancient Egyptians lived. The civilisation lasted for over 3,000 years and saw the emergence of ideas and inventions such as mathematics and toothpaste!
Crash! Bang! Wallop! by Neil Clark (11 August)
Crash, Bang, and Wallop are all boisterous and love making lots of noise. But when they meet three quieter characters, the trio find that they can still have fun in quiet moments. Little ones will love reading this fun rhyming book.
How to Grow a Dragon by Rachel Morrisroe & Steven Lenton (18 August)
Sarah and Mr Pottifer have received a delivery of dragodil seeds. And although unexpected, this means they can now grow helpful dragon pets for their customers! But it quickly becomes apparent that these fiery beasts are not well-behaved at all.
Act of Oblivion by Robert Harris (1 September)
In 1660, General Edward Whalley and Colonel William Goffe cross the Atlantic – they are on the run and wanted for the murder of King Charles I. In London, Richard Nayler is tasked with tracking them down. He’ll stop at nothing until the two men are brought to justice. This thrilling new novel is an epic journey across continents, and a chase like no other.
Love Untold by Ruth Jones (1 September)
Lessons by Ian McEwan (13 September)
When Roland Baine’s wife vanishes, leaving him alone with his tiny son, he is finally forced to confront the reality of his restless existence. Epic, mesmerising and deeply humane, Lessons is a chronicle for our times – a powerful meditation on history and humanity through the prism of one man's lifetime.
The Bullet that Missed by Richard Osman (15 September)
Colditz by Ben MacIntyre (15 September)
In a Gothic castle on a hilltop in the heart of Nazi Germany, an unlikely band of British officers spent WWII plotting daring escapes from their Nazi captors. But that tale contains only part of the truth. The astonishing inside story, revealed for the first time in this new book, is a tale of the indomitable human spirit, but also one of snobbery, class conflict, homosexuality, bullying, espionage, boredom, insanity and farce. Deeply researched and full of incredible human stories, this is the definitive book on Colditz.
Landlines by Raynor Winn (15 September)
Following The Salt Path and The Wild Silence, in Landlines Raynor Winn embarks on her most ambitious walk to date. With husband Moth she travels from the dramatic beauty of the north-west corner of Scotland, to the familiar territory of the South West Coast Path. Chronicling her journey, she maps not only the physical terrain, but also captures the collective consciousness of a country facing an uncertain path ahead.
Terry Pratchett: A Life With Footnotes by Rob Wilkins (29 September)
In 2015, Terry Pratchett was working on his finest story yet – his own. Following his untimely death from Alzheimer's, the mantle of completing Pratchett’s memoir was passed to Rob Wilkins, his former assistant and friend. This is Pratchett’s extraordinary story – from his early childhood to the literary phenomenon that his Discworld series became; and how he met and coped with the challenges that Alzheimer's brought with it.
Children's and YA
The Whisperling by Hayley Hoskins (1 September)
It’s 1897 and 12-year-old Peggy Devona has a very rare gift – she is a Whisperling and can speak to the dead. She keeps her skill a secret as those in her village fear anyone who is different. But when her best friend is accused of murder, Peggy has to draw on her abilities to solve the case and prove Sally’s innocence.
Speak Up! by Nathan Bryon and Dapo Adeola (15 September)
Rocket is an avid bookworm and loves her weekly trips to the library where she reads all about inspirational figures from the past. But when Rocket learns that her local library is going to be shut down, she is determined to speak up – just like Rosa Parks – and save the day.
The Ministry of Unladylike Activity by Robin Stevens (29 September)
Those who have been missing the escapades of Daisy Wells and Hazel Wong will be delighted to learn that author Robin Stevens has a brand-new series. It’s the Second World War, and a secret arm of the British government is training up spies. Hazel’s little sister May Wong knows there is no one more perfect to become a spy than a child. She offers up her services but is turned away. So, Hazel and her friend Eric, take matters into their own hands…
Darling by India Knight (20 October)
Marooned in a sprawling Norfolk farmhouse, teenager Linda Radlett feels herself destined for greater things. She longs for love, but how will she ever find it? She can't even get a signal on her mobile phone. In this razor-sharp, gloriously funny retelling of Nancy Mitford’s The Pursuit of Love, we follow Linda's journey – one wilder, more surprising and more complicated than she could ever have imagined.
Nightwalking: Four Journeys Into Britain After Dark by John Lewis-Stempel (20 October)
As the human world settles down each evening, nocturnal animals prepare to take back the countryside. In this beautiful book, acclaimed nature writer and farmer John Lewis-Stempel takes us on four walks through the four seasons, revealing a world bursting with life and normally hidden from view.
Autobiography by Malorie Blackman (20 October)
In Malorie Blackman’s long-awaited autobiography, the author shares her extraordinary story – from a childhood surrounded by words, to the 83 rejection letters she received in response to her first project, to the children's laureateship. It explores the books that have made her, and the background to some of the most beloved children's stories of today. It is an inspiring account of the power of words to change lives.
Edible Economics: A Hungry Economist Explains the World by Ha-Joon Chang (27 October)
Explore economic thinking – about globalisation, climate change, immigration and more – in its most digestible form. In Edible Economics, Ha-Joon Chang makes challenging ideas more palatable by plating them alongside stories about food from around the world. Myth-busting, witty and thought-provoking, it shows that getting to grips with the economy is like learning a recipe: if we understand it, we can change it – and, with it, the world.
Manorism by Yomi Sode (27 October)
Through poems about family, survival and the complexities of belonging, Manorism examines the lives of Black British men and boys. From exploring the ongoing pressure of code-switching, to charting the dramatic reconciliations surrounding a death in the family, this thrillingly original book is a must for all lovers of poetry and its power.
Children's and YA
I Am, You Are by Ashley Harris Whaley and Ananya Rao-Middleton (13 October)
Written by disability activist Ashley Harris Whaley, I Am, You Are offers a thorough explanation about disability for children, parents, carers, and teachers. It includes explanations on key words and concepts alongside beautiful illustrations. A must-have for every child.
My Name is Malala by Malala Yousafzai and Mariam Quraishi (18 October)
Malala Yousafzai is known all over the world for her tireless activism and bravery in the face of oppression. This board book that charts her life is a wonderful introduction for younger readers and will inspire anyone who reads it.
Peter Rabbit: Tales from the Countryside (27 October)
Featuring 24 stories inspired by Beatrix Potter’s original tales, this compendium of Peter Rabbit tales for every season will delight all readers. Join Peter as he harvests apples in the autumn, stargazes on a winter’s night, finds a missing lamb in the spring, and enjoys a picnic in the summer.
Fourteen Days edited by Margaret Atwood (1 November)
Set in a Lower East Side tenement in the early days of the pandemic, Fourteen Days is a dazzling, heart-warming novel with an unusual twist: each character has been secretly written by a different, major literary voice – from Margaret Atwood and Douglas Preston to Dave Eggers and Celeste Ng. One to look forward to, it portrays how, beneath the loss and suffering, some communities managed to become stronger.
Novelist as a Vocation by Haruki Murakami (8 November)
Haruki Murakami fans are sure to be delighted with this unique look into the mind of the master storyteller. In Novelist as a Vocation, the famously reclusive writer shares what he thinks about being a novelist, his thoughts on the role of the novel in our society, his own origins as a writer, and his musings on creativity.
A Private Spy by John le Carré (3 November)
Don’t miss this collection of letters from John le Carré, spanning decades from his childhood to the Cold War to his final years. By turns intimate and comic, tender and clear-sighted, A Private Spy offers a rare and illuminating portrait of one of the greatest British novelists of our time.
The Song of the Cell by Siddhartha Mukherjee (3 November)
In his most spectacular book yet, Siddhartha Mukherjee tells the story of how scientists discovered cells, began to understand them, and are now using that knowledge to create new humans. Making complex science thrilling, he continues his exploration of what it means to be human. Told in six parts, laced with his own experience as a researcher, doctor and prolific reader, The Song of the Cell is both panoramic and intimate – a masterpiece.
Get to know 12 of our most exciting new fiction writers, and discover why their books should be top of your to-read pile this year.
Isy Suttie speaks to five authors about the books they’re making a splash with this year.