43 Highly Anticipated Books of 2019

Posted by Hayley on January 2, 2019
big 2019 books

There's no such thing as "too many books." That's our mantra (once again) as we welcome a new year full of irresistible reading.

To create our list of soon-to-be favorites across genres, we focused on what Goodreads members can't wait to read. How do we measure that anticipation? By taking a look at how many times a book has been added to Want to Read shelves. From new titles by beloved authors including Elizabeth Gilbert, Angie Thomas, Dave Cullen, Jennifer Weiner, and Ruth Ware to The Handmaid's Tale sequel and an epic fantasy by a Man Booker Prize winner, these are the books readers will be talking about this year.

Now let's get to the good stuff—the books! How many will you be checking out?


FICTION
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In rural Trinidad, a father faces impossible choices about loyalty and love as he searches for a lost son, a misunderstood boy last seen wandering into the bush. This debut is the second novel from Sarah Jessica Parker's imprint, SJP for Hogarth.

Release date: January 29


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From the author of Boy, Snow, Bird comes a tale inspired by the bewitching place gingerbread holds in classic children's stories. Perdita and Harriet Lee juggle jealousy and ambition while relying on the curious magic of their favorite family recipe.

Release date: March 5


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If you had to pick five people to sum up your life, who would they be? In this debut, an 84-year-old man pulls up a stool at a hotel bar and raises a toast to the five people who have meant the most to him, revealing a lifetime of fierce love and regret.

Release date: March 5


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After a messy breakup with her long-term white boyfriend, Queenie, a Jamaican British woman living in London, seeks comfort in all of the wrong places on her bumpy journey to discover meaning and purpose in today's world.

Release date: March 19


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In a seedy suburb of Brisbane, Eli learns what it means to be a good man. His potential role models: a lost father, a heroin dealer stepdad, and Slim, his most steadfast guardian—who just happens to be a notorious felon and frequent prison escapee.

Release date: April 2


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The electricity of first love clashes with the subtleties of class as young Connell and Marianne confront the limits of their connection over the years in this thought-provoking novel from the author of Conversations with Friends.

Release date: April 16


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From the 1950s to the present, two spirited sisters struggle to find their own place in the world, navigating an ever-evolving American landscape, in this timely and ambitious new book from the author of Good in Bed.

Release date: June 25


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In this powerful follow-up to the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award-winning bestseller, The Underground Railroad, two young boys endure a hellish reform school intent on turning delinquent boys into honorable men in Jim Crow-era Florida.

Release date: July 16


MYSTERY & THRILLER
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Joe Thorne is a teacher with a hidden agenda. He returns to settle scores at the high school he once attended, only to uncover a darker secret than he could have imagined in this thrilling tale from the author of The Chalk Man.

Release date: February 5


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In this new standalone book from The Dry author, two men meet at the remote fence line separating their cattle farms in the Australian Outback. In front of them, the stockman's grave landmark rises; at their feet, their brother lies dead.

Release date: February 5


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One evening Gabriel returns home, and his wife, Alicia, shoots him five times in the face. She never speaks another word, turning the domestic tragedy into a notorious mystery, one that captures the attention of a relentless criminal psychotherapist.

Release date: February 5


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Bookseller and part-time private investigator Nikki Griffin just wants to right the world's wrongs. But her attempts to help Karen, a troubled employee at a tech company, put her directly in the line of fire in this brand-new series.

Release date: March 19


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A lot of people have complicated relationships with their in-laws. Most of them don't end in murder. A perplexing autopsy report and a last-minute will change are only the beginning in this book from The Family Next Door author.

Release date: April 23


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From the author of The Woman in Cabin 10 comes a modern-day haunted house thriller. Rowan accepts a live-in nanny position at a smart home in the Scottish Highlands, but the dream job soon turns into a nightmare, one that will end with a child dead.

Release date: August 8


(Plus keep an eye out for more details on Paula Hawkins' currently untitled next book, set to be released on October 3. Check out more highly anticipated 2019 mystery & thrillers here.)


FANTASY & SCIENCE FICTION
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A skilled hunter searches for a young boy with the help of a shape-shifter and other unlikely allies in this epic novel, set in a fantasy version of Africa, from the author of the Man Booker Prize-winning A Brief History of Seven Killings.

Release date: February 5


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Clare, the author of The Mortal Instruments series, and Chu, the author of The Lives of Tao, team up to deliver a new adult fantasy trilogy about a centuries-old warlock, his mortal lover, and a dangerous spell book of dark magic.

Release date: April 2


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For a decade, Darrow led a revolution against the corrupt color-coded society. Now, outlawed by the very Republic he founded, he wages a rogue war on Mercury to salvage the dream of Eo in this fifth installment in the Red Rising Saga.

Release date: July 9


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Praise be? Thirty-four years after the publication of her dystopian classic, The Handmaid's Tale, Atwood returns to Gilead to continue the story of Offred. The sequel is narrated by three female characters and will not be connected to the recent adaptation.

Release date: September 10


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The wait is over! From the author of the 2011 bestseller The Night Circus comes a new tale about graduate student Zachary's discovery of a book full of adventures, secrets, and something truly strange: a story from Zachary's own childhood.

Release date: November 5


(Looking for release dates for long-awaited series installments from George R.R. Martin, Patrick Rothfuss, and Scott Lynch? So are we! We're also keeping watch for information on big new books from N.K. Jemisin and Neil Gaiman. Check out more highly anticipated 2019 science fiction & fantasy books here.)


NONFICTION
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After working for years as a maid, a single mom reveals the dark truth of what it takes to survive and thrive in today's inequitable society, exploring the underbelly of upper middle class America and the reality of what it's like to be in service to them.

Release date: January 22


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On the first anniversary of the mass shooting in Parkland, the acclaimed author of Columbine offers an intimate account of the teenage survivors who became activists, inspiring millions of Americans to join their grassroots #neveragain movement.

Release date: February 12


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In this surreal memoir, an aspiring violinist lands a job with a professional ensemble—only to discover that the group is a sham, "performing" while music that sounds suspiciously like the Titanic soundtrack blares from a CD. A crisis of identity ensues.

Release date: February 12


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What is it about evil that we find so compelling? Psychologist Shaw explores the dark subject, pulling from our society's obsession with serial killers and violence in pop culture to the neuroscience behind bad behavior.

Release date: February 26


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As a follow-up to last year's bestselling Girl, Wash Your Face, Hollis sounds a wake-up call in this inspiring self-help book, urging women to live to their full potential by identifying common excuses and obstacles.

Release date: March 12


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Inspired by fans of her 1999 novel, Speak, which gave voice to a young sexual assault survivor, and enraged by how little has changed since that book's publication, Anderson pens this lyrical memoir, part poetry collection and part call to action.

Release date: March 12


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From the hosts of the hit podcast My Favorite Murder comes this frank, funny, and illuminating reflection on true crime, formative life events, and the importance of valuing personal safety over being "nice" or "helpful."

Release date: May 28


YOUNG ADULT
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Some secrets aren't meant to stay buried, and some wounds aren't meant to heal. Nikolai will try anyway, enlisting the help of a monk and a stranger capable of manipulating the winds in this brand-new series in Bardugo's celebrated Grishaverse.

Release date: January 29


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Her debut novel, The Hate U Give, won three Goodreads Choice Awards and was adapted into a critically acclaimed movie. Her second novel follows a teen's quest to escape poverty and live up to the legacy of her father, an underground rap legend.

Release date: February 5


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The DC Icons series continues, and this time it's the Man of Steel in the spotlight. Before the world can be saved, Clark Kent just needs to figure out how to save Smallville, teaming up with his best friend, Lana Lang, to uncover secrets in their rural town.

Release date: March 5


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After bringing magic back to Orïsha, Zélie struggles to unite her allies and avoid a catastrophic civil war in this sequel to Children of Blood and Bone from the Best Debut Author of the 2018 Goodreads Choice Awards.

Release date: March 5


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In this debut novel from a popular YouTube "BookTuber," Shane commits to a semester of adventure, moving to London on a whim to make new friends, fall in love, and confront the complicated realities of living outside her bubble.

Release date: May 7


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The year is 1872, and New Orleans is ruled by the dead. Celine doesn't mind, falling under the spell of the vibrant city, its glitzy underworld, and the enigmatic Sèbastien Saint Germain in this sultry fantasy from the author of The Wrath and the Dawn.

Release date: October 8


(Check out more highly anticipated 2019 young adult books here.)


ROMANCE
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From the author of The Hating Game comes a rom-com about the pros and cons of having a lifelong crush on your brother's best friend and the dangers of sharing a roof with a sexy, spontaneously reckless house flipper.

Release date: January 29


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Fixie doesn't ask anything of anyone, but a chance encounter with a stranger kicks off a flurry of exchanged notes, IOUs for favors to life-changing opportunities, in this sweet tale from the author of Confesions of a Shopaholic.

Release date: February 5


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An unforeseen tragedy forces young lovers Annika and Jonathan apart, leaving them to navigate their lives alone. A decade later, they are reunited. She is now a librarian, and he is a Wall Street whiz—but can anything of their old relationship be salvaged?

Release date: April 2


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Fresh off her Goodreads Choice Award for The Kiss Quotient, Hoang delivers a heartwarming tale of modern love. When Khai's mother worries his autism is hindering his relationships, she goes to Vietnam to find him the perfect bride. Instead she comes back with Esme.

Release date: May 7


The bearded boys of Green Valley are back. After watching everyone around him find their soul mate, now it's Bill's turn. This is the pun-loving final book in Reid's Winston Brothers series, but it can be read as a standalone.

Release date: October 7


(Check out more highly anticipated 2019 romance books here.)


HISTORICAL FICTION
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An abandoned suitcase at Grand Central Terminal leads recently widowed Grace Healey to a ring of female secret agents in this tale of friendship and courage during World War II from the author of The Orphan's Tale.

Release date: February 5


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From the author of The Ghost Bride comes a sweeping novel about a dance hall girl and an orphan boy whose fates become entangled in 1930s Malaysia over an old Chinese superstition about men who can turn into tigers.

Release date: February 12


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A battle-haunted English journalist and a Russian female bomber pilot join forces to track down the Huntress, a deadly Nazi war criminal gone to ground in America in this thrilling tale from the author of The Alice Network.

Release date: February 26


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Coming of age in Los Angeles in the late '60s, Daisy embraces the sex, drugs, and rock and roll of the era, leading her to a date with her musical destiny in this rollicking oral history from the author of The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo.

Release date: March 5


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Set a generation before her bestselling novel, The Lilac Girls, this story focuses on Eliza Ferriday as she embarks on a trip of a lifetime to the turbulent streets of St. Petersburg and the avenues of Paris under the shadow of World War I.

Release date: April 9


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The author of Eat, Pray, Love returns to fiction with a bold tale of glamour and adventure set in New York during the 1940s, following Vivian Morris as she rubs elbows with showgirls—and makes a mistake that will alter the course of her life.

Release date: June 4


What books are you most excited to read this year? Let us know in the comments!

Check out more recent articles:
26 of the Hottest Romances of 2019
The 36 Big Mysteries & Thrillers of 2019
29 of the Biggest Sci-Fi & Fantasy Books of 2019

Comments Showing 1-50 of 260 (260 new)


message 1: by Vikas (new)

Vikas Nice but something is broken on the site, fix it immediately. We aren't able to update status or mark the books as read from the homepage. Please FIX


message 2: by Elin (new)

Elin Streiffert Vikas wrote: "Nice but something is broken on the site, fix it immediately. We aren't able to update status or mark the books as read from the homepage. Please FIX"

Yes, please fix it. So sad that I can't keep track of everything like I am used to.


message 3: by ethan (new)

ethan this is a good list but i’d like to see more YA novels, hopefully a list dedicated to YA novels like you’ve done with other genres


message 4: by Leah (last edited Jan 02, 2019 03:56AM) (new)

Leah Elin wrote: "Vikas wrote: "Nice but something is broken on the site, fix it immediately. We aren't able to update status or mark the books as read from the homepage. Please FIX"

Yes, please fix it. So sad that..."


You can still update your progress. You just have to go on the site where all the information and reviews about the book are. Now you can either hover over the tab where it says what to read or sth just below the cover or find the update thingie where you can write your review. I hope that helped because my English is pretty bad right now. I just woke up.


message 5: by Anissa (last edited Jan 02, 2019 05:41AM) (new)

Anissa From this list, I'm looking forward to The Step Mother by Sally Hepworth but I won't be tricked into another Ruth Ware offering. Atwood's The Testaments is another I'm eager to get in 2019 but I think I'm over Darrow & the whole Red Rising Saga. I hadn't heard about Maid but I think I want to read that so, on the WTR list it goes.

Looking at my TBR list for 2019 so far, I'm most looking forward to: A Memory Called Empire, Agency, We Came Here to Forget: A Novel, A Philosophy of Ruin: A Novel and Cape May.


message 6: by Ashish (last edited Jan 02, 2019 05:42AM) (new)

Ashish Falswal Leah wrote: "Elin wrote: "Vikas wrote: "Nice but something is broken on the site, fix it immediately. We aren't able to update status or mark the books as read from the homepage. Please FIX"

Yes, please fix it..."

Yes, but still a direct update from homepage is far better than individually opening single title. It helps to get reminded how much progress have i made in the book we left for long time or rather abandoned midway.
Hope they bring this feature back along with tweaks like average reading days among members for that title.


message 7: by Anissa (last edited Jan 02, 2019 05:58AM) (new)

Anissa For any who may be unaware, Goodreads has a dedicated Feedback group for any issues experienced on the site & there are a few threads about the Update Progress feature. They do respond there as well.

https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/...


message 8: by Angela (new)

Angela Kocheshkova No queer books in the romance section((


message 9: by Shruhashi (new)

Shruhashi Dey Angela wrote: "No queer books in the romance section((" yeahhh that's what I was looking for too


message 10: by Sam (new)

Sam Definitely not my list of most anticipated books of 2019. Whilst some of these might get into my book pile most will remain in the bookshop. A 3/10 list. More variety needed Goodreads.


message 11: by Cecilia (new)

Cecilia Lang Wow! I don't know, like, ANY of these books!


message 12: by Ann (new)

Ann Cecilia wrote: "Wow! I don't know, like, ANY of these books!"

Me either and none of them appeal to me


message 13: by Ann (new)

Ann Its a list of 43 where are the rest of them?


message 14: by Ann (new)

Ann Sam wrote: "Definitely not my list of most anticipated books of 2019. Whilst some of these might get into my book pile most will remain in the bookshop. A 3/10 list. More variety needed Goodreads."

Agreed I might see a title and say Oh I saw that on GoodReads:)


message 15: by Ann (new)

Ann the book called Maid, and the daisy jones and the six are titles clicked on as want to read but I probably wont purchase them or make an effort to read them I have more to read but when I first read the synopsis they sounded interesting


message 16: by Cassie (new)

Cassie Not seeing much on this list I am interested in. Strange. Maybe that will just give me more time to finish up what I did not get to last year.


message 17: by Lynne (new)

Lynne Lambdin Vikas wrote: "Nice but something is broken on the site, fix it immediately. We aren't able to update status or mark the books as read from the homepage. Please FIX"

You should submit an actual ticket (if you have not already). It isn't likely Goodreads support will review these comments.


message 18: by James (new)

James What about new Joe Abercrombie?


Shall I Download A Black Hole And Offer It To You idea: maybe, just maybe, try posting alternate suggestions/books instead of just making negative commentary about what you didn't find/didn't like... yeah, sounds silly, but it reminds me of people who can identify problems or shoot down someone else's idea, but don't offer anything of their own as possible option/remedy...


message 20: by Elyse (new)

Elyse The mass market paperback of An Easy Death by Charlaine Harris comes out July 30, 2019 but the book is available now. Kindle and hardcover came out Oct 2, 2018.


message 21: by Vicki (new)

Vicki Carson Thank you for being so busy and bringing us these books!


message 22: by Louise-Andree (new)

Louise-Andree I'm definitely more of a YA reader and I did add a few on my want to read list but I was expecting more. That would have been awesome!!


message 23: by Viviana (new)

Viviana Thank you for the list! I am looking forward to the Historical Fiction books (especially "Lost Roses").
Just a small correction: Pam Jenoff wrote "The Orphan's Tale", but you wrote: ...from the author of "The Orphan Train" (written by Christina Baker Kline). However, when clicking on "The Orphan Train" you are sent to "The Orphan's Tale".
Thank you!


message 24: by Andrea (new)

Andrea Angela wrote: "No queer books in the romance section(("

"How do we measure that anticipation? By taking a look at how many times a book has been added to Want to Read shelves." It's not like GR picks and chooses what goes on the list. Keep adding those books and you shall receive.


message 25: by Andrea (new)

Andrea ethan wrote: "this is a good list but i’d like to see more YA novels, hopefully a list dedicated to YA novels like you’ve done with other genres"

I can say the same thing about Nonfiction, but that ain't going to happen.


message 26: by Philip (new)

Philip Lynne wrote: "Vikas wrote: "Nice but something is broken on the site, fix it immediately. We aren't able to update status or mark the books as read from the homepage. Please FIX"

You should submit an actual tic..."
How do I "submit a ticket" ? I can't find anywhere on Goodreads to do that.


message 27: by Ashley (new)

Ashley Vikas wrote: "Nice but something is broken on the site, fix it immediately. We aren't able to update status or mark the books as read from the homepage. Please FIX"
Whew, I thought I was the only one.


Fluffy Unicorns Leah wrote: "Elin wrote: "Vikas wrote: "Nice but something is broken on the site, fix it immediately. We aren't able to update status or mark the books as read from the homepage. Please FIX"

Yes, please fix it..."


Just so people know I filed a question to Goodreads support about the Update Progress feature being missing and they got back to me. They told me it was getting some new features and they would be restoring it soon and weren't planning on getting rid of it permanently. I also agree that you can still update your progress by going to the webpage of the book you are reading and looking at your activity, even though doing this on the homepage is much more convenient.


message 29: by Mindi (new)

Mindi Do you realize that there is a very large horror community and this list completely ignores it?


message 30: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer Julian There are quite a few on this list that I’m excited to read, even a few that aren’t my usual flavor. I’m over Rachel Hollis, I wish she wasn’t on this list.


message 31: by JPerceval (new)

JPerceval The Bride Test, for sure!


message 32: by Dana Al-Basha (new)

Dana Al-Basha دانة الباشا Vikas wrote: "Nice but something is broken on the site, fix it immediately. We aren't able to update status or mark the books as read from the homepage. Please FIX"

YES please!!


message 33: by Kev (new)

Kev Willoughby These are some good picks, but y'all are missing the boat on James Rubart. He has another new book coming out this year (The Pages of Her Life), but don't miss the best of his previous works: "The Five Times I Met Myself" and "The Long Journey to Jake Palmer."


message 34: by Diljit (new)

Diljit Dosanjh I just realized that there is a very large horror community and this list has totally ignored it.


message 35: by Wendy (new)

Wendy Kev wrote: "These are some good picks, but y'all are missing the boat on James Rubart. He has another new book coming out this year (The Pages of Her Life), but don't miss the best of his previous works: "The ..."

Thanks for the suggestion I'll take a look at James Rubart.


message 36: by Margot (new)

Margot Only two on this list make my list.
The Lost Man by Jane Harper which I have already read as it was available in Australia last year.
and
The Testaments by Margaret Atwood

These are the books I am looking forward to that don't make the Goodreads list.

Big Sky by Kate Atkinson
A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World by C.A. Fletcher
The Rosie Result by Graeme
Simsion

The Department of Sensitive Crimes by Alexander McCall Smith
The Paris Diversion by Chris by
Pavone

Good Girl, Bad Girl: A Novel by Michael Robotham
The Scholar by Dervla McTiernan
Sweet Sorrow by David Nicholls
Knife by Jo Nesbø
The Double Mother by Michel Bussi
The Long Call by Ann Cleeves

and one I can't find on the Goodread data base
The Colours of the Inferno by Pierre Lemaitre


message 37: by Antony (new)

Antony Smith waiting for the second volume of Dust by Philip Pullman


message 38: by Elyse (last edited Jan 03, 2019 05:17AM) (new)

Elyse Margot wrote: "Only two on this list make my list.
The Lost Man by Jane Harper which I have already read as it was available in Australia last year.
and
The Testaments..."


Couleurs de l'incendie Looks like no English translation yet.


message 39: by Leah (last edited Jan 03, 2019 06:45AM) (new)

Leah RED WHITE AND ROYAL BLUE BY CASEY MCQUISTON


message 40: by Michelle (new)

Michelle Miller What? Storm Cursed by Patricia Briggs isn't on this list?
None of these books interests me.


message 41: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer So much negative feedback. I think the list looks great. I’m excited about all these books I may not of heard of otherwise.


message 42: by Adam (last edited Jan 03, 2019 07:09AM) (new)

Adam Nice list, but you missed "A Bend in the Stars," a debut novel by Rachel Barenbaum about a scientist racing against Einstein to prove relativity. It promises to be amazing

A Bend in the Stars by Rachel Barenbaum


message 43: by Debi (new)

Debi Mersch Go Tell the Bees that I'm Gone, the 9th book in the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon. We've waited 5+ years for this one.


message 44: by Frank (new)

Frank Berlingeri Creatures of Habit by Frank Berlingeri


message 45: by Cricket (new)

Cricket Muse Juvenile books? Middle readers forgotten or no titles forthcoming? Picture books also are missing.
Sigh—no Shakespeare titles in any genre.


message 46: by Megan (new)

Megan Hamsher WHERE is the Christian Fiction category?????


message 47: by phyllis lavender (new)

phyllis lavender Need more for YA and perhaps even a little younger. 11-13 years old. But excellent readers.


message 48: by Irizayo (new)

Irizayo I cannot wait for Daniel Suarez's Delta-V novel!!! April 23rd!


message 49: by Mew2228 (new)

Mew2228 15 of these are now on my Want To Read shelf.


message 50: by Deborah (new)

Deborah Plenn Definitely Mrs. Everything because Jennifer Weiner is my favorite author. Also I want to read, The Girl He Used to Know,


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