Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature/meme now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. The meme was originally the brainchild of The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is Books on My Fall 2023 To-Read List.
Books on My Fall 2023 To-Read List
Note: These are in order of publication.
Babel: An Arcane History, by R. F. Kuang (Aug. 23, 2022) From the blurb: “…a historical fantasy epic that grapples with student revolutions, colonial resistance, and the use of language and translation as the dominating tool of the British Empire.” Robin gave me the hardcover for Christmas, and says it’s fantastic. It’s on my #23in2023 reading challenge list, and a college friend and I decided to read it and discuss it over Zoom for our informal, two-person book club, so I have actually started it already.
The October Witches, by Jennifer Claessen (UK: Sept. 1, 2022. US: Aug. 29, 2023.) From the US publisher’s blurb: “Practical Magic meets Hocus Pocus in this sweet and enchanting middle grade fantasy novel about a young witch who must uncover the secrets of her family’s past to end their longstanding internal feud.” I already have the British edition, and it’s obviously a perfect choice for October reading. Plus, it’s on my #23in2023 reading challenge list.
Four Walls and a Heart, by Celia Lake (Sept. 22, 2023) Celia Lake’s Albion books are my latest obsession (as in, I keep rereading them!) I’m looking forward to this backstory romance novella about two important secondary characters who appear in several other books. I preordered this one, so it should show up in my Kindle tomorrow.
The Chalice of the Gods, by Rick Riordan (Sept. 26, 2023) From the blurb: “The original heroes from The Lightning Thief are reunited for their biggest challenge yet: getting Percy to college when the gods are standing in his way.” How can I resist a new book starring Percy, Annabeth, and Grover?! I’m number 10 on the library hold list, for 6 copies, so I shouldn’t have to wait too long.
Mistletoe and Murder, by Connie Berry (Oct. 17, 2023) From the blurb: “In Connie Berry’s festive holiday novella, American antiques dealer Kate Hamilton has a long way to go before she gets down the aisle, but will someone stand in the way of her happily ever after?” I love this traditional/cozy mystery series set in Britain, starring an American antiques dealer. And lucky me: I have the ARC!
Bookshops and Bonedust, by Travis Baldree (Nov. 7, 2023) I absolutely loved the first book, Legends and Lattes, so of course I can’t wait to read the prequel! Based on the blurb, I’m pretty sure this is the story of how Viv discovers coffee (leading her to open her coffeeshop in Legends and Lattes), though there is clearly a lot more to the plot than that. I was turned down for the ARC, but I’m pretty high up on the library hold list, once the book comes out.
Chaos Terminal, by Mur Lafferty (Nov. 7, 2023) From the blurb: “Mallory Viridian would rather not be an amateur detective, and fled to outer space to avoid it…but when one of the new human arrivals on a space shuttle is murdered, she’s back in the game.” Again, I loved Station Eternity (review), the first book in the Midsolar Murders sci-fi mystery series, and I’m really excited for the sequel. I’m still waiting to see if my ARC request is approved, but meanwhile, I’m at the top of the hold list at the library, so I have a good chance of getting it soon after it comes out.
The Illusion of a Boar, by Celia Lake (Nov. 11, 2023) This installment of Lake’s Albion series is set during WWII, and I’m not entirely sure if it’s a romance, but I’m interested to read it regardless. It features four characters who were students (and very secondary characters) in some of the earlier books, now grown and doing very secret war work. I preordered it a month or two ago, so it should show up on my Kindle right on schedule.
Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Lord, by Celeste Connally (Nov. 13, 2023.) From the blurb: “Bridgerton meets Agatha Christie in Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Lord, a dazzling first entry in a terrific new Regency-era cozy series with a feminist spin.” Sounds like fun! I have the ARC, so I’ll be able to read it early.
I Heard a Fly Buzz When I Died, by Amanda Flower (Nov. 14, 2023) From the blurb: “When a literary icon [Ralph Waldo Emerson] stays with the Dickinson family, Emily and her housemaid Willa find themselves embroiled in a shocking murder.” The first book in the Emily Dickinson mystery series was pretty good, and I’m looking forward to the second one. (I have an ARC of this one, too.)
What the River Knows, by Isabel Ibañez (Nov. 14, 2023) From the blurb: “The Mummy meets Death on the Nile in this lush, immersive historical fantasy set in Egypt filled with adventure, a rivals-to-lovers romance, and a dangerous race.” Sounds amazing! Unfortunately, I didn’t get the ARC for this one, so while it’s on my Fall 2023 TBR, I may have to wait a while. (It’s not yet in the library’s catalog, so I can’t put it on hold. And it’s too close to Christmas to be buying myself books.)
Inheritance, by Nora Roberts (Nov. 21, 2023) The start of the Lost Bride trilogy. In the first book, “Sonya has inherited far more than a house. She has inherited a centuries-old curse, and a puzzle to be solved if there is any hope of breaking it…” I love Roberts; she would be an autobuy author for me, but some of her books are uncomfortably dark, or deal with topics that can trigger my anxiety. It’s subject-related, usually; I love some of her romantic suspense thrillers, and avoid others. But this one sounds like one I will enjoy even when it gets creepy, so I’m definitely excited to read it. I’m still waiting for approval for the ARC; if I don’t get it, I may have to wait until after Christmas, since several of my relatives know I love most of Roberts’s books.
The Curse of Penryth Hall, by Jess Armstrong (Dec. 5, 2023) From the blurb: “An atmospheric gothic mystery that beautifully brings the ancient Cornish countryside to life…” Set in post-WWI Britain, this gothic mystery sounds deliciously spooky, and (reading between the lines) there might be a hint of romance as well. Plus, the main character deals in antiquarian books. I’m decidedly intrigued, and looking forward to reading the ARC.
Valdemar, by Mercedes Lackey (Dec. 12, 2023) Book #3 in the Founding of Valdemar trilogy should finally cover the origin of Companions and their Heralds, a story that Valdemar fans are familiar with only as distant history in other books. It’s taken two books to get to this point, and I have my fingers crossed that it lives up to my expectations. (Which I can’t always count on from Lackey these days, but book #1 in the series was pretty good, and book #2 was all right.) Lackey’s Valdemar books are usually autobuys for me, but with this one coming out so close to Christmas, I didn’t preorder it. I will, however, put it at the top of my Christmas wish list!