Beach read season may be slipping away, but I-just-want-curl-up-with-a-cozy-blanket-and-book season is on the horizon. Pumpkin spice is taking over stores, there’s a chill in the air, and the autumn leaves are changing — and so are people’s reading palettes. Book lovers are exchanging love stories set on the lake for murder mysteries in the woods and destination reads for holiday season-inspired meet-cutes. ‘Tis the season, right?
Bookworms are in for a treat this fall. From romance novelists Kate Goldbeck’s and Ali Rosen’s highly anticipated releases and a coming-of-age story by the beloved Ali Hazelwood, to Jessica Knoll’s riveting Young Becoming Women and Jean Kwok’s transformative narrative, this fall is stacked with fantastic new titles. Whether you celebrate Halloween by reading spooky horror books all October long or enjoy sipping on a PSL while reading an enemies-to-lovers storyline, there’s a book on this list for everyone.
Here are the best 2023 fall releases we can’t wait to read in front of a cozy fire with a cup of hot apple cider and our favorite weighted blanket:
1. Happiness Falls by Angie Kim
One part mystery, one part drama, Happiness Falls begs whether blood is really thicker than water. The story unfolds on the worst night for a biracial Korean American family living in Virginia: a son comes home covered in blood and their father is missing. The last person to see him was Eugene, who can’t speak due to a rare genetic condition. Time is of the essence. In cooperation with his sister Mia, Eugene must piece together the reason behind their father’s disappearance.
2. Mother-Daughter Murder Night by Nina Simon
A Reese’s Book Club selection, Mother-Daughter Murder Night follows three generations of Rubicon women, who are thrown for a curveball when their youngest, Jack, comes across a dead body while out on the water and consequently, finds herself a suspect in a homicide investigation. Despite her daughter’s wishes, Lana sets out to solve the case and clear her granddaughter’s name. Meanwhile, Beth is trying to make sense of her mother’s cancer diagnosis, all while trying to bust her daughter out of harm’s way.
3. You, Again by Kate Goldbeck
Ari and Josh are polar opposites, except when it comes to their interest in women. In fact, as it turns out, they happen to be dating the same woman – how’s that for a meet-cute? Fast forward into the future, Ari and Josh’s paths cross once more and in a surprising twist they become friends. Dubbed “friends-without-benefits,” Ari and Josh increasingly spend more time with one another. Then one night everything changes.
4. Vampires of El Norte by by Isabel Cañas
A mixture of romance, horror, and historical fiction, Vampires of El Norte follows Nena, a rancher’s daughter in 1840s Mexico, who was attacked by susto (a crazy, blood-scuking disease) as a kid. Now, the susto is back and reigning havoc on the townspeople. In 1846, U.S. invades Mexico and Nena is reunited with her childhood crush, who to his understanding, believed Nena had died. Meanwhile, Nena’s father is busy trying to find her a suitable husband. In the midst of a war and romantic reconciliation, the susto strikes again.
5. The Long Game by Elena Armas
After getting into a kerfuffle with the soccer team’s mascot, Adalyn Reyes is shipped off to rural Carolina to mentor a youth soccer team, who can’t tell a penalty kick from a free kick. When it comes to Adalyn’s attention that a famed goalkeeper is staying in town, she sees it as the perfect opportunity to rope in another experienced athlete. Only issue is, Cam has no interest in helping or coaching kids. All is fair in love and war, and soccer.
6. Rouge by Mona Awad
In this horror novel, a skincare guru is allured to a lavish transformative spa (read: cult) by the name of La Maison de Méduse in hopes of learning more about her late estranged mother’s equally unhealthy obsession with beauty and mirrors.
7. Bright Young Women by Jessica Knoll
Jessica Knoll, author of Luckiest Girl Alive, is back with another heart-pounding and mind puzzling read about two women living on opposite sides of the country, who team up to restore justice and bring the truth to light amid a spree of killings. The title Bright Young Women is Knoll’s way of reclaiming the words issued by the judge to describe serial killer Ted Bundy during his murder trial: “a bright young man.”
8. Murder in the Family by Cara Hunter
In December 2003, Luke Ryder was killed and found dead in his garden, while his wife and children were inside their home. The case remained unsolved until now. Cut to modern-day, a new TV series featuring an impressive team of investigative experts revisit the cold case with fresh eyes. Viewers at home are also invited to study old evidence and testimonials for clues, turning the series into a competition show of sorts. Who will solve the case first?
Publishes September 19
9. The List by Yomi Adegoke
Ola is living her best life. She’s a renowned journalist and exactly one month away from marrying her soulmate. People love Michael. The idea of Ola and Michael together for all of eternity is considered some of cupid’s best work, according to their friend group. So when Ola wakes up to discover that Michael’s name is included on The List, it’s game over. An anonymous social media account accusing men of inexcusable behavior, The List is something Ola, as a journalist, would be all over…but Michael.
Publishes October 3
10. The Leftover Woman by Jean Kwok
Two womens’ lives become tangled in ways they never imagined. Jasmine Yang has fled her rural Chinese village to Manhattan in hopes of locating the daughter who was taken from her at birth. Rebecca Whitney is at the top of her game, and sitting next to her is her beautifully sweet, adopted Chinese daughter. However, an exposed secret threatens to blow up the perfect life she’s created. As Rebecca’s life begins to shatter, Jasmine faces hurdles of her own, including one in the shape of a very controlling husband.
Publishes October 10
11. Recipe For Second Chances by Ali Rosen
Cookbook author Ali Rosen is making her fiction debut this November, so consider this your official warning to eat before reading! Set against the beautiful Italian countryside, Recipe For Second Chances follows a pair of exes who serendipitously reunite 10 years post-breakup. Over the course of a long, hot weekend packed with copious amounts of pasta, wedding festivities, and exploration, Stella and Samuel slowly fall back into their old groove — but is one magical weekend enough time to repair all the damage that’s been done?
Publishes November 1
12. Today Tonight Forever by Madeline Kay Sneed
Featuring an ensemble cast of quirky, puzzling characters, Today Tonight Forever centers around newly divorced Athena Matthias at her close friend’s beach wedding. As you can imagine, Athena isn’t exactly in the mood for a love-filled celebration. However, the bride’s wandering eye, a catastrophic betrayal, potential new love interest, and surprise guest guarantee that an interesting weekend awaits.
Publishes November 7
13. Veronica Ruiz Breaks the Bank by Elle Cosimano
We asked (more like begged) and author Elle Cosimano listened! This fall, Finlay Donovan fans are getting a short story all about Finlay’s sneaky and hilarious partner-in-crime, Vero. Readers will finally get Vero’s full backstory — why she ran off to her cousin’s apartment and there’s a warrant out for arrest in Maryland, and how she and Finlay met. Don’t fret, Javi makes an appearance, too.
Publishes November 7
14. Check & Mate by Ali Hazelwood
Just when Mallory was ready to give up the game of chess for good, she goes and beats the current world champion. Nolan doesn’t lose. And the weird part is, he doesn’t feel discouraged about his fall from grace either. He wants a rematch and it looks like his newly minted nemesis isn’t backing down either. Check & Mate is another swoony romance from one of the genre’s most beloved authors.
15. Alice Sadie Celine by Sarah Blakley-Cartwright
Sure to be one of the most talked about queer novels of the year, Blakley-Cartwright writes about a mother who falls in love with her adult daughter’s best friend after watching her perform on stage. Infused with themes of power, feminism, and love, the story takes place over several decades with glimpses into Alice and Sadie’s childhood friendship, and Celine’s life-changing decision to divorce her husband.
Publishes November 28
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