Something You Haven’t Read: Best Fiction Debuts of 2022

Do you seem to be reading the same authors, and the same books, over and over and over? We’ve got the antidote: check out our list of stellar debut novels from 2022. Get in on the ground floor of these authors’ promising careers. Here’s a small sample of what you’ll find there:

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  • The Ghetto Within by Santiago H. Amigorena, translated by Frank Wynne
    In the haunting and resonant English language debut of this  French Argentine writer, a Jewish emigrant to Buenos Aires confronts inescapable walls of guilt when he learns of the fates of those he left behind in Warsaw, an emotional legacy he passes down to his own offspring.
  • Stories No One Hopes Are About Them by A.J. Bermudez
    Playfully subversive, darkly humorous stories reveal the myriad subtle ways we are marginalized by the entitlemens of others, and sidelined by our own internalized powerlessness.
  • The Book Eaters by Sunyi Dean
    In a vivid, moving gothic fantasy for all book lovers, Devon is raised on a literal diet of fairytales, only to confront a world where happy endings are the exception, rather than the rule.
  • Hawk Mountain by Connor Habib
    Single father Todd is looking for a fresh start as he raises his young son in a small town, only to run smack into Jack, the bully who made his own boyhood hell and seems bent on ruining his adulthood as well, in a taut psychological thriller exploring toxic masculinity.
  • Someday, Maybe by Onyi Nwabineli
    Her husband’s suicide was not how Eve Ezenwa-Morrow hoped to ring in the New Year, sweeping away her hopeful resolutions as she struggles to recover from her grief, and find her way forward. A poignant and inspiring story.
  • None of This Would Have Happened if Prince Were Alive by Carolyn Prusa
    Between her demanding boss, straying husband, and the needs of her two young children, Ramona’s life was already a hurricane before an actual hurricane descended on her Savannah home. Oh, for the days when rain was purple!
  • Diary of a Void by Emi Yagi, translated by David Boyd and Lucy North
    Leaving one sexist Tokyo workplace for another, Ms. Shibata figures out a cunning way to make her gender work in her favor, faking a pregnancy that gradually becomes almost real, in a trenchant and gripping, surreal tale.

Many more terrific 2022 debut titles await you in our catalog, so treat yourself to some fresh new authors.

     ~ Posted by David W.

Seattle Staff Faves 2022: Fiction

A New Year approaches which can only mean that it is once again time for us to share our Staff Favorites for another year. Here is some of our favorite recent fiction for grown ups – you’ll find the whole list here.

Small Game, by Blair Braverman. “A wild chase up to and beyond the end! A survival game show – like Alone but fictionalized – in the very far northwoods where participants are filmed daily by a crew along with cameras in the trees. No alone time here! And no escape. The unthinkable happens! I read it in one day.” – Christine

A Prayer for the Crown Shy, by Becky Chambers. “Chambers continues her Monk & Robot novellas with another deeply philosophical tale. Sibling Dex is still unsure about their future, and Mosscap has many questions that may not have answers.” – Cassandra

Saint Death’s Daughter, by C.S.E. Cooney. “Sometimes you want something deliciously dark, strange, yet whimsical. Miscellaneous Stones aka Lanie comes from a family of necromancers and assassins, and she is a necromancer who happens to be allergic to violence. That was a nice twist! Delightful and so filled with life even as it dances with death.” – Misha

Dr. No, by Percival Everett. “Professor Wala Kitu – i.e. ‘Nothing Nothing’ – knows everything about nothing, which would be supervillain John Sill seeks to unleash on a racist America. Literary trickster extraordinaire Everett does James Bond, with devastating results that squeeze and tickle the brain. My kind of mayhem, madness with a method in it.” – David

Out There: Stories, by Kate Folk. “These stories are, as advertised, ALL THE WAY out there. I was repulsed, disturbed…and delighted! In my personal fave, The Turkey Rumble, a man introduces his new boyfriend to a gleefully demented Thanksgiving family tradition. Festive!” – Jennie

Let’s Not Do That Again, by Grant Ginder. “Nancy Harrison is poised to win her Senate seat so long as her adult children are on their best behavior; when her daughter appears on the news with extremists, the wheels start coming off. A hilarious and smart novel.” – Frank

A Lady for a Duke, by Alexis Hall. “Regency romance where a trans woman tries to figure out her place in society and her relationship with her old best friend, a former soldier dealing with PTSD who doesn’t know that the new woman in his life is someone he’s known since childhood. A perfect slow burn!” – Brianne

Nettle & Bone, by T. Kingfisher. “A spare princess leaves the nunnery, gathers some unlikely companions (a gravewitch, a godmother, a knight, and a demon-possessed chicken) and heads off on a quest to save her sister from an abusive prince. Adventurous, funny, and a little disturbing.” – Andrea

Once There Were Wolves, by Charlotte McConaghy  “Layered thriller set in Scotland with a side of romance and the strength of sisterly bonds. Inti travels to Scotland with her twin sister, Aggie, and with a team of biologists to reintroduce wolves into the Highlands, but clashes with those that farm on the land. A death of one of the farmers has all eyes on the wolves, but is it one of their own?” – Kara

The Wedding Dress Sewing Circle, by Jennifer Ryan. “Set in wartime Britain, depicts daily life in the city and country, having to frequently head to bomb shelters, and rationing of clothes, fabric and other home goods. Reworked wedding dresses take on a new purpose and a group of women bond and support each other through garment sewing.” – Marion

Genesis of Misery, by Neon Yang. “Based on the story Joan of Arc. Kinda space opera meets Neon Genesis Evangelion meets gender theory meets Catholicism. You can see a lot of similar elements to Neon Yang’s earlier books, but at the same time it’s so different.” – Eliza

Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, by Gabrielle Zevin. “Some books are perfect start to finish. Zevin sums up this book as being about Love, Art, Video games, and Time–and that she wrote it with the idea that a good love story can also be a good friendship story. You don’t have to like video games to get hooked by this impressively nuanced, character-driven novel. If you liked Meg Wolitzer’s The Interestings or Jennifer Egan’s A Visit from the Goon Squad then this is for you. I adored this book.” – Misha

Perfect indeed: Zevin’s book was our single most popular title this year! To see the others, check out this year’s list.

     ~ David W.

New Fiction Roundup – July 2022

Summer reading continues with these great new releases:

7/5: Acts of Violet by Margarita Montimore
After magician Violet Volk disappeared mid-act, her sister Sasha picked up the pieces and moved on. Coming up on the ten year anniversary, with both a podcast host and her niece digging up old memories, Sasha resolves to discover the truth about Violet. (general fiction) A Peak Pick!

7/5: Honey & Spice by Bolu Babalola
College radio host Kiki Banjo takes it as her mission to warn the women of the African-Caribbean Society against the players and cads who would break their hearts. But when she’s caught kissing Malakai Korede, who she just called out, she decides to save face by entering into a fake relationship with Malakai. Will they catch feelings? (romance) A Peak Pick!

Continue reading “New Fiction Roundup – July 2022”

New Fiction Roundup – May 2022

Get ready for summer reading with May new releases! It’s a (perhaps surprisingly) good month for new horror releases, as well as new titles from literary favorites, some great romance, and much more.

5/3: Book Lovers by Emily Henry
Cutthroat literary agent Nora takes a girls trip to Sunshine Falls, North Carolina but continually finds herself thrown together with Charlie, a brooding editor that she knows from home. Will they write their own love story? (romance) A Peak Pick!

5/3: Book of Night by Holly Black
Thief Charlie Hall is trying to get out of the business, but she works for some dangerous people: gloamists, magicians who manipulate shadows to eavesdrop and sometimes kill. With a desperate sister and a boyfriend hiding secrets, Charlie enters the hunt for a book that could unleash a terrifying power. (fantasy)

5/3: Companion Piece by Ali Smith
Pandemics, isolation, companionship, medieval clocks, poetry, and wordplay are rich ground for the author of the Seasonal Quartet. (general fiction)

5/3: The Hacienda by Isabel Canas
In 1820s Mexico, Beatriz accepts a marriage proposal and finds herself at a haunted estate, where she’ll rely on the help of a local priest to save herself and the others who live at the hacienda. (horror)

5/3: The Immortal King Rao by Vauhini Vara
17-year-old Athena recounts the story of her father, King Rao, who overcame being born into the lowest caste in India to become a tech billionaire. Thanks to one of King Rao’s inventions, The Harmonica, Athena has access to all his memories and must use them to absolve herself of his suspicious death. (general fiction) Continue reading “New Fiction Roundup – May 2022”

New Fiction Roundup – April 2022

New novels by heavy-hitters such as Jennifer Egan, Emily St. John Mandel, and Douglas Stuart join debut novels involving a heist, police in Lahore, and a trip across the 1880s American West.

4/5: The Candy House by Jennifer Egan
Tech mogul Bix Bouton develops “Own your Unconscious,” a technology that allows one to externalize their memory and share those memoires with others. In interlocking narratives told by multiple characters over several decades, the consequences of Bix’s technology are spun out. A sibling novel to Egan’s award winning novel A Visit from the Good Squad. A Peak Pick! (general fiction)

4/5: Four Treasures of the Sky by Jenny Tinghui Zhang
Kidnapped from China and smuggled to America, Daiyu constantly reinvents herself in order to survive, roaming across the 1880s American West as anti-Chinese sentiment sweeps across the country. A Peak Pick! (historical fiction)

4/5: Let’s Not Do That Again by Grant Ginder
Running for the US Senate, Nancy Harrison would like to focus on her campaign, but instead must grapple with two grown children who are adrift: Nick, aimlessly writing a musical about Joan Didion; and Greta, who finds herself in Paris with extremist protestors. (comic fiction)

4/5: Portrait of a Thief by Grace D. Li
In this lyrical heist novel that delves into diaspora, the colonization of art, and the complexity of Chinese American identity, a crew of five led by Harvard senior Will Chen attempt to steal five priceless Chinese sculptures from an American museum and return them to Beijing. (Crime thriller)

Continue reading “New Fiction Roundup – April 2022”