There's nothing more satisfying than starting a new book. Cracking the spine for the first time, feeling the texture of its cover in your hands, engulfed by the smell of a new book ready for reading. It can be a ritualistic act or a means of relaxation, something you make a daily habit or regard as a part of your holidays. To kick start your literary experiences for the year, we've compiled a list of 16 of the best books to read in 2022, from late 2021 publications to upcoming releases that have the world of books waiting with bated breath. To read is to learn, and those who don't read live only one life. Indulge in fresh, engaging perspectives today with one of our choices.
1. The Cost of Labour – Natalie Kon-Yu
An important read examining how the traditional dynamics of pregnancy don’t align with contemporary societal norms.
2. What a Shame – Abigail Bergstrom
A gripping piece of debut fiction embodying the best of contemporary British literature.
3. Henry Hamlet’s Heart – Rhiannon Wilde
Steeped in Mid-2010’s nostalgia, this Brisbane-based tale follows Henry Hamlet through his final year of secondary school, which become pivotal in his development into a grown adult.
4. Careering – Daisy Buchanan
Soon to be released and hotly anticipated, we can’t wait to get our hands on the latest from Daisy Buchanan. If it’s anything like Insatiable, we’ll be turning the pages at a rapid pace.
5. Cleopatra and Frankenstein – Coco Mellors
An addictive debut about the fallout from one impulsive couple’s marriage.
6. Wayward – Dana Spiotta
How one woman grapples with changes to her life she didn’t foresee impacting on her as a person.
7. Sunset – Jessie Cave
Get the tissues ready, but also prepare to laugh along the way at a contemporary retelling of grief and loss, coupled with love and growth.
8. Devotion – Hannah Kent
A novel about faith, family and trust, Kent explores humanity across continents in this epic work.
9. Found, Wanting – Natasha Sholl
Powerfully written, Natasha Sholl’s memoir about the loss of her partner on Valentine’s Day is a beautifully frank recount of dealing with loss and growing through it.
10. Sex, Swipes and Other Stories – Helen Chik
A blend of a memoir and handbook that you'll wish you had read before going on your last bad date.
11. A Book of Days – Patti Smith
A visual offering from the imitable Patti Smith, A Book of Days is slated for release in November this year and is an anthology of images inspired by her Instagram page.
12. Nina Simone’s Gum – Warren Ellis
How something so small can form lifelong, precious connections between people.
13. Love and Virtue – Diana Reed
For those who enjoyed Brie Lee’s Who Gets to be Smart, Diana Reed’s fiction account of a first year university student navigating a toxic educational and social culture is a must read.
14. Margaret Atwood – Burning Questions
A collection of essays spanning 15 years of Atwood’s literary career.
15. It Starts with Us – Colleen Hoover
The book that has been sending TikTok into overdrive as users wait with bated breath for the latest offering from cult writer Colleen Hoover.
16. Big Beautiful Female Theory
After winning the prestigious Melbourne Prize for Literature Writer's Prize in 2021, it was only a matter of time before we found ourselves in possession of a debut book from Eloise Grills. Big Beautiful Female Theory delves into what it means to be fat, female and alive. It's straight-talking on topics like diet culture, body positivity, popular culture and female sexuality. A must read for 2022.
When shopping for the best books to read in 2022, there's nothing like browsing through a well-stocked bookstore for your purchase. Why not visit one of the RUSSH team's favourite stores if you're in Sydney? We can guarantee they are worth a visit.