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  • Writer's pictureThe Fiction Fox

Most Anticipated Releases for 2023

Although I have a dedicated page where I keep track of upcoming releases, I still like to include this list of my “most anticipated releases” within my Year in Review series. This year I have 25 to talk about and I’ve sorted them by genre. Please be aware that expected release-dates are always subject to change, so make sure to check the publishers catalogue or Goodreads.

Let’s hope I have similar success in predicting the books I’ll love as last year, and without further ado; let’s get into the list.

Literary Fiction

Expected release date: March 28th 2023 Why I’m Excited: a coming of age story about sisterly bonds, family secrets, illness, hauntings and the power of storytelling, compared to the narrative style of Helen Oyeyemi, ticks basically EVERY SINGLE ONE of my boxes. Take my money already, and get in my bag! Synopsis: Sisters Zora and Sasha Porter are drifting apart. Bearing witness to their father’s violence and their mother’s worsening illness, an unsettled Zora escapes into her journal, dreaming of being a writer, while Sasha discovers sex and chest binding, spending more time with her new girlfriend than at home. But the sisters, like their parents, must come together to answer to beings greater than themselves, and reckon with a family secret buried in the past. A tale told from the perspective of a mischievous narrator, featuring the Rolling Calf who haunts butchers, Mama Dglo who lives in the ocean, a vain tiger, and an outsmarted snake, The Human Origins of Beatrice Porter & Other Essential Ghosts is set in a world as alive and unpredictable as Helen Oyeyemi’s.

Expected release date: March 23rd 2023 Why I’m Excited: Environmental fiction inspired by Cloud Atlas, Station Eleven and the Overstory, told through different timelines. Synopsis: The northern mining town of River Meadows is one of three hotspots in the world producing ghost ore, a new source of energy worth twenty-eight times its weight in gold. It's also linked with slippages of time and space that gradually render the area uninhabitable. After the town is evacuated, the whole region is cordoned off, the new no-go zone wryly nicknamed The Park. Three intertwined stories flow from the disaster of River Meadows. Alex Hewitt and his sister, Amery, were among the first to be shipped out of the contaminated town. Now an accomplished game designer, Alex has moved on, but his sister has not, making increasingly dangerous break-ins to save animals trapped in the toxic wasteland. When at last she fails to return from a trip inside the fence, Alex flies to River Meadows to search for her, enlisting her friend, Michio Amano, a mathematician who needs to transcend the known laws of physics if he and Alex are to succeed. Claire Foley ran away from River Meadows as a teenager and now traffics in endangered wildlife. As Alex and Michio search for Amery, Claire arrives in an island nation under threat of environmental catastrophe to retrieve her greatest prize yet, only to find herself facing a life-altering choice. And, finally, in a future as distant as myth, a flock of birds sets out on a dangerous journey to prevent the extinction of their ancient enemy, humanity. The account they hand down is an Epic of Gilgamesh for our times, illuminating the wisdom of nature and our flawed stewardship of the planet.

Expected release date: April 6th 2023 Why I’m Excited: it’s another dark-literary piece by Max Porter, which is all I needed to know going off my love of his previous works.A

Synopsis: From the bestselling author of Grief is the Thing with Feathers and Lanny, Shy is a novel about guilt, rage, imagination and boyhood. It is about being lost in the dark, and realising you are not alone.

This is the story of a few strange hours in the life of a troubled teenage boy.

He is wandering into the night listening to the voices in his head: his teachers, his parents, the people he has hurt and the people who are trying to love him.

H is escaping Last Chance, a home for 'very disturbed young men', and walking into the haunted space between his night terrors, his past and the heavy question of his future.

Expected release date: June 6th 2023 Why I’m Excited: a literary sci-fi novel that deals with themes of grief, guilt and revisiting your past memories, all set during the outbreak of a world-changing pandemic, blurbed as for fans of Never Let Me Go. This sounds topical, lyrical and absolutely haunting and I cannot wait to read it. It doesn’t hurt that the cover is the best thing that 2023 has had to offer so far. Synopsis: In the face of a pandemic, an unprepared world scrambles to escape the mysterious disease’s devastating symptoms: sensory damage, memory loss, death. Neffy, a disgraced and desperately indebted twenty-seven-year-old marine biologist, registers for an experimental vaccine trial in London―perhaps humanity’s last hope for a cure. Though isolated from the chaos outside, she and the other volunteers―Rachel, Leon, Yahiko, and Piper―cannot hide from the mistakes that led them there. As London descends into chaos outside the hospital windows, Neffy befriends Leon, who before the pandemic had been working on a controversial technology that allows users to revisit their memories. She withdraws into projections of her past―a childhood bisected by divorce; a recent love affair; her obsessive research with octopuses and the one mistake that ended her career. The lines between past, present, and future begin to blur, and Neffy is left with defining questions: Who can she trust? Why can’t she forgive herself? How should she live, if she survives?

Expected release date: April 6th 2023 Why I’m Excited: literary fiction + chronic illness + nature-writing about the ocean. Bonus points for being partly set on the Dutch isle of Texel (I’ve never seen a non-Dutch book cover that) Synopsis: When a seed falls from a vine in the tropics and is carried by ocean currents across the Atlantic to the shores of Western Europe - it is known as a sea bean. It is still considered lucky to find a sea bean on the shore, they have been used as magical charms for more than a thousand years. Sally's search for a sea bean begins not long after she moves to the windswept archipelago of Shetland. When pregnancy triggers a chronic illness and forces her to slow down, Sally takes to the beaches. There she discovers treasure freighted with story and curiosities that connect her to the world. The wild shores of Shetland offer glimpses of orcas swimming through the ocean at dusk, the chance to release a tiny storm petrel into the dark of the night and a path of hope. This beachcombing path takes her from the Faroese archipelago to the Orkney islands, and the Dutch island of Texel. It opens a world of ancient myths, fragile ecology, and deep human history. It brings her to herself again.

Expected release date: April 18th 2023 Why I’m Excited: again: speculative eco-fiction + themes of family/mother-daughter relationships. As this novel is marketed as “witty and playful” I’m hoping it’ll make a nice offset for the heavier books mentioned earlier. Synopsis: Jane is a serious scientist on the cutting-edge team of a bold project looking to "de-extinct" the woolly mammoth. She's privileged to have been sent to Siberia to hunt for ancient DNA, but there's a catch: Jane's two "tagalong" teen daughters are there with her in the Arctic, and they're bored enough to cause trouble. Brilliant, fiery, sharp-tongued Eve is fifteen and willing to talk back to the male scientists in a way her mother is not. And sweet, thirteen-year-old Vera, who seems to absorb all the emotional burdens of her small family, just wants to be home in Berkeley, baking cakes and watching bad TV. When Eve and Vera stumble upon a four-thousand-year-old baby mammoth that has been perfectly preserved, their discovery sets off a chain of events that pits Jane against her colleagues, and soon her status at the lab is tenuous at best. So what does a female scientist do when she's a passionate devotee of her field but her gender and life history hold her back? She goes rogue. As Jane and her daughters ping-pong from the slopes of Siberia to a university in California, from the shores of Iceland to an exotic animal farm in Italy, The Last Animal takes readers on an expansive, bighearted journey that explores the possibility and peril of the human imagination on a changing planet, what it's like to be a woman and a mother in a field dominated by men, and how a wondrous discovery can best be enjoyed with family. Even teenagers.

Expected release date: June 6th 2023 Why I’m Excited: family legacies, queer relationships and the ghostly imprint of grief on a town literally drowned under the waters of a dam-break. I’m hoping this story is as good as the atmosphere and setting it’s painting. Synopsis: Years ago, yellow fever gripped the small lakeside town of Prosper, Arkansas. At the height of that summer swelter, in the wake of an unexpected storm, the dam failed and the valley flooded—drowning the town and everyone trapped inside. The secrets of old Prosper drowned with them. Now, decades later, when a mysterious locked box is pulled from the depths of the lake, three descendants of that long-ago tragedy are hurled into another feverish summer. Cassie: the reclusive sole witness to an impossible horror no one believes. Lark: a wide-eyed dreamer haunted by bizarre visions. June: caught between longing for a fresh start and bearing witness to the ghosts of the past. Bound together, all three must contend with their home’s complex history—and with the ruins of the town lost far beneath the troubled water.

Expected release date: May 2nd 2023 Why I’m Excited: Although I haven’t read the authors previous novel Cutting for Stone, I’ve heard nothing but great things about it. His newest release promises a generational tale with themes of medicine, religion and family legacy set on the South Indian coast. Synopsis: Spanning the years 1900 to 1977, The Covenant of Water is set in Kerala, on South India’s Malabar Coast, and follows three generations of a family that suffers a peculiar affliction: in every generation, at least one person dies by drowning—and in Kerala, water is everywhere. The family is part of a Christian community that traces itself to the time of the apostles, but times are shifting, and the matriarch of this family, known as Big Ammachi—literally “Big Mother”—will witness unthinkable changes at home and at large over the span of her extraordinary life. All of Verghese’s great gifts are on display in this new work: there are astonishing scenes of medical ingenuity, fantastic moments of humor, a surprising and deeply moving story, and characters imbued with the essence of life.


Expected release date: March 28th 2023 Why I’m Excited: one of my favourite horror authors taking on one of my favourite horror tropes of the haunted house. This has all the elements to become a new horror favourite for me. Synopsis: "Mom seems off." Her brother's words echo in Sam Montgomery's ear as she turns onto the quiet North Carolina street where their mother lives alone. She brushes the thought away as she climbs the front steps. Sam's excited for this rare extended visit, and looking forward to nights with just the two of them, drinking boxed wine, watching murder mystery shows, and guessing who the killer is long before the characters figure it out. But stepping inside, she quickly realizes home isn’t what it used to be. Gone is the warm, cluttered charm her mom is known for; now the walls are painted a sterile white. Her mom jumps at the smallest noises and looks over her shoulder even when she’s the only person in the room. And when Sam steps out back to clear her head, she finds a jar of teeth hidden beneath the magazine-worthy rose bushes, and vultures are circling the garden from above. To find out what’s got her mom so frightened in her own home, Sam will go digging for the truth. But some secrets are better left buried.

Expected release date: April 18th 2023 Why I’m Excited: “mythological horror” is one of my favourite niche-sub-genres, as it gives such a unique look into the cultural fears of the society that birthed these myths. With native American mythology and history being one that’s fascinated me in particular for years now, this combines the best of both world. The fact that it’s own-voices gives me even more hope that this’ll be something special. Synopsis: A young Native girl's hunt for answers about the women mysteriously disappearing from her tribe's reservation lead her to delve into the myths and stories of her people, all while being haunted herself, in this atmospheric and stunningly poignant debut. Anna Horn is always looking over her shoulder. For the bullies who torment her, for the entitled visitors at the reservation's casino...and for the nameless, disembodied entity that stalks her every step--an ancient tribal myth come-to-life, one that's intent on devouring her whole.With strange and sinister happenings occurring around the casino, Anna starts to suspect that not all the horrors on the reservation are old. As girls begin to go missing and the tribe scrambles to find answers, Anna struggles with her place on the rez, desperately searching for the key she's sure lies in the legends of her tribe's past. When Anna's own little sister also disappears, she'll do anything to bring Grace home. But the demons plaguing the reservation--both ancient and new--are strong, and sometimes, it's the stories that never get told that are the most important.

Expected release date: March 21st 2023 Why I’m Excited: although the synopsis leaves us with more questions than answers, this was a case of setting + author + hook that was enough for me. Setting: 20th century American Mid-West. Author: Victore Lavalle of Changeling-fame. Hook: a lone traveling woman carrying around a steamer-trunk that may never be opened, or else peoples lives are at stake. Sold. Synopsis: Adelaide Henry carries an enormous steamer trunk with her wherever she goes. It’s locked at all times. Because when the trunk is opened, people around her start to disappear... The year is 1914, and Adelaide is in trouble. Her secret sin killed her parents, and forced her to flee her hometown of Redondo, California, in a hellfire rush, ready to make her way to Montana as a homesteader. Dragging the trunk with her at every stop, she will be one of the "lone women" taking advantage of the government's offer of free land for those who can cultivate it—except that Adelaide isn't alone. And the secret she's tried so desperately to lock away might be the only thing keeping her alive.

Expected release date: May 9th 2023 Why I’m Excited: They Drown Our Daughters exceeded all my expectations with how great and immersive it was. With similar themes of motherhood, family and a highly atmospheric setting, I’m hoping this will do the same. Synopsis: At four months old, Olivia Dahl was almost murdered. Driven by haunting visions, her mother became obsessed with the idea that Olivia was a changeling, and that the only way to get her real baby back was to make a trade with the "dead women" living at the bottom of the well. Now Olivia is ready to give birth to a daughter of her own...and for the first time, she hears the women whispering. Everyone tells Olivia she should be happy. She should be glowing, but the birth of her daughter only fills Olivia with dread. As Olivia's body starts giving out, slowly deteriorating as the baby eats and eats and eats, she begins to fear that the baby isn't her daughter at all and, despite her best efforts, history is repeating itself. Soon images of a black-haired woman plague Olivia's nightmares, drawing her back to the well that almost claimed her life―tying mother and daughter together in a desperate cycle of fear and violence that must be broken if Olivia has any hope of saving her child...or herself.

Expected release date: April 11th 2023 Why I’m Excited: With both Sundial and The Last House on Needless Street, Ward has shown her knack for writing unique horror, that isn’t afraid to take a risk. For that alone, I’m curious to see what she does with this latest premise. Synopsis: In a lonely cottage overlooking the windswept Maine coast, Wilder Harlow begins the last book he will ever write. It is the story of his childhood summer companions and the killer that stalked the small New England town. Of the body they found, and the horror of that discovery echoing down the decades. And of Sky, Wilder’s one-time best friend, who stole his unfinished memoir and turned it into a lurid bestselling novel, Looking Glass Sound. But as Wilder writes, the lines between memory and fiction blur. He fears he’s losing his grip on reality when he finds notes hidden around the cottage written in Sky’s signature green ink.


Expected release date: January 12th 2023 Why I’m Excited: this is probably my most anticipated release of the entire year, simply because it’s Kirsty Logan. I’ll read anything she writes at this point and a dark witchy tale featuring herbal magic, folklore, prejudice and themes of overcoming a traumatic past is everything I could’ve asked for. Synopsis: From the snowy winter woods to the bright midnight sun; from lost and powerless to finding your path, Now She is Witch conjures a world of violence and beauty - a world where women grasp at power through witchcraft, sexuality and performance, and most of all through throwing each other to the wolves. Lux has lost everything when Else finds her, alone in the woods. Her family, her lover, her home - all burned. The world is suspicious of women like her. But Lux is cunning; she knows how to exploit people's expectations, how to blend into the background. And she knows a lot about poisons. Else has not found Lux by accident. She needs her help to seek revenge against the man who wronged her, and together they pursue him north. But on their hunt they will uncover dark secrets that entangle them with dangerous adversaries. This is a witch story unlike any other…

Expected release date: March 14th 2023 Why I’m Excited: I didn’t know I needed a sequel the strange but incredibly good ride I had with Vita Nostra, but now that this book has seen the light of day, I cannot wait to get back into Sasha’s story. Synopsis: (spoiler alert for Vita Nostra) In Vita Nostra, Sasha Samokhina, a third-year student at the Institute of Special Technologies, was in the middle of taking the final exam that would transform her into a part of the Great Speech. After defying her teachers’ expectations, Sasha emerges from the exam as Password, a unique and powerful part of speech. Accomplished and ready to embrace her new role, she soon learns her powers threaten the old world, and despite her hard work, Sasha is set to fail. However, Farit Kozhennikov, Sasha’s dark mentor, finds a way to bring her out of the oblivion and back to the Institute for his own selfish purposes. Subsequently, Sasha must correct her mistakes before she is allowed to graduate and is forced to do what few are asked and even less achieve: to succeed and reverberate—becoming a part of the Great Speech and being one of the special few who dictate reality. If she fails, she faces a fate far worse than death: the choice is hers. Years have passed around the Institute—and the numerous realities that have spread from Sasha’s first failure—but it is only her fourth year of learning what role she will play in shaping the world. Her teachers despise and fear her, her classmates distrust her, and a growing love—for a young pilot with no affiliation to the school—is fraught because a relationship means leverage, and Farit won’t hesitate to use it against her. Planes crash all the time. Which means Sasha needs to rewrite the world so that can’t happen...or fail for good.

Expected release date: June 6th 2023 Why I’m Excited: I love my SSF to have unique and interesting settings, and a floating-living city in the sky ruled by powerful architects is just an example of such. I also love the idea that we’re following an already established couple trying to preserve a marriage on the rocks, rather than a new (insta-lovey) romance like usual. Very excited to see what the author does with all these concepts. Synopsis: High above a jungle-planet float the last refuges of humanity—plant-made civilizations held together by tradition, technology, and arcane science. In these living cities, architects are revered above anyone else. If not for their ability to psychically manipulate the architecture, the cities would plunge into the devastating earthrage storms below. Charismatic, powerful, mystical, Iravan is one such architect. In his city, his word is nearly law. His abilities are his identity, but to Ahilya, his wife, they are a way for survival to be reliant on the privileged few. Like most others, she cannot manipulate the plants. And she desperately seeks change. Their marriage is already thorny—then Iravan is accused of pushing his abilities to forbidden limits. He needs Ahilya to help clear his name; she needs him to tip the balance of rule in their society. As their paths become increasingly intertwined, deadly truths emerge, challenging everything each of them believes. And as the earthrages become longer, and their floating city begins to plummet, Iravan and Ahilya's discoveries might destroy their marriage, their culture, and their entire civilization.

Expected release date: June 23rd 2023 Why I’m Excited: lyrical historical fantasy with a theatre setting. Themes of fluid identities, love, art and class… Did someone just compare this to The Nightcircus? Yes please… Synopsis: London, 1601—a golden city soon to erupt in flames. Shay is a messenger-girl, falconer, and fortune teller who sees the future in the patterns of birds. Nonesuch is the dark star of the city’s fabled Blackfriars Theatre, where a cast of press-ganged boys perform for London’s gentry. When the pair meet, Shay falls in love with the performances—and with Nonesuch himself. As their bond deepens, they create the Ghost Theatre, an underground troupe that performs fantastical plays in the city’s hidden corners. As their fame grows the troupe fans the flames of rebellion among the city’s outcasts, and the lovers are drawn into the dark web of the Elizabethan court. Embattled, with the plague on the rise throughout the country, the Queen seeks a reading from Shay, a moment which unleashes chaos not only in Shay’s life, but across the whole of England too. A fever-dream full of prophecy and anarchy, gutter rats and bird gods, Mat Osman’s The Ghost Theatre is a wild ride from the rooftops of Elizabethan London to its dark underbelly, and a luminous meditation on double lives and fluid identities and the bewitching, transformative nature of art and power, with a bittersweet love affair at its heart. Set amid the vividly rendered England of Osman’s imagination and written in rich, seductive prose, The Ghost Theatre will have readers under its spell from the very first page.

Expected release date: March 2nd 2023 Why I’m Excited: mythology (in this case as story that I’ve never heard about before and can’t wait to dive into), collective grief, time and memory in a magical-realism story about a giant catfish that shook a nation. Sounds strange, powerful and completely up my alley. I’m also getting The Astonishing Color of After-vibes, which definitely helps. Synopsis: There's a catfish under the islands of Japan and when it rolls the land rises and falls. Sora hates the catfish whose rolling caused an earthquake so powerful it cracked time itself. It destroyed her home and took her mother. Now Sora and her scientist father live close to the zones – the wild and abandoned places where time runs faster or slower than normal. Sora is sensitive to the shifts, and her father recruits her help in exploring these liminal spaces. But it's dangerous there – and as she strays further inside in search of her mother, she finds that time distorts, memories fracture and shadows, a glimmer of things not entirely human, linger. After Sora's father goes missing, she has no choice but to venture into uncharted spaces within the time zones to find him, her mother and perhaps even the catfish itself...

Children’s/Middle-grade/Young Adult

Expected release date: March 1st 2023 Why I’m Excited: Middle-grade featuring grief and a protagonist who’s interested in biology/STEM is about as far up my alley as you can get. Also, spoiler-alert: I’ve already read and loved and ARC of this book, and can highly recommend it. Synopsis: Twelve-year-old Juniper Edwards can't stop chasing the endangered butterfly her sister died trying to catch. In her grief, Juniper finds comfort in her family's study of insects, because science is based on logic, order, and control. But then Juniper's search for the butterfly nearly kills her, too, and when she wakes up with newfound abilities, she discovers that the line between science and magic--and life and death--is not as solid as she thought. With the help of her mysterious neighbors, Juniper tries an experiment to change things back to the way they were. Its result will force her to face the fact that some things are way beyond her control.

Expected release date: March 28th 2023 Why I’m Excited: middle-grade fiction about the loss of a parent, and the healing power of music. Sounds magical, heart-warming, powerful, and just like something I would’ve loved to have at that age, and now love to recommend to my followers. Synopsis: Amie has spent her life perfectly in tune with Ba-ba, her father—she plays the violin, his favorite instrument; she loves all his favorite foods, even if he can’t eat them during his cancer treatments; and they talk about books, including Amie’s favorite series, Harry Potter. But after Ba-ba dies, Amie feels distanced from everyone close to her, like her mother and her best friends, Rio and Bella. More devastating still, she loses her ability to play the violin—the notes that used to flow freely are now stilted and sharp. Will Amie ever find her way back to the music she once loved? With hope and harmony lighting the way—and with help from the people who care about her most—Amie must find the strength to carry on. In the end, she’ll learn that healing, while painful, can be its own miraculous song.

Expected release date: May 2nd 2023 Why I’m Excited: middle-grade with some heavier themes, set at a summercamp, by a well-known and beloved author branching out into a completely new genre. I’ve never read a Morgan Matson before, as I don’t like strictly romance-novels, but I’ll for sure give this one a try. Synopsis: For as long as Ryanna Stuart can remember, her summers have been spent with her father and his new wife. Just the three of them, structured, planned, and quiet. But this summer is different. This summer, she’s received a letter from her grandparents—grandparents neither she nor her dad have spoken to since her mom’s death—inviting her to stay with them at an old summer camp in the Poconos. Ryanna accepts. She wants to learn about her mom. She wants to uncover the mystery of why her father hasn’t spoken to her grandparents all these years. She’s even looking forward to a quiet summer by the lake. But what she finds are relatives…so many relatives! Aunts and uncles and cousins upon cousins—a motley, rambunctious crew of kids and eccentric, unconventional adults. People who have memories of her mom from when she was Ryanna’s age, clues to her past like a treasure map. Ryanna even finds an actual, real-life treasure map! Over the course of one unforgettable summer—filled with s’mores and swimming, adventure and fun, and even a decades-old mystery to solve—Ryanna discovers a whole new side of herself and that, sometimes, the last place you expected to be is the place where you really belong.

Poetry, Memoirs and Other

Expected release date: January 10th 2023 Why I’m Excited: the authors debut Me Moth made it to my favourites of 2021 and I’ve been looking forward to reading whatever she writes next. We’re All So Good at Smiling promises to tackle similar themes, written in a similar poetry-prose-hybrid style, so I’m hoping for the same emotional impact that Me Moth left on me. Synopsis: Whimsy is back in the hospital for treatment of clinical depression. When she meets a boy named Faerry, she recognizes they both have magic in the marrow of their bones. And when Faerry and his family move to the same street, the two start to realize that their lifelines may have twined and untwined many times before. They are both terrified of the forest at the end of Marsh Creek Lane. The Forest whispers to Whimsy. The Forest might hold the answers to the part of Faerry he feels is missing. They discover the Forest holds monsters, fairy tales, and pain that they have both been running from for 11 years.

Expected release date: June 1st 2023 Why I’m Excited: with disability-fiction being so close to my heart, I’m always here for a good memoir about the topic. Each year, one of these memoirs has made my favourites-list, so I’m hoping this one will follow in the footsteps of Sitting Pretty and A Face for Picasso. Synopsis: In this warm, thought-provoking and often hilarious memoir, Lottie Jackson reflects on her experiences of living with disability: from the difficulties of going shopping on a mobility scooter, to the headache of defining oneself on a tick-box form, and from the indignities of the so-called easy-pull tights aid to the intense pleasure of finally swapping a hospital gown for a slinky dress. Lottie captivatingly expresses the acute difficulties and joys of living with disability, as well as the strange everyday occurrences that abled-bodied people usually don't experience. See Me Rolling is an insightful and moving memoir, but it is also a clarion call for greater diversity and inclusion. Inequalities in representation, access and opportunities for disabled people are breeding in silence. Too often people with disabilities are kept on the periphery and treated as a sum of their differences. In this dazzling debut, Lottie reveals why we must strive for change and how we can transform our society for the better. She has a voice that needs to be heard.

Expected release date: April 18th 2023 Why I’m Excited: novels in verse can be hit or miss, but always catch my interest if only for the sheer skill going into writing them. As a lover of beautiful language, I’m so excited to see these kind of books make it into the YA- and Middle-Grade domain as well. A story that takes on that linguistic challenge, as well as difficult topics like political oppression and a refugee-crisis has the potential of being something absolutely extraordinary. Synopsis: Winged beings are meant to be free. And so are artists, but the Cuban government has criminalized any art that doesn’t meet their approval. Soleida and her parents protest this injustice with their secret sculpture garden of chained birds. Then a hurricane exposes the illegal art, and her parents are arrested. Soleida escapes to Central America alone, joining the thousands of Cuban refugees stranded in Costa Rica while seeking asylum elsewhere. There she meets Dariel, a Cuban American boy whose enigmatic music enchants birds and animals—and Soleida. Together they work to protect the environment and bring attention to the imprisoned artists in Cuba. Soon they discover that love isn’t about falling—it’s about soaring together to new heights. But wings can be fragile, and Soleida and Dariel come from different worlds. They are fighting for a better future—and the chance to be together.

Expected release date: September 2023 Why I’m Excited: Jen Campbell is one of my favourite authors/creators/reviewers and people in general when discussing the topic of disability. I've loved her previous collections that've dealt with this topic and watch her channel religiously for recommendations, so I cannot wait to read her next work.

Synopsis: Please Do Not Touch This Exhibit explores disability, storytelling, and the process of mythologising trauma. Jen Campbell writes of Victorian circus and folklore, deep seas and dark forests, discussing her own relationship with hospitals — both as a disabled person, and as an adult reflecting on childhood while going through IVF.


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