A new year also means new books — and lots of them. Which upcoming releases have readers buzzing, though? We tapped the loyal Instagram followers of the Read with Jenna book club to see what page-turners they can't wait to dig into this year — and their picks didn't disappoint.
We rounded up 22 of the most popular titles from those who responded to our open call below. From historical fiction books to dreamy summer romance novels, there's a pick for every kind of reader out there.
We should note that not all of these books are available to read right now, but they are available for pre-order. The list covers releases all the way through June 21, so you can consider your TBR list for the first half of 2022 set. Keep reading to explore the books that the RWJ community is excited to pick up this year.
Read with Jenna community's most-anticipated books of 2022
"Olga Dies Dreaming," by Xochitl Gonzalez
Olga and her brother "Prieto" are well-known in New York City; Olga a wedding planner and Prieto a popular congressman. Behind closed doors, though, things aren't as well as they seem. Their mother, a Young Lord turned radical, abandoned them in the fight for a "militant political cause," leaving them to be raised by their grandmother. When their mother returns during hurricane season, it's safe to say there's more than one storm moving through their lives.
"The Last House on the Street," by Diane Chamberlain
Ellie Hockley was raised to be a proper Southern woman in 1965. Kayla Carter was supposed to raise her family in a beautiful home, next door to Ellie, in 2010. Ellie is far too familiar with the nature of the people in their Round Hill neighborhood, while Kayla doesn't know the secrets of the land on which her home is built. After her husband dies in an accident, Kayla is forced to uncover and reckon with the truth, no matter how painful it may be.
"To Paradise," by Hanya Yanagihara
The storyline of this New York Times bestseller spans three centuries: 1893, 1993 and 2003. Each section of the book features different characters in an alternate America, but despite the differences they each face, they are ultimately tied together by the core qualities that make everyone feel human — fear, love and loneliness, among them.
"Reminders of Him: A Novel," by Colleen Hoover
Kenna Rowan, a single mother, is given her shot at redemption when she returns to the town she made that very mistake in. The five years she spent in prison prior to her return, however, allowed for bridges to be burned that she is struggling to rebuild, including one with her own daughter. The one link she has hope for in order to reconnect with her daughter? The local bar owner. They form a connection and romance ensues — but so does risk.
"Violeta," by Isabel Allend
Violeta is the first girl in a family of boys, which already sets her apart from the rest. Her entire life has been marked by landmark events, including the Great War, the Spanish flu and soon, the Great Depression. Her family has lost everything, we learn, as she recounts her story through a letter to a special someone she loves.
"Black Cake," by Charmaine Wilkerson
Of course, the Read with Jenna pick for February made the list of anticipated reads for RWJ fans. It centers on two estranged siblings who have to put aside their differences in order to deal with not only the death of their mother, but her secret past and the inheritance she has left them: a Caribbean black cake made from a family recipe and a voice recording.
"The Paris Apartment," by Lucy Foley
Jess is desperate for a fresh start and thinks she'll find it in Paris, as her half-brother Ben has reluctantly allowed her to crash with him for a bit. When she arrives, however, Ben is missing. While she came to Paris to escape her past, she quickly finds herself enthralled in Ben's future — and the not-so-friendly neighbors that seem like prime suspects. "The Paris Apartment," is set to release on Feb. 22, 2022.
"One Italian Summer," by Rebecca Serle
Katy's mother, Carol, was more than just a mom to her — she was her best friend and shoulder to cry on. So when she passes away before their planned mother-daughter trip of a lifetime, Katy embarks on the trip alone. Once she steps foot in Positano, though, she can feel her mother's spirit; and feels herself come back to life. And then she spots her mother. Over the course of the summer, she gets to know the younger version of her mother, a version that existed before she was born, in this novel about the ways we move about after loss. "One Italian Summer," will hit shelves on March 1, 2022.
"The Unsinkable Greta James," by Jennifer E. Smith
Right after the unexpected death of her mother and right before the release of her sophomore album, indie musician Greta James falls apart on stage — and it's all on tape. Just as her father, Conrad, predicted, her career is now in jeopardy. Months later, she (reluctantly) agrees to accompany her father on the cruise her parents booked for their wedding anniversary — their last chance to heal together. But it proves to be much more than a story about healing. "The Unsinkable Greta James," is expected to be released on March 1, 2022.
"French Braid," by Anne Tyler
The Garrett family took its first and last family vacation in 1959. In fact, they hardly ever leave the house. Despite all the time they spend together, their desires and aspirations are far from similar, and the effects of those differences trickle down through each generation. In this story, Anne Tyler demonstrates just how hard it is to break free from those who love us, along with how many unknowns family members may have about one another. This title will be released on March 22, 2022.
"The Diamond Eye," by Kate Quinn
This World War II-era read is based on the true story of a quiet librarian, Mila Pavlichenko, who ultimately becomes the deadliest female sniper in history — Lady Death. She becomes so well known that she is sent on a goodwill tour of America, but she finds herself lonely and isolated. That is, until an unexpected friendship with First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt blooms. This novel will be released on March 29, 2022.
"Lessons in Chemistry," by Bonnie Garmus
Set to be released on April 5, "Lessons in Chemistry" centers on chemist Elizabeth Zott, the only woman on her all-male team at Hastings Research Institute, and Calvin Evans, seemingly the only man on the team with a real view on equality. He falls for her, but years later she finds herself alone as a single mother — and the star of an American cooking show. Her following is growing from it all, but she's turning a few heads in the wrong direction as she changes the status quo.
"The Wise Women," by Gina Sorrell
Advice columnist Wendy Wise has been dishing out advice to women for four decades, but it seems the lives of her very own daughters are a mess. Clementine's husband, Steve, secretly funneled their money into a failing startup, and Barb is burnt out from her architecture job on top of her relationship with her cheating girlfriend. But, bitter with childhood resentment, they won't turn to their mom for help. When Wendy decides to takes matters into her own hands and decides to hunt down Steve, Barb and Clementine soon learn that Wendy has some baggage of her own to deal with. "The Wise Women," will be released on April 5, 2022.
"Bombshelter," by Mary Laura Philpott
Philpott has always kept her out for danger, so when she finds her teenage son unconscious on the floor one morning, she can't help but spiral down a wormhole of anxious thoughts. How do we keep living when the unexpected can happen at any moment? We'll get a clue when this title drops on April 12, 2022.
"The Good Left Undone," by Adriana Trigiani
The Cabrelli family matriarch, Matelda, is nearing the end of her old age and doesn't want to leave a single stone unturned. Her daughter Domenica has lived a tranquil life until her coastal town becomes unsafe on the brink of World War II and she is forced to flee. Time is running out for the both of them. Yet, 100 years later, Matelda's granddaughter and great-granddaughter are left to confront their family legacy and just what is worth fighting for in life.
"Book Lovers," by Emily Henry
Nora Stephens is well aware of Charlie Lastra, and she thought she would have left him behind in the city when she chose to venture to South Carolina for the month of August. Until she keeps bumping into him there. They both are left to wonder whether it is just coincidence or if there is more to discover about each other along the way. "Book Lovers," will hit shelves on May 3, 2022.
"The Bookwoman’s Daughter," by Kim Michele Richardson
As the daughter of the Troublesome Creek packhorse librarian, Honey Lovett is used to running from the law. But when both of her parents are imprisoned, she must decide whether she wants to fight for her life or risk being sent away herself. She embarks through Appalachia to bring freedom books to those who need it most, and learns that she has to fight for herself just as she is fighting for others. This novel will be released on May 3, 2022.
"This Time Tomorrow," by Emma Straub
Emma Straub's novel centers around soon-to-be 40-year-old Alice, who is generally happy with her life — her job, relationship, her apartment, you name it. But, it would be nice if her ailing father was in the picture. Suddenly, she finds herself back in her 16-year-old body and reunited with the 49-year-old version of her father. Is this her chance to do things differently, or would she even change anything at all, given what she knows now? You can find out when this title hits shelves on May 17, 2022.
"Woman of Light," by Kali Fajardo-Anstine
Luz "Little Light" Lopez has no choice but to fend for herself in 1930s Denver after her brother has been run out of town by a white mob. She starts to have visions that transport her to her Indigenous homeland and, after numerous recollections, knows that it is up to her to save her family's story from disappearing. It's a western saga about love, family secrets and survival that will hit shelves on June 7, 2022.
"The Lunar Housewife," by Caroline Woods
Louise Leithauser is a writer on the rise in New York City. Then, she overhears her boyfriend and his business partner arguing about listening devices and death threats and decides to investigate. She starts to put the pieces together — artists and writers are being censored all around her. As more opportunities fall into her lap, she must decide whether she wants to take them on while her fellow creatives are being silenced or fight for what is right. This anticipated release will hit shelves on June 7, 2022.
"The Hotel Nantucket," by Elin Hilderbrand
Just in time for summer, "The Hotel Nantucket" will hit shelves on June 14, 2022. It centers on Lizbet Keaton, who is seeking a rebound after a bad breakup. As the newly-appointed general manager of The Hotel Nantucket, she has the opportunity to turn the current state of the eyesore around and impress its billionaire owner. The hotel's haunted past is getting in the way, though, and Lizbet must decide whether all of the uncertainty will lead both her and the hotel to success or doom.
"The Lies I Tell," by Julie Clark
On June 24, 2022, this thriller will finally hit shelves. It tells the story of Meg Williams, Maggie Littleton and Melody Wilde — three pseudonyms for the same con artist — and Kat Williams, a young woman desperate for revenge who enlists Meg for help. As Meg and Kat grow closer, she can't help but wonder who Meg actually wants target.
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