We kicked off 2023 with a group of AMAZING new releases! From the thrilling and highly anticipated conclusion to the Last Hours series, to an adorable romcom debut and a delightful sequel novella, we’re ready to start crushing our reading goals for this year!
Must-Read Books That Came Out in January 2023
1. Chain of Iron paperback by Cassandra Clare
A #1 New York Times Bestseller!
The Shadowhunters must catch a killer in Edwardian London in this dangerous and romantic sequel to the #1 New York Times bestselling novel Chain of Gold, from New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Cassandra Clare. Chain of Iron is a Shadowhunters novel.
Cordelia Carstairs seems to have everything she ever wanted. She’s engaged to marry James Herondale, the boy she has always loved; she has a new life in London with her best friend Lucie; and she bears the sword Cortana, a legendary hero’s blade.
But the truth is far grimmer. Cordelia’s marriage is a lie, arranged to save her reputation, while James remains in love with the Grace Blackthorn. Cortana burns her when she touches it. And a serial murderer is targeting the Shadowhunters of London, killing under cover of darkness, then vanishing without a trace.
Now Cordelia, James, and Lucie must follow the trail of the killer through the city’s most dangerous streets. All the while, each is keeping a shocking secret: Lucie, that she is attempting to raise the dead; Cordelia, that she has sworn a dangerous oath of loyalty to a mysterious power; and James, that he himself may be the killer they seek.
2. The Love Match by Priyanka Taslim
To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before meets Pride and Prejudice in this delightful and heartfelt rom-com about a Bangladeshi American teen whose meddling mother arranges a match to secure their family’s financial security—just as she’s falling in love with someone else.
Zahra Khan is basically Bangladeshi royalty, but being a princess doesn’t pay the bills in Paterson, New Jersey. While Zahra’s plans for financial security this summer involve working long hours at Chai Ho and saving up for college writing courses, Amma is convinced that all Zahra needs is a “good match,” Jane Austen style.
Enter Harun Emon, who’s wealthy, devastatingly handsome, and…aloof. As soon as Zahra meets him, she knows it’s a bad match. It’s nothing like the connection she has with Nayim Aktar, the new dishwasher at the tea shop, who just gets Zahra in a way no one has before. So, when Zahra finds out that Harun is just as uninterested in this match as she is, they decide to slowly sabotage their parents’ plans. And for once in Zahra’s life, she can have her rossomalai and eat it too: “dating” Harun and keeping Amma happy while catching real feelings for Nayim.
But life—and boys—can be more complicated than Zahra realizes. With her feelings all mixed up, Zahra discovers that sometimes being a good Bengali kid can be a royal pain.
3. 16 & Pregnant by LaLa Thomas
“A powerful and timely exploration of two friends navigating a life-changing event.” —Angela Johnson, Michael L. Printz Award–winning author of The First Part Last
The bond between two best friends is put to the test when one of them gets pregnant in this contemporary teen novel inspired by MTV’s iconic reality show.
Erykah was looking forward to junior year at East Prep High. She has a cute boyfriend, gets good grades, and has the best bestie. Money is tight, though that’s nothing new in her world. But everything changes when she gets pregnant. Having a baby at sixteen was definitely not part of the plan.
Kelly’s plan was to dominate junior year—grade-wise and on the basketball court—and eventually get an athletic scholarship. It did not include helping her best friend through a pregnancy. But that’s what best friends do, right? Besides, Kelly has every intention of being a good auntie.
As the two girls navigate the pregnancy, they’ll learn some harsh realities about the world and be forced to make some huge decisions. They’ll also discover a deep reserve of strength and compassion…for each other and themselves.
16 & Pregnant: A Novel honestly and openly explores pregnancy through the eyes of two young Black teens in modern-day Nevada. Debut author LaLa Thomas combines personal insights, heartfelt dialogue, and authentic emotions in this powerful portrait of American teen life.
4. The Mysteries of Thorn Manor by Margaret Rogerson
In this delightful sequel novella to the New York Times bestselling Sorcery of Thorns, Elisabeth, Nathaniel, and Silas must unravel the magical trap keeping them inside Thorn Manor in time for their Midwinter Ball!
Elisabeth Scrivener is finally settling into her new life with sorcerer Nathaniel Thorn. Now that their demon companion Silas has returned, so has scrutiny from nosy reporters hungry for gossip about the city’s most powerful sorcerer and the librarian who stole his heart. But something strange is afoot at Thorn Manor: the estate’s wards, which are meant to keep their home safe, are acting up and forcibly trapping the Manor’’ occupants inside. Surely it must be a coincidence that this happened just as Nathaniel and Elisabeth started getting closer to one another…
With no access to the outside world, Elisabeth, Nathaniel, and Silas—along with their new maid Mercy—will have to work together to discover the source of the magic behind the malfunctioning wards before they’re due to host the city’s Midwinter Ball. Not an easy task when the house is filled with unexpected secrets, and all Elisabeth can think about is kissing Nathaniel in peace. But when it becomes clear that the house, influenced by the magic of Nathaniel’s ancestors, requires a price for its obedience, Elisabeth and Nathaniel will have to lean on their connection like never before to set things right.
5. Black Ice paperback by Becca Fitzpatrick
Danger is hard to resist in this sexy young adult thriller following a teen girl caught between all-too-human perils and the brutal natural elements in the mountains—from Becca Fitzpatrick, the New York Times bestselling author of the Hush, Hush saga.
Britt Pheiffer has trained to backpack the Teton Range, but she isn’t prepared when her ex-boyfriend, who still haunts her every thought, wants to join her. Before Britt can explore her feelings for Calvin, an unexpected blizzard forces her to seek shelter in a remote cabin, accepting the hospitality of its two very handsome occupants.
But her luck takes a turn for the worse when she discovers the men are fugitives, and they take her hostage. Britt is forced to guide them off the mountain, knowing she must stay alive long enough for Calvin to find her. Along the way, Britt finds chilling evidence of a series of murders that could be linked to her captors…
But nothing is as it seems, and everyone is keeping secrets, including Mason, one of her kidnappers, whose seemingly genuine kindness confuses Britt. While facing the threats of frigid snowstorms and wild grizzly bears, can Britt figure out who her real enemies are?
6. Retro by Sofía Lapuente and Jarrod Shusterman
What starts off as a light-hearted competition to live without modern technology for a year turns into a fight for survival in this unputdownable young adult thriller by New York Times bestselling author Jarrod Shusterman and debut author Sofía Lapuente.
It was never meant to happen this way.
Things were never supposed to get this out of hand.
After a cyberbullying incident at her school goes viral, Luna Iglesias finds herself at the heart of a brewing controversy. When the social media company Limbo—who are also implicated in the scandal—sweeps in with an offer that sounds like an opportunity to turn over a new leaf and receive a scholarship to the college of her dreams, she’s happy to jump on the new trend. It’s called the Retro Challenge, where contestants live without modern technology, wear vintage clothes, party as if the future weren’t already written, and fall in love as if they were living in a movie.
At first, the challenge is fun. But then things get dangerous. Kids start disappearing, including Luna’s friends. There are voices in the woods. Bloodred markings on the trees. And Luna increasingly begins to wonder if all these strange happenings are connected with the Retro Challenge.
Secrets. Lies. Betrayal. The weight of her family on her shoulders. There’s so much on the line for Luna, not to mention she’s falling in love with the last guy she expected. Unless she can figure out the truth behind who’s sabotaging the challenge, the next person to disappear may be Luna herself.
7. Chain of Thorns by Cassandra Clare
James and Cordelia must save London—and their marriage—in this thrilling and highly anticipated conclusion to the Last Hours series from the #1 New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Cassandra Clare. Chain of Thorns is a Shadowhunters novel.
All first edition hardcovers will include full-color reverse jacket art, ten black-and-white interior illustrations, and a bonus short story!
Cordelia Carstairs has lost everything that matters to her. In only a few short weeks, she has seen her father murdered, her plans to become parabatai with her best friend, Lucie, destroyed, and her marriage to James Herondale crumble before her eyes. Even worse, she is now bound to an ancient demon, Lilith, stripping her of her power as a Shadowhunter.
After fleeing to Paris with Matthew Fairchild, Cordelia hopes to forget her sorrows in the city’s glittering nightlife. But reality intrudes when shocking news comes from home: Tatiana Blackthorn has escaped the Adamant Citadel, and London is under new threat by the Prince of Hell, Belial.
Cordelia returns to a London riven by chaos and dissent. The long-kept secret that Belial is James and Lucie’s grandfather has been revealed by an unexpected enemy, and the Herondales find themselves under suspicion of dealings with demons. Cordelia longs to protect James but is torn between a love for James she has long believed hopeless, and the possibility of a new life with Matthew. Nor can her friends help—ripped apart by their own secrets, they seem destined to face what is coming alone.
For time is short, and Belial’s plan is about to crash into the Shadowhunters of London like a deadly wave, one that will separate Cordelia, Lucie, and the Merry Thieves from help of any kind. Left alone in a shadowy London, they must face Belial’s deadly army. If Cordelia and her friends are going to save their city—and their families—they will have to muster their courage, swallow their pride, and trust one another again. For if they fail, they may lose everything—even their souls.