19 New Books We Can't Wait to Read in 2021 - Nerdist
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19 New Books We Can’t Wait to Read in 2021

There are plenty of reasons to be excited for 2021. Not least among them: all the amazing books headed our way. While you all know we love a comic, this list nods to all the prose titles we cannot wait to get our hands on. From radical romance to dark thrillers to reimaginings of classic literature, this list has it all. And if you’re a fan of some of our favorite fantasy series like the Grishaverse, Kingdom of Souls, and Wicked Saints, then get excited. We have new books from those incredible worlds. And plenty more!

Happily Ever Afters by Elise Bryant
19 Books We Can't Wait for in 2021_1

Balzer + Bray

Tessa Johnson loves romance novels even if she never sees herself in their pages. She also adores writing, and can’t believe it when she’s accepted into a prestigious creative writing course. But when she arrives she’s struck down with a terrible case of writer’s block. Her conundrum leads to a scheme that sees her try to find real romance as inspiration. But will she lose herself on the way?

Hits shelves on January 5, 2021

Empire of the Superheroes by Mark Cotta Vaz

Marvel and DC Comics have become pop culture titans over the last decade. This new book from Texas University Press investigates the landscape in which those stories and characters were created. Crafting a history based on the artists who imagined bigger and better worlds but were often denied their credits and profits, this is a must read for anyone who loves comic book movies.

Hits shelves on January 5, 2021

Possession by Katie Lowe

Ten years ago, Hannah’s husband was brutally murdered in their home. Now, a true crime podcast is questioning whether the man who was charged was actually the killer. Hannah and her daughter left London after the trial, but now the podcast is shining a light on her past. Why doesn’t she remember that night? What does her history of citations and outbursts mean? This is a thrilling read that will keep you guessing all night long.

Hits shelves on February 9, 2021

What Big Teeth by Rose Szabo
19 Books We Can't Wait for in 2021_2

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Eleanor has spent most of her life at boarding school, so she barely remembers her family and home before. But after something terrible happens, she heads back to her strange, wild clan and their ancestral home on the rain-soaked coast of Maine, she has to face the monstrous truth about herself and the family that she left behind. And when an unexpected death occurs just as she arrives home, that reckoning suddenly becomes far stranger and more dangerous.

Hits shelves on Feb 2, 2021

All the Tides of Fate by Adalyn Grace

We fell in love with Amora Montara in All the Stars and Teeth, and we cannot wait to read the final part of Grace’s duology when it hits this year. Without spoiling its secrets, this is full of swashbuckling action, star-crossed romance, and a powerful female lead you’ll adore.

Hits Shelves on February 2, 2021

Reaper of Souls by Rena Barron

If you haven’t checked out the incredible Kingdom of Souls, you’ve got just enough time to read it before the sequel hits shelves. The story centers a young woman, Arrah, who wants nothing more than to become a powerful witch doctor like the rest of her family. But when the day that her magic appears never comes, Arrah makes a terrible choice. This decision puts her on the path of the long-forgotten Demon King and a kingdom-wide mystery.

Hits shelves on February 16, 2021

Later by Stephen King

Stephen King is one of the most prolific authors working, and his newest book sounds intriguing. Jamie is being raised by a single mother and struggling to hide his burgeoning power to be able to see what no one else can see. But when an NYPD detective pulls him into the investigation of a potentially supernatural killer, his life and innocence are put at risk.

Hits shelves on March 2, 2021

Act Your Age Eve Brown by Talia Hibbert
19 Books We Can't Wait for in 2021_3

Piatkus

Talia Hibbert has quickly established herself a modern romance master! That’s why we’re so excited for her new book, which centers an autistic lead in a charming romantic yarn. It’s the third book in her Brown Sisters series and centers on Eve, the flightiest and unlikeliest to settle, who finds an unexpected connection with Jacob Wayne, her potential new employer.

Hits shelves on March 9, 2021

Tell Me My Name by Amy Reed

This near-future dystopian treat reimagines The Great Gatsby in a dying world through the lens of influencers, celebrity, and emotional dependency. Fern has lived her whole life on Commodore Island, a wealthy enclave that’s separated from the horrors of the modern world. When a famous young woman called Ivy arrives on the island, everything changes… especially when she shines her light on the quiet, isolated young woman she meets at the local store.

Hits shelves on March 9, 2021

Rule of Wolves by Leigh Bardugo
19 Books We Can't Wait for in 2021_4

Orion Children’s Books

If you’re a fan of Leigh Barudo’s incredible fantasy series The Grishaverse, you’ll likely already be desperate for the sequel to her spin-off about Nikolai Lantsov. A major player in the original Shadow and Bone series, the sometimes-prince-sometimes-pirate definitely deserves his own spotlight and this duology delivers. King of Scars is also a great jumping-on point. With the Shadow and Bone adaptation hitting Netflix soon, it’s the perfect time to catch up.

Hits shelves on March 30, 2021

Blessed Monsters by Emily A. Duncan

Duncan’s stunning cosmic horror fantasy series Wicked Saints continues here with this highly anticipated third entry. The eldritch gods have awoken! Now the three children who woke them will have to deal with the consequences of their heresy. Dense, expansive, and totally immersive, this is one of the best contemporary fantasy series we’ve read.

Hits shelves on April 6, 2021

The Cost of Knowing by Brittney Morris

We were huge fans of Morris’ debut novel Slay and cannot wait to read this emotionally charged follow-up about two young Black brothers growing up in America. The twist here is that Alex, the elder of the pair, sees the future every time he touches an item or person. It’s a curse he’s trying to live with, but when he sees a vision of his brother’s death he’s thrown into a race to save him.

Hits shelves on April 6, 2021

The Mary Shelley Club by Goldy Moldavsky
19 Books We Can't Wait for in 2021_5

Henry Holt and Co.

This twisty YA thriller bills itself as Scream-meets-Karen McManus, which sounds perfect to us. New girl Rachel Chavez can’t believe her luck when she’s inducted into the elite horror club at her school. But when the crew’s passion for terrifying pranks  turns deadly, Rachel realizes she’s fighting for more than her status at high school.

Hits shelves on April 13, 2021

The Backups by Alex de Campi

De Campi was the writer behind one of our favorite comics of 2020 and she’s behind one of our most anticipated new books of 2021. Based on the author’s own experiences directing music videos in London, the story follows three misfit teens who get an incredible chance to be the backup singers for a huge star. This looks like the music industry coming-of-age story we need!

Hits shelves on April 13, 2021

Witches Steeped in Gold by Ciannon Smart

This Jamaican-inspired fantasy debut centers on two warring witches who enter an uneasy alliance in order to destroy a shared enemy. Described by the publisher as having “twisted cat-and-mouse of Killing Eve with the richly imagined fantasy world of Furyborn and Ember in the Ashes,” this sounds like a wild ride that we cannot wait to go on.

Hits shelves on April 20, 2021

The Ones We’re Meant to Find by Joan He
19 Books We Can't Wait for in 2021_6

Roaring Brook Press

Three years ago, Cee woke up marooned alone on an island. She doesn’t know how she got there or who built the small rickety shack she lives in or the old android who keeps her company. All she knows is she has a sister and she has to find her. Kasey lives in Earth’s last safe haven, the eco-city, but she now wants to escape… will the pair find each other again?

Hits shelves on May 4, 2021

Tokyo Ever After by Emiko Jean

If you’re a fan of The Princess Diaries then this should be at the top of your most-anticipated list! Izumi is your average teenager in a small town in California. She spends her days traversing high school and hanging out with her friends. By chance, Izumi discovers that she’s the lost Crown Princess of Japan. Suddenly she’s swept off to Tokyo and a whole new life. But will she fit in? Being a royal is tough, and her new security guard is really cute…

Hits shelves on May 25, 2021

The Queer Principles of Kit Webb by Cat Sebastian

Sebastian will be making her trade debut with this cozy queer romance. The story centers on a reformed highwayman and a stuck up aristocrat. Lord Holland is in trouble, so when he heads into Kitt Webb’s shop he’s desperate. He needs the ex-con to help him procure a special book in a fashion that isn’t quite legal. As the pair embark on the journey, they begin to realize that there might be something more than a business deal between them.

Hits shelves on June 8, 2021

Gearbreakers by Zoe Hana Mikuta
19 Books We Can't Wait for in 2021_7

Feiwel & Friends

Queer romance in the time of war sounds amazing! And that’s before we even get to the fact that this is a war fought by giant mechs known as Windups. Eris Shindanai is a Gearbreaker, which means she can take down the Windups from the inside out. Sona Steelcrest is a cybernetically enhanced Windup pilot. When the pair meet in prison, they’re set on a dangerous path, but one that could lead to love.

Hits shelves on June 29, 2021

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