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16 Books to Dive Into to Kick Off Your January Reading Resolutions


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Graphics by: Anna Wissler
Graphics by: Anna Wissler

It’s a resolution that many of us claim for our own come January 1: Read more books. And we start off well-intentioned, opening up to that first page in those first few days of the year as we emerge from our New Year’s food-and-champagne coma. But by February 1, we’ve put the book in a designated spot on the bedside table, where it sits collecting dust. 

But this year is going to be different. You’re going to accomplish that goal, and we have the books that will help you do it. No doubt distractions will arise (hello #momlife), but if a book is good, and we mean really, really good, like page-turning stay-up-too-late good, then you can’t help but make the time to devour it. 

These books all fall into that category. Browse the list below and find one that calls your name, then get ready to rock that resolution. Just be forewarned, you may need an extra cup of coffee in the morning to compensate for your upcoming late-night reading sessions.

Colleen Hoover
It Starts With Us

If there's one thing we know for sure, it's that the past couple years have been huge for Colleen Hoover. If, like the rest of the universe, you've added her novels to your list, now's a great time to pick up the highly-anticipated sequel to It Ends With Us.

In the sequel, Lily has been successfully co-parenting with her ex-husband Riley. When her first love, Atlas, walks back into her life, she thinks time is finally on their side. But Riley isn't comfortable having Altas in his ex-wife or daughter's life, and he's not going to let it fly without argument.

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Taylor Jenkins Reid
Carrie Soto is Back

Taylor Jenkins Reid has had some heavy hitters, like The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo and Daisy Jones and the Six. In her newest novel, Carrie Soto, previously the best female tennis player in the world, ends her retirement in an effort to reclaim her title. Dedicating her life to the sport, she must put aside her pride and train alongside a man who once nearly claimed her heart. Reid is known for her touching stories, and Carrie Soto is Back is no exception.

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Brianna Wiest
101 Essays That Will Change The Way You Think

The start of a new year is often seen as a time for bettering ourselves. That's why picking up a book such as Brianna Wiest's life-changing collection of essays is a great way to start off on the right foot. Known for her profound writing, Wiest offers stories filled with life lessons meant for opening your mind to a new way of thinking.

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Madeline Miller
The Song of Achilles

Every now and then, life leaves us yearning for an adventure. The good news is, you can do just that by opening up this book.

An homage to Homer's The Iliad, The Song of Achilles is as much of an adventurous tale as it is a love story—and one that you won't want to put down.

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Rebecca Serle
In Five Years

I'm a huge fan of any book I can read in one sitting, and In Five Years was exactly that. This poignant tale is an imaginative answer to the question, "Where do you see yourself in five years?"

Dannie and her best friend Bella could not be more different. Dannie's straightforward lifestyle has left her wanting more, until one morning she wakes up five years in the future and everything is different—including the apartment she's in and the man she's with, who happens to be Bella's fiancé. After spending one hour in this future world, she wakes up back in the present questioning her every move.

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book lovers
Emily Henry
Book Lovers

Emily Henry's latest novel (she also authored the wildly popular Beach Read and People We Meet on Vacation) follows literary agent Nora and her sister, Libby, as they take a summer vacation to North Carolina. But when Nora runs into Charlie, a book editor she knows from the city, their stories begin to intertwine and the carefully-crafted stories they've written about themselves unravel.

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Laura Dave
The Last Thing He Told Me

Hannah's having a harder time than she'd like to admit connecting with her stepdaughter Bailey. That is, until her husband disappears, leaving behind only a bag of money and a note instructing Hannah to "protect her." Together, Hannah and Bailey set out for answers to where he went and whether or not he'll be coming back. This was a thrilling yet heartwarming page-turner I recommend everyone get their hands on.

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Prince Harry The Duke of Sussex

The image of two young princes walking behind a coffin as they lay their mother to rest will forever be engrained in many of our minds. Now, for the first time, Prince Harry opens up about his experience losing his mother in the public eye at such a young age.

Pre-order for its release on January 10, 2023.

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the light we carry Michelle Obama
Michelle Obama
The Light We Carry: Overcoming in Uncertain Times

Start your year off right with some inspiring words from our former First Lady. While there's no guidebook for how to handle life's challenges, Michelle Obama believes there are tools we can use to manage change and personal tribulations. Read along as she offers tangible advice for some of our burning life questions, like how to handle self-doubt and helplessness.

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Matthew Perry
Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing: A Memoir

If every line from Friends is perpetually etched in your mind, you're going to want to pick up Matthew Perry's memoir as soon as possible.

We know him as the beloved Chandler Bing who put a smile on our face for 10 seasons with his sarcastic wit, but behind closed doors, Perry struggled with severe addiction. In his memoir, he recounts the struggles he endured after a life-threatening health scare. His story is raw and unforgettable, and one we can all learn from.

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Jennette McCurdy
I'm Glad My Mom Died

It seems Jennette McCurdy's memoir has gotten everyone talking this past year—and for good reason.

Put under immense pressure as a child by her mother to become famous, McCurdy recounts tales of restrictive eating, dramatic "makeovers," and other horrors forced upon her. When she accepted a lead role in iCarly, her mother was ecstatic. Meanwhile, Jennette was facing an eating disorder, anxiety, and addiction. After her mother died of cancer, Jennette finally sought help for her trauma. She shares what she's learned since then in I'm Glad My Mom Died.

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Black Cake
Charmaine Wilkerson
Black Cake

Black Cake will transport you across decades and to different countries as siblings Byron and Benny unravel their mother's life story after she passes away, leaving them a traditional Caribbean black cake and a voice recording that changes everything they know.

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Stephen King
Fairy Tale

If you're a Stephen King fan, it's a great time to pick up his newest book.

High school student Charlie Reade knows more than a young man should about tragedy. When his neighbor and friend, Mr. Bowditch, dies, Charlie is left with his beloved dog and a cassette tape telling the story of a parallel world he can access through the shed in his yard. When Charlie and his four-legged companion enter the parallel world, they see that good and evil are at war, and now it's up to Charlie to be the hero.

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Alex Michaelides
The Silent Patient

Some of my favorite books are the ones that keep me up at night, and not many have done that quite as well as The Silent Patient.

Alicia and Gabriel's life and relationship is seemingly perfect, until he comes home late one night and she shoots him five times in the face. Since then, she's entered a psych hospital and refuses to utter a word. Psychotherapist Theo Faber is eager to work with Alicia and determined to figure out her motive for killing her husband. Little does he know, he may become more invested in the answers than he thought.

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R. F. Kuang

For our fellow fantasy lovers, we recommend not going another day without reading Babel.

Robin Swift has worked most of his life to enroll in Oxford University’s Royal Institute of Translation. Also known as Babel, the institute is the world's center for translation and magic—and somewhat of a utopia for Robin. What he doesn't realize is that being a part of Babel means betraying his homeland. When a war ensues between Britain and China, he must pick a side once and for all.

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Colleen Hoover

Fair warning, this book may be triggering for some readers—moms in particular. That said, it's the ultimate page-turner with an ending that leaves you questioning everything you thought you knew.

When bestselling author Verity Crawford can no longer finish her series due to debilitating health problems, struggling writer Lowen Ashleigh is hired to ghostwrite her final books. The job is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for Lowen, but it requires her to move into Verity's home where her child and her husband, Jeremy, also reside. Before long, Lowen becomes tempted by Jeremy while Verity is bedridden upstairs. After stumbling upon one of Verity's manuscripts, Lowen learns more than she should about Verity's history.

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This article was originally published at an earlier date and has been updated for timeliness. 

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