Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme that currently resides at The Artsy Reader Girl and features bloggers sharing lists on various book topics. For the first Top Ten Tuesday of 2023, I will be listing my most anticipated upcoming books for the first half of the year. This is a regular post I do each year and I always look forward to highlighting the most awesome looking books for the start of the year. I am actually planning to do two versions of this list, one that will exclusively look at upcoming fantasy and science fiction books, and this one that will focus on upcoming books from other genres, including thrillers, crime fiction, historical fiction, comics and more.
Despite only just starting, 2023 is already shaping up to be an epic and exciting year for books with a huge range of impressive and highly anticipated novels due for release in the next 12 months. This includes exciting debuts, anticipated sequels and the latest entries in beloved bestselling series. The first half of the year is looking particularly awesome, with a substantial number of incredible upcoming releases that I am deeply looking forward to.
Even though I excluded fantasy and science fiction books, this ended up being a rather difficult list to pull together due to all the awesome releases coming out in Australia between 1 January 2023 and 30 June 2023. There were way too many extraordinary upcoming books that I could have included, and I ended up having to make some very tough calls and cutting several novels that have an immense amount of potential. Despite this, I am rather happy with the eventual choices that I made, and I think that this list reflects the upcoming novels and comics I am going to have the most fun reading. I have mentioned several of these books before in my weekly Waiting on Wednesday articles, and some of them also appeared on my recent Summer TBR list. However, there are also some interesting new books that I am discussing for the first time here, so that should give this list a bit of variety. So let us get to my selections and find out which upcoming novels are my most anticipated releases for the first half of 2023.
The Last Kingdom by Steve Berry – 21 February 2023
The next entry in Steve Berry’s brilliant Cotton Malone series, The Last Kingdom has a lot of potential for a fun read. Set to feature a compelling historical conspiracy, I know I’m going to have a lot of fun with this book and I can’t wait to read it.
The Kind Worth Saving by Peter Swanson – 28 February 2023
I have been having a lot of fun with Peter Swanson’s crime fiction books lately and I’m sure his upcoming book, The Kind Worth Saving, is going to be awesome.
A fantastic sounding historical read, loaded with war, corrupt knights and deadly tournaments.
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I am always guaranteed to have an amazing time in the first half of the year with the latest Alex Delaware novel by Jonathan Kellerman. I have deeply enjoyed several recent books in this long-running series (including The Wedding Guest, The Museum of Desire, Serpentine and City of the Dead) and I am very excited for the next entry. Set to focus on the murder of a controversial photographer, the always entertaining team of psychologist Alex Delaware and his best friend, Lieutenant Milo Sturgis, must determine if his death was the result of his work or his uber-rich family. Sure to be one of the best mysteries of 2023.
One of the best current thriller authors, Gregg Hurwitz, continues his deep and action-packed Orphan X series with The Last Orphan. This latest book will see the former government agent turned vigilante protagonist Evan Smoak forced to decide whether to take one last contract for the United States Government or risk his freedom and his new life by defying the President. This has been a consistently awesome series (I have had an amazing time with previous entries, Out of the Dark, Into the Fire, Prodigal Son and Dark Horse), and Hurwitz has set up some compelling and emotionally rich storylines heading into The Last Orphan. I know I am going to love this book and I cannot wait to read it.
One of my favourite historical fiction authors, Simon Scarrow, returns with another complex historical murder mystery set in Nazi Germany. The sequel to his previous novel, Blackout, Dead of Night will present the reader with another dark murder where the principled detective protagonist is forced to go against the wishes of the Nazi regime. I always deeply enjoy anything Scarrow writes, but I have a feeling this is going to be a particularly epic read.
Few books in the first half of 2023 have me more excited than the new Gray Man novel from Mark Greaney, Burner. Following on from such epic reads as The Gray Man, Mission Critical, One Minute Out (one of my favourite books and audiobooks of 2020), Relentless (one of my favourite books and audiobooks of 2021) and Sierra Six (one of my favourite books and audiobooks of 2022), Burner has a lot to live up to, but with Greaney at the helm I already know I am going to love it. This latest book will place protagonist Court Gentry firmly between the CIA and the Russian mob in an explosive and entertaining confrontation. This will no doubt be another five-star read and I can’t wait to get my hands on it.
I had to include the next entry of one of my favourite comic series on this list with the upcoming Usagi Yojimbo volume, The Green Dragon by Stan Sakai. I absolutely love this epic comic series and every new volume is a must read for me, especially after some of the recent awesome volumes released in colour (Bunraku and Other Stories, Homecoming, Tengu War! and Crossroads). This new volume will feature two amazing sounding stories and I already know I am going to have an exceptional time reading it.
One of the more intriguing debuts of 2023 is the excellent sounding murder mystery book, City Under One Roof by screenwriter Iris Yamashita. Set in a unique community, City Under One Roof has an awesome story behind it and I am very excited to dive into this complex and compelling mystery.
After presenting one of the very best debuts of 2022, Her Perfect Twin, author Sarah Bonner returns with another elaborate thriller in Her Sweet Revenge. Set around two women who have very different reactions to the same mysterious note, Her Sweet Revenge looks set to be another twisty and addictive read that I have extremely high hopes for.
The always impressive Lindsey Davis has yet another book in her long-running Flavia Albia series coming out in a few months with Fatal Legacy. The 11th entry in this great historical murder mystery series (which has featured excellent reads like Pandora’s Boy, A Capitol Death, The Grove of the Caesars, A Comedy of Terrors and Desperate Undertaking), Fatal Legacy presents the reader with another intriguing case in the iconic setting of ancient Rome. This time focused on a complex legal dispute between two rival families, Fatal Legacy has a great deal of promise and should be a wildly entertaining read.
I have had an epic time with some of Sarah Beth Durst’s recent fantasy novels such as Race the Sands and The Bone Maker, so I am excited to follow her into a different genre with her upcoming young adult thriller The Lake House. A fun and intense sounding book with some major horror vibes, The Lake House sees three young women arrive at a remote summer camp to find it abandoned with a dead body in the woods. I can’t wait to see Durst’s take on a classic horror scenario, and I have a lot of faith that this is going to be an exceptional book.
Empire by Conn Iggulden – 25 May 2023
One of the very best historical fiction books of 2023 is definitely going to be the next book by legendary author Conn Iggulden, Empire. The fourth book in his current series about ancient Athens (which has previously featured The Gates of Athens, Protector and Lion), Empire will follow the rise of Pericles and shows the early stages of the upcoming war between Athens and Sparta. Set to be filled with exquisite historic details and outrageous figures from the fast, Empire is going to be an amazing read with a great story to it.
That is the end of this list. I am extremely happy with how my latest Top Ten Tuesday article turned out and this list contains an intriguing collection of upcoming books that should prove to be incredible reads. I think that nearly every one of these books has the potential to get a full five-star rating from me and I cannot wait to see what amazing and exciting stories they contain. While I am waiting to get my hands on these books, why not let me know if any of the above interest you, as well as what your most anticipated releases for the next six months are in the comments below. Also, make sure to check out my other Top Ten List with the top upcoming fantasy books of 2023.