2022 Releases Getting Rave Reviews on NetGalley

A collage of the covers included in this article

It can be difficult to narrow the selection down with so many buzzy books hitting shelves every week, which is why I’ve turned to NetGalley member reviews for recommendations. Here’s a list of upcoming 2022 releases that are already exciting me and NetGalley members alike. I predict you’ll be adding quite a few of these to your TBR!

Real Easy by Marie Rutkoski

Is it too early for a best of 2022 list? Educator Laura D doesn’t think so, writing that Real Easy is certain to be the “best thriller of the year” for the way it “seamlessly blends deep characterization with a fast plot.” Set in 1999, the book transports readers to a strip club where a dancer has gone missing. It’s Marie Rutkoski’s adult debut, and reviewers like Pamela J can’t get enough. In a five-star review, Pamela J wrote: “The plot is suspenseful but the real star of the novel is the writing. Her writing is sophisticated and nuanced, and she creates whole characters, using surprising imagery and language. Reading Real Easy was a real pleasure.”

Memphis by Tara M. Stringfellow

Tara M. Stringfellow drew inspiration from her own family history for her debut novel, a generational tale following a Southern Black family. Reviewers have endless praise for Memphis, which begins in 1995 when 10-year-old Joan moves to the titular city with her mom and sister to escape her abusive father. Reviewer Latonya B called it “artfully written and a pleasure to read. Memphis is a story that is both heartbreaking and heartwarming. The women endure much personal trauma but through it all there is a community of Black women there lifting them up and providing support as they find the strength to heal and overcome the past.” Reviewer Kat T seems to agree, writing “Is someone cutting onions? I cried so much on that last chapter… I can not wait for the rest of the world to experience this story.”

Delilah Green Doesn’t Care by Ashley Herring Blake

Ashley Herring Blake’s adult debut is a queer romance that follows single-mom Claire falling for Delilah, her friend’s stepsister and wedding photographer. Though it isn’t on shelves until February, Delilah Green Doesn’t Care is already leaving NetGalley members swooning. “My god, does Ashley Herring Blake know how to write a love story. I was instantly hooked,” says librarian Sarah C in a five-star review. “This is everything you want a romance to be: heartfelt, hopelessly romantic, steamy, sweet, and an electric shock of chemistry.”

Message Not Found by Dante Medema

A teenage girl copes with loss after her best friend dies in a tragic car accident in this young adult novel. In her grief, Bailey uses years worth of texts and emails to create a chat bot of Vanessa that she can talk to. The novel was an instant favorite for reviewer Ryan K: “Simply put, I found this story to be absolutely beautiful… and it culminates wonderfully. I can’t wait to see this book in print next year so I can hold it in my hands and give it a hug. This twisty, poetic, and ultimately hopeful novel is something I hope to see on everyone’s shelves in the spring.”

Light Years from Home by Mike Chen

Mike Chen’s next novel takes a close look at sisters in the aftermath of their brother’s disappearance. Evie and Kass’ father claims their brother Jakob was abducted by aliens. Kass isn’t buying it, but Evie does. When Jakob shows up 15 years later warning of an intergalactic war, the siblings must find a way to work together and reconnect. “I loved this book! I’m a big Mike Chen fan, and Light Years from Home did not disappoint,” bookseller Paula B raves. “It’s got everything: sci-fi, adventure, and the raw tenderness of people who have been hurt (often by each other) coming together to make things right… I will be enthusiastically recommending it.”

Homicide and Halo-Halo by Mia P. Manansala

“This book absolutely does not disappoint,” librarian Beth D says of the second installment in Mia P. Manansala’s Tita Rosie’s Kitchen Mystery series, which kicks off with the murder of a beauty pageant judge. “The mystery was well written and had me guessing until the last couple chapters… And, as someone who tried and LOVED both the ube crinkle cookies and salabat-spiced banana bread recipes that were included [in Arsenic and Adobo], I can not wait to get back into the kitchen with the new recipes included at the end of this one!”

Hook, Line, and Sinker by Tessa Bailey

Tessa Bailey returns next year with the second book in the Bellinger Sisters series—this one starring music-loving ​​Hannah, who needs help catching the attention of the coworker she’s crushing on. She asks her friend Fox, a renowned playboy, for tips and instead finds herself falling for him. Five-star reviews are rolling in from booksellers who can’t wait to add this book to their stores’ shelves. Mikayla F writes that “Tessa Bailey is a romantic genius”—no arguments here!—while Brooklyn O says, “my expectations were blown out of the water… Bailey has truly set the bar for rom coms.”

Peach Blossom Spring by Melissa Fu

Melissa Fu’s debut is a generational story that begins in China in 1938. Meilin and her son Renshu must leave their home behind and set off on a journey that eventually sees Renshu living in America with his own child, one who has seemingly endless questions about her family’s history. Educator Barbara M’s review readsPeach Blossom Spring is a beautiful, richly written novel of family, culture, history, and love… [it’s] a search for where one fits in the world and explores how one’s past affects one’s future and family. I loved this book.”

Shattered Midnight by Dhonielle Clayton

The Mirror series follows a cursed family through generations, with a different author writing each installment. Dhonielle Clayton takes the helm for book two and takes readers to New Orleans where Zora has retreated after her magic caused a terrible accident. “The forbidden romance is swoon-worthy. The characters are very well-developed. There are touches of Cinderella, Snow White, and The Princess and the Frog throughout, yet it also feels like its own fairy-tale entirely,” writes librarian Emily D. “Highly recommended to anyone who enjoys YA fantasies. This is definitely one not to be missed!”

Hunt the Stars by Jessie Mihalik

Jessie Mihalik kicks off the Starlight’s Shadow series with the tale of a bounty hunter forced to team up with her nemesis. Octavia Zarola reluctantly agrees to let former general Torran Fletcher join her latest hunt, with the promise of a huge payoff of course. But things get complicated when she realizes he may simply be using her as a pawn to start a war. Librarian Elizabeth M recommends clearing your schedule when you start this one: “Hunt the Stars is an explosive, exciting adventure in a futuristic world coupled with a tantalizing romance. This is a book that you have to read in one sitting because you won’t be able to put it down. I can’t wait for future adventures.”

Kelly Gallucci

Kelly Gallucci is the Executive Editor of We Are Bookish, where she oversees the editorial content, offers book recommendations, and interviews authors and NetGalley members. When she's not working, Kelly can be found color coordinating her bookshelves, eating Chipotle, and watching way too many baking shows.

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