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Heartbreak, Heartthrobs and Honour: Our Anticipated Reads for Autumn

By Shaniah Shields, Leanne Francis and Michelle Ye

With autumn on the horizon, we have decided to share some of our highly anticipated releases for the final half of the year. From powerful young adult novels to spectacularly original fiction, authors who identify as BIPOC are as ever, delivering fantastic stories and we cannot wait to get round to them.

General Fiction

I Rise by Marie Arnold

1 September 2022

I Rise, is the heartbreakingly powerful new novel from Marie Arnold, author of The Year I Flew Away. We follow fourteen-year-old Ayo, whose mother has founded the biggest civil rights movement in New York City. The movement, entitled “See Us” tackles the racial profiling and police brutality in Harlem, something Ayo has been part of her whole life. After Ayo’s mother is put in a coma, a riot between the police and protesters breaks out and Ayo looks to the wisdom of her ancestors and her community for guidance.

The novel shines a light on the systematic racism within America and tackles important issues including inequality, social injustice and police brutality that continue to haunt contemporary America. This is a powerful celebration of Black girl magic and one of my highly anticipated releases of the year!

If You Could See the Sun by Ann Liang

11 October 2022

Alice Sun has always felt invisible at her elite Beijing International boarding school as the only scholarship student there. But one day when she starts to uncontrollably turn invisible, she hatches a plan to monetise her strange new power as her parents can no longer afford her tuition. Alice begins to sell her wealthy classmates’ scandalous secrets, but at what cost?

If You Could See the Sun is a genre-bending young adult debut that follows a Chinese-American protagonist’s journey to friendship and love. Weaving together Chinese culture and diaspora experience, this is a fun, light-hearted read.


Monsters Born and Made by Tanvi Berwah

6 September 2022

From the mind of Tanvi Berwah comes this gripping debut novel about sixteen-year-old Koral and her older brother Emrik. In Monsters Born and Made, the siblings risk their lives to capture sea monsters, known as “maristags,” for the ruling elite. In a deadly tournament, they prepare to battle for the last maristag of the year, the fate of her chronically ill sister and burning island in their hands.


The Decoy Girlfriend by Lillie Vale

6 September 2022

In The Decoy Girlfriend, Freya Lal, a writer lacking inspiration, impersonates Mandi Roy for fun, an actress who she bears a unique resemblance to. After accidentally fuelling rumours of Mandi’s breakup with actor Taft Bamber, Freya and Taft find themselves repairing the damage…and falling for each other in the process. Featuring fame, fortune and fake dating, Lillie Vale’s novel sets itself up as the perfect autumn romance.

A Scatter of Light by Malinda Lo

4 October 2022

In this invigorating novel by Malinda Lo, A Scatter of Light follows Aria Tang West as she prepares to spend the summer with her friends before going to university. After intimate photos of her are shared online, Aria is sent to her grandmother’s, where she finds herself becoming attracted to Steph, the gardener. The only problem? Steph isn’t single. As the bond between the pair grows, Aria’s simple summer becomes increasingly complicated.

Drizzle, Dream, and Lovestruck Things by Maya Prasad

18 October 2022

Set in the Pacific Northwest, the Singh sisters thread through the Inn, working together to create a perfect home. With each romantic season, the sisters find themselves challenged by love. Nidhi’s plans are knocked out of order when autumn brings not just falling leaves, but also a captivating boy. Avani’s winter of mourning and remembrance is interrupted by someone from her past. Sirisha embraces the world through a certain lens, but spring pushes her towards a new relationship. And Rani, a true romantic, steps into a summer full of possibilities, including two potential loves. Maya Prasad’s debut novel celebrates the whirlwind of first love in all seasons and highlights the strength that comes from family.

Historical Fiction

Strike the Zither by Joan He

25 October 2022

A retelling of the classic Chinese text, Romance of the Three Kingdoms, Strike the Zither reimagines ancient China as a battleground for powerful warlordesses. Zephyr carves out her own place by honing her skills until she becomes the best strategist in the land. Trying to stay alive while following the honourable warlordess Xin Ren becomes increasingly difficult for Zephyr in a war fueled by betrayal. Complications continue to rise when Zephyr must infiltrate an enemy camp only to be met by the opposing strategist, someone who is finally her equal. Taking full advantage of the historic period, Joan He does not shy away from the bitter realities of war. The novel shines a spotlight on the greed and corruption of humanity without ignoring the tangles of emotion, choice, and fate.


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