Hello, hello! I hope you’re all having a great week so far. This weeks TTT prompt is ‘2023 debuts I’m excited for’ and there are definitely more than 10 I have my eye on, but I have managed to narrow it down. The below are all books that instantly piqued by interest, whether it be because they had a beautiful cover, or because the premise sounded amazing, and I can’t wait to get my hands on every singe on. If you want to check out the goodreads page for any, click on the cover to be taken there.
Top Ten Tuesday is run by Jana over at That Artsy Reader Girl and you should definitely go give her blog some love.
Thief Liar Lady
I’m not who you think I am.
My transformation from a poor, orphaned scullery maid into the enchantingly mysterious lady who snagged the heart of the prince did not happen—as the rumours insisted—in a magical metamorphosis of pumpkins and glass slippers. On the first evening of the ball, I didn’t meekly help my “evil” stepmother and stepsisters primp and preen or watch forlornly out the window as their carriage rolled off toward the palace. I had other preparations to make.
My stepsisters and I had been trained for this—to be the cleverest in the room, to be quick with our hands and quicker with our lies. We were taught how to get everything we want in this world, everything men always kept for themselves: power, wealth, and prestige. And with a touchingly tragic past and the help of some highly illegal spells, I would become a princess, secure our fortunes, and we would all live happily ever after.
But there’s always more to the story. With my magic running out, war looming, and a handsome hostage prince—the wrong prince—distracting me from my true purpose with his magnetic charm and forbidden flirtations, I’m in danger of losing control of the delicate balance I’ve created…and that could prove fatal.
There’s so much more riding on this than a crown.
The Bandit Queens
Geeta’s no-good husband disappeared five years ago. She didn’t kill him, but everyone thinks she did–no matter how much she protests.
But she soon discovers that being known as a “self-made” widow has some surprising perks. No one messes with her, no one threatens her, and no one tries to control (ahem, marry) her. It’s even been good for her business; no one wants to risk getting on her bad side by not buying her jewellery.
Freedom must look good on Geeta, because other women in the village have started asking for her help to get rid of their own no-good husbands…but not all of them are asking nicely.
Now that Geeta’s fearsome reputation has become a double-edged sword, she must decide how far to go to protect it, along with the life she’s built. Because even the best-laid plans of would-be widows tend to go awry.
Forged by Blood
In the midst of a tyrannical regime and political invasion, Dèmi just wants to survive: to avoid the suspicion of the nonmagical Ajes who occupy her ancestral homeland of Ife; to escape the King’s brutal genocide of her people—the darker skinned, magic wielding Oluso; and to live peacefully with her secretive mother while learning to control the terrifying blood magic that is her birthright.
But when Dèmi’s misplaced trust costs her mother’s life, survival gives way to vengeance. She bides her time until the devious Lord Ekwensi grants her the perfect opportunity—kidnap the Aje prince, Jonas, and bargain with his life to save the remaining Oluso. With the help of her reckless childhood friend Colin, Dèmi succeeds, but discovers that she and Jonas share more than deadly secrets; every moment tangles them further into a forbidden, unmistakable attraction, much to Colin’s—and Dèmi’s—distress.
The kidnapping is now a joint mission: to return to the King, help get Lord Ekwensi on the council, and bolster the voice of the Oluso in a system designed to silence them. But the way is dangerous, Dèmi’s magic is growing yet uncertain, and it’s not clear if she can trust the two men at her side.
Legends don’t always live up to reality.
Being reborn as an immortal defender of the realm gets awfully tiring over the years–or at least that’s what Sir Kay’s thinking as he claws his way up from beneath the earth yet again.
Kay once rode alongside his brother, King Arthur, as a Knight of the Round Table. Since then, he has fought at Hastings and at Waterloo and in both World Wars. But now he finds himself in a strange new world where oceans have risen, the army’s been privatized, and half of Britain’s been sold to foreign powers. The dragon that’s running amok–that he can handle. The rest? He’s not so sure.
Mariam’s spent her life fighting what’s wrong with her country. But she’s just one ordinary person, up against a hopelessly broken system. So when she meets Kay, she dares to hope that the world has finally found the savior it needs.
Yet as the two travel through this bizarre and dangerous land, they discover that a magical plot of apocalyptic proportions is underway. And Kay’s too busy hunting dragons–and exchanging blows with his old enemy Lancelot–to figure out what to do about it.
In perilous times like these, the realm doesn’t just need a knight. It needs a true leader.
Luckily, Excalibur lies within reach.
But who will be fit to wield it?
And Break the Pretty Kings
Mirae was meant to save her kingdom.
But the ceremony before her coronation ends in terror and death, unlocking a strange new power within her and foretelling the return of a monster even the gods fear. Amid the chaos, Mirae’s beloved older brother is taken—threatening the peninsula’s already tenuous truce.
Desperate to save her brother and defeat this ancient enemy before they are beset by war, Mirae sets out on a journey with an unlikely group of companions while her unpredictable magic gives her terrifying visions . . . of a future she must stop at any cost.
And break the pretty kings
The Jasad Heir
At ten-years-old, the Heir of Jasad flees a massacre that takes her entire family.
At fifteen, she buries her first body.
At twenty, the clock is ticking on Sylvia’s third attempt at a home. Nizahl’s armies have laid waste to Jasad and banned magic across the four remaining kingdoms. Fortunately, Sylvia’s magic is as good at playing dead as she is.
When the Nizahl Heir tracks a group of Jasadis to Sylvia’s village, the quiet life she’s crafted unravels. Calculating and cold, Arin’s tactical brilliance is surpassed only by his hatred for magic. After a mistake exposes Sylvia’s magic to Arin, he offers her an escape: compete as Nizahl’s Champion in the Alcalah tournament and win immunity from persecution. In exchange, Arin will use her as bait to draw out the Jasadis he’s hunting.
To win the deadly Alcalah, Sylvia must work with Arin to free her trapped magic, all while staying a step ahead of his efforts to uncover her identity. As the two grow closer, Sylvia is thrust into the world of cunning royals and double-dealing politics. The Jasadi groups escalate the fight to make Sylvia the face of their movement, and Sylvia realizes winning her freedom as Nizahl’s Champion means destroying any chance of reuniting Jasad under her banner.
The Pearl Hunter
Kai and Kishi share the same futon, the same face, and the same talent for pearl diving. But Kishi is the obedient daughter, while Kai tries to push the rules, and sometimes they fight. Still, when Kishi is stolen and killed by the legendary Ghost Whale, nothing will stop Kai from searching for her, deep in the ocean, hoping for a way to bring her back to life.
But such a rescue is beyond the power of an ordinary mortal. Kai strikes a deal with the gods: she’ll steal a magic pearl in exchange for her sister’s soul. As she journeys across treacherous land scape, Kai must navigate encounters with scheming bandits, a power-hungry war lord, and a legion of conniving fox spirits. And when a new friendship becomes something almost as powerful as her love for her sister, Kai must make impossible choices and risk everything just to get home again.
The Pearl Hunter
Thirty years ago, a young woman was murdered, a family was lynched, and New Orleans saw the greatest magical massacre in its history. In the days that followed, a throne was stolen from a queen.
On the anniversary of these brutal events, Clement and Cristina Trudeau—the sixteen-year-old twin heirs to the powerful, magical, dethroned family—are mourning their father and caring for their sick mother. Until, by chance, they discover their mother isn’t sick—she’s cursed. Cursed by someone on the very magic council their family used to rule. Someone who will come for them next.
Cristina, once a talented and dedicated practitioner of Generational magic, has given up magic for good. An ancient spell is what killed their father and she was the one who cast it. For Clement, magic is his lifeline. A distraction from his anger and pain. Even better than the random guys he hooks up with.
Cristina and Clement used to be each other’s most trusted confidant and friend, now they barely speak. But if they have any hope of discovering who is coming after their family, they’ll have to find a way to trust each other and their family’s magic, all while solving the decades-old murder that sparked the still-rising tensions between the city’s magical and non-magical communities. And if they don’t succeed, New Orleans may see another massacre. Or worse.
The Sun and the Void
Reina is desperate.
Stuck living on the edges of society, her only salvation lies in an invitation from a grandmother she’s never known. But the journey is dangerous, and prayer can’t always avert disaster.
Attacked by creatures that stalk the region, Reina is on the verge of death until her grandmother, a dark sorceress, intervenes. Now dependent on the Doña’s magic for her life, Reina will do anything to earn—and keep—her favor. Even the bidding of an ancient god who whispers to her at night.
Eva Kesare is unwanted.
Illegitimate and of mixed heritage, Eva is her family’s shame. She tries her best to be perfect and to hide her oddities. But Eva is hiding a secret: magic calls to her.
Eva knows she should fight the temptation. Magic is the sign of the dark god, and using it is punishable by death. Yet, it’s hard to deny power when it has always been denied to you. Eva is walking a dangerous path, one that gets stranger every day. And, in the end, she’ll become something she never imagined.
The Carnivale of Curiosities
In Victorian London, where traveling sideshows are the very pinnacle of entertainment, there is no more coveted ticket than Ashe and Pretorius’ Carnivale of Curiosities. Each performance is a limited engagement, and London’s elite boldly dare the dangerous streets of Southwark to witness the Carnivale’s astounding assemblage of marvels. For a select few, however, the real show begins behind the curtain. Rumors abound that the show’s proprietor, Aurelius Ashe, is more than an average magician. It’s said that for the right price, he can make any wish come true. No one knows the truth of this claim better than Lucien the Lucifer, the Carnivale’s star attraction. Born with the ability to create fire, he’s dazzled spectators since he was a boy.
When Odilon Rose, one of the most notorious men in London, comes calling with a proposition regarding his young and beautiful charge, Charlotte, Ashe is tempted to refuse. After revealing, however, that Rose holds a secret that threatens the security of the troupe’s most vulnerable members, Ashe has no choice but to sign an insidious contract.
The stakes grow higher as Lucien finds himself drawn to Charlotte and her to him, an attraction that spurs a perilous course of events. Grave secrets, recovered horrors, and what it means to be family come to a head in this vividly imagined spectacle—with the lives of all those involved suspended in the balance.
I’m also excited for The Sun and the Void!
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It sounds so good, right?!?
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The Sun and the Void and The Jasad Heir are on my list too! Both look amazing!
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Don’t they! Super excited for those 😀
Great list, Becky! I just added Thief Liar Lady to my TBR. It sounds great!
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Thanks, Julie! It popped up on Netgalley and I just instantly added it to my TBR 😀
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