12 New Must-Read Books That Are Perfect To Lose Yourself In These Holidays

Ring out the end of 2021 with a stack of new reads

It’s felt like five years wrapped into one, but we can finally say that 2021 is coming to an end. And while no, we have no confirmation that 2022 will be any better, there’s one thing that will certainly ease the year-to-year transition.

A myriad of new releases have hit the stands this December, meaning that we have an endless supply of reading material to keep us curled up on the couch—or entertained by the seaside—during the holiday season.

Whether you’re a fan of gripping fantasy or tearful non-fiction, there’s sure to be a novel perfect to consume—alongside a charcuterie board—this festive season.

Below, we’ve rounded up our favourite new releases.

My Body by Emily Ratajkowski 


Supermodel Emily Ratajkowski has made a career out of her looks, but this book will change the way you view her. In an extremely intimate series of essays, the model dissects her ideals of beauty, how they intersect with her personal and political beliefs and how they’ve shaped the course of her life so far. The book has already cemented itself as a must-read for women everywhere, critically examining the way in which we understood feminism a few years ago and how we view it now. From someone whose career predominantly revolves around their body, it’s a refreshingly candid perspective about how she’s made a living off her looks and the ways in which she did, and continues to crave male validation in its many forms.

Buy it here.

Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid


Set in 1983, Malibu Rising tells the story of the Riva family. A very wealthy, admired group of people living in Malibu with one very destructive secret. After a house party which spirals out of control, the family mansion goes up in flames, but who exactly is responsible? What lead to the events of that night and what were the family already hiding? If you were a fan of Daisy Jones, then this is an absolute must-read. 

Buy it here.

Who Gets To Be Smart by Bri Lee

bri lee

Bri Lee, the award-winning author behind Eggshell Skull, returns with her second book, as she examines the elite educational institutions and the people lucky enough to be taught within them. Throughout its pages, she keeps coming back to one overarching question, ‘who gets to be smart?’ Examining her own privilege and a nation rampant with institutional prejudice, you’ll find yourself asking questions you may never have considered before. 

Buy it here.

Love & Virtue by Diana Reid


A coming-of-age narrative that explores the concepts of unrequited love, power imbalances and social and political class, this book has people talking for all the right reasons. Following the fragile and tumultuous relationship of two young women at university, one night will change the course of their lives (and friendship) forever, forcing them to confront the very blurred lines of consent. 

Buy it here.

Beautiful World, Where Are You by Sally Rooney

sally rooney

Following the lives of four people in their thirties, Sally Rooney returns with her unique voice as she embarks on a complicated exploration of human emotion. Alice (a novelist) finds herself inviting Felix (a warehouse worker) and a man whom she barely knows, on a trip to Rome. Here, they grapple with their strange, yet undeniably sexual relationship. Elsewhere, Alice’s friend Eileen finds herself heartbroken, and reconnecting with Simon, a friend from her childhood. They each grapple with their own needs, beliefs and desires, painting a very relatable picture of what it means to fall in and out of love both with each other and with ourselves. 

Buy it here.

Emotional Female by Yumiko Kadota 


We all know that working your way up the medical ladder is no easy ride, especially not for women. In her debut novel, Yumiko Kadota shines a light on the toxic culture that exists within the esteemed profession, particularly for junior doctors and surgeons. Suffering severe burnout and finding the resilience to bounce back, this is her account of what it’s like to train in the Australian medical industry, and what forced her to walk away from it all. 

Buy it here.

How We Love by Clementine Ford


In her unflinching and emotionally raw memoir, Australian feminist writer Clementine Ford explores love in all its forms. From losing her mother at a tragically young age to navigating the joys and heartache of a first love through to adult love, it’s essential reading for anyone who has questioned why we put ourselves through it, only to do it all over again. 

Buy it here.

A Slow Fire Burning by Paula Hawkins 


Betrayal, loss and revenge. A young man is found murdered, which leads to questions around the three women who knew him. A one night stand, a grieving aunt and a nosy neighbour, all of whom are simmering with resentment, for different reasons. When it comes to revenge, even the best of people can be driven to commit the worst acts. But how far might they have gone to seek it? 

Buy it here.

Nothing But My Body by Tilly Lawless


Nothing But My Body takes readers on an eight-day journey, following the life of a queer, sex worker living in Sydney. Set against the backdrop of the catastrophic Australian bushfires and the COVID-19 pandemic, Tilly grapples with her professional and personal world, and the way in which they intersect. It’s an unflinching, honest, and very, very real. 

Buy it here.

Sorrow And Bliss by Meg Mason


Martha knows something is wrong, but she isn’t sure what exactly. Her husband Patrick tells her not to worry, but she can’t stop. The book explores mental illness and relationship breakdowns, somehow managing to be both humorous and heartbreaking at the same time. Meg Mason’s voice has been likened to Phoebe Waller Bridge’s, and it’s not hard to see why. You’ll easily devour it in one sitting. 

Buy it here.

Seven Days In June by Tia Williams


Shane and Eva are both best-selling authors, who find themselves reunited at a literary event in Brooklyn fifteen years after they met. Fifteen years since they spent one week falling madly and deeply in love, only to have it all come crashing down. Upon reuniting, sparks fly, and they find themselves entangled in the drama of both their past and future selves. Eva isn’t sure if she can trust the man who broke her heart, but before he disappears again, there’s a few questions she needs answered. 

Buy it here.

The Push by Ashley Audrain


Blythe is determined to be a good mother to her newborn daughter, Violet. She won’t be anything like the mother she had growing up. Not long after her birth, however, Blythe becomes convinced that there is something very wrong with her child. Her husband, Fox, says it’s all in her head, but the more he tries to convince her otherwise, the more certain she becomes that something isn’t right. After the birth of her second child, a son named Sam, Blythe finally feels the connection to her child that she always dreamed of. But when something happens which changes life as they know it, Blythe is forced to confront her worst fears. 

Buy it here.

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