“And now we welcome the new year” – Our picks of the novels of 2022

Highlights of 2022

And now we welcome the new year. Full of things that have never been.

Rainer Maria Rilke

The year has passed in a flurry of events and unbelievably it has already got to that point in time when we can take stock of the best fiction releases of 2022. To celebrate the rich variety and diversity of fiction releases this year we have created a list of 100 books that we think do a good job at representing the year 2022 in fiction.

Click the links above to view our choices! We’ve selected titles from across the fiction spectrum: from mysteries to science fiction, award-winners to best sellers and all points in between — books from our own shores and novels from around the world. This is very much our own selection and whilst we have included some of the year’s best-sellers and award-winning titles, we have also included novels that are very much our own choice. This list is definitely not intended to be exhaustive or completist, and we apologise in advance if we missed out any of your favourites!

Miracle, by Jennifer LaneWhat we have noticed over the course of the year is the continued growing trend of World class crime and mystery novels originating from our own fair shore’s books such as Miracle by Jennifer Lane, Blood Matters by Renée and In Her Blood by Nikki Crutchley.

This excellence and growth is spurred on we strongly suspect thanks to the fabulous Ngaio Marsh Awards which have proved such excellent nurturing  grounds for this genre over the years .

Akata Woman by Nnedi OkoraforThe trend for widening the range of international voices and giving readers a more diverse range of new world views has also continued this year.  We were especially pleased to see this evident in the publication of lots of afro-futurist books in the science fiction and fantasy world, with titles such as Akata Woman by Nnedi Okorafor, The World We Make by the fabulous N.K. Jemisin, as well as pop super star turned author Janelle Monáe’s collection of stories The Memory Librarian: And Other Stories of Dirty Computer all catching our attention. (We love the title of Janelle Monáe’s book too!)

How to loiter in a turf war, by Coco SolidThere have also been a few names who have burst onto the New Zealand fiction scene and made a huge splash this year — we’re thinking of authors such as Coco Solid with her vivid urban tale of modern New Zealand How to loiter in a turf war, Gina Cole’s science fiction spectacular Na Viro and Anthony Lapwood’s Home theatre. All three are relatively new authors on the New Zealand literature scene, and we’re excited to see more from them in the future!

And finally, it’s always nice to see well established writers in New Zealand and on the world scene creating masterful works for us to enjoy — such as Alan Garner’s Treacle Walker, Val McDermid’s 1989 and Vincent O’Sullivan’s Mary’s boy, Jean-Jacques : and other stories.

All in all, it’s been a fascinating and exciting year in the fiction world — now roll on 2023 and even more exciting new novels!