Wondering what to read now? Here are all the hot new September 2021 book releases for you. I’ll let you know what I’ve read, what I can’t wait to read, and what’s getting all the attention this month.
In case you’re new to Booklist Queen, every month I cover all the hottest new book releases. I try to read as many new book releases as I can to give you an honest perspective on what to read and what to skip.
However, I realize that my to-read list might not exactly match yours. That’s why, this year, I’ve decided to also include some of the most popular September 2021 book releases from your favorite authors.
Enough from me. Let’s get on to the September 2021 book releases so you can fill up your to-read list.
Top September 2021 Book Releases
Cloud Cuckoo Land
From the author of All the Light We Cannot See comes an ambitious work of literary fiction. Doerr’s novel toggles between three timelines – the Fall of Constantinople in 1453, present-day Idaho, and interstellar ship far in the future. Each piece explores the power of stories as a fictional ancient Greek comedy weaves throughout the entire book. I predict that Cloud Cuckoo Land will be hit or miss with people since the plot doesn’t converge as powerfully as it should. Yet, the awe-inspiring power of the written word that Doerr evokes in every sentence will be appreciated by literary fiction lovers.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Scribner through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
Apples Never Fall
It should be the golden years for Stan and Joy Delaney now that they’ve sold their tennis academy and settled into retirement, so why aren’t they happy? When they welcome a bleeding stranger into their home, her arrival begins a cascade of events. Now Joy is missing, and the four grown Delaney children wonder if their father might have done it. Liane Moriarty’s books always make for exciting reads, so you’ll want to keep your eye out for her latest novel.
In 1960s Harlem, Ray Carney has a reputation as an upstanding used furniture salesman. Although Ray strives to live up to what he knows he can be, times aren’t like they used to be, and he occasionally supplements his incomes with a side gig fencing items for the underworld of Harlem. When Ray’s cousin ropes him into being the fence for a heist gone wrong, Ray finds himself caught up with shady cops and local gangsters.
The Night She Disappeared
One night in 2017, a teen mom has her mother watch her baby boy so she can attend a party in the nearby woods, only to disappear without a trace. Two years later, mystery novelist Sophie is wandering the woods near her new house when she finds a note attached to a tree saying, “Dig Here.” Lisa Jewell’s dark thrillers are always my favorites, displaying the harrowing lengths to which humans can descend. The Night She Disappeared is a slow-burn mystery that is intriguing enough to grab your attention but not an edge-of-your-seat read.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Atria through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
Rock Paper Scissors
After winning a trip to a remote Scotland getaway for the weekend, Adam and Amelia try one last-ditch effort to save their marriage. Amelia is tired of Adam putting his work as a screenwriter before her and Adam is just tired of Amelia. As things start to unravel and their past is revealed through secret anniversary letters Adam has never read, you find that someone is lying and someone doesn’t want them to end happily ever after.
While I was reading, I wavered between enjoying the mystery and being annoyed by it. Overall the book was good, if a bit unbelievable, but the twist is so artfully executed that it elevates the entire novel up a notch.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Flatiron Books through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
Beautiful World, Where Are You
Hitting the upper end of the new adult genre, Sally Rooney’s latest novel follows the lives of four single 30ish Irish protagonists as they try to find their way in life. On a whim, Alice, a novelist, invites Felix, a warehouse worker she just met, to travel to Rome with her. Meanwhile, while recovering from a breakup, Alice’s best friend Eileen begins flirting with Simon, a childhood friend.
Beautiful World, Where Are You alternates between chapters that push the plot forward and letters between Alice and Eileen full of existential musings on life, love, climate change, and sex. If you love Rooney’s distinctive style then you’ll love her September release. If you don’t enjoy reading about millennial angst, then I’d pass on this one.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
Book of the Month – September 2021
Receiving my blue box from Book of the Month Club is a highlight of every month.
Here’s how it works – each month, they pick 5 books and you get to choose one book or skip until the next month. If you want to add any extra books, then you get them at a discounted price.
Each month is usually a mix of new releases and advance copies of unreleased books. If you are interested in joining, right now you can use my Book of the Month Club affiliate link to get your first book for $5!
The September Book of the Month selections are:
See the Complete List of Upcoming Releases!
Reese Witherspoon’s September 2021 Book Club Pick
María Amparo Escandón
In the L.A. drought, Mexican-American matriarch Keila is tired of her loveless marriage to Oscar whose only thought is for the weather and the rain that might never come. When Keila decides to end her marriage, her three adult daughters are forced to take a hard look at their own relationships in this witty family drama chosen by Reese Witherspoon for her September book club pick.
Read with Jenna’s September 2021 Book Club Pick
Qian Julie Wang
When Qian was seven years old, her family immigrated to the United States. As her parents struggled to cope with the transition from respected professors to “illegal” sweatshop laborers, Qian finds herself an outcast at school and seeks comfort in the library. When her mother becomes ill, Qian’s fears multiply in this moving coming-of-age memoir about the immigrant experience in the US.
The Most Anticipated September 2021 Book Releases
Under the Whispering Door
When the reaper comes to collect him at his own funeral, Wallace Price, a soulless lawyer obsessed with all the wrong things, finds himself taken to a small tea shop tucked into the mountains. Given one week until he needs to pass on, Wallace decides to lives as much as he can in the next seven days with the help of the kind tea shop owner who is assigned to assist Wallace.
Many readers are going to love Under the Whispering Door, raving about the profound truths conveyed through wry humor and quirky characters. Unfortunately, I am not one of them. To me, Under the Whispering Door felt like it was trying to hard to be meaningful. The tongue-in-cheek humor just isn’t my style, so I decided not to finish this one. If you liked Fredrik Backman’s Anxious People, you’ll likely love TJ Klune’s September 2021 book releases. Else, I’d skip this one.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Tor Books. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
Eight Perfect Hours
On her way home from a school reunion, a surprise blizzard traps Noelle on the highway. She ends up spending eight splendid hours talking with Sam, the handsome American in the car next to her. Over the next few months, as Noelle keeps running into Sam, she begins to realize that she wants more in life than what she has settled for.
Although I loved Lia Louis’s debut, Dear Emmie Blue, Eight Perfect Hours fell flat for me. The sheer number of Noelle and Sam’s coincidences tipped the scales from cute to completely contrived. Moreover, Noelle spends so much time in her head repetitively going over the same doubts that the story loses force. Although still an enjoyable rom-com, Eight Perfect Hours needed much more nuance and character-building to be worth recommending.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Atria Books through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
Richard Powers, the author of the bestseller The Overstory, contemplates the world we are leaving for our children in his September 2021 book release. As widowed astrobiologist Theo Byrne searches for life on other planets, he struggles with raising his nine-year son. Sweet nature-loving Robin is on the verge of being expelled from third grade. Robin’s teachers and doctors tell Theo that Robin needs drugs to help be normal, but Theo refuses, leaning on the love of the natural world to help Robin cope.
As a troubled teenager, Maggie Dawes was sent to live with her aunt in a remote North Carolina beach town. Her life is changed forever when she met Bryce Trickett, a handsome local teen who taught her to love the island and introduced her to photography before he heads off to West Point. Now a renowned travel photographer, Maggie recounts the story of her first love to her young assistant after Maggie is diagnosed with a crippling illness.
Anderson Cooper and Katherine Howe
CNN host Anderson Cooper teams up with historian Katherine Howe to recount the rise and fall of a great American dynasty, his mother’s family, the Vanderbilts. Told in vignettes of the various family members, Cooper shows how Cornelius Vanderbilt built his shipping and railroad empires in the 1800s, and how his descendants fought over his staggering fortune, forever fracturing the family.
Declutter Like a Mother
Are you tired of being a “hot mess” mom, spending your days drowning in overwhelm? Forget the stark white empty walls, Casazza teaches a family-oriented approach to minimalism that shows you how to reclaim the joy in motherhood and make your home work for you. Declutter like a Mother does a great job conveying the why of decluttering for families, explaining the benefits to both mothers and children. The actual decluttering techniques are similar to basically every decluttering book. Also, be aware that she gets a little annoying with the self-promotion of her online courses.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson Books through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
Once Upon a Broken Heart
When the love of her life is about to marry her stepsister, Evangeline Fox strikes a deal with the Prince of Hearts. In payment, he demands in payment three kisses, to be given at his time of choosing. After the first kiss is given to the Prince of the North, Evangeline realizes she’s trapped in a deadly game with an immortal, one that will either end in her happily ever after or completely break her heart.
Set after the events of the Caraval books, Once Upon a Broken Heart picks out a new resourceful heroine and brings back the bad boy you love to hate, or it it hate to love? Critically speaking, the story isn’t nearly as good as Caraval, lacking originality and spending too much time in Evangeline’s head. However, preteens and Caraval fans won’t care and will gobble it up.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Flatiron Books. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
In the 7th book in the Green Rider series, Sir Karigan G’ladheon is making her way back to Sacor City after her eventful mission to the North. Although plagued by nightmares and self-doubt after being tortured, Karigan must continue to risk all for king and country as the Second Empire makes a final bid to attack the kingdom.
Fantasy isn’t generally my genre of choice, but I got hooked on the Green Rider series after the birth of my youngest, reading all six (gigantic) books in about a week. I’ve heard that this is the penultimate book in the series, and I have to admit that I am just as hooked now as I was when I started. In Winterlight, fans of the series will be pleased as Britain keeps up a constant stream of action while diving into the psychological toll of Karigan’s many adventures. While the loose threads from the other books are mentioned, the focus is on Karigan and King Zachary taking on the Second Empire.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from DAW through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
R. J. Palacio
From the author of the bestselling middle-grade novel Wonder comes a new children’s story set in the American West. In the middle of the night, three horsemen take Silas’s father away. When a pony shows up, twelve-year-old Silas sets out on a journey across the West to find his father. But Silas is not alone. He brings along Mittenwool, a companion who happens to be a ghost.
Popular September Upcoming Releases
What September 2021 Book Releases are You Most Excited to Read?
What books can you not wait to get your hands on this month? Did I miss any September 2021 book releases that you are anticipating? As always, let me know in the comments!
More New Book Releases:
I cannot honestly say I am that excited about it, but of the options given, I chose Beautiful Country as my September BOTM. I know nothing about it, but the others were of no interest at all. I’ve skipped months recently and seem to be getting most new releases, among other books from my local library.
I did need a “debut” to complete my debut darling badge, so this memoir will fill that spot.
I actually had 2 credits & a birthday coupon from August that BOTM kindly let me crossover to this month, since I had skipped August. So in addition, I added The Goldfinch & The Secret History, both Donna Tartt books.
The Secret History is still buzzing after all these years. It was her debut novel. I think I may have started it in the past, but did not finish. The same with The Goldfinch. It is a massive book. I believe I checked it out twice from the library 8 years ago & never got to the end! I figure it will at least give me my money’s worth page-wise
I know I attempted it 8 years ago, because my now 8 year old grandson was an infant.
I am not sure what is going on with BOTM, but lately the main choices are IMO not as good as the add ons. And I am sorry to see their collaboration with ReadwithJenna has ended. No one would give me a definite answer, then finally they confirmed it.
I love Hayley Mills, so Forever Young is of interest to me. Whenever you are feeling down in the dumbs or overwhelmed with our current day stressors, just find a Hayley Mills movie & watch it.
Also I only recently discovered Lauren Groff, so super excited for Matrix and on a wait list at my library.
The Magician sounds good too!
So many great books, that was why BOTM’s weak picks this month were a little disappointing.
Down in the “dumps” not dumbs!!!!!
Although it can feel that way at times!!!
Stephanie Easthope says
Ann – I just finished The Secret History – having had it on my shelf for more than a decade… I’m glad I picked it up again. It’s a fantastic book.
Most people love Labor Day for the three day weekend.
I love it because now the library will be open on Sunday.