Books can often provide a place of refuge and solace and sometimes even provide answers to questions that arise. Here are five books you need to read in 2023.


These past few years have been tough, to say the least, as the pandemic and the war have marked the years with uncertainty and devastation. Books can often provide a place of refuge and solace and sometimes even provide answers to questions that arise when living through trying times. 

Without further ado, here are five books you need to read in 2023. 

The Naked Don’t Fear the Water by Matthieu Aikins

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In The Naked Don’t Fear the Water, Canadian journalist Matthieu Aikins went undercover, forgoing his passport and identity to join his Afghan friend Omar who was fleeing his wartorn country and leaving the woman he loved behind in 2016. This incredible journey became the backdrop of Aikins’ book which recounts the story of the two friends through a dangerous and harrowing journey on the refugee trail from Afghanistan to Europe. As the two are faced with the brutal realities of war, Aikins spares no details in weaving his empathetic yet urgent story.

Reasons To Stay Alive by Matt Haig


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While this entry may be an older one, published on March 2015 by novelist Matt Haig based on his experiences of living with depression and anxiety disorder which he suffered from the age of 24, this novel is Matt Haig’s first nonfiction piece and the first time he wrote about his illness publicly. With all that has happened these past few years, this book may serve those going through something similar and can hopefully lead them to a healthier mental state in 2023. 

The School for Good Mothers by Jessamine Chan

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In this taut and explosive debut novel, one lapse in judgment lands a young mother in a government reform program where custody of her child hangs in the balance.

Frida Liu is struggling. She doesn’t have a career worthy of her Chinese immigrant parents’ sacrifices. Worse, she can’t persuade her husband, Gust, to give up his wellness-obsessed younger mistress. Only with their angelic daughter Harriet does Frida finally feel she’s attained the perfection expected of her. Harriet may be all she has, but she’s just enough. Until Frida has a horrible day.

The Candy House by Jennifer Egan 

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The Candy House is Jennifer Egan’s follow-up to her Pulitzer-winning 2010 novel titled A Visit from the Goon Squad and is one of the most anticipated books of 2023. A Visit from the Goon Squad was hailed for its innovative structure – one chapter was written as a PowerPoint presentation – meanwhile, the new narrative tails in its unique construction. Egan spins fresh commentary on technology, memory, and privacy this time through 14 interlinked stories. 


All My Rage by Sabaa Tahir

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All My Rage is a contemporary young adult novel by Pakistani-American author Sabaa Tahir. It was published on March 1, 2022, by Razorbill, an imprint of Penguin Random House. All My Rage is the fifth book written by Tahir and her first standalone book. It explores two high school students struggling to balance family, grief, love, life, and a desperate desire to escape a small town that only seems to be suffocating them.



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