Litty Committee: The Best Books Dropping This Summer If You Still Need A Secret Santa Pressie

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It’s December folks. The end of the year is nigh, and so is your last-minute Christmas shopping, because what better gifts to get your loved ones than a book to curl up with — and maybe even pass on to another friend when they’re done? Books are the gifts that keep on giving, so without further ado, here are all the best December releases that will make the perfect gift for all bookworm babes.

Christmas chaos aside, you also only have T-minus four weeks to smash your reading goal for this year (was it 24 books like mine?). But don’t worry, we’ve got you covered as always. Nothing motivates you to read like a stack of killer novels to get the brain juices flowing! And reading is way more fun when you’re doing it alongside your friends, so why not gift your mates the books you’re reading this December as Christmas gifts?

Let’s get into it!

Best Fantasy Books Coming in December

To Kill a Shadow by Katherine Quinn (Soaliha’s pick)


About the book:

Fantasy novels with a dark-haired brooding love interest and a fiery red-haired heroine are done to death… and yet here I am, intrigued every time. To Kill a Shadow is a fantasy horror and its premise reminds me of Hafsah Faizal‘s We Hunt The Flame: a fantasy novel also about a fiesty woman with searing eyes who teams up with an emo, brooding general (called the Prince of Death, so I suspect this was inspo for Katherine Quinn). If you have a BookTok girlie in your midst, this would make an excellent Xmas gift for them (or yourself!).

Jude Maddox knows nothing of love or even light. He knows only his grim duty as the Hand of Death. The other Knights may fear their lethal commander, with his hard, merciless demeanor. Outcast Kiara Frey sees only a leader, a man who knows how to survive. Someone like her. But wanting him is as treacherous as the shadows themselves…and just as seductive.

With a kingdom on the verge of collapse, the Knights must now venture into the darkest heart of the land and uncover the secrets of the misted shadows, where evil will prey upon their minds and feast on their flesh.

Most of them will die, but they have no other choice. Because the only way to fight the darkness…is to become it.

Release date: November 28

Best Fiction Books Coming in December

The Mystery Guest by Nita Rose (Soaliha’s pick)


About the book:

Don’t ask me why, but nothing screams Christmas reading more than a cosy murder mystery. There’s something about a retro, cosy whodunnit that feels festive to me — maybe it’s because of all the associations of Christmas and cosy fireplaces (despite it being summer here)? Either way, it’s no surprise that this is the book I plan to spend my Boxing Day reading.

Molly Gray wears her Head Maid badge proudly for every shift at the Regency Grand Hotel, plumping pillows, sweeping up the guests’ secrets, silently restoring rooms to a state of perfection. But when a renowned guest – a famous mystery writer – drops very dead in the grand tea room, Molly has an unusual clean-up on her hands.

As rumours and suspicion swirl in the hotel corridors, it’s clear there’s grime lurking beneath the gilt. And Molly knows that she alone holds the key to the mystery. But unlocking it means thinking about the past, about a dusty old house, and everything else she’s tidied away in her memory.

Because Molly knew the dead guest once upon a time — and she knows his secrets too…

Release date: November 29

Consider Me by Becka Mack (Lachy’s pick)

About the book:

Booktok baddies, I’m back with another recommendation for you. Becka Mack has returned with Consider Me, the much-anticipated novel off the back of her two previous releases that have taken TikTok by storm. This one combines hot men in hockey uniforms and romance — count me in.

Following our two protagonists Cater and Olivia, we take to the rink with our star player (Carter), now turned hopeless romantic as he tries to win over Olivia who he is SO desperate to be with. Olivia has experience with hockey players and their arrogant antics, so why would a teacher want to spend her time stroking the ego of an athlete? Sparks will fly as Carter does whatever it takes for Olivia to consider him in this steamy, smutty story.

Release date: November 29

Deep in the Forest by Erina Reddan (Soaliha’s pick)


About the book:

Inspired by the author’s own upbringing in a closed of Catholic community, Deep in the Forest is an exploration of power and the enticing nature of cults — specifically, how most people don’t even realise they’re part of one.

Fed up with being shunned by locals for a crime she didn’t commit, Charli Trenthan plans to leave her hometown of Stone Lake. But when she receives a cryptic message from a member of the Sanctuary, a conservative closed community nestled in the forest, she is determined to find answers.

A gruesome discovery soon lands Charli yet again in hot water with the police, but how is the Sanctuary connected? As she digs deeper, dark secrets are uncovered and the fight to prove her innocence turns into a fight for her life.

Release date: November 29

Best LGBTQIA+ Books Coming in December

Heartstopper Volume 5 by Alice Oseman (Lachy’s pick)

About the book:

It’s here. The fifth graphic novel from Alice OsemanHeartstopper Volume 5. Our favourite gay and bisexual couple are back as we continue falling in love with them in the fifth part of this series. Heartstopper is quite literally the gay comic book I wish I had all those years ago…without exposing my age (it’s none of your business).

We pick up where we left off and Nick and Charlie are still very much in love. They’ve finally said those three little words (my heart), and Charlie has almost persuaded his mum to let him sleep over at Nick’s house (raunchy)…but with Nick going off to University next year, is everything about to change?

Release date: December 7

Love and Other Scores by Rachel Johns (Lachy’s pick)

About the book:

Sports? Gays? We’re not in Kansas anymore. This home-soil romance is giving the same energy of Red, White and Royal Blue. I have no doubt Abra Pressler is here to serve us a steamy, dramatic romance in Love and Other Scores and quite honestly I’m already hooked.

Love and Other Scores from Abra Pressler, follows follows Gabriel, our rising tennis superstar and Noah, the oblivious to sports type (very me). As Gabriel gears up to attend his first Grand Slam title at the Australian Open, the pressure is truly bubbling. And then he meets Noah. There’s an instant connection and the more time they’re together, the more steamy this romance gets.

But, both of them have their reasons for wanting to keep their flourishing romance private. When the stakes are so high, will they be willing to risk everything for love?

Release date: November 28

Best Romance Books Coming in December

Never Ever Forever by Karina May (Soaliha’s pick)


About the book:

An enemies-to-lovers romance set in both Mudgee and India, by an Australian author? This romcom was written for me. (And also you.)

It’s been six years since childhood sweetheart Wes Preston jumped on a plane and never looked back, and Rosie Royce spends most nights spooning her laptop. If she has to swipe on one more bloke posing with a sedated tiger, she’ll scream.

An impulse move to the idyllic country town of Mudgee is the fresh start Rosie needs, as she trades in her high-pressure marketing career for a laidback gig in local radio. But the universe isn’t done messing with Rosie just yet. Her new job comes with a handsome but infuriating co-host, Dr Markus Abrahams, while a school reunion brings Wes back into her orbit.

When Rosie’s work whisks her to vibrant, chaotic India, a world of possibility opens up.

Release date: November 28

Best Non-Fiction Books Coming in December

The Flirtation of Girls / Ghazal el-Banat by Sara M Saleh (Soaliha’s pick)


About the book:

Now is the time more than ever to amplify Palestinian voices. I felt this beautiful and haunting poetry collection by Sydney poet, human rights activist and lawyer Sara M Saleh deep in my chest, with its themes of occupation, colonialism and defiance. Colonial grief is something many ethnic diaspora are all too familiar with, and the more of us who recognise that and build our solidarity, the less alone we will all feel in our struggles. I especially recommend the poem simply titled “Gaza”.

The Flirtation of Girls introduces us to the polychromatic lives of girls and women as they come into being amidst war, colonial and patriarchal violence, and exile and migration.

This searing collection of non-fiction poems interrogates and represents the complexity of Arab-Australian Muslim women’s identities as they negotiate an irresistible world full of music and family, grit and grief, love and loss.

Release date: November 28

The Vagus Nerve Reset by Anna Ferguson (Lachy’s pick)


About the book:

The way I jumped at the opportunity to get my hands on this before launch. Anna Ferguson has provided us with ALL the tools in The Vagus Nerve Reset. It’s a lesson in anatomy and a guide to understanding how our nervous system controls our entire being. You’ll want to take your time with this one and Ferguson encourages that you revisit the activities over time to help maximise the outcome of her findings.

Through somatic therapies alongside the science of the Polyvagal Theory, Anna Ferguson provides best practices to help train our nervous systems. This allows us to stop overreacting and start responding better to day-to-day stressors and heal our past experiences. I just know you’re intrigued now.

Release date: November 28

How To Win Friends and Manipulate People by George Mladanov (Lachy’s pick)


About the book:

Australian Survivor fans assemble! As a fan of the show, I had my reservations but when King George Mladenov announced he’s written a book, but I knew I had to get my hands on a copy. Throughout his seasons, strategy and alliances were his main tactics and it was about time he delivered it to us. George goes raw in How To Win Friends and Manipulate People as we learn about his upbringing and rise to the throne on Survivor.

Each chapter is grounded in an insightful anecdote from George’s life. In providing lessons from key moments of his life that have formulated his mindset, from his upbringing in a tight-knit Macedonian and Greek household in Bankstown, to his careers in politics, poker and TV.

Release date: November 29

Well, that’s all for our most-anticipated December reads. See you next year, folks!