Favorite Books for Adults 2023

If one of your 2024 goals is to read more books this year, I have twelve books you have to check out!

I am audiobook addict and in 2023, I listened to 56 books. While the year initially started off with a few disappointing reads, I explored a variety of genres and found several phenomenal stories I couldn’t put down. Here you will find a mix of thrillers to keep you on the edge of your seat, uplifting romantic comedies, and one nonfiction book that completely shifted my mindset on parenting.

What was your favorite book you read in 2023? See any that you love here? What books did I miss that I need to read?

You can also view this list on BOOKSHOP.

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Happy Place by Emily Henry, 2023

Emily Henry is a must-read author for me and her newest book did not disappoint. I just adore her witty banter and the profound love found between characters. Harriet is thrilled to be at her “Happy Place”, a cozy cottage in Maine filled with her best friends from college, until she walks in to find her ex, Wynn. Viewed as the perfect couple, Harriet and Wynn have yet to tell their friends about their breakup and now they have to pretend to be together for the happiness of their group on what will likely be their last vacation together. It is clear Harriet and Wynn are still madly in love and one can cut the sexual tension with a knife!

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Never Enough: When Achievement Culture Becomes Toxic- And What We Can Do About It by Jennifer Breheny Wallace, 2023

I don’t normally like nonfiction, but when my friend recommended this one, I gave it a try and was shocked how much I loved it. Award-winning reporter Jennifer Breheny Wallace investigates the current pressure many families feel to succeed and “get ahead” in life. I am extremely impressed with how well researched this book is and how it has changed the way I parent my kids. I actually stopped to take notes while reading! After seeing the effects of the pressure many kids and parents face first-hand, I especially love the way this book addresses how people will often thrive when they feel like they matter and have value. I highly recommend this one to parents and educators.

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The Measure by Nikki Erlick, 2022

This thought-provoking story is absolutely fascinating and perfect for book clubs! One day, all over the world, boxes appear out of nowhere on people’s doorsteps. Inside the box is a string representing the length of time a person has to live. The story follows eight individuals and the decisions they make based on their strings. With its unique and provocative storyline, I couldn’t wait to talk with other people about this book!

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The Other Mothers by Katherine Faulkner, 2023

I love a good murder mystery and I couldn’t put down this slow burn thriller. When the body of a young woman is found in local wetlands, Tash, a journalist with a young child is determined to solve the mystery behind her death. When Tash enters her son into a preschool, she is befriended by a group of wealthy, sophisticated mothers who not only become Tash’s new friends, but also suspects in the young woman’s murder.  Told in alternating narratives between the murder victim and Tash, this is a fascinating story about motherhood, marriage, and class. I especially appreciated watching the two main characters develop over time and show their true colors for better and worse.

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Yours Truly by Abby Jimenez, 2023

With likeable, well-developed characters, this refreshing love story gave me all the feels! When Dr. Briana Ortiz first meets Dr. Jacob Maddox, she feels nothing but contempt for the man. After receiving a letter from him, however, she gains insight into how she misinterpreted their initial interactions. Soon a friendship blooms and ultimately blossoms into something else altogether. Written with humor and heart, this riveting story about moving on and second chances had me hanging on every word. I will definitely be reading the companion book Part of Your World (2022).

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The Only One Left by Riley Sager, 2023

I’m a sucker for thrillers and this one has everything I love… a creepy setting, secrets galore, and mysterious characters!  Desperate home-health aid Kit McDeere has no choice, but to take a job caring for stroke victim Lenora Hope in her crumbling cliffside mansion. Though never convicted, it is well-believed that Lenora killed her entire family one fateful night fifty years earlier. Mute and confined to a wheelchair, Lenora communicates with Kit through a typewriter expressing her desire to finally reveal the full story. With twists around every turn, this is my favorite book by Riley Sager yet.

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The Secret Book of Flora Lea by Patti Callahan Henry, 2023

This enchanting historical fiction moves back and forth through time sharing the tale of two sisters Hazel and Flora who move to the English countryside during WWII and 1960’s London. To comfort Flora during the war, Hazel shares secret stories of a magical land that she believes disappears with her sister when Flora goes missing on the edge of a river one fateful day. Twenty years later, however, Hazel discovers a rare book filled with tales of the whimsical world she created with her sister. What ensues is a quest to discover the fate of Flora and mend old wounds. This is a beautifully crafted heartfelt story with an uplifting ending.

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None of This is True by Lisa Jewell, 2023

Lisa Jewell has a way of creating the most creepy and captivating stories that I feel like I shouldn’t like, but I can’t seem to get enough of. In a chance encounter at a pub, bright, buoyant Alix Summer meets the enigmatic Josie Fair. Soon their lives become entwined when Alix interviews Josie for her podcast and uncovers several unsettling, but oddly enthralling facts about Josie. As Josie and Alix become closer, Josie’s intentions become questionable and ultimately result in a shocking array of events that leave Alix the subject of her own podcast.  

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The Second Chance Year by Melissa Wiesner, 2023

Down-on-her luck pastry chef, Sadie Thatcher is regretting several of the choices she made from the previous year that resulted in her current jobless, single, and homeless status. During a chance encounter with a fortune teller on New Year’s Eve, she wishes to go back and relive her year with different decisions. When she wakes up one year earlier, she is careful with her choices that leave her questioning what she really wants out of life after all. There is so much to love about this book including the witty writing, Sadie’s growth, and the flourishing love between her and her little brother’s best friend.

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The Seven Year Slip by Ashley Poston, 2023

Apparently, 2023 was a big year for time travel stories because this is another time-bending romance that melted my heart.  Clementine is a hard-working book publisher who inherits a magical apartment from her aunt, which sends her back in time seven years and into the arms of a very handsome chef.  When she encounters the man again, this time seven years later, she grapples with how he is changed and if they can make their love work.

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The Last Word by Taylor Adams, 2023

I was honestly shocked how much I loved this book. I thought it would be a quick, easy read and I was amazed how it kept me at the edge of my seat! Emma Carpenter is currently housesitting in an isolated area on the Washington Coast. After leaving a one-star review for a particularly bad horror book, she begins to receive messages from the author and then has reason to believe he is stalking her. What follows is a gripping tale of survival as she unravels who the author could actually be.

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Nora Goes Off Script by Annabel Monaghan, 2023

I found this romantic comedy to be so incredibly refreshing! When romance screenwriter, Nora Hamilton’s husband leaves her, she turns her failed love life into a successful movie script. While filming, she starts a fling with the award-winning actor Leo Vance who is experiencing a little  midlife crisis of his own. Together, the two learn to navigate their emotional baggage and attempt their own happy ending.

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Here are a few more books that I enjoyed this year:


And here are a few books that are on my TO BE READ LIST for this year. Many of these are recommended by my followers. Thanks for your suggestions!