Cover The best book launches of October 2021 (Photo: Goodreads)

Whether you're looking to escape reality, catch up with your favourite celebrity, or deepen your understanding of the world, you will find something perfect for you this #Booktober

1 / 13

The Book of Hope: A Survival Guide for Trying Times by Jane Goodall and Douglas Adams

“Doug had spent a year with Bishop Tutu and the Dalai Lama before writing The Book of Joy, so when he approached me with the idea for The Book of Hope, I thought he was going to spend some time with me and then write the book. I said that he could have four days, not a year, with me,” shared Jane Goodall about her upcoming book in collaboration with Doug Abrams in an exclusive interview with Tatler last year. 

Through stories and photographs from her remarkable career, Goodall helps answer the question on how to be hopeful in a world facing a global pandemic, worsening climate crisis and political upheaval. The Book of Hope is an intimate, eye-opening dialogue with the world's beloved primatologist, anthropologist and advocate for environmental justice that will make for an insightful and thought-provoking read. 

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See also: Jane Goodall Talks Hope, Her New Book And Why The Kids Are Alright

2 / 13

Dear Memory: Letters on Writing, Silence and Grief by Victoria Chang

Chinese-American poet Victoria Chang presents a collection of literary letters and mementos, from marriage licenses and visa petitions to photographs and receipts, that tell the story of her family and memories of trauma, loss and grief that spans generations. Beautiful, raw and evocative, Dear Memory joins Chang's Barbie Chang as some of her best work in prose, alongside her award-winning poetry collections, The Boss and Obit

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See also: First-Time Author Catherine Menon on Finding Her Voice

3 / 13

Oh William! by Elizabeth Strout

Pulitzer Prize-winning author, Elizabeth Strout explores the enduring bond between a divorced couple in the latest instalment of her beloved Amgash series. She revisits beloved fictional character, Lucy Barton whose story began when her mother made an unexpected visit after a simple operation in My Name Is Lucy Barton. This latest novel traces the protagonist's complex and tender relationship with her first husband, William. Together, they recount their decades-long partnership, from meeting college years and their turbulent marriage to the strange shared intimacy and pain of watching their daughters grow up. 

Oh William! is a poignant and unforgettable exploration on the way people live and love that will take you on an emotional journey from start to finish. 

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See also: Why Modern Women Are Moving Away From Marriage For Freedom and Independence

4 / 13

Taste: My Life Through Food by Stanley Tucci

Award-winning actor known for his roles on The Lovely Bones, The Devil Wears Prada and The Hunger Games film trilogy, Stanley Tucci went viral in the early days of the pandemic for teaching the internet how to make the perfect negroni during lockdown. Since then, he's been sharing his favourite recipes and even hosted a six-part culinary travel series around Italy.

This month, he releases his memoir, Taste: My Life Through Food. Bringing his trademark wit and humour, he shares anecdotes about growing up in Westchester, New York with his Italian-American family, shooting the cult-favourite foodie film Julie & Julia and his renewed appreciation for food after radiation therapy to remove a tumour at the base of his tongue.  

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See also: Mandy Yin, Owner of Sambal Shiok Laksa Bar, Is Releases A Cookbook To Make Malaysian Food More Accessible

5 / 13

I Love You But I've Chosen Darkness by Claire Vaye Watkins

One woman finds herself in the Mojave Desert where she grew up after abandoning her husband and baby daughter. Determined to escape her domestic duties and the spiralling emptiness of her postpartum depression, she comes across ghosts from her past, including her first love and her father, a member of the most famous cult in American history. Infused with dark humour and dry wit, I Love You But I've Chosen Darkness is a must-read story of family, marriage and motherhood.

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See also: Comedian Phil Wang on His New Book, 'Sidesplitter'

6 / 13

My Monticello by Jocelyn Nicole Johnson

A formidable debut from former public school art teacher, My Monticello is a collection of six stories. Set in the near future, the eponymous novella tells the story of Da’Naisha, a young Black descendant of Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings leading a group of Charlottesville neighbours fleeing violent white supremacists and seeking refuge in Jefferson's historic plantation home. The short stories follow other characters fighting to survive in America, including a professor who is performing a social experiment on his own son, a Nigerian widower trying to find solace in a new city and more. 

"It is a rare breed of writer who can tell any kind of story and do so with exquisite deftness. Jocelyn Nicole Johnson is one such writer," writes world-renown writer, Roxane Gay in a review. So vivid and powerful is Johnson's voice that Netflix has already optioned the rights to this collection. 

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See also: This International Booker Prize-Winning Novel Belongs On Your Reading List

7 / 13

Aristotle and Dante Dive into the Waters of the World by Benjamin Alire Sáenz

The highly-anticipated sequel to Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe is finally here. In the second instalment of this series, the protagonist Ari finds himself in a whole new world. No longer the same quiet, angry boy in the back of the class, he navigates senior year in high school with Dante by his side—making new friends and standing up for what he believes in. The two are determined to forge a path for themselves in a world that doesn’t understand them. But when Ari is faced with a shocking loss, he’ll have to go far beyond his comfort zone to fight for his new reality. 

Sáenz revisits Aristotle and Dante with his trademark style, following them as they heal from past trauma and transition into adulthood to provide a heart-warming finale to this beloved YA series. 

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See also: Jessie Mei Li On Bringing Alina Starkov To Life In Netflix's Adaptation of YA Novel, 'Shadow and Bone'

8 / 13

The Violent Season by Sara Walters

Get into the Halloween mood with this thrilling debut from Sarah Walters. Telling the story of high-schooler Wyatt Green whose mother was brutally murdered, The Violent Season is set in the fictional town of Wolf Ridge. Rumour has it that the townspeople become blood-thirsty, violent monsters every November. A silly story or morbid truth? Follow Wyatt as she uncovers the truth and faces the harsh reality about what really makes people decide to hurt each other.

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See also: 7 Thrillers To Binge-Watch This Halloween

9 / 13

The Storyteller: Tales of Life and Music by Dave Grohl

From his turbulent tour days with Kurt Cobain and Nirvana to finding success with the Foo Fighters, world-renowned drummer Dave Grohl shares the details of his life in a captivating autobiography.

"The joy that I have felt from chronicling these tales is not unlike listening back to a song that I've recorded and can't wait to share with the world, or reading a primitive journal entry from a stained notebook, or even hearing my voice bounce between the Kiss posters on my wall as a child," he writes in the blurb. "This certainly doesn't mean that I'm quitting my day job, but it does give me a place to shed a little light on what it's like to be a kid from Springfield, Virginia, walking through life while living out the crazy dreams I had as young musician."

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See also: Yuna Begins A New Chapter In Her Musical Journey

10 / 13

The Judge's List by John Grisham

A master of legal thrillers, John Grisham returns with the sequel to The Whistler, where judicial investigator Lacy Stoltz blows the whistle on a corrupt judge who was taking millions in bribes from a crime syndicate. Ready to retire, she crosses paths with Jeri Crosby, a woman who has been looking into the murder of her father for two decades with a growing suspicion that a judge under Stoltz's jurisdiction is the killer. Will she pursue the case, even if it meant putting her life in danger? 

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See also: Lauren Ho, Author of Last Tang Standing, On Transitioning From Law To Literature

11 / 13

Little Thieves by Margaret Owen

Little Thieves is a modern retelling of the Brothers Grimm's fairytale, The Goose Girl. Delightfully fast-paced with witty conversation and gripping plot twists, this fantasy novel starts with Vanja Schmidt, the adopted goddaughter of Death and Fortune, who steals the identity of her mistress, Princess Gisele and has been leading a double life as a royal and a jewel thief. But she is cursed to slowly turn to stone after crossing the wrong god. With two weeks to figure out how to break her curse and a tenacious detective on her tail, she has to pull the biggest grift of all to save her own life. 

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See also: What Our Favourite Fairytale Character Would Wear

12 / 13

Light From Uncommon Stars by Ryka Aoki

Faustian bargains. Cursed violins. Alien courtship. 

This brilliant adventure novel follows Shizuka Satomi, who must entice seven other violin prodigies to trade their souls for success in order to escape damnation. She's ready to serve up her final candidate Katrina Nguyen, a young runaway with tremendous talent, to the devil but is distracted by Lan Tran, retired starship captain, interstellar refugee, and mother of four. Light From Uncommon Stars joyfully defies literary genres to bring a heart-felt, quirky story of fate, friendship and love. 

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See also: 5 Books By Asian Authors To Put On Your 2021 Reading List

13 / 13

Silverview by John Le Carré

Arriving in the same month as No Time To Die, the latest 007 movie starring Daniel Craig as James Bond for the last time, Silverview follows Julian Lawndsley, whose simple life running a bookshop in a small English seaside town is disrupted by the arrival of a visitor who seems to know a lot about his family and is rather too interested in the inner workings of his modest new enterprise. 

In his signature style, John Le Carré adds one last story of mystery and intrigue to his expansive repertoire of thrillers, including The Spy Who Came in from the Cold and Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy.

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See also: Everything You Need To Know About The 'No Time To Die' London Premiere