A few of my personal tips and tricks for filling your calendar with books
Not long ago, a friend texted to ask me how I stay updated on new book releases, and I realized I couldn’t easily outline all my sources via text. I’ve been thinking about it ever since, and noticing all the different places I go to get hyped about upcoming book releases.
My teaching philosophy is that if one person’s asking, others probably have the same question. So, I’m going to break down some of the places that work for me, personally, to get info about what cool new books are on their way.
You may not want your online life to revolve around books quite this much, but here are a few key ways I stay in-the-know.
1. Subscribe to Book Newsletters & Podcasts
Book Riot’s flagship podcast was the first podcast I ever listened to, and I also wrote for the site once upon a former internet life, so note my bias here. But, this is still my go-to first place for all things book.
Don’t take my word for it. Book Riot is a book publicity giant because they do book content well. Their New Books newsletter and the All the Books podcast are great ways to stay current on new and upcoming releases.
Into getting more genre specific? The newsletter webpage boasts a veritable army of genre-specific newsletter you can subscribe to if they strike your fancy, and many of them feature upcoming releases.
Personally I am usually not able to jot things down while listening to podcasts, so I stick to the newsletter where I can easily click “want to read” on Goodreads if a book on the list strikes me. This one hops into your inbox every Tuesday with a few highlighted titles, and does a monthly Mega Book List as well.
Other online bookish sites like BuzzFeed Books or PopSugar’s Bookmarked likely also have newsletters you can check out if you prefer your book news elsewhere. I just don’t personally subscribe to any of these, so your book mileage may vary.
2. Subscribe To Your Favorite Publisher’s Newsletters & Social Media
Look, I get it. You may not have a list of your favorite publishers and imprints at the forefront of your mind.
But tracking my reading this year has taught me that I do, in fact, tend to read a lot of books from a few select imprints. Berkeley Romance, in particular, has claimed more than their fair share of my 2021 reading pie, but there are other repeat players as well.
Armed with this knowledge, I started following them on social media and subscribed to their newsletters (can you tell I adore newsletters?). Since then, I have been pleasantly overwhelmed with just how many amazing books are suddenly crossing my radar.
It may take a little bit of investigation to unearth your favorite publishers if you’re not used to noticing this kind of book info, but trust me, the results may well be worth it.
3. Follow Your Favorite Authors on Social Media
Am I the only one who is deeply terrified to tag authors in my gushing reviews of their books? The internet suggests that yes, maybe I am.
Nevertheless, I do follow my top-favorite, auto-buy authors on Twitter and/or Instagram so I can be sure to know about upcoming books the moment they’re announced. Then I try to hide from them so they never find out how much I love their books (except that time I accidentally pre-ordered Not Like the Movies Twice — that story, I had to share).
Fun fact: authors generally have their social media in large part specifically to promote their books. Ergo, you will learn about their upcoming books by following them.
4. Find Book Blogs That Feature Advanced Reviews
Whether or not you personally want to blog about books, many book bloggers do a lot of their reading in advance. That means they publish reviews and features for books that aren’t yet released, which can give you a good sense of what’s on the horizon.
Some blogs publish frequently and feature all genres, but others specialize in things like Romance or Thrillers. By following, bookmarking, or otherwise checking in with blogs that feature reviews of books like those you most enjoy, you can get hyped about upcoming releases with the best of them.
Instagram and Twitter feature hashtags like #bookblog and others that you can peruse to find more blogs than you can shake a URL at. Trust me on this one.
5. Check out Advanced Review Sites Like NetGalley and BookSirens
Want to get your hands on the aforementioned advanced reader copies, or just see what’s on offer? Sites like NetGalley and BookSirens connect book reviewers and book bloggers with pre-release titles in exchange for honest reviews.
This option is for the reader who is willing to do a little reviewing, and you do have to be approved for titles in order to get your hands on those sweet, sweet ARCs.
Even if you don’t review often and aren’t approved for many requests, having an account will give you the ability to browse basic info about upcoming releases. Just don’t request books you don’t actually plan to review, because publishers rely on that publicity and promotion as part of their book campaigns!
6. Follow Book-Centric Twitter & Instagram Accounts
Are you tired yet? There are a lot of ways I keep tabs on upcoming books, it turns out. Whew!
The last (serious) recommendation from me is to follow book-centric social media accounts. I didn’t include BookTok because I am an old, but the youths tell me this is a great place to be, too.
Folks who talk books online are doing a lot of the above, and probably more, to keep tabs on new and exciting book releases. So, they can be a great source of book news and book release hype, even if you aren’t ready to deep dive into a million newsletters and websites like I do.
Following or searching for hashtags like #bookstagram or #booktwt can get you in the loop even if you aren’t into following specific accounts.
If All Else Fails, Scream “I LIKE BOOKS” into the Internet Void
Let’s be honest — our internet overlords are listening, and if you’re doing any or all of the steps above, the algorithm will start to learn what you like and it will show it to you.
When I open Google on my phone, book lists featuring my favorite authors will often pop up, and even though this is somewhat alarming if I think about it too much, I generally click on these because, hey, more books! I think this is the top reason why this question required some reflection, since books seem to almost find me these days instead of the other way around.
As you can see, I have a lot of different venues for finding out about new books. And yes, this sometimes means I get, say, three different emails reminding me that Jen DeLuca’s Well Matched came out on October 19th.
You may not want to dive into the deep in with all of these suggestions, but if you want to stay more in-the-know about new books, maybe give one or two of them a try!