A collection of debut novels, viewed from the side, on a blue background
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Amazing debuts you may have missed this year

From historical tales to modern life dramas, laugh-out-loud love stories to fiendishly twisting thrillers – whatever your taste in novels, we have some perfect new voices to catch up on and share with others.

Penguin Editors

There's nothing quite like the thrill of discovering a new voice in fiction. Many authors get better with each new book, but there's usually something about debut novels – a certain fearlessness, a burst of energy and ideas – that makes them impossible to forget. What better gift than a new discovery?

There's the bragging rights – the oh my god, have you read it yet? factor – of being among the first to discover a new talent. Over the past year, that particular pleasure has been harder to come by than usual; the serendipitous stroll around the bookshop has been trickier; the word-of-mouth buzz difficult to catch.

Jump to: Thought-provoking reads | Historical fiction | Twisting Thrillers | Modern storytelling | Family drama | Love, friendship and summer fun

And so we've decided to celebrate a range of brilliant debut novels that may have passed you by this year, from engrossing historical fiction to beautiful portraits of contemporary life; joyful tales of love and friendship to nail-biting thrillers. If you've loved them, why not buy another copy for a friend, giving you something wonderful to catch up on in the new year. 

Thought-provoking reads

Historical fiction

Twisting Thrillers

Modern storytelling

Family drama

Love, friendship and summer fun

What did you think of this article? Email editor@penguinrandomhouse.co.uk and let us know.

Image: Mica Murphy / Penguin

Three Rooms by Jo Hamya

Set over 2018, when climate change dominated the headlines, Brexit continued to divide a nation and the Grenfell tragedy highlighted social inequality, Three Rooms follows a young woman as she begins her professional career at a society magazine. The contract is temporary and her rent budget only stretches to a stranger's sofa, which leads her to question: What is it all for? Jo Hamya's debut speaks to a generation of underpaid and overworked young people with prospects of job security and homeownership a distant dream while trying to establish their place in the world.

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