Welcome to Book Riot’s January 2021 Horoscopes and Book Recommendations! New year, new you, new books! Where to begin with the first round of 2021 titles? Let the stars be your guide. Find your January horoscope below, paired with a newly released book you’re sure to love.
And because it’s the perfect time to set new goals, I’ve included a bookish New Year’s resolution for each sign. You’re welcome!
Aries (March 21–April 19)
Persephone Station by Stina Leicht (January 5, Saga Press)
You love a fresh start, Aries. January represents a time for you to forget last year’s frustrations and focus on the future. You love setting new goals and hitting the ground running. Although your job won’t be easy this month, your enthusiasm and social skills will take you far. Romance is heating up this wintery month; time spent with a love partner will increase your energy for the year ahead. Check out the gritty, queer space opera Persephone Station by Stina Leicht. Persephone Station is an out-of-the-way planet mostly ignored by the rest of the galaxy. But when a soulless corporation seeks to exploit Persephone Station for its own profit, a band of criminals with a home base hidden in the back of a local bar prepare to fight back.
Aries’s Bookish New Year’s Resolution: Focus on enjoying what you’re reading instead of trying to beat your friends’ reading goals.
Taurus (April 20–May 20)
Unfinished by Priyanka Chopra Jonas (January 19, Random House)
Taurus is at peace in January. Although life may not be easy this month, you like where you are and where you’re going. That solid foundation means you can handle whatever is thrown at you. In romantic relationships and in personal goals, this is your chance to take a big step forward. Money troubles may be in store, so save where you can and embrace chances to earn a little extra cash. I recommend Unfinished by actor, producer, activist, and UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Priyanka Chopra Jonas. Even when faced with racism, sexism, and personal tragedy, Chopra Jonas has found a way to come out stronger and chase her dreams. This memoir explores her childhood in India, coming of age in the U.S., the launch of her acting career, and her work to change the world.
Taurus’s Bookish New Year’s Resolution: Read outside of your comfort genre. Who knows, maybe you’ll find something you like!
Gemini (May 21–June 20)
Angel of Greenwood by Randi Pink (January 12, Feiwel & Friends)
You want more this month, Gemini. Introspection and ambition are front of mind as you start your year. Although the timing may not be right to start a new project, the stars are aligned for you to start laying the groundwork. Think strategically about your goals, and discuss plans with trusted advisors. And don’t forget to take care of your body while focusing on intellectual pursuits! You might enjoy Angel of Greenwood by Randi Pink, a historical fiction novel set around the 1921 Tulsa Greenwood Massacre. Goody-two-shoes Angel and bad boy Isaiah think they have little in common. When they both accept a job running their English teacher’s mobile library on a two-seater bicycle, they’re forced to get to know each other better. But on May 31, 1921, their lives—and perspectives—change forever.
Gemini’s Bookish New Year’s Resolution: Actually finish a book before starting three new ones.
Cancer (June 21–July 22)
Black Buck by Mateo Askaripour (January 5, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)
Cancers are zooming toward their goals this month. At work, your fresh ideas will earn you respect and help your whole team. Creative pursuits will be especially fruitful. But your hyperfocus on your career may cause tension at home. Miscommunications with loved ones can lead to messy situations. Avoid making assumptions about family members’ intentions, or things may blow up. Check out Black Buck by Mateo Askaripour, a satirical novel about tech startup culture. As a former high school valedictorian and now twentysomething Starbucks barista, Darren’s loved ones worry he isn’t living up to his potential. But when he gets a sales job at a New York tech startup, he recreates himself as Buck, an aggressive salesman who behaves nothing like before. Can he reach the top when he’s also hit rock bottom?
Cancer’s Bookish New Year’s Resolution: Stop yelling at books for making you cry.
Leo (July 23–August 22)
Happily Ever Afters by Elise Bryant (January 5, Balzer + Bray)
Leos are ready for love in January. Romances old and new will be a source of great joy, as well as a nice ego boost. That passion will spill over into other parts of your life, giving you career inspiration and an open mind to learn new things. Educational pursuits will be a focus as you start the new year. But beware of conflict with siblings, which may make family matters challenging. You might enjoy Happily Ever Afters by Elise Bryant. Seventeen-year-old aspiring romance writer Tessa is thrilled when she gets accepted into a prestigious creative writing program. But once she starts the program, she hits a wall of writer’s block. Her best friend is convinced that Tessa must experience her own book-worthy love story to break the block. But as she sparks a romance with brooding artist Nico, she feels less and less like herself.
Leo’s Bookish New Year’s Resolution: Actually read the books you use as props in selfies.
Virgo (August 23–September 22)
Concrete Rose by Angie Thomas (January 12, Balzer + Bray)
Stay the course this month, Virgo. It’s tempting to start off your year by taking on a big new project, but such efforts won’t be fruitful. Spend your health and energy instead on tying up loose ends or laying the groundwork for future efforts. Big personalities in your family may butt heads; try to be a peacemaker instead of an instigator. Loved ones will look to you as the voice of reason. I recommend Concrete Rose by Angie Thomas, a prequel to her bestseller The Hate U Give. Teenager Maverick knows he needs to step up to provide for his family now that his dad is in prison. Dealing for the King Lords is the only way he knows how to do that. But when he finds out he’s a father, he tries to leave the King Lords behind and become a role model for his baby son.
Virgo’s Bookish New Year’s Resolution: Spend less time organizing your books and more time reading them.
Libra (September 23–October 22)
A Lie Someone Told You About Yourself by Peter Ho Davies (January 5, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)
Libras have lots of love to give in January. In romance, you have the passion and affection to make things sexy and sweet. Your loving support will give family and friends a big boost as they start the year. At work, your good vibes lift the whole team. Sharing your positive energy isn’t just good for the people around you; it will earn you recognition and an exciting new opportunity. You should read A Lie Someone Told You About Yourself by Peter Ho Davies. This is a novel about fatherhood and the joys and challenges of raising a child, told through the eyes of a professor as he experiences a tidal wave of parental emotions. It’s also a story of abortion, the complexities of marriage, and the impossible decisions presented by both.
Libra’s Bookish New Year’s Resolution: Stand up for your book opinions instead of always agreeing with your book club members.
Scorpio (October 23–November 21)
After the Rain by Nnedi Okorafor, John Jennings, and David Brame (January 5, Abrams ComicArts-Megascope)
Relinquish some control this month, Scorpio. It’s often hard for you to trust people, but some situations in January are out of your hands. Things aren’t going your way at work and personal goals aren’t within reach. Rather than growing frustrated, reset your expectations. Meditation and relaxation techniques are key. And if things get too tough to handle, change your surroundings. Check out After the Rain by Nnedi Okorafor, adapted by John Jennings and illustrated by David Brame. Based on Okorafor’s short story “On the Road”, this graphic adaptation tells a fantastical and haunting tale set in a small Nigerian town. During a massive storm, Nigerian American Chioma opens the door to find a boy with a terrible head wound whose touch causes something strange and painful to erupt in her.
Scorpio’s Bookish New Year’s Resolution: Lean in. Read more books from the villain’s point of view.
Sagittarius (November 22–December 21)
Aftershocks: A Memoir by Nadia Owusu (January 12, Simon Schuster)
Sagittarius has a challenging month ahead. No matter how hard you work, your career efforts are stymied. Money troubles will cause tension with family, made even worse by a lack of communication. Hiding your frustrations will only make things worse; be vulnerable and share feelings with people you trust. Remember that one bad month doesn’t foretell a bad year. Good things are ahead! Read Aftershocks: A Memoir by Nadia Owusu. After being abandoned by her mother at age 2 and the death of her father at age 13, Owusu spent her childhood adrift, moving across the globe. By the time she started college in the U.S., she struggled to bring together the various versions of herself from so much upheaval. Her experience forced her to examine what it means to be yourself while coming of age with so much change and uncertainty.
Sagittarius’s Bookish New Year’s Resolution: Actually read the books your friends and family recommend to you. Maybe they know you better than you think.
Capricorn (December 22–January 19)
The Rib King by Ladee Hubbard (January 19, Amistad)
Happy Birthday, Capricorn! While other signs struggle with finances, your money multiplies in January. A little work goes a long way when it comes to your income. You may be tempted to indulge in some luxuries, but helping loved ones make ends meet would also be appreciated. Consider something in the middle. Networking and new friendships will bring a confidence boost. I recommend The Rib King by Ladee Hubbard. As the white Barclay family’s fortune dwindles, their Black servants take on the brunt of the difficulties. But then the family concocts a plan to sell their cook’s rib sauce, to regain their wealth, marketing it with their landscaper’s face as the logo. When their servants learn of the plan—and that they won’t receive any of the profit—they become set on revenge.
Capricorn’s Bookish New Year’s Resolution: Read more books for enjoyment instead of for bragging rights.
Aquarius (January 20–February 18)
Chlorine Sky by Mahogany L. Browne (January 12, Crown Books for Young Readers)
Aquarius’s friends are worth their weight in gold. When stress is overwhelming in January, your social network will come through for you. Any problem at work can be solved with the help of close colleagues. But when it comes to drama at home, try to resolve it without gossiping to friends. Open communication with your family will serve you better than outside opinions this month. Check out Chlorine Sky by Mahogany L. Browne. This novel in verse is narrated by a teenager learning what it means to be yourself and move through the world as a girl. When her best friend stops speaking to her, she must decide how to handle toxic relationships and stand up for herself.
Aquarius’s Bookish New Year’s Resolution: Stop judging bestsellers based on their popularity. You might even like them!
Pisces (February 19–March 20)
The Prophets by Robert Jones Jr. (January 5, G.P. Putnam’s Sons)
You’re feeling grounded this month, Pisces. Although the new year inspires lofty aspirations in many, you prefer to focus on the achievable. Don’t let that realism turn to negativity. Learning a new skill will help you move forward, and may even lead to new income. Save the wild plans for February. I recommend The Prophets by Robert Jones Jr., a lyrical historical novel set on a plantation in the deep south. Samuel and Isaiah are two enslaved young men who have found a refuge in their love for each other. But as their enslaver’s gospel becomes increasingly pushed on the plantation, their privacy and intimacy are threatened.
Pisces’s Bookish New Year’s Resolution: Treat yourself by buying new books instead of waiting out the library hold list.