Sunshine and warmer weather are here, and that means it’s the perfect time to head outside, kick back your feet, and read a good book. There are plenty of new releases in fiction to be excited about. Here are some of the new releases I am most eager to read this summer from some popular genres of fiction.
Fantasy – Witch King by Martha Wells
Release date: May 30, 2023
From the breakout SFF superstar author of Murderbot comes a remarkable story of power and friendship, of trust and betrayal, and of the families we choose.
Kai’s having a long day in Martha Wells’ Witch King….
After being murdered, his consciousness dormant and unaware of the passing of time while confined in an elaborate water trap, Kai wakes to find a lesser mage attempting to harness Kai’s magic to his own advantage. That was never going to go well.
But why was Kai imprisoned in the first place? What has changed in the world since his assassination? And why does the Rising World Coalition appear to be growing in influence?
Kai will need to pull his allies close and draw on all his pain magic if he is to answer even the least of these questions.
He’s not going to like the answers.
Witch King is Martha Wells’s first new fantasy in over a decade, drawing together her signature ability to create characters we adore and identify with, alongside breathtaking action and adventure, and the wit and charm we’ve come to expect from one of the leading writers of her generation.
Historical Fiction/Folklore – Clytemnestra by Costanza Casati
Release date: May 2, 2023
For fans of Madeline Miller, a stunning debut following Clytemnestra, the most notorious villainess of the ancient world and the events that forged her into the legendary queen.
As for queens, they are either hated or forgotten. She already knows which option suits her best…
You were born to a king, but you marry a tyrant. You stand by helplessly as he sacrifices your child to placate the gods. You watch him wage war on a foreign shore, and you comfort yourself with violent thoughts of your own. Because this was not the first offence against you. This was not the life you ever deserved. And this will not be your undoing. Slowly, you plot.
But when your husband returns in triumph, you become a woman with a choice.
Acceptance or vengeance, infamy follows both. So, you bide your time and force the gods’ hands in the game of retribution. For you understood something long ago that the others never did.
If power isn’t given to you, you have to take it for yourself.
A blazing novel set in the world of Ancient Greece, this is a thrilling tale of power and prophecies, of hatred, love, and of an unforgettable Queen who fiercely dealt out death to those who wronged her.
Science Fiction – The Archive Undying by Emma Mieko Candon
Release date: June 27, 2023
War machines and AI gods run amok in The Archive Undying, national bestseller Emma Mieko Candon’s bold entry into the world of mecha fiction.
When an AI dies, its city dies with it.
When a city falls, it leaves a corpse behind.
When that corpse runs off, only devotion can bring it back.
When the robotic god of Khuon Mo went mad, it destroyed everything it touched. It killed its priests, its city, and all its wondrous works. But in its final death throes, the god brought one thing back to life: its favorite child, Sunai. For the seventeen years since, Sunai has walked the land like a ghost, unable to die, unable to age, and unable to forget the horrors he’s seen. He’s run as far as he can from the wreckage of his faith, drowning himself in drink, drugs, and men. But when Sunai wakes up in the bed of the one man he never should have slept with, he finds himself on a path straight back into the world of gods and machines.
The Archive Undying is the first volume of Emma Mieko Candon’s Downworld Sequence, a sci-fi series where AI deities and brutal police states clash, wielding giant robots steered by pilot-priests with corrupted bodies.
Come get in the robot.
Mystery/Thriller – Zero Days by Ruth Ware
Release date: June 20, 2023
The New York Times bestselling “new Agatha Christie” (Air Mail) Ruth Ware returns with this adrenaline-fueled thriller that combines Mr. and Mrs. Smith with The Fugitive about a woman in a race against time to clear her name and find her husband’s murderer.
Hired by companies to break into buildings and hack security systems, Jack and her husband, Gabe, are the best penetration specialists in the business. But after a routine assignment goes horribly wrong, Jack arrives home to find her husband dead. To add to her horror, the police are closing in on their suspect—her.
Suddenly on the run and quickly running out of options, Jack must decide who she can trust as she circles closer to the real killer in this unputdownable and heart-pounding mystery from an author whose “propulsive prose keeps readers on the hook and refuses to let anyone off until all has been revealed” (Shelf Awareness).
Graphic Novel – Lore Olympus: Volume Four by Rachel Smythe
Release date: June 6, 2023
Witness what the gods do after dark in the fourth volume of a stylish and contemporary reimagining of one of the best-known stories in Greek mythology, featuring a brand-new, exclusive short story from creator Rachel Smythe.
The rumor mill of Olympus is constantly churning, but Persephone and Hades are all anyone can talk about. With the constant gossip creating intense pressure on the pair, they decide to slow down their budding romance and focus on sorting out their own issues first.
But that’s easier said than done.
Hades struggles to find support in his personal life, with Zeus trivializing his feelings and Minthe resorting to abusive patterns in their relationship. And while Hades tries to create healthier boundaries where he can—like finally putting a stop to his sporadic, revenge-fueled hookups with Hera—he still feels lonely and adrift.
Persephone feels equally ostracized as her classmates shun her for her connection to Hades, and she can find no refuge at home, with Apollo constantly dropping by unannounced and pushing his unwelcome advances. And on top of it all, the wrathful god of war, Ares, has returned to Olympus to dredge up his sordid history with the goddess of spring, threatening to surface Persephone’s dark and mysterious past and ruin her tenuous position in the land of the gods.
Despite agreeing to take it slow, Persephone and Hades find themselves inextricably drawn toward each other once more amid the chaos. The pull of fate cannot be denied.
This edition of Rachel Smythe’s original Eisner-winning webcomic Lore Olympus features exclusive behind-the-scenes content and brings the Greek pantheon into the modern age in a sharply perceptive and romantic graphic novel.
Romance/Chick Lit – Happy Place by Emily Henry
Release date: April 25, 2023
A couple who broke up months ago pretend to still be together for their annual weeklong vacation with their best friends in this glittering and wise new novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Emily Henry.
Harriet and Wyn have been the perfect couple since they met in college—they go together like salt and pepper, honey and tea, lobster and rolls. Except, now—for reasons they’re still not discussing—they don’t.
They broke up five months ago. And still haven’t told their best friends.
Which is how they find themselves sharing a bedroom at the Maine cottage that has been their friend group’s yearly getaway for the last decade. Their annual respite from the world, where for one vibrant, blissful week they leave behind their daily lives; have copious amounts of cheese, wine, and seafood; and soak up the salty coastal air with the people who understand them most.
Only this year, Harriet and Wyn are lying through their teeth while trying not to notice how desperately they still want each other. Because the cottage is for sale and this is the last week they’ll all have together in this place. They can’t stand to break their friends’ hearts, and so they’ll play their parts. Harriet will be the driven surgical resident who never starts a fight, and Wyn will be the laid-back charmer who never lets the cracks show. It’s a flawless plan (if you look at it from a great distance and through a pair of sunscreen-smeared sunglasses). After years of being in love, how hard can it be to fake it for one week…in front of those who know you best?