The Hottest Books of Summer

Posted by Hayley on May 6, 2019
Here at Goodreads we take our summer reading seriously. After all, there are beach bags to be packed and ereaders to stock! To help you start planning, we rounded up the most irresistible new releases of the season.

Our list is based on what Goodreads members can't wait to read. How do we measure that anticipation? By taking a look at how many times a book has been added to Want to Read shelves.

From new titles by Margaret Atwood, Neal Stephenson, Elizabeth Gilbert, and Thomas Harris to The Poppy War sequel and the next harrowing historical novel from Colson Whitehead, these are the biggest books publishing in the U.S. this summer.

Enough talking—on to the books! How many will you be checking out?


FICTION
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NYPD rookies Francis and Brian are neighbors, not friends. When a devastating tragedy divides their two families, it is their children who pay the price in this powerful novel of forgiveness and grace from the author of Fever.

Read our interview with Keane here.

Release date: May 28


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The author of Eat, Pray, Love returns to fiction with a bold tale of glamour and adventure set in New York City during the 1940s. It follows Vivian Morris as she rubs elbows with showgirls—and makes a mistake that will alter the course of her life.

Release date: June 4


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In this lyrical debut novel from the Night Sky with Exit Wounds poet, Little Dog writes a letter to his mother, who cannot read, unearthing a family history that began before he was born, stretching from Vietnam to America.

Release date: June 4


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From the 1950s to the present, two spirited sisters struggle to find their own place in the world, navigating an ever-evolving American landscape, in this timely and ambitious new book from the author of Good in Bed.

Release date: June 11


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Chicago couple Marilyn and David are still madly in love. The same cannot be said for their four adult daughters. A long-buried secret tests their tangled bonds in this poignant debut, a portrait of a modern family in crisis.

Release date: June 25


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In this follow-up to the Pulitzer Prize– and National Book Award–winning bestseller The Underground Railroad, two young boys endure a hellish reform school for delinquent adolescents in Jim Crow–era Florida.

Release date: July 16


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Ginny's husband sends their daughter away and grieves her as though she were dead. The reason: Baby Lucy has Down syndrome. But Ginny fights back, turning fugitive to reunite with Lucy in this novel from the author of Rust & Stardust.

Release date: August 6




MYSTERY & THRILLER
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In his first book in 13 years, The Silence of the Lambs author takes readers to the Miami Beach waterfront, where $25 million in cartel gold lies hidden, in this dark tale of evil, greed, and dangerous obsession.

Release date: May 21


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Twenty years ago, a woman was found bludgeoned to death in a rowboat on the MacAllisters' property. No one was ever charged with the crime. The grown-up MacAllister siblings return to find the truth in this suspenseful mystery.

Release date: June 1


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What happened to Sylvie? The golden girl, raised by a distant relative before rejoining her family in America, is missing. Her sister, Amy, searches for answers and uncovers painful secrets in this novel from the author of Girl in Translation.

Release date: June 4


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Jules doesn't believe in ghosts. An apartment sitter at the Bartholomew, she ignores the strange stories about the building's past—until a woman disappears. She searches for clues in this thriller from the author of Final Girls.

Release date: July 2


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Everyone else in their book club thinks newcomer Angelica is naughty, harmless fun. Amy knows better. In this thriller from The Almost Sisters author, blackmail escalates into a cat-and-mouse game as Amy tries to keep her past at bay.

Release date: July 30


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From the author of The Woman in Cabin 10 comes a modern-day gothic mystery. Rowan accepts a live-in nanny position at a smart home in the Scottish Highlands, but the dream job soon turns into a nightmare.

Release date: August 6




FANTASY
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Private investigator Ivy has a slight drinking problem and a major magic problem. Hired to solve a grisly murder at a school for sorcery, she teams up with her gifted sister in this genre-bending debut that mixes fantasy and noir fiction.

Release date: June 4


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In this next installment in The Legends of the First Empire series, humanity's only hope for survival lies with a legendary witch. But after a devastating betrayal, Persephone has no choice but to place her trust in the unknown.

Release date: July 9


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Tau does not want to join the war. Then his loved ones are brutally murdered. He descends down a path toward vengeance, joining the Omehi people in their fight, in this African-inspired debut fantasy.

Release date: July 16


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In a dusty town in southern Mexico, young Casiopea accidentally frees the spirit of the Mayan god of death, sending her on a life-changing adventure, from the jungles of Yucatán to the bright lights of Mexico City.

Release date: August 6


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Waging war is all Rin knows how to do. Addicted to opium and on the run from a vengeful god, she reluctantly joins forces with the enigmatic Dragon Warlord in this gripping sequel to The Poppy War.

Release date: August 6




NONFICTION
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From the hosts of the hit podcast My Favorite Murder comes this frank, funny, and illuminating reflection on true crime, formative life events, and the importance of valuing personal safety over being "nice" or "helpful."

Find Kilgariff and Hardstark's favorite true-crime reads.

Release date: May 28


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Embark on a haunting voyage into our planet's past and future with the author of The Old Ways. Nature writer Macfarlane explores what lies beneath the surface through the narratives of artists, divers, mourners, and dreamers.

Release date: June 4


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With the trademark wit, humor, and compassion that made him a star on Netflix's Queer Eye, France reveals in this heartfelt memoir what it was like growing up gay in a traditional Muslim family and how he found his voice (and style).

Release date: June 4


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For nearly a decade, award-winning journalist Taddeo followed three American women—an Indiana homemaker, a successful entrepreneur, and a high school student—to write this deeply immersive account of the state of female desire.

Release date: July 9




YOUNG ADULT
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Ben just wants to survive senior year. Here's what's in the way: an anxiety disorder, a disastrous crush, and shattered family relationships—a result of Ben coming out as nonbinary. Hope shines in the face of adversity in this joyous debut.

Release date: May 14


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The library is Elisabeth's home. Raised among deadly grimoires, she dreams of becoming a book warden until an act of sabotage forces her to place her trust in a sorcerer in this novel from the author of An Enchantment of Ravens.

Release date: June 4


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From the author of The Truth About Forever comes a bighearted novel about one magical summer. When Emma arrives at North Lake, a whole new world opens up to her, one with dreamy Roo, her former best friend.

Release date: June 4


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Trinity is going blind; she also can see ghosts. With demons intent on devouring her flesh, she teams up with a gargoyle shape-shifter in this paranormal thriller, the first installment in a new series from the author of Obsidian.

Release date: June 11


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After their island boarding school, Raxter School for Girls, is put under quarantine, three best friends go to unbelievable lengths to uncover the truth about their confinement in this mind-bending debut.

Release date: July 9


To escape a bland life, Maia poses as a boy to compete for the role of imperial tailor. All she has to do to prove her worth is sew three mystical dresses from the sun, the moon, and the stars in this fantastical debut inspired by Chinese culture.

Release date: July 9




SCIENCE FICTION
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From the author of Snow Crash comes a futuristic take on Paradise Lost. In a parallel universe, Dodge is pronounced brain-dead, catapulting his consciousness into the cloud where the "eternal afterlife" is not the utopia it might first seem.

Release date: June 4


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From the author of Dark Matter comes a sci-fi thriller about a mysterious disease that afflicts people with vivid memories of a life they never lived. But are the memories really false—or is someone trying to rewrite history?

Release date: June 11


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For a decade Darrow led a revolution against the corrupt color-coded society. Now, outlawed by the very republic he founded, he wages a rogue war on Mercury to salvage the dream of Eo in this fifth installment in the Red Rising Saga.

Release date: July 30


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Thirty-four years after the publication of her dystopian classic, The Handmaid's Tale, Atwood returns to Gilead. The sequel is narrated by three female characters and will not be connected to the recent adaptation.

Release date: September 10




ROMANCE
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In this dazzling debut, Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice gets a modern-day Muslim twist. Uninterested in an arranged marriage, Ayesha is drawn to Khalid, a smart conservative man who's also judgmental and annoyingly proud.

Release date: June 4


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Behind the scenes of a popular house-flipping business, Travis hammers out his frustrations. His glory days as a baseball star are over, and the love of his life is solidly off-limits. Too bad meddling Georgette has other ideas.

Release date: June 11


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According to a neighborhood seer, the only way Natalie can save San Francisco's Chinatown is by cooking three recipes from her grandmother's cookbook. She receives help from a surprising love interest in this delicious debut.

Release date: June 11


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The one-night stand was a mistake. Maddie and Theo both know this; after all, they're sworn enemies. They'll go back to hating each other once the wedding of their mutual friend is over in this rom-com from the author of The Wedding Date.

Release date: July 16


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Firefighter Cassie can handle emergencies. Then her life is uprooted and she's forced to move to Boston. With the help of a handsome rookie, she learns to adjust in this novel about new beginnings from the author of How to Walk Away.

Release date: August 13




Which books are you most excited to read this season? Let us know in the comments!

Check out the complete guide to Summer Reading, including:
Goodreads Staffers Share Their Summer Reading Picks
Summer Reading Recommendations from Favorite Authors
Bookish Celebrities Recommend Great Summer Reads

Comments Showing 1-50 of 57 (57 new)


message 1: by Maria (new)

Maria The Wilder Girls cover is absolutely stunning


message 2: by Vanessa (new)

Vanessa Dark Age's release date changed to July 30, 2019.


message 3: by Ashley (new)

Ashley Maria wrote: "The Wilder Girls cover is absolutely stunning"

I was just thinking the same thing! It sounds interesting to but I really am drawn to that cover.


message 4: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Hicks Looks like there's going to be some damn good summer reading this year! I'm so here for it! I've added many to my shelf. Thanks Goodreads for the awesome selection!


message 5: by Nitya (new)

Nitya The Rest of the Story, Sorcery of Thorns, Natalie Tan’s Book of Luck and Fortune, Ayesha at Last.... such a stellar list :D


message 6: by Elise (new)

Elise Sorcery of throne for sure


A S H L E Y ⚡️ So excited for Ruth Ware’s new book!


message 8: by Cleanaccountbr (new)

Cleanaccountbr I'm soo excited for I Wish You All The Best! That cover is stunning! I can't wait to read it and it to be published in my country!


message 9: by Luke (new)

Luke Anyone know what the new Thomas Harris book, Cari Mora is like?


message 10: by Daniel (new)

Daniel Myers Maria wrote: "The Wilder Girls cover is absolutely stunning"

Agreed. I also find The Most Fun We Ever Had's cover visually arresting.


message 11: by Mimi (new)

Mimi I look forward to getting the chance to read Ruth Ware’s The Turn of the Key. 👍


message 12: by Leighellen (new)

Leighellen Any good historical fiction?


message 13: by F.J. (new)

F.J. Commelin That would be "Gods of jade and shadow" and the follow up on "The handmaid's tale"


message 14: by Janet (new)

Janet Mrs. Everything and Never Have I Ever!


message 15: by Laura (new)

Laura Just started Never Have I Ever, which I won in a Goodreads giveaway. Great so far!


message 16: by Robert (new)

Robert W. How about Spinoza? or "The road less traveled" or "Man's search for meaing" or "The Magic Mountain:" or "Don't Sweat the Sweat Stuff and t's All Sweat Stuff" and others.


message 17: by F.J. (new)

F.J. Commelin Spinoza? or "The road less traveled", both worthwhile.


message 18: by Denise (last edited May 07, 2019 09:41AM) (new)

Denise  Reed I'm currently reading an ARC of Ask Again, Yes - powerful read so far!


message 19: by Bonnie (new)

Bonnie The Testaments by Margaret Atwood. Long time between books but I love Handmaids Tale read it 35 years ago. And of course watched the series intriguing


message 20: by soph❁•*。. (new)

soph❁•*。. can i just say i am definitely reading wilder girls because the cover is so beautiful haha


message 21: by Juliet (new)

Juliet Smith No historical fiction. Boo!


message 22: by Lauren (new)

Lauren The Testaments by Atwood!!!!!!!


message 23: by Maria (new)

Maria Rivera Can't wait for "Wolf Rain" by Nalini Singh and "Shadow Warrior" by Christine Feehan!!!


message 24: by Jo (new)

Jo Cadman Can anyone recommend an author who caters in humor in the 40 years to 55 years including family menopause etc....


message 25: by Sandra (new)

Sandra Added many to my shelf but really looking most forward to The Testaments by Margaret Atwood!
Will be re-reading Handmaiden’s Tale to get ready!


message 26: by Kameron Raynor (new)

Kameron Raynor This is super helpful, I am looking forward to reading some of these books this Summer!


message 27: by megan (new)

megan sponsored by doggies!


message 28: by Tim (new)

Tim Joseph Blake Crouch's Recursion tops my list here... Read the ARC, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. Can't wait to read it again!


message 29: by Frank (new)

Frank Parker Her Kind Is my recommendation. My review is here: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...


message 30: by Dywane (new)

Dywane That's Good Book To Read?


message 31: by Frank (new)

Frank Parker Excellent, IMHO. Check out my review. And if you look at some of the other reviews you will see it is not to everyone's taste.


message 32: by maryThompson (new)

maryThompson Love Amish books


message 33: by Shawnna (new)

Shawnna Rigsby A S H L E Y ⚡️ wrote: "
So excited for Ruth Ware’s new book!
"

Same!


message 34: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Graham The Only Woman In The Room, Lily & The Octopus, The Last of The Romantics,Sometimes I Lie, American Pop, Furious Hours, The Room on Rue Amelie, The Library Book, Do Not Be Anxious For Anything


message 35: by Fran (new)

Fran Granville Shawnna wrote: "A S H L E Y ⚡️ wrote: "
So excited for Ruth Ware’s new book!
"
Same!"

When did "excited about" become "excited for"? You used to be excited for your friend because she graduated or something. Now you are happy for a book.


message 36: by Alexandra (new)

Alexandra Biron Oh boy. Found a few books to add to my summer reading list which just keeps getting bigger! I think this is going to be a very good year for reading.


message 37: by Denise (new)

Denise Lundstrom I've found several books to add to the list!! Something from almost every genre!!


message 38: by John (new)

John Perrone Read "Poppy Wars" and found the book and magic wonderful. The end of the book felt not right to me. It smacked of vengeance instead of helping. The main character had a choice and I disagreed with the one she made. Will read this second book to see if my feelings are the same,begrudgingly.


message 39: by Patricia (new)

Patricia Harris Good reading this summer. "Underland" release right before my birthday . Excited!


message 40: by Pam (new)

Pam Carmichael Ashley wrote: "Maria wrote: "The Wilder Girls cover is absolutely stunning"

I was just thinking the same thing! It sounds interesting to but I really am drawn to that cover."

I so agree and I want to read it!!!!


message 41: by Sophie (new)

Sophie A Better Man by Louise Penny is one to look out for...
The Starless Sky by Erin Morgenstern is sure to be on my First Reads list!


message 42: by Kurtharrison (new)

Kurtharrison Well, some of these books are really stupid. Seriously, they are. Personally, I would like to see something more technical, I mean what and how to backup your wordpress site like https://www.geekyedge.com/what-and-ho... this one or similar useful information. I like fiction but this list is not the best.


message 43: by Bojan (new)

Bojan Hot books for Sommer are The Rabbit Hunter from Kepler, Fitzpatricks Package and more.....


message 44: by Ash (new)

Ash ROAN, by Jessica Gadziala. That’s the book I’m most looking forward to.


message 45: by Leila (new)

Leila The cover for Wilder Girls by Rory Power makes me feel guilty...
it just proves how shallow I can be, LOL I'm definitely reading that one purely because it's BEAUTIFUL!!


message 46: by Isa (new)

Isa Can't wait for Underland! I think it can be surprisingly interesting.


message 47: by Patricia carroll (new)

Patricia carroll more fictuon


message 48: by Carol Lahners (new)

Carol Lahners Kurtharrison wrote: "Well, some of these books are really stupid. Seriously, they are. Personally, I would like to see something more technical, I mean what and how to backup your wordpress site like https://www.geekye..."

Fran wrote: "Shawnna wrote: "A S H L E Y ⚡️ wrote: "
So excited for Ruth Ware’s new book!
"
Same!"
When did "excited about" become "excited for"? You used to be excited for your friend because she graduated or..."



message 49: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Grabenstetter Isn’t Jennifer Armentrout the one who plagiarized another author, stole her name and spoofed all her books? http://jennytrout.com/?p=9886
Yeah, she is.
No. Thanks.


message 50: by Judy Richter (new)

Judy Richter I want to read Where the crawdads sing! I read a book and it said I had to cancel it after I read it! I thought I did, but it says I didnt! I'm not liking this kindle! Big pain!
Now I can't get new book to read! So much Amazon Prime


!
An prime!


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