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56 New Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Horror Books Releasing in July

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Image: Tor Books

July’s hefty pile of new sci-fi, fantasy, and horror releases brings lesbian vampires, politically motivated magic, interstellar bounty hunters, a jazz musician who teams up with mecha pilots, mermaids, robots, fairy-tale riffs, and so much more. There’s still plenty of summer reading time left, so what are you waiting for?


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Image: Flatiron Books

Acts of Violet by Margarita Montimore

Ten years after a famous magician vanishes onstage, her introverted sister is forced to face the truth about what happened in this tale told both in traditional narration and as transcripts from a podcast that’s digging into the case. (July 5)

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Image: Tor Books

Flying the Coop by Lucinda Roy

The Dreambird Chronicles continue in this sequel to The Freedom Race, set in a dystopian version of Washington, D.C. where a young woman must not only deal with systemic racism, but also her newfound ability to fly. (July 5)

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Image: Baen

The Icarus Plot by Timothy Zahn

A new sci-fi series begins as a one-armed bounty hunter and his partner, an alien with a super-sensitive sense of smell, take an intriguing new job locating a woman and the top-secret project she’s linked to. (July 5)

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The Jigsaw Assassin by Catherine Asaro

The Major Bhaajan series continues as the interstellar military officer-turned-private eye takes on a new case, tracking a serial killer who appears to have political motivations. (July 5)

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Image: Blackstone Publishing

The Key to Fury by Kristin Cast

The Key Series continues as Elodie and Aiden, who’ve escaped the sinister Key Corporation, seek to join the resistance movement working against it—a task that proves tricker than they realize. (July 5)

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Image: Harper Voyager

Master of Furies by Raymond E. Feist

The Firemane fantasy saga concludes as a pair of grieving men seek revenge on the raiders who killed their families, while the pirate known as “the Sea Demon” tracks those who sent the raiders in the first place—and her husband flexes his magical powers with an even greater goal in mind. (July 5)

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Image: William Morrow

The Pallbearers Club by Paul Tremblay

An author whose high-school social life revolved around “an extracurricular club for volunteer pallbearers at poorly attended funerals” tries to write a memoir, but experiences strange interference from a particularly spooky friend he met during that period in his life. (July 5)

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Image: Solaris

Silk Fire by Zabé Ellor

In a massive matriarchal city that runs on both magic and technology, a male courtesan plots against his politically powerful father—and accidentally gains dangerous, dragon-fueled powers in the process. (July 5)

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Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin

Over three decades, a pair of childhood friends grow up to become hugely successful video game designers in this novel examining “the multifarious nature of identity, disability, failure, the redemptive possibilities in play, and above all, our need to connect.” (July 5)

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Weird Tales: Best of the Early Years 1923-25 edited by Jonathan Maberry and Justin Criado

This collection gathers 13 notable entries from the legendary pulp magazine’s first few years, with horror, sci-fi, and fantasy stories from authors like Harry Houdini and H.P. Lovecraft. (July 5)

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Where You Linger by Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam

This book of interconnected stories introduces vengeful robot assassins, man-eating monsters, a woman seeking shelter from killer rain, and other memorable characters. (July 11)

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The Albion Initiative by George Mann

Special agents Newbury and Hobbes return for their final steampunk adventure in this series-concluding tale. (July 12)

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August Kitko and the Mechas From Space by Alex White

A jazz pianist becomes an unlikely hero when he’s saved by a group of rebellious mecha pilots who’re taking a stand against their space brethren’s quest to wipe out life on Earth. (July 12)

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Barbarian Lover by Ruby Dixon

The Ice Planet Barbarians series continues as a determined-to-stay-single Kira tries to resist the flirty alien who’s caught her eye. (July 12)

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Classic Monsters Unleashed edited by James Aquilone

Joe R. Lansdale, F. Paul Wilson, Jonathan Maberry, Ramsey Campbell, and more contribute to this horror anthology reimagining famous monsters from movies, literature, and beyond, including Dracula, the Invisible Man, the Headless Horseman, the Wicked Witch of the West, and others. (July 12)

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Image: Harper Voyager

Eclipse the Moon by Jessie Mihalik

A bounty hunter finds herself in a tight spot—and forced to work closely with an enticing teammate—when she starts investigating a shadowy group that’s trying to start an interstellar war. (July 12)

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Image: Tachyon Publications

The Extractionist by Kimberly Unger

In this cyberthriller, a woman whose job revolves around discreetly extracting people from virtual reality meets resistance from her latest target—while in the real world, she starts to realize she herself is being targeted by powerful people. Read an excerpt here. (July 12)

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Half Outlaw by Alex Temblador

In this tale filled with magical realism, a woman agrees to participate in a memorial “Grieving Ride” after her uncle, who raised her in the midst of his motorcycle gang, passes away. (July 12)

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Hooked by A.C. Wise

The latest dark Peter Pan tale from the author of Wendy, Darling explores what happens when Wendy and Captain Hook meet in London decades after leaving Neverland. (July 12)

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Into the Narrowdark by Tad Williams

The third novel in the Last King of Osten Ard series uncovers more royal turmoil, as well as a rampaging army hellbent on resurrecting an evil spirit. (July 12)

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The Last Blade Priest by W.P. Wiles

In this fantasy tale, a master builder in a kingdom that’s just lost a war is reluctantly enlisted as a spy, while a priest digs into an occult conspiracy. Both will discover more than they expect about their lives and the future of the world. (July 12)

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The Memory in the Blood by Ryan Van Loan

The Fall of the Gods trilogy concludes as the super-powered Buc prepares to make her last stand against the Dead Gods and the religious war that’s destroying the world around her. (July 12)

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The Mermaid of Black Conch by Monique Roffey

After a fisherman rescues a mermaid who’s been kidnapped by tourists, he further helps her as she slowly begins to transform back into a human. (July 12)

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Image: Titan Books

The Moonday Letters by Emmi Itäranta

This “part space-age epistolary, part eco-thriller, and love story between two individuals from very different worlds” follows the Earth-born Lumi as she sets out to find the mysteriously missing Sol. (July 12)

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The Night Shift by Natalka Burian

Soon after a woman learns that New York City is full of secret shortcuts that allow the user to leap across stretches of time and space, she’s pulled into a missing-person mystery—and discovers her connection to the shortcuts is more personal than she realized. (July 12)

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A Prayer for the Crown-Shy by Becky Chambers

In this follow-up to A Psalm for the Wild-Built, traveling duo Sibling Dex (a monk) and Mosscap (a robot) roam from more rural areas into cities, where new friends and ideas await. (July 12)

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Image: Poisoned Pen Press

They Drown Our Daughters by Katrina Monroe

After she splits from her wife, a woman and her young daughter move to her seaside hometown to stay with her aging mother, where they become entangled in the ghostly legend swirling around a local lighthouse. (July 12)

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Upgrade by Blake Crouch

After a man is unexpectedly “upgraded” with new abilities, he realizes he’s part of a larger plan to evolve all of humanity—something he’s uniquely positioned to prevent, once he decides whether or not that’s the right thing to do. (July 12)

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Image: Tor Nightfire

What Moves the Dead by T. Kingfisher

This retelling of Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Fall of the House of Usher” follows a retired soldier, a mycologist, and a doctor trying to solve the nature-entwined mystery that’s menacing the troubled Usher family. (July 12)

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Avatar, the Last Airbender: The Dawn of Yangchen by F.C. Yee

The Chronicles of Avatar series continues in this origin story for the ultimately powerful Yangchen. Read an excerpt here. (July 19)

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The Big Dark Sky by Dean Koontz

Decades after her childhood on a ranch in Montana, a woman is telepathically compelled to return—only to discover she’s not the only one who received the strange psychic message. Even more worrisome, a potential mass murderer lurks among them. (July 19)

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The Book of Sand by Mo Hayder

This tale set is in two different worlds: a sand-filled alien planet where a family struggles to survive, and suburban Virginia, where a teen girl starts to realize her apparently ordinary life is not what it seems. (July 19)

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Dark Earth by Rebecca Stott

In a ruined Roman settlement circa 500 AD, two sisters and their father live in exile after he’s accused of using dark magic. When he dies, they join a secret community of women plotting against the local warlord. (July 19)

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The Daughter of Doctor Moreau by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

This tale set on Dr. Moreau’s estate—filled with the mad scientist’s human-animal hybrids—expands the world dreamed up by H.G. Wells by delving into the lives of doctor’s daughter, his right-hand man, and the reckless son of his rich patrons. (July 19)

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Heat Wave by TJ Klune

The Extraordinaries trilogy concludes as Nick, Seth, Gibby, and Jazz must grapple with a new hero that crash-lands into Nova City. (July 19)

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Ion Curtain by Anya Ow

Amid an interstellar Cold War between the UN and Russia, a Russian who’s spying for the UN and the head of a Russian salvage crew find themselves on the front lines when an alien threat suddenly enters the picture. (July 19)

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Just Like Home by Sarah Gailey

A woman returns home at the request of her estranged mother and discovers some suspiciously unsettling reminders of her father, a serial killer who buried his victims on the family property. (July 19)

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The Last Storm by Tim Lebbon

In a world where climate change has transformed most of North America into a desert wasteland, a woman who survived a brush with death attempts to construct a rainmaker—not realizing the storms she’ll summon will be supernaturally dangerous. (July 19)

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Mary: An Awakening of Terror by Nat Cassidy

In this horror novel, an otherwise ordinary middle-aged woman begins to have visions and hear voices urging her to do terrible things—and soon begins to suspect that a notorious serial killer is somehow reaching out to her. (July 19)

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Other Terrors: An Inclusive Anthology edited by Vince A. Liaguno and Rena Mason

This anthology spotlights “authors from historically excluded backgrounds telling terrifying tales of what it means to be, or merely to seem, ‘other.’” Contributors include Tananarive Due, Stephen Graham Jones, Alma Katsu, and many more. (July 19)

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Image: Quercus Publishing

Priest of Crowns by Peter McLean

The War for the Rose Throne series continues as the disgraced Piety tries to get his life together but must face his dark past to do so, while Vogel begins to regret a dark choice he made in his own recent past. (July 19)

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Slaying the Dragon: A Secret History of Dungeons & Dragons by Ben Riggs

This non-fiction book written by a role-playing game historian takes a deep dive into the history of Tactical Studies Rules (TSR) and its most famous creation. (July 19)

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Wake of War by Zac Topping

In a far more dystopian version of America, a rebellion called the Revolutionary Front takes over Salt Lake City, setting the stage for a clash with a disaffected U.S. military. (July 19)

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Youngblood by Sasha Laurens

At a swanky boarding school for vampires, former foes Kat and Taylor are forced to put their differences aside when they’re assigned as roommates—then become an unlikely detective team when they uncover a sinister secret. (July 19)

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The Book of Gothel by Mary McMyne

This retelling of the Rapunzel fairy tale unfolds from the perspective of the (misunderstood) witch who places the long-haired lass in the tower (for some very compelling reasons). (July 26)

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The Eye of Scales by Tracy Hickman and Richard Garriott

The fantasy series based on the Shroud of the Avatar game continues as former Obsidian soldier Aren Bendis uses his magical sword to try and spark a rebellion. But is he controlling the sword… or is the sword controlling him? (July 26)

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A Half-Built Garden by Ruthanna Emrys

In 2083, aliens arrive on Earth to convince humanity to leave their climate change-ravaged planet and seek a new beginning in the stars, or else. But is Earth really beyond saving? And even beyond that, can humankind figure out a united way to respond to their interstellar visitors? (July 26)

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Nightmare Fuel by Nina Nesseth

This non-fiction book uses horror movies as a way to examine “the strange and often unexpected science of fear through the lenses of psychology and physiology,” with explorations of films like Hereditary, The Exorcist, and more. (July 26)

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The Nova Incident by Dan Moren

The Galactic Cold War series continues as Simon Kovalic and his spy team investigate a terrorist bombing. (July 26)

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Primeval Fire by C.T. Rwizi

The Scarlet Odyssey series concludes with this tale set in the chaotic aftermath of Salo’s death… and the even greater chaos that erupts when some of his sorcerer allies decide to resurrect him. (July 26)

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A Strange and Stubborn Endurance by Foz Meadow

Two royal scions from neighboring kingdoms are pressed into an arranged marriage—a far from ideal situation that at least acknowledges the fact that they’re both gay men. They’ll have to learn to trust each other (and maybe fall in love?) when they’re targeted by a murderous foe. (July 26)

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Three Miles Down: A Novel of First Contact in the Tumultuous 1970s by Harry Turtledove

When a marine biologist grad student joins a top-secret government project at the height of the 1970s Watergate scandal/conspiracy theory era, he finds he’s the only person on the mission suited to handle its intended purpose: orchestrating the first human-alien contact. (July 26)

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The Valkyrie’s Daughter by Tiana Warner

A stable hand dreams of joining the valkyries in battle, but she’ll need to test her loyalties and join forces with an oddly alluring fallen valkyrie if she wants any chance of achieving her goal. (July 26)

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Image: Delacorte Press

Violet Made of Thorns by Gina Chen

A woman who uses her prophetic gifts strategically—and not always truthfully—finds her position in peril when a new ruler prepares to take the throne. But things get even more dangerous when her lies set off an ancient curse that could doom the entire kingdom. (July 26)

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Image: Bloom Books

When Stars Come Out by Scarlett St. Clair

Being the new kid at school is rough enough even when you don’t have magical abilities—but that’s what the heroine of this new fantasy must deal with, along with a bizarre murder at her new school and the fact that a sinister order is hunting her to exploit her powers. (July 26)

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Stealing Infinity by Alyson Noël

In this contemporary fantasy, a student with a peculiar gift for using time gets kicked out of high school (and arrested), then decides to try their luck at a “a remote, off-the-grid school owned and operated by an inscrutable billionaire tech guru.” What could possibly go wrong? (July 28)


Want more io9 news? Check out when to expect the latest Marvel and Star Wars releases, what’s next for the DC Universe on film and TV, and everything you need to know about House of the Dragon and Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power.

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