Another month has come and gone, which means it is time to look forward to next month’s book releases. August is completely stacked with great books, and some of these are among my most anticipated releases of the year. So, it is going to be a great month!
New Adult by Timothy Janovsky
Release Date: August 15, 2023
Nolan Baker longs to be “thirty, flirty and thriving” in this charmingly quirky LGBTQIA+ romance that’s one part 13 Going on 30 and one part One Last Stop.
WHY CAN’T WE SKIP TO THE GOOD PART?
Twenty-three-year-old Nolan Baker wants it all by the time he’s thirty. Too bad he’s single, barely able to cover his own expenses, and still paying his dues at a prominent NYC comedy club. When faced with his perfect sister’s wedding, Nolan takes it as a wakeup call. It’s time to quit comedy and make good on his practical dreams—most importantly, asking Drew Techler, his best friend, to be his date.
But right as Nolan is about to give it all up, he’s asked to fill a last-minute spot for a famous comedian. Score! He crushes his set, but stands Drew up, misses his sister’s big day, and disappoints his entire family. After major blowouts with everyone he loves, Nolan desperately wishes on a set of gift “magical healing crystals” to skip to the good part of life. When he wakes the next morning, it’s seven years later, he’s a successful comedian, and he has everything he always thought he wanted. Everything, that is, except his friends and family, none of whom are taking his future self’s calls.
With nowhere else to turn, Nolan sets out to find the only person he trusts to help. Except Drew is all grown up now, too. He’s hot, successful…and hates Nolan’s guts. As Nolan works to get back to his younger self—and the life he so carelessly threw away—he’ll have to prove he’s not the man everyone thinks they know in order to regain Drew’s trust, friendship, and maybe, ultimately, his heart.
While part of a series, this book stands alone.
The Pattern of the World by J. T. Greathouse
Release Date: August 3, 2023
J.T. Greathouse delivers an epic conclusion to his British Fantasy Award-nominated Pact and Pattern fantasy series in which a magical warrior must undo his greatest feat—which became his greatest failure…
In an ill-fated attempt to prevent the tyrannical Emperor from rekindling war with the gods, young rebel Foolish Cur made the dreadful mistake of wielding incredibly powerful but forbidden magic. In doing so, he himself fell into a trap of the gods’ own making, inadvertently setting them free.
Now, after uncountable years, the gods are free to wreak their own chaos upon the world, transforming the lands into a nightmare for mortals while horrific new creatures emerge to terrorize all in their path. The Empire, the rebellion, and existence itself stand on the brink of destruction.
To undo the damage he caused, Foolish Cur must use every ounce of skill, intelligence, and guile within him while gathering those who still have the will to fight. But while this may be a battle Foolish Cur can win, it may not be one he can survive…
Forged by Blood by Ehigbor Okosun
Release Date: August 8, 2023
A brilliant new voice brings a brilliant new novel: debut author Ehigbor Okosun’s first book in an action-packed, poignant duology inspired by Nigerian mythology—full of magic and emotion and set in a highly atmospheric, complex world in which a young woman fights to survive a tyrannical society, having everything stripped away from her, and seeks vengeance for her mother’s murder and the spilled blood of her people.
In the midst of a tyrannical regime and political invasion, Dèmi just wants to survive: to avoid the suspicion of the nonmagical Ajes who occupy her ancestral homeland of Ife; to escape the King’s brutal genocide of her people—the darker skinned, magic wielding Oluso; and to live peacefully with her secretive mother while learning to control the terrifying blood magic that is her birthright.
But when Dèmi’s misplaced trust costs her mother’s life, survival gives way to vengeance. She bides her time until the devious Lord Ekwensi grants her the perfect opportunity—kidnap the Aje prince, Jonas, and bargain with his life to save the remaining Oluso. With the help of her reckless childhood friend Colin, Dèmi succeeds, but discovers that she and Jonas share more than deadly secrets; every moment tangles them further into a forbidden, unmistakable attraction, much to Colin’s—and Dèmi’s—distress.
The kidnapping is now a joint mission: to return to the King, help get Lord Ekwensi on the council, and bolster the voice of the Oluso in a system designed to silence them. But the way is dangerous, Dèmi’s magic is growing yet uncertain, and it’s not clear if she can trust the two men at her side.
A tale of rebellion and redemption, race and class, love and trust and betrayal, Forged by Blood is epic fantasy at its finest, from an enthusiastic, emerging voice.
The Midnight Kingdom by Tara Sim
Release Date: August 22, 2023
In this “glorious tapestry of magic and murderous gods” (Buzzfeed News) each heir walks a dangerous path, attempting to undo the damage the gods have wrought across the four realms, but they live on borrowed time—and not all of them will survive. A cataclysmic battle to save the city of Nexus has left the four noble heirs scattered across the realms.
Taesia, the shadow-wielding rebel of House Lastrider, and Nikolas, the reluctant soldier of House Cyr, have been cast into Noctus, the realm of eternal night. But they are not alone. The dangerous and unpredictable god of light has traveled with them, and he will do anything in his power to destroy Noctus in his bid for cosmic control.
Risha, the peacekeeping necromancer of House Vakara, must navigate her way through Mortri, the realm of death. But still she cannot help the wayward spirits, nor does she have any idea how to return home. All she knows is that no mortal can survive for long in Mortri. And the creatures that prowl the realm of death don’t take kindly to the living.
Angelica, the stubborn elementalist of House Mardova, is on her own in Vitae, trying to keep Nexus from unraveling. But Angelica secretly suffers from an illness that her god left in her veins. And when she is sent on a delicate diplomatic mission, she knows that any weakness will have disastrous repercussions for her family, her kingdom, and her dreams of the throne.
All will encounter old friends and new enemies as they attempt to restore the balance of the universe. But the gods grow stronger. And their descendants will need more than their magic and their wits to survive the war that is coming…
He Who Drowned the World by Shelley Parker-Chan
Release Date: August 22, 2023
The sequel and series conclusion to She Who Became the Sun, the accomplished, poetic debut of war and destiny, sweeping across an epic alternate China. Mulan meets The Song of Achilles.
How much would you give to win the world?
Zhu Yuanzhang, the Radiant King, is riding high after her victory that tore southern China from its Mongol masters. Now she burns with a new desire: to seize the throne and crown herself emperor.
But Zhu isn’t the only one with imperial ambitions. Her neighbor in the south, the courtesan Madam Zhang, wants the throne for her husband—and she’s strong enough to wipe Zhu off the map. To stay in the game, Zhu will have to gamble everything on a risky alliance with an old enemy: the talented but unstable eunuch general Ouyang, who has already sacrificed everything for a chance at revenge on his father’s killer, the Great Khan.
Unbeknownst to the southerners, a new contender is even closer to the throne. The scorned scholar Wang Baoxiang has maneuvered his way into the capital, and his lethal court games threaten to bring the empire to its knees. For Baoxiang also desires revenge: to become the most degenerate Great Khan in history—and in so doing, make a mockery of every value his Mongol warrior family loved more than him.
All the contenders are determined to do whatever it takes to win. But when desire is the size of the world, the price could be too much for even the most ruthless heart to bear…
Unexpecting by Jen Bailey
Release Date: August 22, 2023
Juno meets Heartstopper in Jen Bailey’s Unexpecting, a poignant and emotional story about found family, what it means to be a parent, and falling in love.
Benjamin Morrison is about to start junior year of high school and while his family is challenging, he is pretty content with his life, with his two best friends, and being a part of the robotics club. Until an experiment at science camp has completely unexpected consequences.
He is going to be a father. Something his mother was not expecting after he came out as gay and she certainly wasn’t expecting that he would want to raise the baby as a single father. But together they come up with a plan to prepare Ben for fatherhood and fight for his rights.
The weight of Ben’s decision presses down on him. He’s always tired, his grades fall, and tension rises between his mom and stepfather. He’s letting down his friends in the robotics club whose future hinges on his expertise. If it wasn’t for his renewed friendship (and maybe more) with a boy from his past, he wouldn’t be able to face the daily ridicule at school or the crumbling relationship with his best friends.
With every new challenge, every new sacrifice he has to make, Ben questions his choice. He’s lived with a void in his heart where a father’s presence should have been, and the fear of putting his own child through that keeps him clinging to his decision. When the baby might be in danger, Ben’s faced with a heart-wrenching realization: sometimes being a parent means making the hard choices even if they are the choices you don’t want to make…
Teach the Torches to Burn by Caleb Roehrig
Release Date: August 22, 2023
In Teach the Torches to Burn, a breathlessly romantic remix of Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet and seventh book in the Remixed Classics series, a queer teen boy discovers first love amid a bloody, centuries-old feud.
Verona, Italy. Seventeen-year-old aspiring artist Romeo dreams of a quiet life with someone who loves him just as he is. But as the heir to the Montague family, he is expected to give up his womanly artistic pursuits and uphold the family honor–particularly in their centuries-old blood feud with a rival family, the Capulets. Worse still, he is also expected to marry a well-bred girl approved by his parents and produce heirs. But the more Romeo is forced to mingle with eligible maidens, the harder it is to keep his deepest secret: He only feels attracted to other boys.
In an attempt to forget his troubles for just one night, Romeo joins his cousin in sneaking into a Capulet party. During a fateful encounter in the garden, he meets the kindest, most beautiful boy he’s ever encountered, and is shocked to learn he’s Valentine, the younger brother of one of his closest friends. He is even more shocked to discover that Valentine is just as enamored with Romeo as Romeo is with him.
So begins a tender romance that the boys must hide from their families and friends, each of them longing for a world where they could be together without fear. And as the conflict between the Montagues and Capulets escalates out of control, Romeo and Valentine find themselves in danger of losing each other forever–if not by society’s scorn, then by the edge of a blade.
Contrarian by L.E. Modesitt, Jr.
Release Date: August 15, 2023
L. E. Modesitt, Jr., bestselling author of Saga of Recluce and the Imager Portfolio, continues his gaslamp political fantasy series which began with Isolate and Councilor . Welcome to the Grand Illusion
In Contrarian , protests against unemployment and poor harvests have become armed riots as the people sink deeper into poverty. They look to a government struggling to emerge from corruption and conspiracy.
Recently elected to the Council of Sixty-Six, Steffan Dekkard is the first Councilor who is an Isolate, a man invulnerable to the emotional manipulations and emotional surveillance of empaths—but not the recent bombing of the Council Office Building by insurrectionists.
His patron, the Premier of the Council, has been assassinated, leaving Dekkard with little first-hand political experience and few political allies.
Not only must Dekkard handle political infighting, and continued assassination attempts, but it appears that someone high up in the government and corporations has supplied arms and explosives to insurrectionists.
Insurrectionists who have succeeded in taking over a naval cruiser that no one can seem to find.
My Roommate Is a Vampire by Jenna Levine
Release Date: August 29, 2023
True love is at stake in this charming, debut romantic comedy.
Cassie Greenberg loves being an artist, but it’s a tough way to make a living. On the brink of eviction, she’s desperate when she finds a too-good-to-be-true apartment in a beautiful Chicago neighborhood. Cassie knows there has to be a catch—only someone with a secret to hide would rent out a room for that price.
Of course, her new roommate Frederick J. Fitzwilliam is far from normal. He sleeps all day, is out at night on business, and talks like he walked out of a regency romance novel. He also leaves Cassie heart-melting notes around the apartment, cares about her art, and asks about her day. And he doesn’t look half bad shirtless, on the rare occasions they’re both home and awake. But when Cassie finds bags of blood in the fridge that definitely weren’t there earlier, Frederick has to come clean…
Cassie’s sexy new roommate is a vampire. And he has a proposition for her.
Kit & Basie by Tess Carletta
Release Date: August 29, 2023
Immortality is a dangerous affair when it isn’t done right.
Basie Yeats knows he’s doing immortality all wrong, spending endless days in the same place, but he doesn’t see a reason to leave the home he loves in Long Lily, Pennsylvania. Once the impossible death of his mother leaves him the only immortal person he knows, Basie decides that the only thing he wants to do is get out of Long Lily and start doing immortality the right way—alone.
Kit Elliot has wandered the world looking for the right place to call home, so when a church-turned-cottage suddenly goes up for sale in a quaint Pennsylvania town, it feels like it was meant to be. It takes only a few days at Wellhead Cottage for Kit to decide that the man who sold it to him is frustrating, awkward, and terribly handsome. He offers to help Basie find a new home away from Long Lily—but as days turn to months, Kit finds himself wishing he could make Basie stay.
What books are you most excited about next month? Let me know in the comments below or over on Twitter!