15 fantasy and science fiction books to read in June 2024

Summer is upon us, and that means it's time to start assembling your slate of summer reading material! There are a lot of exciting fantasy and sci-fi books coming out this June to choose from:
Mirrored Heavens.jpg
Mirrored Heavens.jpg / Saga Press

Summer is in full swing, and you know what that means: it's time to break out the summer reads, hit the beach, camp or other vacation spot of choice, and get lost in some fantastical world. Every month, we compile all the hottest fantasy and science fiction book releases hitting shelves in one place, the better to fuel your reading habit — and hopefully help you find some of your new favorite authors or stories.

May had plenty of great books to devour and June isn't slowing down one bit. This month we'll see the thrilling conclusion to acclaimed trilogies, urban fantasies with badass heroines, science fiction with astronomical stakes, grimdark fantasy, and much more. Pull up your Goodreads account or a trusty notepad and let's get to finding you your next reads!

Mirrored Heavens by Rebecca Roanhorse. Image: Saga Press.
Mirrored Heavens by Rebecca Roanhorse. Image: Saga Press. / Saga Press

MIRRORED HEAVENS by Rebecca Roanhorse (Between Earth and Sky #3) — June 4

Mirrored Heavens is the third and final book in Rebecca Roanhorse's Hugo Award-winning Between Earth and Sky series, which began with Black Sun in 2020. This is a fantasy series which draws inspiration from the pre-Columbian empires of mesoamerica, like the Aztec and Maya. That makes it feel wonderfully different than most European-inspired fantasy novels. The first book followed an ensemble group of characters including a blind man with a heavy destiny, a sailor with mysterious mermadic powers, and a priestess caught up in a web of political maneuvering in the mesa city of Tova.

That first book ended with an apocalyptic event which sent ripples through the sequel, Fevered Star. Personally, I'm dying to see how it all comes together in the third and final book of the trilogy.

Read the official description below:

Even the sea cannot stay calm before the storm. — Teek saying

Serapio, avatar of the Crow God Reborn and the newly crowned Carrion King, rules Tova. But his enemies gather both on distant shores and within his own city as the matrons of the clans scheme to destroy him. And deep in the alleys of the Maw, a new prophecy is whispered, this one from the Coyote God. It promises Serapio certain doom if its terrible dictates are not fulfilled.

Meanwhile, Xiala is thrust back amongst her people as war comes first to the island of Teek. With their way of life and their magic under threat, she is their last best hope. But the sea won’t talk to her the way it used to, and doubts riddle her mind. She will have to sacrifice the things that matter most to unleash her powers and become the queen they were promised.

And in the far northern wastelands, Naranpa, avatar of the Sun God, seeks a way to save Tova from the visions of fire that engulf her dreams. But another presence has begun stalking her nightmares, and the Jaguar God is on the hunt.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

The Last Song of Penelope by Claire North
The Last Song of Penelope by Claire North. Image: Orbit. /

THE LAST SONG OF PENELOPE by Claire North (The Songs of Penelope #3) — June 4

Next up, we step into the realm of mythic reimaginings with The Last Song of Penelope by Clair North. This is the third and final book in North's Songs of Penelope series, which explores how Queen Penelope, the wife of Odysseus, retained power on Ithaca while her husband was swept up in the events of Homer's Odyssey.

Penelope already defended Ithaca from numerous threats in the previous books, keeping a tenuous hold on her position and staving off the many suitors who would take Odysseus' place as king. But in The Last Song of Penelope she'll face her most difficult — and fascinating — challenge yet: the return of Odysseus himself. He's a very different man than the one who sailed from Ithaca decades earlier.

Many years ago, Odysseus sailed to war and never returned. For twenty years his wife Penelope and the women of Ithaca have guarded the isle against suitors and rival kings. But peace cannot be kept forever, and the balance of power is about to break . . .

A beggar has arrived at the Palace. Salt-crusted and ocean-battered, he is scorned by the suitors - but Penelope recognises in him something terrible: her husband, Odysseus, returned at last. Yet this Odysseus is no hero. By returning to the island in disguise, he is not merely plotting his revenge against the suitors - vengeance that will spark a civil war - but he's testing the loyalty of his queen.  Has she been faithful to him all these years? And how much blood is Odysseus willing to shed to be sure?

The song of Penelope is ending, and the song of Odysseus must ring through Ithaca's halls. But first, Penelope must use all her cunning to win a war for the fate of the island and keep her family alive, whatever the cost...

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

HELL FOR HIRE by Rachel Aaron (Tear Down Heaven #1) — June 4

Hell For Hire is the start of a brand new urban fantasy series from Rachel Aaron, and it sounds like a hell of a time. A team of misfit demon mercenaries are contracted by a male forest witch to help keep his family's bloodline from being eradicated by the ancient Meopotamian king Gilgamesh. The back-of-book description for this one is full of personality and panache, so I'm going to let it do the talking here:

The Crew
A hulked-out wrath demon who eats gamer rage and loves cats, a shapeshifting lust demon who enjoys their food a bittoomuch, and a void demon who doesn’t see the point of any of this. They’re not the sort of mercenaries you'd hire on purpose, but Bex wouldn’t trust her life to anyone else.

Ever since the ancient Mesopotamian king Gilgamesh decided death wasn’t for him, killed the gods, and conquered the afterlife, times have been rough for a free demon. But the denizens of the Nine Hells aren’t the quitting sort, and Bex and her team have been choking a living out of the Eternal King’s lackeys for years. It’s not honest work, but when Heaven itself declares you a non-person, you smash-and-grab what you can get.

This next gig looks like more of the same…until Bex meets the client.

The Job
Adrian Blackwood is a witch with a problem. His family has skirted the edges of King Gilgamesh’s ire for centuries, but thanks to a decision he made as a child, Adrian is personally responsible for putting his entire coven in Heaven’s crosshairs.

Determined to set things right, Adrian drags his broom, caldron, and talking cat thousands of miles across the country to Seattle where he can fight the Eternal King’s warlocks without bringing the rest of his family into the fray. But witchcraft--like all crafts--takes time, and if the warlocks catch him before his spells are ready, he’s dead. So Adrian does what any professional witch would do and hires a team of mercenaries to keep the warlocks off his back. He didn’t expect to get demons, but when you’re already on the killing-edge of Heaven’s bad side, what’s a bit more fuel on the fire?

Sometimes you get more than you paid for.
Neither Adrian nor Bex knew what to expect when they signed their contract, but witch-plus-demon turns out to be a match made in the Hells. With this much chaos at their fingertips, even impossible dreams can come back into reach, because Bex wasn’t always a mercenary. She used to be the Eternal King's biggest nightmare, and now that she’s got a witch in her corner, it’s time to put the old magics back on the field and show Adrian Blackwood just how much Hell he’s hired.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Service Model by Adrian Tchaikovsky
Service Model by Adrian Tchaikovsky. Image: Tordotcom. /

SERVICE MODEL by Adrian Tchaikovsky — June 4

Adrian Tchaikovsky is the award-winning author of series like Children of Time and Elder Race. He puts out books with such regularity that it feels like he shows up every other month on these lists.

This month, Tchaikovsky is releasing a new novella called Servie Model, which is being pitched as a "delightfully humorous tale of robotic murder" in the vein of Murderbot and Redshirts. Check out the official description:

To fix the world they must first break it, further.

Humanity is a dying breed, utterly reliant on artificial labor and service.

When a domesticated robot gets a nasty little idea downloaded into its core programming, they murder their owner. The robot discovers they can also do something else they never did before: They can run away.

Fleeing the household they enter a wider world they never knew existed, where the age-old hierarchy of humans at the top is disintegrating into ruins and an entire robot ecosystem devoted to human wellbeing is having to find a new purpose.

Sometimes all it takes is a nudge to overcome the limits of your programming.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Daughter of the Merciful Deep by Leslye Penelope
Daughter of the Merciful Deep by Leslye Penelope. Image: Redhook. /

DAUGHTER OF THE MERCIFUL DEEP by Leslye Penelope — June 4

We shift next to historical fantasy with Daughter of the Merciful Deep, the latest book from The Monsters We Defy author Leslye Penelope. It takes readers to the American South in the early 1900s and explores the extreme racial tensions of the time by highlighting the drowned Black towns — towns which were purposefully flooded by man-made lakes. But since this is fantasy, it also has a healthy dose of gods, myth and magic.

“Our home began, as all things do, with a wish.”

Jane Edwards hasn’t spoken since she was eleven years old, when armed riders expelled her family from their hometown along with every other Black resident. Now, twelve years later, she’s found a haven in the all-Black town of Awenasa. But the construction of a dam promises to wash her home under the waters of the new lake.

Jane will do anything to save the community that sheltered her. So, when a man with uncanny abilities arrives in town asking strange questions, she wonders if he might be the key. But as the stranger hints at gods and ancestral magic, Jane is captivated by a bigger mystery. She knows this man. Only the last time she saw him, he was dead. His body laid to rest in a rushing river.

Who is the stranger and what is he really doing in Awenasa? To find those answers, Jane will journey into a sunken world, a land of capricious gods and unsung myths, of salvation and dreams made real. But the flood waters are rising. To gain the miracle she desires, Jane will have to find her voice again and finally face the trauma of the past. 

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Tidal Creatures by Seanan McGuire
Tidal Creatures by Seanan McGuire. Image: Tordotcom. /

TIDAL CREATURES by Seanan McGuire (Alchemical Journeys #3) — June 4

Next up we have a new release from Seanan McGuire, which is always an exciting thing. Tidal Creatures is the third entry in McGuire's Alchemical Journeys series. Someone is murdering the moon gods of various cultures, and unless the remaining deities can figure out why, it could spell disaster for the balance of the world.

Every night, a Moon shines down on the Impossible City…

All across the world, people look up at the moon and dream of gods.  Gods of knowledge and wisdom, gods of tides and longevity. Over time, some of these moon gods incarnated into the human world alongside the other manifest natural concepts. Their job is to cross the sky above the Impossible City—the heart of all creation—to keep it connected to reality.

And someone is killing them.

There are so many of them that it's easy for a few disappearances to slip through the cracks.  But they aren't limitless.

In the name of the moon, the lunar divinities must uncover the roots of the plot and thwart the true goal of those behind these attacks—control of the Impossible City itself.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

The Fall of Waterstone by Lilith Saintcrow
The Fall of Waterstone by Lilith Saintcrow. Image: Orbit. /

THE FALL OF WATERSTONE by Lillith Saintcrow (Black Lad's Bane #2) — June 11

Believe it or not, every single book we've talked about so far drops on June 4 — it's a big day for book releases! But now at last, we move on to the 11th, when author Lilith Saintcrow will be releasing The Fall of Waterstone, the second installment in her Black Lad's Bane Norse-inspired epic fantasy series. The elemental witch Solveig and her shieldmaiden are embarking on the next chapter of their journey in the hidden palace of Waterstone. Waterstone may be safe from the dangers of the wider world, but its halls are filled with intrigue that make it just as dangerous in its own way.

Solveig and her shieldmaid have finally reached the fabled Elder sanctuary of Waterstone—a city of healing, restful beauty hidden from the Enemy’s gaze. Yet whispers race through the palace halls, and those they have come to tentatively trust have hidden intentions. For not only is the city a refuge for an elementalist, her protector, and a mortal prince, it also holds a great weapon, one that only Solveig’s kind may wield.

Yet Sol’s faith in her own magic is perilously fractured. She can rely only her wits and skills of negotiation to be heard, or she will become a pawn in a dark game played by Elder and Enemy alike. The lord of the Black Land is mighty; treachery slithers amid Waterstone’s many wonders, and time is growing short.

Before the darkness finds a way in, Sol must decide who to trust, where to turn for aid, and if she will take up a power she cannot hope to control. Even the right choice may doom not just the home she has left behind, but the entire world…

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

The Fire Within Them by Matthew Ward
The Fire Within Them by Matthew Ward. Image: Orbit. /

THE FIRE WITHIN THEM by Matthew Ward (The Soulfire Saga #2) — June 11

The Fire Within Them is the second book in Matthew Ward's Soulfire Saga, a dark epic fantasy which sounds just right for fans of Brandon Sanderson's Mistborn, or of John Gwynne. It takes place in a world ruled with an iron fist by an immortal king, "where souls fuel magic and a supernatural mist known as the Veil threatens to engulf the land."

For the first time in a millennium, the kingdom of Khalad is divided. The Battle of Athenoch has fanned the spark of Bashar Vallant’s rebellion to a raging flame. Tyzanta, jewel of the east, has declared for his cause, and other cities have followed. Vallant, the people’s hero, may soon be powerful enough to challenge Caradan Diar, Khalad’s immortal king.

But such power demands great personal sacrifice.

Afflicted with omen rot after channeling the Deadwinds to save Athenoch from the koilos army, Kat searches for a means to stop the disease killing her as it did her mother. Her journey will uncover secrets long since buried––secrets concerning her past, her family and the kingdom itself. Eventually she’ll learn that the past never stays buried in Khalad––and that the truth can cut deeper than any blade.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Rogue Sequence by Zac Topping.
Rogue Sequence by Zac Topping. Image: Tor Books. /

ROGUE SEQUENCE by Zac Topping (Ander Rade #1) — June 11

Also coming out on June 11 is Rogue Sequence, the latest military sci-fi novel from Zac Topping and the first installment in a new series, Ander Rade. Topping's debut release, Wake of War, generated a lot of buzz among sci-fi readers when it came out in 2022. I'm more than a little curious to see what he does with this next novel, which is set in the late 21st Century and revolves around genetically modified super-soldiers who are sold to the highest bidder.

Ander Rade is a super-soldier, a genetically engineered living weapon, and has been dutifully following orders since he gave himself to Scythe Industries’ Gene-Mod Program several years ago. But when a mission goes sideways, he’s captured, imprisoned, and forced into brutally violent fighting pits for the better part of the next decade…until agents from the Genetic Compliance Department of the United American Provinces appear in the visitors room.

Things have changed since Rade was captured. Shortly after his incarceration, the World Unity Council banned human genetic engineering and deemed all modified individuals a threat to society. Overnight, an entire subculture of people became outlaws simply for existing. But instead of leaving Rade locked behind bars, the GCD agents have come with an offer: Freedom in exchange for his help tracking down one of his former teammates from that ill-fated mission all those years ago.

It's an offer Rade can't refuse, but he soon realizes the situation is far more volatile than anyone had anticipated, and must take matters into his own hands as he tries to figure out whose side he’s really on, and why?

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Winter Lost by Patricia Briggs
Winter Lost by Patricia Briggs. Image: Ace. /

WINTER LOST by Patricia Briggs (Mercy Thompson #14) — June 18

Moving on to the back half of the month, Patricia Briggs is dropping a brand new entry in her long-running Mercy Thompson series: Winter Lost. The Mercy Thompson books are urban fantasies about a coyote shapeshifter who works as a mechanic by day and faces off with other supernatural threats by night.

Briggs has been writing these books since 2006, and the fact that there are already 14 of them should tell you that this is a series that's safe to get invested in for the long haul. If you like stories like The Dresden Files or paranormal romances, and you haven't read Mercy Thompson, it's well worth giving a look. And with a new book on the way, now's a great time for it!

In the supernatural realms, there are creatures who belong to winter. I am not one of them. But like the coyote I can become at will, I am adaptable.

My name is Mercy Thompson Hauptman, and my mate, Adam, is the werewolf who leads the Columbia Basin Pack, the pack charged with keeping the people who live and work in the Tri-Cities of Washington State safe. It’s a hard job, and it doesn’t leave much room for side quests. Which is why when I needed to travel to Montana to help my brother, I intended to go by myself.

But I’m not alone anymore.

Together, Adam and I find ourselves trapped with strangers in a lodge in the heart of the wilderness, in the teeth of a storm of legendary power, only to discover my brother’s issues are a tiny part of a problem much bigger than we could have imagined. Arcane and ancient magics are at work that could, unless we are very careful, bring about the end of the world. . . .

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

The Bound Worlds by Megan E. O'Keefe
The Bound Worlds by Megan E. O'Keefe. Image: Orbit. /

THE BOUND WORLDS by Megan E. O'Keefe (The Devoured Worlds #3) — June 25

It seems like just yesterday that Megan E. O'Keefe launched her Devoured Worlds sci-fi series, but since O'Keefe writes with the speed of a ship hurtling through deep space, we're already coming up on the hotly anticipated ending in The Bound Worlds. The first book in this series, The Blighted Stars, saw the scion of a noble merchant house stranded on a dying planet along with a woman space marine with a serious (justified) grudge against his family. Their journey together was a total blast, melding elements of science fiction, horror and romance into a read that was impossible to put down.

By the time the dust settled, the conflict on that dying world had spiraled outward into the galaxy at large, setting the stage for a struggle between humanity and a mysterious foe that it would be a shame to say more about here. If you enjoy stories like Aliens or The Last of Us, this is a series you absolutely need on your radar.

Worlds will collide and fates will be rewritten in the thrilling conclusion to the Devoured Worlds space opera trilogy by award‑winning author Megan E. O’Keefe.

Naira and Tarquin have found a new home on Seventh Cradle. But the peace they’ve built is short-lived as mysterious assailants ambush the settlement and Naira is haunted by visions of a monstrous future. Catastrophe strikes when Tarquin uncovers a plot to bring about the end of the universe. As humanity races against the clock to prevent their extinction, old secrets come to light and loyalties fracture, and Naira realizes she may be the key to saving the world—or ending it.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Echo of Worlds by M.R. Carey.
Echo of Worlds by M.R. Carey. Image: Orbit. /

ECHO OF WORLDS by M.R. Carey (The Pandominion #2) — June 25

While we're talking about epic science fiction sagas with galaxy-ending stakes, Echo of Worlds by M.R. Carey is another book coming out in June that squarely fits into that category. Carey is perhaps best known as the author of The Girl With All The Gifts; his latest series, The Pandominion, is a space opera where humanity is pushed to the brink of extinction by an AI known as the Rupshe. The first book, Infinity Gate, saw that conflict reach a fever pitch. Will humanity be able to survive?

The Pandominion is a duology, which means that answer awaits in the second and final book, Echo of Worlds.

Two mighty empires are at war - and both will lose, with thousands of planets falling to the extinction event called the Scour. At least that's what the artificial intelligence known as Rupshe believes.

But somewhere in the multiverse there exists a force - the Mother Mass - that could end the war in an instant, and Rupshe has assembled a team to find it. Essien Nkanika, a soldier trying desperately to atone for past sins; the cat-woman Moon, a conscienceless killer; the digitally recorded mind of physicist Hadiz Tambuwal; Paz, an idealistic child and the renegade robot spy Dulcimer Coronal.

Their mission will take them from the hellish prison world of Tsakom to the poisoned remains of a post-apocalyptic Earth, and finally bring them face to face with the Mother Mass itself. But can they persuade it to end eons of neutrality and help them? And is it too late to make a difference?

Because the Pandominion's doomsday machines are about to be unleashed - and not even their builders know how to control them.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

The Daughters' War by Christopher Buehlman
The Daughters' War by Christopher Buehlman. Image: Tor Books. /

THE DAUGHTERS' WAR by Christopher Buehlman (Blacktongue Thief #0) — June 25

We come next to the darkest of fantasy. The Daughters' War by Christopher Buehlman is the prequel to The Blacktongue Thief, an acclaimed grimdark fantasy novel with a healthy dose of humor. If you like books by authors like Joe Abercrombie and haven't heard of Christopher Buehlman, you're welcome for discover your new favorite author.

The Daughters' War takes place years before The Blacktongue Thief, during a horrific war where goblins have wiped out most men. In their place, women take up arms to face the lurking monstrosities in their midst.

The goblins have killed all of our horses and most of our men.

They have enslaved our cities, burned our fields, and still they wage war.

Now, our daughters take up arms.

Galva —Galvicha to her three brothers, two of whom the goblins will kill — has defied her family’s wishes and joined the army’s untested new unit, the Raven Knights. They march toward a once-beautiful city overrun by the goblin horde, accompanied by scores of giant war corvids. Made with the darkest magics, these fearsome black birds may hold the key to stopping the goblins in their war to make cattle of mankind.

The road to victory is bloody, and goblins are clever and merciless. The Raven Knights can take nothing for granted — not the bonds of family, nor the wisdom of their leaders, nor their own safety against the dangerous war birds at their side. But some hopes are worth any risk.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

WE SHALL BE MONSTERS by Tara Sim — June 25

The next book on our list gives me chills just thinking about it, in the best of ways. Tara Sim is best known as the author of the dark fantasy City of Dusk, but this June she's releasing something a bit different: We Shall Be Monsters, a fantasy story that melds Indian mythology with the resurrected sensibilities of a story like Frankenstein.

We Shall Be Monsters revolves around Kajal, a woman who tries to bring her sister back to life with horrific consequences. Her attempts catch the attention of two strangers who save Kajal from the consequences of her actions, only to pull her into a plot to resurrect someone else, and things spiral dramatically from there. Don't take my word for it; read this back-of-book description and see if you aren't intrigued, I dare you:

Kajal knows she is not a good person. If she were, she wouldn’t selfishly be risking her sister’s soul in a dangerous bid to bring her back to life. She would let Lasya rest in peace—but Kajal cannot stand the horror of living without her.

As Kajal prepares for the resurrection, the worst happens: Her sister’s soul warps into a bhuta—a murderous, wraith-like spirit—and Kajal gets sentenced to death for her sister’s rampage. There seems little hope of escape until two strangers offer to free her. The catch: She must resurrect the kingdom’s fallen crown prince to aid a growing rebellion against a tyrannical usurper. Desperate, Kajal rushes to complete her end of the deal . . . only to discover that the boy she’s resurrected, Tav, isnotthe crown prince.

Now Kajal—prickly, proud, admirer of the scientific method—must team up with Tav—stubborn, reticent, and fonder of swords than of books—to find the real crown prince. With only a scalpel and her undead dog, Kutaa, at her side, Kajal must work fast before her mistake is exposed or Lasya’s bhuta turns its murderous fury on the person truly responsible for her death: Kajal herself.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Foul Days by Genoveva Dimova
Foul Days by Genoveva Dimova. Image: Tor Books. /

FOUL DAYS by Genoveva Dimova (The Witch's Compendium of Monsters #1) — June 25

We end the list with Foul Days, the first novel in Genoveva Dimova's fantasy series The Witch's Compendium of Monsters. This series is being compared to The Witcher and the works of Naomi Novik, and has roots in Slavic folklore. After the witch Kosara trades her shadow in order to be let in to the safety of the city of Chernograd, she comes down with a wasting sickness that will kill her unless she regains her magic. Forced to team up with a "suspiciously honorable detective" in order to track down her shadow, Kosara sets out into a world filled with monsters and magic in order to save her own life from the only monster she's never been able to escape.

As a witch in the walled city of Chernograd, Kosara has plenty of practice treating lycanthrope bites, bargaining with kikimoras, and slaying bloodsucking upirs. There’s only one monster she can’t defeat: her ex, the Zmey, known as the Tsar of Monsters. She’s defied him one too many times and now he’s hunting her. Betrayed by someone close to her, Kosara’s only choice is to trade her shadow—the source of her powers—for a quick escape.

Unfortunately, Kosara soon develops the deadly sickness that plagues shadowless witches—and only reclaiming her magic can cure her. To find it, she’s forced to team up with a suspiciously honorable detective. Even worse, all the clues point in a single direction: To get her shadow back, Kosara will have to face the Foul Days’ biggest threats without it. And she’s only got twelve days.

But in a city where everyone is out for themselves, who can Kosara trust to assist her in outwitting the biggest monster from her past?

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

And so ends our round-up of new fantasy and science fiction book releases for June! What will you be reading?

Next. Exclusive: Behold the stunning cover for author Eliane Boey's sci-fi thriller Club Contango. Exclusive: Behold the stunning cover for author Eliane Boey's sci-fi thriller Club Contango. dark

To stay up to date on everything fantasy, science fiction, and WiC, follow our all-encompassing Facebook page and Twitter account, sign up for our exclusive newsletter and check out our YouTube channel.