24 Works of Fiction to Read This Summer

All the Sinners Bleed, by S.A. Cosby

A year into Titus Crown’s term as the sheriff of Charon County, Va., a school shooting leads to an investigation into a cult that has quietly operated in the area for years, killing and torturing Black children. After reviewing harrowing video footage of the cult’s activities, Titus sets out to find the group’s masked leader.

Flatiron, June 6

Kairos, by Jenny Erpenbeck

After the death of her former lover, a woman receives two cardboard boxes full of his possessions, prompting her to relive their relationship: It began when she was 19, he was 53, and 1980s Berlin was on the precipice of seismic change. The novel, which was translated by Michael Hofmann, is her sixth to be released in English; our critic Dwight Garner noted that this “profound and moving book has a subterranean force.”

New Directions, June 6

Loot, by Tania James

In James’s third novel, set in 18th-century India and France, a teenage artisan named Abbas is recruited by the ruler of Mysore, in southern India, to apprentice with a French clockmaker who is building an automaton of a tiger attacking a British soldier. Years later, after Mysore falls to the British, Abbas must steal back the artifact from a country estate.

Knopf, June 13

I Am Homeless If This Is Not My Home, by Lorrie Moore

When Finn (who’s a bit of a conspiracy theorist) learns that his ex-girlfriend, Lily, has died, he does the only logical thing under the circumstances: He picks up her reanimated body at the cemetery where she was buried and they embark on a cross-country road trip.

Knopf, June 20

Watch Us Dance, by Leïla Slimani

The second installment of a planned trilogy, which began with “In the Country of Others,” this new novel — translated by Sam Taylor — is inspired by the author’s family history. Set in 1968 Morocco, it follows Amine and Mathilde as they grow older and their children come of age.

Viking, June 20

Killingly, by Katharine Beutner

When Bertha, the quietest student at Mount Holyoke, disappears in 1897 (a real-life unsolved mystery), her sister and best friend are asked to help identify why she might have vanished. It becomes clear that the people closest to Bertha have their own motives for wanting her gone.

Soho Crime, June 6

The Quiet Tenant, by Clémence Michallon

Aidan Thomas has worked hard to cultivate a reputation as a good man in his small Hudson Valley community. No one there knows he is a serial killer, holding yet another woman captive in a shed, where she’s been for years. Narrated by the three women in Aidan’s life — his daughter, his prisoner and his girlfriend — this thriller looks at the tension between his public and private selves.

Knopf, June 20

Nothing Special, by Nicole Flattery

A disaffected and adrift teenager, Mae, becomes a transcriber for Andy Warhol as the artist records the Factory’s happenings as source material for a novel. Along with her fellow secretary Shelley, Mae grapples with vanity, commodification and fame.

Bloomsbury, July 11

The Vegan, by Andrew Lipstein

After a dinner party gone awry leaves one guest in a coma, Herschel Caine, a hedge fund manager on the brink of unparalleled wealth, is overwhelmed with guilt. In the meantime, his firm’s proprietary technology might be disrupting the stock market, and his partners don’t seem to care. After animals turn out to be the best confidantes — including the neighbor’s dog — Herschel decides to go vegan, setting up a darkly funny morality play.

Farrar, Straus & Giroux, July 11

Crook Manifesto, by Colson Whitehead

Ray Carney, the antihero of Whitehead’s 2021 novel “Harlem Shuffle,” is back, trying to keep his life on track: He’s stopped fencing stolen goods, and runs a thriving furniture store in Harlem. Things seem to be going according to plan until his daughter asks for Jackson 5 tickets, and a corrupt NYPD officer offers seats in exchange for a jewelry heist.

Doubleday, July 18

Silver Nitrate, by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

In 1990s Mexico City, Montserrat is a sound editor pining for her longtime friend Tristán, a soap star whose career is on the decline. Through Tristán’s neighbor, they discover an unfinished film written by a Nazi occultist. But will finishing the film end the spell, or open a Pandora’s box of horrors?

Del Rey, July 18

Small Worlds, by Caleb Azumah Nelson

In this love story, the principal relationship is between the British Ghanaian musicians Stephen and Del, but Stephen’s love for his brother, and for his music, also drives his coming of age. Spanning continents and summers, this novel explores race, inheritance and migration.

Grove, July 18

Vanishing Maps, by Cristina García

This sequel to García’s acclaimed novel “Dreaming in Cuban” revisits the del Pino family some 20 years later. Ivanito is a drag queen living in Berlin, Pilar is a sculptor struggling to make ends meet in Los Angeles, Irina is selling lingerie in Moscow and Celia — now in her 90s — is still in Cuba, reconnecting with a lost love.

Knopf, July 18

Family Lore, by Elizabeth Acevedo

Acevedo, who won a National Book Award for her Y.A. novel, “The Poet X,” has written her first book for adults. The story follows the Marte sisters after one of them, Flor — who can predict deaths to the day — asks everyone to participate in a living wake for herself. In the days before the gathering, the entire family’s secrets rise to the surface.

Ecco, Aug. 1

Time’s Mouth, by Edan Lepucki

Lepucki spins a multigenerational tale around a 1950s cult leader named Ursa, who flees Connecticut as a teenager after discovering she can travel back in time. She lands in California, where she sets up a women-only commune. But her abilities alter the lives of her family, including her son, Ray, and her granddaughter, Opal.

Counterpoint, Aug. 1

Tom Lake, by Ann Patchett

With their lives paused during the early days of the pandemic, Lara’s daughters return home to the family orchard in Michigan to help harvest cherries. They ask Lara to tell them about her summer romance with a now-famous actor at a theater company, prompting reflections about their own desires and secrets.

Harper, Aug. 1

Witness: Stories, by Jamel Brinkley

Brinkley’s new collection, set in contemporary New York, features characters who must decide whether to speak up, take action or remain silent bystanders in everyday situations with lasting consequences.

Farrar, Straus & Giroux, Aug. 1

Bridge, by Lauren Beukes

While emptying her mother’s house, Bridget finds a “dreamworm” — an object that allows her to visit all the possible versions of her life, including those where her mother might still be alive.

Mulholland, Aug. 8

The Heaven & Earth Grocery Store, by James McBride

From the author of “Deacon King Kong” comes the story of Chicken Hill, a community in Pennsylvania where Black and Jewish residents live side by side. Moshe runs an integrated theater company, while his wife, Chona, heads up the Heaven and Earth Grocery Store. Led by a Black janitor at Moshe’s theater, the town comes together to protect a deaf boy from institutionalization.

Riverhead, Aug. 8

Las Madres, by Esmeralda Santiago

In 1975, a car accident in Puerto Rico kills Luz’s parents and permanently injures her brain. Her new friends Ada and Shirley — “las Madres” — help pick up the pieces. Thirty-two years later in the Bronx, Luz’s daughter Marysol, hoping to jog her mother’s unreliable memory, decides to take her back to Puerto Rico, where a natural disaster and a family secret turn their lives upside down.

Knopf, Aug. 8

Sun House, by David James Duncan

This novel of ideas, which took Duncan 16 years to complete, follows all manner of people who are staring down crises of faith. These lost souls — from cowboys to urban refugees — make their way to Montana and build new communities for themselves. “I’m really trying to portray something that might give something hope,” Duncan said of the book in an interview with The Idaho Mountain Express. “When I shatter a heart, I try as best as I can to at least partially mend it as well.”

Little, Brown, Aug. 8

The Bee Sting, by Paul Murray

The Barnes family is headed for a crisis. Dickie’s car dealership is floundering, his kids are acting out and his wife, Imelda, is miserable. Could their misfortune stem from a freak accident on Dickie and Imelda’s wedding day, when a bee got caught under her veil?

Farrar, Straus & Giroux, Aug. 15

Happiness Falls, by Angie Kim

Kim, who won acclaim for her debut novel, “Miracle Creek,” follows a Korean American family in Virginia grappling with a crisis: When a teenager named Eugene — who has a rare genetic condition that prevents him from speaking — comes home from a walk covered in blood and without his father, the family must investigate the disappearance and find a way for Eugene to reveal what happened.

Hogarth, Aug. 29

Vampires of El Norte, by Isabel Cañas

The author of “The Hacienda” returns with a historical Gothic romance set in 1846, when two childhood friends, Nena and Néstor, cross paths at the start of the Mexican-American War. She’s a healer and he’s a vaquero, but both are still healing from a vampire attack when they were teenagers. Now, they must take up the mantle as unlikely vampire hunters.

Berkley, Aug. 29

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