Add These New Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Horror Books to Your August Reading List

Add These New Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Horror Books to Your August Reading List

For whatever quirky reason, August 2023 is particularly robust on two fronts: short-story collections, and retellings that shed new light on familiar characters from myths and history. That said, this month’s list is simply huge (70 titles!) and also has plenty of epic fantasy and sci-fi—as well as some truly original ideas, like a tale involving sentient tornadoes. Read on!

Image: Harper Voyager

The Book of Witches edited by Jonathan Strahan

New short stories all about witches make their debut in this new collection, featuring P. Djèlí Clark, Amal El Mohtar, Garth Nix, Darcie Little Badger, Sheree Renée Thomas, Cassandra Khaw, Fonda Lee, E. Lily Yu, and more. (August 1)

Image: Sourcebooks Fire

Bring Me Your Midnight by Rachel Griffin

A young witch’s arranged marriage is intended to bring peace between her coven and the humans who fear them—until she meets an alluring practitioner of dark magic, who quickly complicates everything. (August 1)

Image: Tor Books

Cassiel’s Servant by Jacqueline Carey

“Cassiel’s Servant is a retelling of cult favorite Kushiel’s Dart from the point of view of Joscelin, Cassiline warrior-priest and protector of Phèdre nó Delaunay. He’s sworn to celibacy and the blade as surely as she’s pledged to pleasure, but the gods they serve have bound them together.” (August 1)

Image: Dutton

The Déjà Glitch by Holly James

In this rom-com set amid the LA music scene, a man and a woman caught in a daily loop—he remembers everything that’s happened with every reset, but she doesn’t—must fall in love to make time move forward again. (August 1)

Image: Harper Voyager

The Embroidered Book by Kate Heartfield

This historical retelling imagines that Marie Antoinette and her sister had magical abilities they used to help shape court politics, and that eventually sparked a dangerous rivalry. (August 1)

Image: Vintage

Fit for the Gods: Greek Mythology Reimagined edited by Jenn Northington and S. Zainab Williams

This anthology gathers “gender-bent, queered, race-bent, and inclusive retellings” of Greek myths from Alyssa Cole, Sarah Gailey, Valerie Valdes, and more. (August 1)

Image: Del Rey

The Hundred Loves of Juliet by Evelyn Skye

In this modern-day Shakespeare retelling, a man and a woman live different lives throughout history as new incarnations of doomed lovers Romeo and Juliet—until the latest “Juliet” becomes determined to change her fate. (August 1)

Image: Titan Books

Inanna by Emily H. Wilson

The Sumerians Trilogy begins with a fresh take on The Epic of Gilgamesh, focusing on the goddess of love and the people she meets during a fraught time for ancient Mesopotamia. Read an excerpt here. (August 1)

Image: Penguin Books

Jezebel by Megan Barnard

The notorious Biblical figure gets her due in this feminist, revisionist tale that brings new context to her story. (August 1)

Image: The MIT Press

More Voices From the Radium Age edited by Joshua Glenn

“An essential collection of proto–science fiction stories that reveals the diverse literary milieu out of which the sci fi genre emerged.” (August 1)

Image: Tin House Books

The Museum of Human History by Rebekah Bergman

In this “novel about how time shapes us, asking what―if anything―we would be without it,” a comatose eight-year-old girl “sleeps” without aging, a phenomenon that draws an array of curious characters into her orbit. (August 1)

Image: Melville House

Oh God, The Sun Goes by David Connor

“The sun has disappeared from the sky. No one can explain where it has gone, but one wayward traveler is determined to try [and] is drawn into a web of illusion and mystery, a shifting astral mindscape that shimmers with the aftermath of loss—and the promise of redemption.” (August 1)

Image: Entangled: Teen

Omen of Ice by Jus Accardo

A druid’s first bodyguard assignment tasks her with protecting the heir to the Winter Fae throne; as she soon realizes, he has a target on his back in a court full of dangerous intrigue. (August 1)

Image: Tor Books

Ravensong by TJ Klune

The author’s Greek Creek fantasy romance series—about a family able to shape-shift into wolves—continues with story told from pack outsider Gordo Livingstone’s point of view. (August 1)

Image: Imbrifex Books

Rubicons by Brett Riley

The Freaks series concludes as the superpowered teens face the looming threat of a government agency intent on tracking them down—and the equally alarming prospect of figuring out life after high school graduation. (August 1)


Wild Spaces by S.L. Coney

In this coming-of-age tale, an 11-year-old boy meets his long-lost grandfather and starts to realize his role in a literally monstrous family secret. (August 1)

Image: Orbit

Cyberpunk 2077: No Coincidence by Rafał Kosik

Set in the video-game world of Cyberpunk 2077, this tale “follows a group of strangers as they discover that the dangers of Night City are all too real.” (August 8)

Image: Harper Voyager

Forged by Blood by Ehigbor Okosun

A new fantasy duology begins in this tale inspired by Nigerian mythology, following a young woman as she fights against “a tyrannical society, having everything stripped away from her, and seeks vengeance for her mother’s murder and the spilled blood of her people.” (August 8)

Image: Gallery / Saga Press

The Handyman Method by Nick Cutter and Andrew F. Sullivan

“When a young family moves into an unfinished development community, cracks begin to emerge in both their new residence and their lives, as a mysterious online DIY instructor delivers dark subliminal suggestions about how to handle any problem around the house.” (August 8)

Image: Blackstone Publishing

A Harvest of Ash and Blood by D.J. Molles

In a world where cruel empires depend on the ashes of the magically gifted to fuel their power, a soldier, a priest, and other characters join together to try and save humanity, starting with their own souls. (August 8)

Image: Angry Robot

Lessons in Birdwatching by Honey Watson

This sci-fi tale of political intrigue is “set on a dystopian world ravaged by a time-plague where a brutal murder will start a civil war.” (August 8)

Image: Tor Nightfire

Looking Glass Sound by Catriona Ward

An author writing about a killer he encountered in his younger days—and the dark secret he’s kept about that time in his life—finds the past starting to haunt both his in-progress novel and his own reality. (August 8)

Image: Tor Books

Masters of Death by Olivie Blake

This “newly revised and edited with additional content” version of the author’s 2018 release follows a vampire real-estate agent trying to sell a house haunted by a stubborn ghost who won’t leave until he figures out how he died. Enter a medium who’s both a fraud and friends with Death himself. (August 8)

Image: Ace

Medusa’s Sisters by Lauren J.A. Bear

The myth of Medusa gets a retelling with the inclusion of her sisters and an exploration of their lives before they were turned into Gorgons. (August 8)

Image: Del Rey

Mister Magic by Kiersten White

The five surviving cast members of a cult-beloved children’s show reunite after 30 years, trying to piece together the mysterious, seemingly supernatural reasons behind the tragic accident that ended the show’s run. (August 8)

Image: Tor Books

The Salt-Black Tree by Lilith Saintcrow

The Dead God’s Heart duology concludes as Nat, on a quest to save her mother’s life, learns the truth about her past and comes to a point of no return among shadows, thieves, and gods both old and new. (August 8)

Image: DAW

Shigidi and the Brass Head of Obalufon by Wole Talabi

“A mythic tale of disgruntled gods, revenge, and a heist across two worlds.” (August 8)

Image: MTV Books

Whalefall by Daniel Kraus

Billed as “The Martian meets 127 Hours” as well as “scientifically accurate,” this thriller follows a scuba diver who is swallowed by a giant whale and must figure out how to escape the beast before he’s out of oxygen. (August 8)

Image: Quirk Books

Bride of the Tornado by James Kennedy

Billed as “Stephen King’s The Mist meets David Lynch’s Twin Peaks,” this midwest-set thriller imagines that tornadoes are sentient—and can only be defeated by a mysterious teenager designated as the “tornado killer.” (August 15)

Image: She Writes Press

The Brill Pill by Akemi C. Brodsky

In the near future, a research scientist who’s figured out how to almost exactly regenerate the human brain from stem cells must face the fallout when his patients start turning into monsters. (August 15)

Image: Tor Books

Contrarian by L.E. Modesitt, Jr.

The Grand Illusion fantasy series continues as Dekkard, an elected official able to withstand emotional manipulations and surveillance, must grapple with political intrigue and growing threats from violent insurrectionists. (August 15)

Image: Blackstone Publishing

Face the Night by Lani Forbes

In this tale set amid a rough frontier, a young woman’s idyllic life becomes a nightmare when her parents are killed. Adopted by an outlaw, she must use her gift of foresight to protect herself—and plot revenge. (August 15)

Image: Random House

Fever House by Keith Rosson

A mysterious severed hand upends the lives of a washed-up singer and her son as they run from shadowy government agents and the random victims affected by the hand’s ability to incite anyone to extreme violence. (August 15)

Image: Inkyard Press

Fracturing Fate by Sasha Alsberg

The duology that began with Breaking Time concludes as Klara tries to figure out how to return to 2022 after being teleported to 16th century Scotland while battling a demigod. Making things worse, her adversaries have somehow tracked her to the past. (August 15)

Image: Atria Books

The Invisible Hour by Alice Hoffman

A young woman raised within an oppressive cult that forbids reading books realizes time is more fluid than she’d realized—helping her discover a connection between her life and that of Nathaniel Hawthorne, whose Scarlet Letter resonates within her reality. (August 15)

Image: Orbit

Labyrinth’s Heart by M.A. Carrick

The Rook & Rose fantasy trilogy ends as con artist Ren—who’s pretending to be a noble heiress, while actually being a political rebel and a vigilante—struggles to maintain her various identities while shielding the city from dark magic. (August 15)

Image: Tin House Books

Let’s Go Let’s Go Let’s Go by Cleo Qian

This story collection explores “the alienated, technology-mediated lives of restless Asian and Asian American women today,” with tales of dating simulations, post-surgery visions, a supernatural karaoke machine, and more. (August 15)

Image: Harper Voyager

Lolth’s Warrior by R.A. Salvatore

The conclusion to the Way of the Drow trilogy finds the author’s long-running Dungeons & Dragons-inspired character Drizzt Do’Urden “coming to understand his role as a friend, a father, and a man caught between the darkness and the light.” (August 15)

Image: Flame Tree Press

The Lonely Lands by Ramsey Campbell

A man figures out how to visit his recently deceased wife in her afterlife, a place filled with memories—and restless spirits, who begin to attach themselves to his life instead. (August 15)

Image: Saga Press

More Perfect by Temi Oh

The Greek myth of Eurydice and Orpheus forms the basis for this tale of near-future London, where people willingly get implants “that allows one access to a more robust social media experience directly as an augmented reality.” All is well until the British government takes charge of the program. (August 15)

Image: Del Rey

Spin a Black Yarn by Josh Malerman

This latest from the author of Bird Box is a collection of five spooky novellas, exploring haunted houses, accused murderers, space tourism, out-of-control smart-home gadgets, and more. (August 15)

Image: Tor Books

Thornhedge by T. Kingfisher

This riff on traditional fairy tales follows “a kind-hearted, toad-shaped heroine, a gentle knight, and a mission gone completely sideways.” (August 15)

Image: William Morrow

Tides of Fire by James Rollins

In this thriller, Sigma Force must uncover an ancient secret if it wants any chance of mitigating a geological disaster that suddenly triggers huge earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. (August 15)

Image: Berkley

Vampires of El Norte by Isabel Cañas

In 1840s Mexico, with U.S. forces lurking at the border, a healer and a vaquero—former childhood sweethearts—reunite to fight against an even more dangerous and decidedly more supernatural threat. (August 15)

Image: Pyr

The Year’s Best Fantasy, Volume 2 edited by Paula Guran

“Over 400 pages of tales ranging from wonderful to wicked,” from fantasy authors hailing from all across the globe. (August 15)

Image: Forge Books

Five Years After by William R. Forstchen

The John Matherson series—set in the near future, after a devastating EMP attack sends what’s now the former United States into a new Dark Age—continues; this time, the professor turned reluctant hero must leap back into action when a new threat emerges. (August 22)

Image: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Foxglove by Adalyn Grace

The sequel to Belladonna finds star-crossed duo Signa and Death tested by a murder plot that frames an innocent man, as well as Signa’s increasingly complicated relationship with Death’s brother, Fate. Read an excerpt here. (August 22)

Image: Tor Books

He Who Drowned the World by Shelley Parker-Chan

The sequel to She Who Became the Sun returns to its fantastical version of China, following Zhu, the newly crowned Radiant King, on her quest to become emperor—and the other determined contenders that stand in her way. (August 22)

Image: Redhook

House of Odysseus by Claire North

The second book in the Songs of Penelope trilogy continues to explore the isle of Ithaca, where Odysseus is long-absent after heading to the Trojan War, and Penelope rules over the chaos caused by characters like Orestes, Elektra, Helen of Troy, Menelaus, and the goddess Aphrodite. (August 22)

Image: Berkley

In Charm’s Way by Lana Harper

In this supernatural rom-com, a witch trying to heal her suddenly shaky powers casts a dangerous spell that backfires, forcing her into a partnership with a half-human, half-fae monster hunter. (August 22)

Image: Kensington

Long Past Midnight by Jonathan Maberry

Eleven short stories, including one brand-new tale, come together in this collection exploring “small-town terrors, local legends, and hair-raising haunts set in the eerie world of Pine Deep, Pennsylvania.” (August 22)

Image: Orbit

The Midnight Kingdom by Tara Sim

The Dark Gods series continues as the four noble heirs find themselves far from the battle-torn city of Nexus, “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.” (August 22)

Image: Valancourt Books

Riding the Nightmare by Lisa Tuttle

Neil Gaiman wrote the introduction to this collection by the horror author featuring 12 eerie and unsettling stories, plus a revised version of novella The Dragon’s Bride. (August 22)

Image: Harper Voyager

Sir Hereward and Mister Fitz: Stories of the Witch Knight and the Puppet Sorcerer by Garth Nix

This new collection gathers “all eight stories—plus a never-before-published story—featuring Sir Hereward and his sorcerous puppet companion Mister Fitz, in one magical volume for the first time ever.” (August 22)

Image: Angry Robot

The War Born by James A. Moore

In this final entry in the Seven Forges series, “the final war is on, one that will change the shape of the Fellein Empire. Even as the gods involve themselves in the final confrontations between the empire and the enemies, old and new.” (August 22)

Image: Tordotcom

The Water Outlaws by S.L. Huang

“Inspired by a classic of martial arts literature, The Water Outlaws are bandits of devastating ruthlessness, unseemly femininity, dangerous philosophies, and ungovernable gender who are ready to make history―or tear it apart.” (August 22)

Image: Entangled: Red Tower Books

Assistant to the Villain by Hannah Nicole Maehrer

Hired on as the assistant to a notorious villain, a young woman starts falling for her boss—while also realizing there’s a plot against him and his evil empire. (August 29)

Image: Del Rey

The Blue, Beautiful World by Karen Lord

As aliens prepare to make first contact, Earth assembles a welcoming committee, with hopefuls including a tech inventor, a celebrity humanitarian, an idealistic young activist, and a pop star whose secret gifts may be the key to humanity’s future—or its undoing. (August 29)

Image: St. Martin’s Griffin

Cave 13 by Jonathan Maberry

The Rogue Team International series continues with the startling discovery of books that contain actual magic, which world powers quickly seek to weaponize. “But everyone who goes near those scrolls goes insane. The fabric of reality is shredding. Is this the result of ancient magic, or is it a new bioweapon that fractures the mind of anyone exposed?” (August 29)

Image: Tor Books

Devil’s Gun by Cat Rambo

The Disco Space Opera series continues as the misfit crew of the You Sexy Thing battles both the perils of opening a pop-up restaurant, and “the dangers of a wrathful pirate-king seeking vengeance.” (August 29)

Image: Knopf Books for Young Readers

Her Radiant Curse by Elizabeth Lim

Two sisters—one beautiful, one cursed with the face of a serpent—“must fight to save each other when a betrothal contest gone wrong unleashes an evil that could sever their bond forever.” (August 29)

Image: Henry Holt and Co.

I Feed Her to the Beast and the Beast Is Me by Jamison Shea

In this horror tale, an ambitious Parisian ballet dancer makes a dark deal deep within the Catacombs—but career success comes with a terrible price, and she realizes she’s being targeted by an even more sinister force. (August 29)

Image: Razorbill

House of Marionne by J. Elle

Forced to live as a fugitive while hiding her forbidden magic, a teenager reluctantly joins “the Order,” an elite group she hopes can help her control her powers. (August 29)

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The House of Saints by Derek Künsken

The Venus Ascendant series concludes with a battle over a mysterious artifact found on Venus—a perilous fight due to the dangerous nature of the planet itself, as well as “the banks and powers of old Earth, who will stop at nothing to claim this new technology for themselves.” (August 29)

Image: Clarion Books

The Lightstruck by Sunya Mara

The Darkening Duology concludes as a sinister light transforms city-dwellers into an army controlled by the Great King. Can goddess vessel Vesper rise up and be a hero for her people once more? (Aug 29)

Image: Berkley

My Roommate Is a Vampire by Jenna Levine

This supernatural rom-com imagines what happens when an artist finds a shockingly good deal on a room in a lovely Chicago apartment, and realizes—well, read the title. (August 29)

Image: Tor Books

The Mystery at Dunvegan Castle by T.L. Huchu

The Edinburgh Nights series continues as teenage ghosttalker Ropa gets drawn into a locked-room mystery involving a stolen magical scroll. (August 29)

Image: Orbit

The Phoenix King by Aparna Verma

A new fantasy series begins in this Indian-inspired debut “in which the fate of a kingdom rests in the hands of a princess desperate for power and an assassin with a dark secret.” (August 29)

Image: Solaris

A Second Chance for Yesterday by R.A. Sinn

As a brilliant programmer works to perfect “SavePoint, the brain implant that rewinds the seconds of all our most embarrassing moments,” she gets caught up in its tech and finds she’s moving backwards in time. Can a college pal who suddenly reappears in her life help set things right? (August 29)

Image: Harper Voyager

Where Peace Is Lost by Valerie Valdes

In this space fantasy, a refugee living in a forgotten corner of the galaxy is content to keep her former life serving in an elite military unit a secret. When a forgotten enemy war machine suddenly reactivates, she’ll have to risk revealing her identity to help save everything she’s worked to build since the war. (August 29)

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