It’s Tuesday, which means it’s time for new book releases! Here are a few of the books out today you should add to your TBR. This is a very small percentage of the new releases this week, as well as a few others you may have missed from recent weeks. Make sure to stick around until the end for some more Book Riot resources for keeping up with new books. The book descriptions listed are the publisher’s, unless otherwise noted.
Blackwater by Jeannette Arroyo and Ren Graham
Riverdale meets Stranger Things in this debut queer YA graphic novel, developed from a hit webcomic. Set in the haunted town of Blackwater, Maine, two boys fall for each other as they dig for clues to a paranormal mystery.
Tony Price is a popular high school track star and occasional delinquent aching for his dad’s attention and approval. Eli Hirsch is a quiet boy with a chronic autoimmune disorder that has ravaged his health and social life. What happens when these two become unlikely friends (and a whole lot more . . .) in the spooky town of Blackwater, Maine? Werewolf curses, unsavory interactions with the quarterback of the football team, a ghostly fisherman haunting the harbor, and tons of high school drama.
Co-illustrated by Jeannette Arroyo and Ren Graham, who alternate drawing chapters in their own unique and dynamic styles, Blackwater combines the spookiness of Anya’s Ghost with the irreverent humor of Nimona.
Reasons to read it: For a mystery whose scary elements stay fun as opposed to crossing into the horror category. Tony and Eli’s relationship dynamics are full of mutual understanding and support, which is really sweet to see. The difference in artistic style from chapter to chapter also gives an interesting reader experience.
The Daughter of Doctor Moreau by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
Carlota Moreau: A young woman growing up on a distant and luxuriant estate, safe from the conflict and strife of the Yucatán peninsula. The only daughter of a researcher who is either a genius or a madman.
Montgomery Laughton: A melancholic overseer with a tragic past and a propensity for alcohol. An outcast who assists Dr. Moreau with his experiments, which are financed by the Lizaldes, owners of magnificent haciendas and plentiful coffers.
The hybrids: The fruits of the doctor’s labor, destined to blindly obey their creator and remain in the shadows. A motley group of part human, part animal monstrosities.
All of them live in a perfectly balanced and static world, which is jolted by the abrupt arrival of Eduardo Lizalde, the charming and careless son of Dr. Moreau’s patron, who will unwittingly begin a dangerous chain reaction.
For Moreau keeps secrets, Carlota has questions, and, in the sweltering heat of the jungle, passions may ignite.
The Daughter of Doctor Moreau is both a dazzling historical novel and a daring science fiction journey.
Reasons to read it: Moreno-Garcia’s talent for different genres is on display in this retelling of The Island of Doctor Moreau, with its science fiction, romantic, gothic, and historical elements. This a fun, creative spin on a science fiction classic.
Just Like Home by Sarah Gailey
Just Like Home is a darkly gothic thriller from nationally best-selling author Sarah Gailey, perfect for fans of Netflix’s The Haunting of Hill House as well as HBO’s true crime masterpiece I’ll Be Gone in the Dark.
“Come home.” Vera’s mother called and Vera obeyed. In spite of their long estrangement, in spite of the memories — she’s come back to the home of a serial killer. Back to face the love she had for her father and the bodies he buried there, beneath the house he’d built for his family.
Coming home is hard enough for Vera, and to make things worse, she and her mother aren’t alone. A parasitic artist has moved into the guest house out back and is slowly stripping Vera’s childhood for spare parts. He insists that he isn’t the one leaving notes around the house in her father’s handwriting… but who else could it possibly be?
There are secrets yet undiscovered in the foundations of the notorious Crowder House. Vera must face them and find out for herself just how deep the rot goes.
Reasons to read it: Pick this one up for an exploration of family dysfunction with an insidious build up. Gailey does an awesome job of creating a dread-filled atmosphere that feels claustrophobic, with a twist that will send you reeling.
Other Terrors: An Inclusive Anthology by Rena Mason and Vince A. Liaguno
An anthology of original horror stories edited by Bram Stoker Award® winners Vince A. Liaguno and Rena Mason that showcases authors from historically excluded backgrounds telling terrifying tales of what it means to be, or merely to seem “other.”
Offering new stories from some of the biggest names in horror as well as some of the hottest up-and-coming talents, Other Terrors will provide the ultimate reading experience for horror fans who want to examine fear of “the other.”
Be they of a different culture, a different background, a different sexual orientation or gender identity, a different belief system, or a different skin color, some people simply aren’t part of the community’s majority — and are perceived as scary. Humans are almost instinctively inclined to fear what’s different, and there are a multitude of individuals who have spent far too long on the outside looking in. And the thing about the outside is…it’s much larger than you think.
In Other Terrors, horror writers from a multitude of underrepresented backgrounds have created stories of everyday people, places, and things where something shifts, striking a deeper, much more primal, chord of fear. Are our eyes playing tricks on us, or is there something truly sinister lurking under the surface of what we thought we knew? And who among us is really the other, after all?
Contributors include: Tananarive Due, Jennifer McMahon, S.A. Cosby, Stephen Graham Jones, Alma Katsu, Michael Thomas Ford, Ann Dávila Cardinal, Christina Sng, Denise Dumars, Usman T. Malik, Annie Neugebauer, Gabino Iglesias, Hailey Piper, Nathan Carson, Shanna Heath, Tracy Cross, Linda D. Addison, Maxwell I. Gold, Larissa Glasser, Eugen Bacon, Holly Lyn Walrath, Jonathan Lees, M. E. Bronstein, Michael H. Hanson.
Reasons to read it: The line up of contributors for this one is outstanding. The introduction by the editors examining how damaging the idea of the other can be in society and the role it has played in horror sets the entire collation up so well. From Tananarive Due’s story of familial horror and shame to the interesting method of survival developed by Usman T. Malik’s Pakistani islanders, horror fans will be hard-pressed to find a story that they dislike. On the contrary, stories from this collection will disturb readers long after they’ve been read. In the best way, of course.
Things We Do in the Dark by Jennifer Hillier
Things We Do in the Dark is a brilliant new thriller from Jennifer Hillier, the award-winning author of the breakout novels Little Secrets and Jar of Hearts. Paris Peralta is suspected of killing her celebrity husband, and her long-hidden past now threatens to destroy her future.
When Paris Peralta is arrested in her own bathroom — covered in blood, holding a straight razor, her celebrity husband dead in the bathtub behind her — she knows she’ll be charged with murder. But as bad as this looks, it’s not what worries her the most. With the unwanted media attention now surrounding her, it’s only a matter of time before someone from her long hidden past recognizes her and destroys the new life she’s worked so hard to build, along with any chance of a future.
Twenty-five years earlier, Ruby Reyes, known as the Ice Queen, was convicted of a similar murder in a trial that riveted Canada in the early nineties. Reyes knows who Paris really is, and when she’s unexpectedly released from prison, she threatens to expose all of Paris’s secrets. Left with no other choice, Paris must finally confront the dark past she escaped, once and for all.
Because the only thing worse than a murder charge are two murder charges.
Reasons to read it: This is a gripping story of people running from their pasts. As engaging as this book is — with its many twists and the mystery of what truly happened years ago looming — there is still a lot of time given to character development. With the shift in perspectives as well as past and present, we’re given fully fleshed-out characters with more understandable motives.
The Bodyguard by Katherine Center
New York Times best-selling author Katherine Center’s The Bodyguard is unabashedly romantic, laugh-out-loud funny, and the perfect summer read.
She’s got his back.
Hannah Brooks looks more like a kindergarten teacher than somebody who could kill you with a wine bottle opener. Or a ballpoint pen. Or a dinner napkin. But the truth is, she’s an Executive Protection Agent (aka “bodyguard”), and she just got hired to protect superstar actor Jack Stapleton from his middle-aged, corgi-breeding stalker.
He’s got her heart.
Jack Stapleton’s a household name — captured by paparazzi on beaches the world over, famous for, among other things, rising out of the waves in all manner of clingy board shorts and glistening like a Roman deity. But a few years back, in the wake of a family tragedy, he dropped from the public eye and went off the grid.
They’ve got a secret.
When Jack’s mom gets sick, he comes home to the family’s Texas ranch to help out. Only one catch: He doesn’t want his family to know about his stalker. Or the bodyguard thing. And so Hannah — against her will and her better judgment — finds herself pretending to be Jack’s girlfriend as a cover. Even though her ex, like a jerk, says no one will believe it.
What could possibly go wrong???
Hannah hardly believes it, herself. But the more time she spends with Jack, the more real it all starts to seem. And there lies the heartbreak. Because it’s easy for Hannah to protect Jack. But protecting her own, long-neglected heart? That’s the hardest thing she’s ever done.
Reasons to read it: This fake dating romance has a bit of a gender role reversal with the woman being the bodyguard, which is refreshing and works well to progress the story. The romance is slow burn, the laughs constant, and the book overall sweet. A perfectly light-hearted read. Helen Hoang, author of The Heart Principle, says it’s “Great rollicking fun! Prepare to laugh and swoon and grin your pants off.”
Other Book Riot Resources for New Book Releases
- All the Books, our weekly new book releases podcast, where Liberty and a cast of co-hosts talk about eight books out that week that we’ve read and loved.
- The New Books Newsletter, where we send you an email of the books out this week that are getting buzz.
- Finally, if you want the real inside scoop on new releases, you have to check out Book Riot Insiders’ New Releases Index! That’s where I find 90% of new releases, and you can filter by trending books, Rioters’ picks, and even LGBTQ new releases!