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May the Books Be With You: 10 New SFF Books Out May 2024

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Liberty Hardy

Senior Contributing Editor

Liberty Hardy is an unrepentant velocireader, writer, bitey mad lady, and tattoo canvas. Turn-ons include books, books and books. Her favorite exclamation is “Holy cats!” Liberty reads more than should be legal, sleeps very little, frequently writes on her belly with Sharpie markers, and when she dies, she’s leaving her body to library science. Until then, she lives with her three cats, Millay, Farrokh, and Zevon, in Maine. She is also right behind you. Just kidding! She’s too busy reading. Twitter: @MissLiberty

April showers bring May book towers! It’s another amazing month to be a fan of science fiction and fantasy books, readers. There are a ton of great SFF releases coming out, from exciting debuts to books by legendary authors. With so many amazing books to choose from, it’s hard to know where to start. That’s why we’re helping you out with this post of ten new SFF books out in May 2024. These are a great beginning to a fantastic reading month!

There’s a cozy fantasy about a guard and a mage who want to open a tea shop; a futuristic fantasy set after the Water Wars; a new novel about a dragon catcher from the author of The Last Unicorn; the adventures of a magebike courier in a climate disaster wasteland; a murder mystery set at a luxury space resort; a YA vampire fantasy romance to sink your teeth into; and more! Plus, don’t miss the new edition of the classic Tailchaser’s Song by Tad Williams, available in a trade paperback edition for the first time in almost four decades.

Now, if you’ll just walk this way, we’ll discuss this month’s books. Mind you, don’t step on the house dragons…

The Best New Science Fiction and Fantasy Books Out May 2024

cover of Archangels of Funk by Andrea Hairston; photo of a young Black woman in shades of pinks and blues

Archangels of Funk by Andrea Hairston (Tordotcom, May 7)

This novel by award-winning author Hairston is a fantasy adventure about Cinnamon and her community. After the world is ravaged in the Water Wars, Cinnamon and her circus bots and dogs live on a farm with other outcasts, working to help the refugees of the floods. But the Darknet Lords threaten to disrupt everything they’ve worked to build.

cover of The Silverblood Promise: The Last Legacy by James Logan; image of a fantasy city with a person in a cape overlooking it from a cliff

The Silverblood Promise: The Last Legacy by James Logan (Tor Books, May 7)

James Logan’s epic fantasy debut is great for fans of Scott Lynch and Michael J. Sullivan. Lukan, the disgraced heir of a noble family, now spends his days gambling his life away as a cardsharp. After he receives news of his father’s murder, he vows to find the killer and restore his place among his family. But can a cardsharp find answers and honor when danger and inequity lurk around every corner?

cover of Can't Spell Treason Without Tea (Tomes & Tea Book 1) by Rebecca Thorne; illustration of people sitting in a bookshop drinking tea

Can’t Spell Treason Without Tea (Tomes & Tea Book 1) by Rebecca Thorne (Bramble, May 7)

Like Legends & Lattes by Travis Baldree, this cozy fantasy was a runaway self-published hit and is now being re-released with a larger publisher. Reyna, one of the Queen’s private guards, and her girlfriend, Kianthe, a powerful mage, have had enough of their day jobs. Their dream is to open a teashop together and retire to a life of warm drinks and good books. But the world isn’t ready to leave them in peace just yet, and adventure and danger come knocking on the door…

cover of I'm Afraid You've Got Dragons by Peter S. Beagle; illustration of a castle with many dragons circling the skies around it

I’m Afraid You’ve Got Dragons by Peter S. Beagle (S&S/Saga Press, May 14)

Speaking of job dissatisfaction: From the author of the legendary classic The Last Unicorn comes the tale of a dragon catcher with big dreams. Gaius Aurelius Constantine Heliogabalus Thrax (or Robert, as he prefers), inherited his job of dragon catcher from his father. But Robert would much rather befriend the dragons than exterminate them and instead wishes to be the prince’s valet.

cover of Road to Ruin (Magebike Courier Book 1) by Hana Lee; illustration of person on a motorbike with a skull-face helmet, looking out over a wasteland

Road to Ruin (Magebike Courier Book 1) by Hana Lee (S&S/Saga Press, May 14)

Here’s another exciting debut, this time set in a Mad Max-like wasteland. Jin-Lu is a magebike courier, one of the most dangerous jobs to hold in a future where the climate has destroyed the lands. She must travel between cities to deliver her cargo, a deadly endeavor on a good day. But now Jin is involved with helping a princess escape her abusive family and her upcoming nuptials. And as if that isn’t trouble enough, complicating things further are Jin’s feelings for both the princess and her fiancé.

cover of When Among Crows by Veronica Roth; illustration of a silver man in blue robes holding a sword and standing in front of a sun

When Among Crows by Veronica Roth ( Tor Books, May 14)

Veronica Roth, best known for her best-selling Divergent series, returns with a new fantasy novella for adults. Based in Slavic folklore, it’s the story of a monster hunter named Dymitr, who must pair up with an enemy to find the legendary witch Baba Jaga in Chicago’s underworld.

cover of Escape Velocity by Victor Manibo; image of a person in a space suit holding a tray with a smoking martini glass

Escape Velocity by Victor Manibo (Erewhon Books, May 21)

From the author of The Sleepless comes a mystery set at a luxury resort in space. Finance magnate Ava attends a 25th class reunion aboard Space Habitat Altaire, determined to get to the bottom of her brother’s murder their senior year. But the alumni are among the most powerful in the galaxy, and it won’t be easy to uncover the secrets of some of the guests, many of whom have their own agendas.

cover of Lost Ark Dreaming by Suyi Davies Okungbowa; illustration of five high rise towers in a desert wasteland

Lost Ark Dreaming by Suyi Davies Okungbowa (Tordotcom, May 21)

This novella, which is being compared to Snowpiercer, is set off the coast of West Africa. It’s about five high-rise buildings that exist after the oceans rise to dangerous levels and the class systems that exist within them. The poorest residents reside at the bottom while the top levels are reserved for the affluent. But now the people who didn’t even make it to a tower but instead were left to die in the waves have returned, thanks to an ancient magic, and they want justice.

SFF New Releases for Kids and Teens

cover of Plain Jane and the Mermaid by Vera Brosgol; cartoon illustration of a young woman with brown hair in a red dress, a seal, and an evil blonde mermaid with fangs, all floating in water

Plain Jane and the Mermaid by Vera Brosgol (First Second, May 7)

This is a fantastic historical fantasy graphic novel about a young woman who stands to lose everything when her parents die. As a girl, Jane cannot legally inherit her family’s property after the death of her parents…unless she has a husband. So she finds a man named Peter who is also unhappy with his family situation, and proposes a marriage of convenience. But before it can happen, Peter is kidnapped by a mermaid. Determined to get her independence at any cost, Jane follows their trail down into the watery depths of the ocean, where she will face great danger and possibly make a new friend, too.

cover of The Dangerous Ones by Lauren Blackwood; illustration of a Black hand holding a silver spear surrounded by pink flower petals

The Dangerous Ones by Lauren Blackwood (Wednesday Books, May 14)

And last but not least, a vampire romantasy, set against the backdrop of the Civil War. In order to fight the Confederates and destroy the vampire army, Jerusalem must make a deal with an ancient vampire who claims to want to help the Union army. Seeing as how Jerusalem’s family was enslaved and murdered by an ancient vampire, you can understand why she has a very hard time trusting him. But to achieve her goals, and kill the vampire responsible for the death of her loved ones, she isn’t going to have a choice.

Bonus Mentions

The Brides of High Hill cover

Because I can’t just stop at ten books, in May, be sure to watch for the sequels Red Side Story (Shades of Grey Book 2) by Jasper Fforde, Blood & Fury (Chaos & Flame) by Tessa Gratton and Justina Ireland, The City Beyond the Stars (The Kingdom Over the Sea) by Zohra Nabi, and The Brides of High Hill (The Singing Hills Cycle Book 5) by Nghi Vo.

And there are a TON of amazing SFF titles out in paperback, including The Saint of Bright Doors by Vajra Chandrasekera, The Water Outlaws by S. L. Huang, On Earth as It Is on Television by Emily Jane, The Deep Sky by Yume Kitasei, Translation State by Ann Leckie, and The Blue, Beautiful World by Karen Lord.

If you want to learn about more sci-fi and fantasy books, check out the Best New Fantasy Books for Your Book Club, 8 Sci-Noir Books that Blend Genres, and be sure to sign up for our SFF newsletter, Swords and Spaceships and listen to our SFF podcast, SFF Yeah!

Finally, you can also find a full list of new releases in the magical New Release Index, carefully curated by your favorite Book Riot editors, organized by genre and release date.