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Summer is here (at least for the northern hemisphere), and that means books for sitting by the pool, laying in the grass, and hiding away in air conditioned rooms. This summer is going to be packed with fantasy book releases, so here are my most anticipated fantasy books of June 2024 to help you cut through the clutter.

 

Demon’s Tear by RE Sanders (June 1 – Self-Published)

There have been many conversations lately about the “death” of epic fantasy, and if you are feeling the epic fantasy induced withdrawal, may I point you to Demon’s Tear? Numerous POV characters, warriors, thieves, rogues, demons, magical jewels, elves, dwarves, and more abound in this epic fantasy book that will absolutely delight anyone who is looking for that old-school fantasy feel in a way that feels fresh.

 

Mirrored Heavens by Rebecca Roanhorse (June 4 – Saga Press)

I’ll be honest that I was dissapointed in Fevered Star, and my review of Mirrored Heavens was a mixed bag. At the same time I cannot lie that this was one of my most anticipated books of the year. Roanhorse introduced readers to a fully realized epic fantasy world based on the Precolumbian Americas, and Black Sun is one of my favorite books from the past few years. June is bringing a lot of my favorite series to a close, and this series is definitely going to be talked about for a long time to come.

 

Daughter of the Merciful Deep by L. Penelope (June 4 – Orbit)

Lush, lyrical, and utterly transportative. Daughter of the Merciful Deep is a historical fantasy that magically confronts a forgotten and terrible part of the US’ past – the drowned Black towns of the deep south. Bursting with beautiful writing, gods, and spritual powers, fans of historical fantasy should definitely have this book on their radar.

 

Service Model by Adrian Tchaikovsky (June 4 – Tordotcom)

Ok ok, this one is definitely cheating because it is technically sci-fi and not fantasy, but Adrian Tchaikovsky continues to be one of the most inventive, suprising, and prolific writers in speculative fiction. Service Model is described as “Murderbot meets Redshirts”….and what could be better than that? I have yet to read this one, but it is at the top of my list come June.

 

A Cask-Aged Blade by Benjamin Aeveryn (June 5 – Self-Published)

The grand finale of the Rainfallen series, A Cask-Aged Blade brings Galahad and co. to a suprising yet fitting end as they continue to battle the deadly rainwights, corrupt kings, dragons, and themselves. This series is a wonderful mash-up of Arthurian legend, grimdark fantasy, and dystopian fiction. It is very much underhyped, and with the release of this finale there is no better time to jump right on in. Looking for just a taste? Also be sure to check out the spinoff novella Blackcap!

 

The Unrelenting Earth by Kritika H. Rao (June 18 – Titan Books)

Last year, Kritika H. Rao introduced the world to the inventful and rereshing The Surviving Sky. A science fantasy rooted in Hindu philosophies and cosmologies, this series started with a burst of creativie and thought-provoking ideas, including one of the most fascinating and messiest marriages in speculative fiction. This June Rao returns with The Unrelenting Earth, the anticipated sequel that is sure to expand this story in all sorts of exciting ways.

 

How to Make a Horror Movie and Survive by Craig DiLouie (June 18 – Orbit)

Another kinda cheat because this one is technically horror, but it involves a possessed film camera that murders anyone it is pointed at, so the speculative/fantastic elements are there. I love horror movies, mostly because my mom essentially raised me on them. This book is a look inside the making of horror movies, and the creatives who will go to any lengths to create the perfect one. This is definitely a slow burn, and the horrors are more human than supernatural as it examines how far one is willing to go to get what they want. A must read for fans of 1980s horror slashers.

 

The Legion of the Lost by Joseph John Lee (June 28 – Self-Published)

Delayed from its original April release date, the final book in the Spellbinders and Gunslingers series is nearly upon us! This series is set in a fantasy world reminiscent of pre-colonial North America, including a villain that gives heavy Christopher Columbus vibes. I don’t think I’ve ever read a series that writes villains this well – showing their perspective and explaining why they are they way they are without ever justifying it. These books are full of fantastic morally grey characters, gigantic gods, epic battles, and more. Like with the Rainfallen series, now that it is complete there is no excuse to not add this to the TBR.

Nathan

Nathan is a PhD Candidate in Anthropology where he specializes in death rituals of the Ice Age in Europe and queer theory. Originally from Ohio, he currently lives in Kansas where he teaches college anthropology, watches too much TV, and attempts to make the perfect macarons in a humid climate. He is also the co-host of The Dragonfire podcast with James Lloyd Dulin. He reads widely in fantasy and sci-fi and is always looking for new favorites!

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