The May 2024 book releases are here and they are spectacular! Spring is well underway and these books mark the start of beach read season. After all, summer reading bingo starts in May so that makes total sense on our calendar.
We cannot possibly read all the books on this list but we can darn well try. There are picks on here from our favorite authors like Carley Fortune, Christina Lauren, Steven Rowley, Natalie Jenner, and more. We also could not resist some of the debut authors.
We scoured many lists of books to bring you our most anticipated picks and we hope you love this list.
*Post contains affiliate links. Purchases made through links result in a small commission to us at no cost to you. Some books have been gifted. All opinions are our own.
Most Anticipated May 2024 Fiction Book Releases
Plot: Are there words to describe how excited we are for this book? Patrick O’Hara is back! This time, his uncle duties bring him to Italy for his brother’s marriage. The kids, who are now teens, are not thrilled. And, there is a soon-to-be Launt (lesbian aunt) in the picture. We cannot wait for this pick from the May 2024 book releases. We know it will give us a great laugh and a heartwarming story.
Plot: We cannot wait to read this pick from the May 2024 book releases. When Shea’s boyfriend proposes and she says yes, she has gone against her beloved Nonna’s rule to never accept a marriage proposal with an heirloom ring. Now, with the help of her big sister and a journalist, she will travel to New York, Italy, Portugal, and more to make sure the ring has forever energy. Can you think of a more perfect pick for books about Jewelry?
Plot: Traci Eddings was an outsider who was not rich enough to vacation at The Saint. She worked there instead and married the boss’s son. Now, years later, she is a widow and trying to bring the hotel back to the glory of its heyday. With the help of summer employees (including her estranged best friend’s daughter), she will have to overcome the memories of a tragic drowning at the hotel and financial problems. This book from the May 2024 book releases is perfect for our Hotel Books.
Plot: In a grand English country house you will find three rich wives, one American Divorcee, two tycoons, two miniature winter dogs, a butler, and enough drama to make you laugh out loud in this pick from the May 2024 book releases. Welcome to the Bottoms, a trip you will not forget!
Plot: Ava, Madison, and Chelsea are reuniting on the Italian coast for Ava’s Wedding. Their careers have sent them in different directions and this wedding may be their last chance to heal old wounds. Will they be able to keep their friendship and move forward? This is a perfect book from the May 2024 book releases for our list of books about friendship or books set in Italy.
Plot: This is a family drama from the May 2024 book releases we cannot wait to read it. The three peacock sisters used to be the best of friends but their secrets have driven them apart. Now, Sylvie is getting married again. She is a librarian who dreams of escaping into her books. When Cleao and Emma show up to the wedding (at a castle estate in England), the three sisters will have to find the courage to move forward- especially when their toxic mother arrives at the wedding.
Plot: This looks like a juicy, scheming story filled with murder, lies, and sex from Kevin Kwan. In this pick from the May 2024 book releases, Rufus Leung Gresham must seduce a wealthy woman to save his family from ruin. Their seemingly unlimited funds have been squandered. When a volcano erupts at the wedding, and a hot mic exposes a secret affair, everything seems to be going up in flames.
Shanghailanders by Juli Min
Genre: Futuristic Fiction
Plot: This debut novel from the May 2024 book releases follows Leo Yang, his Japanese French Wife, and their two eldest children back in time. The story begins in 2040 and slowly rewinds to 2014. This is a family saga that is unlike anything we have read before.
Genre: Feel Good Fiction
Plot: This looks like an amazing feel-good book from the May 2024 book releases. Joe-Nathan is neurodivergent and lives his life being a good friend, following the rules, and following the advice his mother writes for him in notebooks. He learns that he can do the hardest things with the help of good friends.
For more contemporary fiction books like these, check out our ultimate list for dozens of recommendations.
May 2024 Book Releases: Historical Fiction
Genre: Historical Fiction
Plot: We love Natalie Jenner and cannot wait to read this pick from the May 2024 book releases. In 1955, Vivian Lowery had her play on stage in London’s West End. When the play fails, Vivien goes to Itlay to explore cinema and find a future for herself while overcoming the loss of her fiance in the war.
Plot: This book from the May 2024 book releases is a story of Hollywood glamour and wartime heroism. In 2005 Sienna Hayes, a budding director, discovers the dark and daring past of legendary actress Lena Browning (formerly Bina Blonski). From the Warsaw Ghetto’s struggles against Nazis to Lena’s rise in Hollywood, the novel intertwines a narrative of survival, sacrifice, and a quest for justice.
Genre: Historical Fiction
Plot: This historical fiction pick from the May 2024 book releases is a coming-of-age story on the British seaside in 1919. Constance has been asked to leave her house and job now that the men have returned from war and must relocate. When she encounters Poppy and her Ladies’ Motorcycle Club. She also meets Harris, Poppy’s brother home injured in battle from the war. We cannot wait to read this book.
Genre: Historical Fiction
Plot: This historical Fiction is based on the true story of Jessie Carson, the American librarian who brought children’s libraries to France. In 1918, Jessie took a leave of absence from the NY Public Library System to go to France and help rebuild before she disappeared.
In 1987, an NYPL librarian comes across a reference to Jessie and becomes intrigued. We cannot wait to read this pick from the new May 2024 book releases.
Genre: Historical Fiction
Plot: Eilis Lacey is married to Tony Fiorella. She is Irish, he is Italian and they live on a cul-de-sac with Tony’s entire large family. When an Irishman shows up at their house one day declaring that his wife is pregnant with Tony’s child, her life is turned upside down. He informs her he will not raise the child and will be giving it to her. This family drama from the May 2024 book releases is a story of marriage, secrets, and home.
May 2024 Book Releases: Most Anticipated Fantasy/ Sci-fi
The Last Murder at the End of the World by Stuart Turton
Genre: Sci-fi Mystery Thriller
Plot: Nobody does a twist and a puzzle like Stuart Turton and we cannot wait for this book from the May 2024 book releases. The world has been destroyed by a fog and all that is left is one perfect island with 122 villagers and three scientists. When one of the scientists is found dead, they must all solve the murder within 92 hours of the fog will come to the island. The catch? All of their memories have been wiped clean.
Plot: Ganga is the goddess of the river who is cursed to be human until she fulfills the obligations of the curse to regain her true form again. She marries King Shantanu and is on the verge of lifting the curse but, she will have to leave her infant son behind. We cannot wait for this pick from the May 2024 book releases.
Genre: Time Travel Romance
Plot: A civil servant is offered a huge salary to work for a government ministry gathering people from across time. Her job is to work with “the bridge”, a man thought to have died in 1847. He is shocked by all the differences in people and technology. But soon, the two fall in love and she must question what the Ministry is actually trying to prove. We cannot wait to read this pick from the May 2024 book releases.
Plot: This fantasy from Veronica Roth is a story of witches, monsters, curses, and knights. Dymittr is a Knight who splits his soul to make his sword. Ala is cursed to die the same death as her mother unless she can stop the curse. When Dymitr offers a solution to Ala, she accepts without knowing what he really is.
Genre: Historical Fantasy
Plot: Marigold has come to the Isle of Innisfree to train as the next Honey Witch. With the magic comes a price- nobody can fall in love with the Honey Witch. When Lottie shows up on her doorstep, Marigold tries to prove that the magic is real but soon starts to feel things she never thought possible. If they fall in love will it destroy everything?
If fantasy books are your favorite books, then these are the perfect book lists for you. We carefully divided them into sub-genres.
Most Anticipated Thrillers and Mysteries for May 2024
Plot: This is an isolation thriller from one of the best there is. Five couples participating in a game shoe are trapped together on an island when a storm comes in. They are cut off from everyone, and their phones don’t work, but that is the least of their worries. A killer is stalking them as well.
Plot: Detective Chelsey Calhoun gets a call that Ellie Black, a teenager who disappeared years ago has returned. Ellie will not say where she has been or what happened but Chelsey must find answers to heal her own trauma of her missing sister who never came home. This page-turning thriller from the May 2024 book releases is a twisty ride and a must-read.
Love Thrillers? We created this list and carefully divided it by sub-genre. These will definitely keep you on your toes.
Love Mysteries? We created this list and carefully divided it by sub-genre for anyone who lives a good mystery as much as we do.
Romance: May 2024 Book Releases
Plot: We are so excited to read this amazing fake dating romance from the queens of romance themselves, Christina Lauren. Anna thought that she had divorced West after they graduated UCLA. Now, three years later, West needs to contact his not ex-wife and pretend they are still happily married to receive a huge inheritance. Can Anna survive in the world of his toxic family and does he want to chance them breaking her beautiful spirit? This pick from the May 2024 book releases is already on our TBR.
Plot: We love Carley Fortune’s wonderful style of writing and her perfect love stories. This book is expected to be released May 7th, 2024 and we cannot wait to get our hands on it.
Lucy heads to Prince Edward Island as a tourist and has an immediate connection with the local who shows her around. It is only after their amazing night together that she realizes he is also her best friend’s little brother. They agree that can never happen again but, can they actually stick to that when their chemistry is undeniable?
Plot: Will the fifth time be a charm in this Second Chance romance? Olivia and Wes’s marriage is over when she returns to her family home in the Hamptons. She is there to help her father and sisters pack up the family estate and sell it to bail them out of financial problems. The only thing that gives her butterflies is the thought of seeing her ex and the love of her life Fred. We cannot wait to read this pick from the May 2024 book releases.
If you love all things romance, then this is the list for you! We have this list carefully divided by sub-genres like second-chance romance books, romcoms, and more.
May 2024: Best Non-Fiction Book Releases
Plot: This memoir from the spring 2024 book releases is from a beloved actor who talks about his years in Hollywood and how he balanced his professional and personal lives. Selleck talks about his childhood, his career, his A-list friends, and family.
Best YA May 2024 Book Releases
Genre: YA Historical Fiction
Plot: Inspired by the real-life Patterson family, this sequel from the May 2024 book releases has been much anticipated. The lives of Olivia Davenport, Helen Davenport, Ruby Tremaine, and Amy Rose Shepherd will all change during the summer of 1910.
Plot: This pick from the May 2024 book releases is the second book in the Campus Diaries series which is set in the same world as Briar U. We cannot wait to read it.
We LOVE to support independent bookstores. You can shop our entire list of New books for May 2024 on bookshop.org
Are you looking for all the new book releases for 2023 & 2024? We have them all in one place.