45 Diverse Books Releasing in Summer 2020

Hi friends! Get ready, because this post is gonna be a little long, but I’m super excited for it because I’m gonna be talking about 45 (!!!) of my anticipated diverse book releases (middle grade, young adult, and adult) for this summer.

45 Diverse Books Releasing in Summer 2020

It’s ALWAYS important to support diverse books, and that’s something that I try to do on my blog (and should definitely be better at), because as bloggers we have the ability to influence people’s reading choices. By promoting diverse books, we not only help people find some really great books, but we also contribute publicity to books that don’t always get enough attention.

The main goal of the publishing industry is to make money (of course), so if we want publishers to increase representation for marginalized authors and stories, then we as people who are trying to be allies need to promote the heck out of those books, causing more readers to buy and borrow them and thereby showing publishers that those stories will be profitable to them.

(On a related note, highly recommend checking out/participating in the #blackoutbestsellerlist initiative started by Amistad Books!)

It’s also just really important for individual people to be reading diverse books, for many reasons! Highly recommend reading this essay by Nic Stone called “Don’t Just Read About Racism—Read Stories About Black People Living” and this one by Tricia Elam Walker entitled “Why Diverse Books Are Important for Everyone—Not Just Marginalized Kids.”

Also, reminder that for those of us who are trying to be allies to Black people and other marginalized groups, reading fictional stories written by and about them is important, but not enough on its own—we need to be reading nonfiction works about racism and oppression as well!

For this post, I’ll be focusing on fiction, but I just wanted to keep that in mind.

Anyway, all that is to say that I want to make more of an effort to use my platform here to promote diverse books as much as I possibly can! And to start, I’ve put together this post of 45 diverse books and books by marginalized authors that are releasing June-August of this year. I only wrote short descriptions of each since there are so many books, so make sure to click on the covers to read more on Goodreads.

I tried to include a variety of age ranges and genres, but the list is YA-heavy for sure since that’s most of what I read, and even within that category I’m sure there are books that I’ve missed, so please don’t hesitate to comment more books that should be on our radars!

Btw I’m linking up with Top Ten Tuesday this week, hosted by Jana @ That Artsy Reader Girl! (Though this is a lot more than ten books lol.)

June

A Song Below Water The Court of Miracles Where We Go From Here A Song of Wraiths and Ruin The Vanishing Half

A Song Below Water | Bethany C. Morrow| June 2nd | Contemporary Portland but with sirens and intersectional identity!

Genre: YA fantasy
Rep: Black main characters

The Court of Miracles | Kester Grant | June 2nd | The premise of this book sounds SO cool—Les Mis meets Six of Crows (!!!) (and I think there’s also something to do with The Jungle Book?) with post-French Revolution crime guilds.

Genre: YA historical fantasy
Rep: unsure of the specific rep but the author is a person of color!

Where We Go From Here | Lucas Rocha | June 2nd | This is about three gay young adults in Rio de Janiero and the effect of HIV on their lives, translated from Portuguese.

Genre: YA contemporary
Rep: gay main characters and LGBTQ+ side characters

A Song of Wraiths and Ruin | Roseanne A. Brown | June 2nd | West African-inspired fantasy (first in a duology) in which a princess and a refugee have to kill each other but then they fall in love.

Genre: YA fantasy
Rep: Black main and side characters

The Vanishing Half | Brit Bennett | June 2nd | Multi-generational story about twin sisters who run away and lead completely different lives—sounds a bit like Yaa Gyasi’s Homegoing (an incredible book!) but set completely between the 1950s and 1990s.

Genre: adult historical fiction
Rep: Black main characters

The Falling in Love Montage American as Paneer Pie All the Things We Never Knew Last Tang Standing The Invincible Summer of Juniper Jones

The Falling in Love Montage | Ciara Smyth | June 9th | Lesbian summer romance between a cynic and a rom-com fan.

Genre: YA contemporary romance
Rep: lesbian main characters

American as Paneer Pie | Supriya Kelkar | June 9th | An Indian-American girl confronts racism in her small town. (Also there’s lots of food!)

Genre: middle grade contemporary
Rep: Indian-American main character

All the Things We Never Knew | Liara Tamani | June 9th | Love story about basketball players described as perfect for fans of Elizabeth Acevedo, Jacqueline Woodson, and Jenny Han.

Genre: YA contemporary romance
Rep: Black main characters

Last Tang Standing | Lauren Ho | June 11th | Set in Singapore, a lawyer in her early 30’s navigates family pressures around marriage.

Genre: adult contemporary romance
Rep: Chinese-Malaysian main character

The Invincible Summer of Juniper Jones | Daven McQueen | June 16th | Coming of age friendship story about a biracial kid in 1955 Alabama.

Genre: YA historical fiction
Rep: biracial (Black and White) main character

I'll Be the One The Brave Mexican Gothic Love, Creekwood In the Role of Brie Hutchens...

I’ll Be the One | Lyla Lee | June 16th | Rom-com about K-Pop and body confidence!

Genre: YA contemporary romance
Rep: bisexual, plus-sized, Korean-American main character; bi and lesbian side characters

The Brave | James Bird | June 30th | Middle schooler who has OCD moves to a Native American reservation to live with his estranged mother.

Genre: middle grade magical realism
Rep: Native American (Ojibwe) main character who has OCD

Mexican Gothic | Silvia Moreno-Garcia | June 30th | Suspense novel set at an isolated mansion in 1950s Mexico.

Genre: adult historical fiction/horror
Rep: Mexican characters

Love, Creekwood | Becky Albertalli | June 30th | Epilogue novella to the Simonverse books about the characters’ lives in college! (And all of the money is going to the Trevor Project!!)

Genre: YA contemporary
Rep: LGBTQ+ and POC characters

In the Role of Brie Hutchens… | Nicole Melleby | June 30th | Eighth grade gay soap opera fan navigates family life and a Catholic school. Super excited to be on the blog tour for this, so keep an eye out for a review later this month!

Genre: middle grade contemporary
Rep: LGBTQ+ main character

July

The Voting Booth Cinderella is Dead Loveless Well-Behaved Indian Women Running

The Voting Booth | Brandy Colbert | July 7th | Romance and voting rights collide in this story set over the course of one day.

Genre: YA contemporary romance
Rep: Black main characters

Cinderella is Dead | Kalynn Bayron | July 7th | Feminist Cinderella spin-off with a Black, lesbian protagonist, set 200 years after the events of the original Cinderella.

Genre: YA fantasy
Rep: Black lesbian main character; gay and lesbian side characters

Loveless | Alice Oseman | July 9th | New novel from Alice Oseman with a fanfiction-loving protagonist, friendship, the saving of a Shakespeare society, and discussion of identity.

Genre: YA contemporary
Rep: aromantic-asexual main character; LGBTQ+ side characters

Well-Behaved Indian Women | Saumya Dave | July 14th | Multi-generational story about three women, their complex relationships, and the expectations put on them.

Genre: adult contemporary
Rep: Indian and Indian-American main characters

Running | Natalia Sylvester | July 14th | About a 15-year-old whose dad runs for president, and the complicated relationship between them that unfolds when she realizes that he’s not exactly who she thought he was.

Genre: YA contemporary
Rep: Cuban-American main character

The Extraordinaries Ghost Wood Song 10 Things I Hate About Pinky Trouble the Saints I Kissed Alice

The Extraordinaries | T.J. Klune | July 14th | Coming-of-age story about a fanfiction writer who’s crushing on a superhero, with dorkiness and parent relationships and friendship.

Genre: YA fantasy/romance
Rep: LGBTQ+ main character who has ADHD; LGBTQ+ side characters

Ghost Wood Song | Erica Waters | July 21st | Paranormal fantasy with family secrets and using a fiddle to raise ghosts.

Genre: YA fantasy
Rep: bisexual main character; lesbian side characters

10 Things I Hate about Pinky | Sandhya Menon | July 21st | Book #3 in the Dimple and Rishi series! I really need to catch up by reading the second book because this one, about summer fake dating in Cape Cod with a rebellious social justice warrior girl and a planning-obsessed boy, sounds so cute!!

Genre: YA contemporary romance
Rep: Indian-American main characters and side characters

Trouble the Saints | Alaya Dawn Johnson | July 21st | Magical WWII NYC with exploration of race via magic and an assassin protagonist! (Need I say more??? This sunds incredible.)

Genre: adult historical fantasy
Rep: Black man character

I Kissed Alice | Anna Birch | July 28th | Enemies-to-lovers f/f rom-com pitched as Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda meets Fangirl at an Alabama art school with the ‘anonymous online friends interact irl without knowing it’ trope.

Genre: YA contemporary romance
Rep: LGBTQ+ main characters (one of whom is bisexual I think)

Today Tonight Tomorrow This is My America The Friend Scheme

Today Tonight Tomorrow | Rachel Lynn Solomon | July 28th | Rival overachievers romance over the course of the last day of senior year. (With a Seattle setting! And an mc who secretly wants to write romance novels!)

Genre: YA contemporary romance
Rep: Jewish main characters

This is My America | Kim Johnson | July 28th | This book sounds so heartbreakingly good—the story of a 17-year-old girl who’s trying to get her innocent Black dad off of death row and also figure out what happened to cause her brother to go on the run from the police.

Genre: YA contemporary
Rep: Black main and side characters

The Friend Scheme | Cale Dietrich | July 28th | Fast-paced romance between the son of a mob leader and the son of a police commissioner.

Genre: YA contemporary romance
Rep: LGBTQ+ main characters

August

Prelude for Lost Souls The Black Kids The Girl and the Ghost Paola Santiago and the River of Tears Sia Martinez and the Moonlit Beginning of Everything

Prelude for Lost Souls | Helene Dunbar | August 1st | Small town + talking to dead people + a haunted piano.

Genre: YA fantasy
Rep: LGBTQ+ characters (unsure of specifics)

The Black Kids | Christina Hammonds Reed | August 4th | Novel about a high school senior caught up in the 1992 Rodney King Riots in LA that explores family, race, and class.

Genre: YA historical fiction
Rep: Black main and side characters

The Girl and the Ghost | Hanna Alkaf | August 4th | Darker middle grade about family and ghosts, inspired by Malaysian folk tales.

Genre: middle grade fantasy
Rep: Malaysian main character

Paola Santiago and the River of Tears | Tehlor Kay Mejia | August 4th | First in a new series from Rick Riordan Presents, about science and superstition and based on Mexican mythology.

Genre: middle grade fantasy
Rep: Latinx main and side characters

Sia Martinez and the Moonlit Beginning of Everything | Raquel Vasquez Gilliland | August 4th | The title and the cover evoke Ari & Dante and I am here for it!! But I am also expecting that this book will stand strong on its own, with discussions of deportation and also spaceships and aliens.

Genre: YA contemporary/fantasy/sci-fi (Goodreads can’t seem to make up its mind?? But the synopsis does have “genre-bending” in it…)
Rep: Mexican-American main character

A Map to the Sun Don't Ask Me Where I'm From Facing the Sun More Than Just a Pretty Face Vanessa Yu's Magical Paris Tea Shop

A Map to the Sun | Sloane Leong | August 4th | Girls playing basketball + friendship + the beach, in graphic novel form.

Genre: YA graphic novel
Rep: unsure of the specific rep, but the author is multiracial and the synopsis promises a “diverse and endearing group of teens”

Don’t Ask Me Where I’m From | Jennifer De Leon | August 4th | Boston-set contemporary about racism and code-switching with a Latinx mc at a predominantly White high school.

Genre: YA contemporary
Rep: Latinx main character

Facing the Sun | Janice Lynn Mather | August 4th | Story about four friends in the Caribbean experiencing changes after a hotel developer buys their community’s beach. (Compared to Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants!)

Genre: YA contemporary
Rep: Caribbean main characters (unsure of the specific rep, but the author is Black and Bahamian)

More Than Just a Pretty Face | Syed M. Masood | August 4th | Rom-com about an aspiring chef, pitched as perfect for fans of Becky Albertalli and Jenny Han. (I don’t know a whole lot about the book, but in researching for this post I’ve found that there seem to be mixed opinions on it from ownvoices reviewers, so I’d encourage you to read this review from the wonderful May @ My 1st Chapter.)

Genre: YA contemporary romance
Rep: Muslim and Asian main and side characters

Vanessa Yu’s Magical Paris Tea Shop | Roselle Lim | August 4th | Parisian antique market! Matchmaking! Divination! Family!

Genre: adult contemporary/magical realism/romance
Rep: Asian main and side characters

Lobizona Displacement A Place at the Table Star Daughter Elatsoe

Lobizona | Romina Garber | August 4th | Fantasy about a crime family, brujas, werewolves, and immigration, inspired by Argentinian folklore.

Genre: YA fantasy
Rep: undocumented, Argentinian main character

Displacement | Kiku Hughes | August 4th | Memoir-based time travel story about a girl whose grandmother was imprisoned in a Japanese internment camp.

Genre: middle grade magical realism graphic novel
Rep: Japanese-American main character

A Place at the Table | Saadia Faruqi & Laura Shovan | August 11th | Dual-POV story about sixth graders who meet at a cooking class.

Genre: middle grade contemporary
Rep: Pakistani-American, Muslim main character; Jewish main character; a main character’s mom has depression

Star Daughter | Shveta Thakrar | August 11th | Fantasy novel with family themes and a half-mortal, half-star protagonist, based on Hindu mythology and pitched to fans of Roshani Chokshi and Laini Taylor.

Genre: YA fantasy
Rep: Desi main character; story is based on Hindu mythology

Elatsoe | Darcia Little Badger | August 25th | Alternate America with magic and family and murder, where the main character can raise the ghosts of animals.

Genre: YA fantasy
Rep: Native American (Lipan Apache), asexual main character

Darius the Great Deserves Better Now That I've Found You

Darius the Great Deserves Better | Adib Khorram | August 25th | Sequel to the incredible Darius the Great is Not Okay!!

Genre: YA contemporary
Rep: biracial (Iranian and White), fat, LGBTQ+ main character who has depression; multiple Iranian side characters; Baha’i major character; major character with depression

Now That I’ve Found You | Kristina Forest | August 25th | A Hollywood aspirant, a famous grandma, and a trip around NYC with a cute musician!

Genre: YA contemporary romance
Rep: Black main character; all-POC cast

Let's Chat

If you read all the way through this, thank you! I hope you found some new books to add to your tbr. If you did, and you’re able to order or pre-order some of them, please support a Black-owned bookstore! (Here’s a directory for ones in the US, searchable by state.) Also please let me know in the comments if there are any more diverse books that you’re excited about!!

♥ Annie

45 Diverse Books Releasing in Summer 2020

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