10 Highly Anticipated Books Coming Out This Fall

This fall is going to be one for the books — literally. There is an amazing number of great novels being published in the next few months, from favorite writers and debut authors alike. We winnowed through the upcoming releases to pick the ten books we’re most excited to read.

Sarah Schmidt

See What I Have Done

Lizzie Borden is having a moment, and her moment is in this debut novel by Australian writer Sarah Schmidt. The story of Lizzie Borden, who brutally murdered her parents in their Massachusetts home in 1892, has become immortalized in true crime history. This fictionalized account of the murders switches between the perspectives of Lizzie herself, her older sister, the housemaid, and a stranger, in a story that promises to keep you turning pages quickly until the end.

Release Date: August 1, 2017

Margaret Wilkerson Sexton

A Kind of Freedom

In her first novel, Margaret Wilkerson Sexton traces three generations of a family in New Orleans, from a budding romance in the 1940s to the couple’s grandchildren living through Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Over 70 years, the family experiences World War II, the Jim Crow laws, and the economic downturn of the 1980s, and we as readers get to travel along not only on the family’s journey but also that of the city of New Orleans, which becomes a character in its own right.

Release Date: August 8, 2017

Brandy Colbert

Little & Lion

If you love a good young adult novel (or even just a good novel), Little & Lion is poised to be a breakout hit this fall. The teenage narrator, Suzette, returns to Los Angeles after attending boarding school in New England. Her stepbrother has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, and Suzette finds herself developing a new crush — on her brother’s girlfriend. The book has been praised for its depiction of mental illness and diverse cast of characters.

Release Date: August 8, 2017

Kamila Shamsie

Home Fire

This “modern-day Antigone” by Pakistani author Kamila Shamsie has already been long-listed for the 2017 Man Booker Prize. In the book, Isma leaves London for graduate school in America, but even across an ocean, she can’t escape her family worries. The story takes a dramatic turn when Isma encounters the son of a powerful political family on campus at Amherst. Bonus: Its cover is extremely Instagrammable.

Release Date: August 15, 2017

Ayobami Adebayo

Stay With Me

At the risk of sounding cliche, Ayobami Adebayo is truly a stunning new voice in fiction. This novel — about a married couple struggling with infertility — is told from dual perspectives, and Adebayo achieves the rare feat of making each voice just as powerful, nuanced, and sympathetic as the other. The setting of late 20th-century Nigeria introduces a specific set of cultural norms and traditions that add an additional layer to the novel.

Release Date: August 22, 2017

Jesmyn Ward

Sing, Unburied, Sing

You may recognize Jesmyn Ward’s name as the editor of last year’s essay collection on race, The Fire This Time. Her new title is her first fiction novel since her National Book Award-winning Salvage the Bones in 2010, hence the wide anticipation. Sing, Unburied, Sing tells the story of Leonie, a drug addict in Mississippi who sets out with her children on a journey across the state when their father is released from prison.

Release Date: September 5, 2017

Celeste Ng

Little Fires Everywhere

Fans of Celeste Ng’s breakout debut Everything I Never Told You will not be disappointed by her sophomore novel. Little Fires Everywhere opens with a house fire in 1990s Shaker Heights, a planned community in the Cleveland suburbs. Beneath the veneer of acceptance and tolerance in this purposefully integrated community, tensions begin to simmer after a nomadic single mother and her daughter rent a house from the well-to-do Richardson family. When a wealthy white couple enters a custody dispute for an American-born Chinese infant, this quiet community is forced to face uncomfortable issues in the court of public opinion.

Release Date: September 12, 2017

Zoe Whittall

The Best Kind of People

Rape culture is something we hear about a lot but don’t talk about enough. In this new novel from Canadian writer Zoe Whittall, the focus is not on the victims nor on the accused, but rather on the people on the periphery of a sexual misconduct investigation: specifically, the wife, daughter, and son of the suspect. When a typical upstanding member of the community is accused of sex crimes, his family is caught between those who believe the charges and therefore despise them, and those who are willing to publicly exploit rape culture stereotypes in an effort to prove his innocence.

Release Date: September 19, 2017

Rupi Kaur

The Sun and Her Flowers

If fitting a novel into your fall schedule sounds intimidating, try a collection of poetry. “Instapoet” Rupi Kaur self-published her first collection, Milk and Honey, back in 2014 before signing with a publisher and selling one and a half million copies. Her follow-up collection of poems and illustrations, The Sun and Her Flowers, is already getting major buzz.

Release Date: October 3, 2017

Carmen Maria Machado

Her Body and Other Parties

Another great alternative to a full-length novel is a book of short stories. Her Body and Other Parties is the highly anticipated debut collection by Carmen Maria Machado, an oft-award-nominated writer and essayist. The tales have been described as horror, fantasy, and science fiction, and one story titled “Especially Heinous” promises to reimagine episodes of Law and Order: SVU.

Release Date: October 3, 2017

Which book are you most excited to read this fall? Tell us in the comments below!


This article was originally published on August 8, 2017.

  • Christina

    Thanks for sharing! I’m almost done with my summer reading list and added a bunch of these to my “want to read” list!

  • Kay

    Great list! I don’t know if it is different in the states but “the best kind of people” by zoe whittall was released last year in Canada.

    • Hi Kay – You’re right! A few of these books have been released internationally already (including The Best Kind of People, See What I Have Done, and Stay With Me). The release dates listed here are just the U.S. releases. Did you read Whittall’s book already? If so, I’d love to hear what you thought!

      • Kay

        Oh ok, I guess i’m so use to things being release in the state first lol. Yes I have read it and I did really enjoy it. Very well written but depending on how you read the book the ending can be disappointing. I found it was a 50/50 split between the group of people who had read it.

        • Makes sense! And yes, I agree with assessment of the book. I think it would make a great book club book for that very reason! Glad you personally liked it. 🙂

  • Well my “to read” list just got a bit longer 😉 I am personally excited to read Little and Lion, Home Fire, Stay with Me, and the Best Kind of People. Also I am also super excited to read Moxi by Jennifer Mathieu!

    I just finished reading Rich People Problems by Kevin Kwan. It’s the final book in his Crazy Rich Asians trilogy and it was amazing! If anyone is looking for some late summer reads Kwan’s books are my recommendation.


    • Thanks, Sarah! I’m glad you’re excited about these books. 🙂 I haven’t gotten to Rich People Problems yet, but I listened to the first two books of the series on audio and they were amazing! I always recommend Kwan’s books to people who are just starting out with audiobooks. Thanks for sharing (and for the tip about Moxi)!

    • I LOVE his whole series! So fun!

  • Maria Tarar

    These sound great! Pre-ordered two of them – will report back!

  • So much to read and so little time!! lol

  • These books look so great, some really interesting reads! I can’t wait to buy them & add them to my huge pile of amazing books I have to read. I am so far behind but this makes me so excited!

    Holly from The Art of Being Holly x

  • Hattie Weber

    I just finished reading “A Stranger In The House” by Shari Lapena! So. Good.

  • I just finished Home Fire – so so good. Its only 276 and moves so fast that I finished it in less than a day!

    • And that ending!!!! 😀

      • Seriously!!!! I didn’t see it coming, but it was beautifully done. I really hope Reese Witherspoon buys the rights and turns it into a movie or HBO mini series – such strong female characters.