Look no further for your next read. The amount of great new books hitting shelves each month can be overwhelming but we’ve rounded up twelve of the buzziest books coming out this April—no matter what genre you’re interested in. Have you read any of these new releases? If not, you’ll want them on your TBR!

Afterlife by Julia Alvarez

This month Julia Alvarez is returning with her first adult novel in nearly 15 years. Afterlife follows Antonia Vega, a newly retired college English professor and immigrant from the Dominican Republic. Antonia is unmoored after the sudden death of her husband Sam and the disappearance of her older sister Izzy. Things take a turn when she discovers Estela, an undocumented pregnant teen seeking shelter in her garage. Antonia grapples with the concept of what we owe to ourselves and to others as she navigates grief, loss, and caring for Estela.

Pretty Things by Janelle Brown

An heiress and a con artist find their lives intertwined in this buzzy thriller. Nina learned everything she knows about crafting the perfect scam from her mother. Now Nina and her boyfriend Lachlan use those tricks to steal from rich kids in L.A. But when her mother’s diagnosed with cancer, Nina decides to go all in on one big payout to help her. The plan seems simple: Nina and Lachlan will travel to her ex Benny’s Lake Tahoe mansion to swipe the $1 million she knows is kept in a safe there. But when they arrive, they discover that Vanessa, Benny’s Instagram-influencer sister, has taken up residence and isn’t leaving any time soon.

Check, Please!: Sticks and Scones by Ngozi Ukazu

In need of a comfort read this month? Ngozi Ukazu has you covered with the second and final book in the Check, Please! series. College junior Bitty is only two hockey seasons away from saying goodbye to Samwell University. The two years between the start of his third year and graduation are packed with wins and losses, ups and downs with new teammates, and navigating his relationship with Jack, now a professional hockey player. As warm, sweet, and satisfying as a freshly baked pie, this is sure to please fans of the series and newcomers alike.

The Happy Ever After Playlist by Abby Jimenez

Sloan Monroe is piecing her life back together after losing her fiancé two years earlier. Adopting a dog wasn’t originally part of her plan, but she takes one look into Tucker’s puppy eyes and can’t resist taking him home. When her attempts to contact the dog’s owner fail, Sloan’s secretly thrilled. Taking care of Tucker gives her a new sense of purpose and things finally seem to be looking up, until she gets a call from Jason, Tucker’s owner. He’s a musician touring in Australia and once he returns home he wants his dog back. Sloan and Jason’s communications begin with check-ins on Tucker but quickly turn flirtatious. If you were as charmed as we were by Jimenez’s debut, you won’t want to miss The Happy Ever After Playlist.

Bonds of Brass by Emily Skrutskie

If you watched the most recent Star Wars trilogy and thought, “Finn and Poe should date” then this is the book for you. The Umber Empire ruthlessly rules the galaxy, demanding citizens join their ranks or perish. After his home was invaded, Ettian Nassun signed up for the Umber military academy, where he meets Gal Veres, his very attractive roommate. When it’s revealed that Gal is the heir to the Umber Empire, Ettian uses his skills as a pilot to help them both escape those who wish to see Gal dead. Ettian believes that Gal could change the empire for the better, but the growing rebellion isn’t willing to risk it. Skrutskie is delivering action, adventure, and romance in this new science fiction novel. Long live #stormpilot.

Conjure Women by Afia Atakora

Afia Atakora weaves together two narratives set on the same Southern plantation: one set before the Civil War featuring Miss May Belle, a conjure woman who uses her powers to help the enslaved women on the plantation; and one set after following her daughter Rue, who learned to be a midwife and healer from her mother. After Rue helps deliver a baby born with pale skin and mysterious black eyes, other children start to fall sick. Suddenly, rumors are spreading about Rue and some start to believe that she’s a witch. The town turns to pastor Bruh Abel for advice, and Rue isn’t certain if she can trust him to help her, especially if he uncovers the secret she’s been hiding from them all.

Incendiary by Zoraida Córdova

Zoraida Córdova’s duology starter is sure to spark the interest of YA fantasy fans. At the age of seven, Renata Convida was kidnapped by the king of Puerto Leones and forced to use her magical ability to extract memories from his prisoners. She was rescued two years later by Moria rebels, but they never fully learned to trust her. Now 17, a misstep leads her people into danger and Ren decides to strike out alone to save unit commander Dez, even though it means going back to the king’s palace.

Strike Me Down by Mindy Mejia

Mindy Mejia’s newest thriller takes readers into the world of professional kickboxing. Gregg Abbott and Logan Russo are a power couple. With his marketing skills and her kickboxing prowess, they’ve built Strike, a business that incorporates gyms, athletic wear, protein bars, and more. Their next venture is hosting a kickboxing tournament that boasts a prize of $20 million. When the money goes missing a week before the competition, forensic accountant Nora Trier is tapped in to track it down, while trying to hide her own personal connections to the company.

Island Affair by Priscilla Oliveras

Priscilla Oliveras is transporting readers to Key West this month with a romance that promises to enchant. When Sara Vance’s boyfriend stands her up for her family’s vacation, she knows she needs to find a replacement. The last thing she needs is her judgemental siblings making comments about her absentee boyfriend, in addition to their dismissal of her job as a social media influencer. She recruits local firefighter Luis Navarro to stand in as her fiancé. Between family diners and days in the sun, she finds that their fake relationship is resulting in real feelings.

The Lucky Ones by Liz Lawson

Liz Lawson’s debut novel chronicles the aftermath of a school shooting through the eyes of a survivor and the teen whose mother is defending the shooter in court. Hiding in the closet saved May’s life that day, but her twin brother didn’t make it and she’s struggling to cope. She agrees to accompany her friend Lucy to a band audition, which is where she meets Zach, whose friends abandoned him once his mom agreed to be the killer’s defense attorney. Through alternating chapters, Lawson explores their journeys through grief, anger, and healing.

The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires by Grady Hendrix

Take a trip back to the 90s in this supernatural thriller from Grady Hendrix. While struggling with her relationships with her husband and kids, Patricia Campbell finds solace and friendship in her neighborhood book club. The group of Charleston mothers bond over their obsessions with true crime and love of suspenseful stories. When strange things begin happening in their neighborhood, the group uses their sleuthing skills to look into the mysterious man who recently moved to town. Could he be connected to the recent string of missing children?

Sword in the Stars by Amy Rose Capetta and Cori McCarthy

The Once & Future duology comes to a close this month with Sword in the Stars. This sci-fi Arthurian retelling follows Ari, the latest reincarnation of King Arthur. Ari and Merlin must travel back in time to steal King Arthur’s Grail from Camelot, without disrupting the past. Easier said than done, especially when Merlin is aging backward with every spell cast. If they succeed, they’ll end the line of reincarnations once and for all. If they fail… well, let’s just say it won’t be good. Newcomers will want to start with book one, while existing fans can dive right in for a final journey with Ari and her knights.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, some publishers have rescheduled publication dates for certain books (read more here). The books above may be impacted after the publication of this article.

Kelly Gallucci

Kelly Gallucci is the Executive Editor of We Are Bookish, where she oversees the editorial content, offers book recommendations, and interviews authors and NetGalley members. When she's not working, Kelly can be found color coordinating her bookshelves, eating Chipotle, and watching way too many baking shows. She is a Gryffindor.

1 Comment
  1. A great list! I am currently waiting for The Lucky Ones, Diplomat of Uram, and Bonds of Brass. Those are my picks for April. I loved the article! Thanks.

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