PEOPLE's Best Books of June 2024: Hotly-Anticipated Catherine Newman and Claire Lombardo Novels and More Must-Reads

See our picks for the best books of the month, including thrillers, historical fiction and new celebrity memoirs

PEOPLE
PEOPLE's picks for the best books of June 2024

Family drama goes to the beach, a child hero goes missing, and an idyllic life is not as it seems  — here are PEOPLE's picks for the best books of June 2024.

'Sandwich' by Catherine Newman

<p>Harper</p> 'Sandwich' by Catherine Newman

Harper

'Sandwich' by Catherine Newman

This delightful book just begs to get sand between its pages. Rocky lives for her family’s annual trip to their ramshackle Cape Cod rental with her husband, Nick, their nearly grown kids and her aging parents. But this year one of her kids has brought a partner along, and a secret threatens to explode like one of Rocky’s menopausal mood swings. It’s a beautiful testament to the way decisions can reverberate down the decades and into the delicate future.

'All the Colors of the Dark' by Chris Whitaker

<p>Crown</p> 'All the Colors of the Dark' by Chris Witaker

Crown

'All the Colors of the Dark' by Chris Witaker

In a small Missouri town in 1975, Patch, 13, saves a local girl from an attacker but then goes missing himself, until his devoted friend Saint finds him. Spanning 30 years, their tale melds tense suspense with a powerful exploration of devotion, obsession and love. — Robin Micheli

'Same As It Ever Was' by Claire Lombardo

<p>Doubleday</p> 'Same As It Ever Was' by Claire Lombardo

Doubleday

'Same As It Ever Was' by Claire Lombardo

Julia Ames has a loving family and a home in the Chicago suburbs. When the reappearance of an old friend coincides with her son’s wedding, Julia’s life is thrown into upheaval in this masterful novel from the author of The Most Fun We Ever Had.

'Lula Dean's Little Library of Banned Books' by Kristen Miller

<p>William Morrow </p> 'Lula Dean's Little Library of Banned Books' by Kristen Miller

William Morrow

'Lula Dean's Little Library of Banned Books' by Kristen Miller

When the books Lula is campaigning to get banned show up in her Little Free Library, it sets off a cascade of consequences in this sneakily smart novel.

'God Bless You, Otis Spunkmeyer' by Joseph Earl Thomas

<p>Grand Central Publishing</p> 'God Bless You, Otis Spunkmeyer' by Joseph Earl Thomas

Grand Central Publishing

'God Bless You, Otis Spunkmeyer' by Joseph Earl Thomas

A Black former Army medic, EMS worker and doctoral student is trying to survive in Philly, despite all of the odds stacked against him. A lyrical treat that will stick with you.

'How to Age Disgracefully' by Clare Pooley

<p>Pamela Dorman Books</p> 'How to Age Disgracefully' by Clare Pooley

Pamela Dorman Books

'How to Age Disgracefully' by Clare Pooley

In this uproarious romp, senior citizens join up with daycare residents (plus their carers and one dog) to save a community center. Hilarious hijinks ensue.

'All Friends are Necessary' by Tomas Moniz

'All Friends are Necessary' by Tomas Moniz
'All Friends are Necessary' by Tomas Moniz

How do you recast your life while dealing with grief? When bisexual Efren “Chino” Flores loses his baby and his marriage, he leaves Seattle for San Francisco, drowning in sorrow and desperate to recover. With a little help from his friends and his community, he slowly realizes all the good that still remains for him, from books and music to new sexual adventures and becoming part of a surprising family. Not only absolutely irresistible but unforgettably profound. — Caroline Leavitt

'Consent' by Jill Ciment

'Consent' by Jill Ciment
'Consent' by Jill Ciment

In 1971, a 16-year-old art student developed a crush on her fortysomething teacher. He later left his wife for her, and they got married. Ciment documented her unusual marriage in her 1996 memoir Half a Life, but today she sees it all a bit differently. Frank, provocative and deeply compelling. — Marion Winik

'The Uptown Local' by Cory Leadbeater

'The Uptown Local' by Cory Leadbeater
'The Uptown Local' by Cory Leadbeater

This poignant debut follows aspiring novelist Cory Leadbeater, who thinks he’s escaped a dead-end life by landing a job as Joan Didion’s assistant. But proximity to literary greatness does not bestow it, and Didion can’t exorcise his demons; Cory must do that himself. — Theo Munger

'The Switch' by Lily Samson

'The Switch' by Lily Samson
'The Switch' by Lily Samson

When Elena and Adam house-sit in a posh neighborhood, they meet the enigmatic Sophia and Finn. But their friendship takes a dark turn in this sexy, seductive thriller.

'Assassins Anonymous' by Rob Hart

'Assassins Anonymous' by Rob Hart
'Assassins Anonymous' by Rob Hart

In this surprising novel, Mark is a retired killer in a 12-step program to keep clean. Then he’s attacked and forced to find out whodunit.

'Evocation' by S.T. Gibson

'Evocation' by S.T. Gibson
'Evocation' by S.T. Gibson

As psychic prodigy-turned-attorney David nears 30, the devil wants to collect an ancient debt. The only person David can turn to is his ex and rival in this delightful series starter.

'Resurrection' by Danielle Steel

'Resurrection' by Danielle Steel
'Resurrection' by Danielle Steel

Darcy Gray seemingly has it all — a successful career as an influencer, a loving husband and twin daughters who are beginning their lives abroad. When her world is unexpectedly upturned after a trip to Rome, Darcy flies to Paris, where her new adventure involves an aging film star, a widowed engineer and the possibility of a fresh start. Another gripping portrait from the bestselling author.

'The Friday Afternoon Club' by Griffin Dunne

'The Friday Afternoon Club: A Family Memoir' by Griffin Dunne
'The Friday Afternoon Club: A Family Memoir' by Griffin Dunne

As the son of journalist Dominick Dunne, and the nephew of writers John Gregory Dunne and Joan Didion, Griffin Dunne grew up surrounded by celebrity. The TV and film veteran now looks back on his famed family's history and tragedy, balancing heartbreak with humor in this revelatory new memoir.

Related: Griffin Dunne Says Friend Carrie Fisher 'Lived For Every Lurid Detail' of His Sexual Encounters (Exclusive)

'Entrances and Exits' by Michael Richards

'Entrances and Exits' by Michael Richards
'Entrances and Exits' by Michael Richards

Following a racist outburst in 2006 at the Laugh Factory, the Seinfeld star is stepping back into the public eye — and opening up about his own struggles along the road to fame — in his debut memoir.

Related: Seinfeld's Michael Richards Says Racist Laugh Factory Rant Made Him Face His Insecurities: 'The Damage Was Inside of Me' (Exclusive)

'Eruption' by Michael Crichton and James Patterson

'Eruption' by Michael Crichton and James Patterson
'Eruption' by Michael Crichton and James Patterson

When Jurassic Park author Michael Crichton died in 2008, he left behind an unfinished manuscript. After 15 years, his widow, Sherri, finally found the right person to finish it: bestselling author James Patterson. The book takes place on the Big Island of Hawaii, in which both a volcanic eruption and more human-focused forces threaten disaster.

“If someone you admire passes, you go, ‘I just want some more,'" Patterson tells PEOPLE of why he got involved in the project. "In this case, I wanted to find out how the story turned out, so it had to be written.”

Related: James Patterson Calls Completing Michael Crichton’s Final Novel ‘One of the Best Things I’ve Done’ (Exclusive)

'Soldier Sailor' by Claire Kilroy

'Soldier Sailor' by Claire Kilroy
'Soldier Sailor' by Claire Kilroy

Besotted with her infant son, the woman who narrates this searing, spellbinding novel is also struggling to cope. “This isn’t postnatal depression,” she tells her checked-out husband. “This is life-is-s--- depression. . . . I miss my old life like I’d miss a lover.” With the urgency of a thriller and the intimacy of a memoir, the book explores the fever dream that is new motherhood — and the disproportionate parenting burdens that can wreak havoc on a marriage. — Kim Hubbard

'There Is No Ethan' by Anna Akbar

'There Is No Ethan' by Anna Akbar
'There Is No Ethan' by Anna Akbar

In 2011, sociologist Anna Akbari matched with the charismatic Ethan Schuman on OkCupid. But he could never seem to meet IRL. As she compared notes with other women who “met” Ethan online, a riveting tale of women using their combined power to unmask a con artist emerged. — Mary Pols

'Shelterwood' by Lisa Wingate

'Shelterwood' by Lisa Wingate
'Shelterwood' by Lisa Wingate

In 1909 Oklahoma, Ollie, 11, helps a Choctaw girl escape abuse. Decades later, in 1990, a new park ranger named Valerie finds a deadly secret. A sweeping tale about little-known history.

'Malas' by Marcela Fuentes

'Malas' by Marcela Fuentes
'Malas' by Marcela Fuentes

This luminous debut moves like a movie. Pilar Aguirre’s family gets cursed in 1951, and 40 years later, Lulu Muñoz forms a bond with a stranger that may change everything.

'The Ballad of Jacquotte Delahaye' by Briony Cameron

'The Ballad of Jacquotte Delahaye' by Briony Cameron
'The Ballad of Jacquotte Delahaye' by Briony Cameron

A thrilling, swashbuckling story of a young Santo Domingo shipwright’s rise to notoriety as the first female pirate captain of the Caribbean.

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