21 Books We Want to Read in 2024

Being an intern at Lilith means being surrounded by conversations about books — the books we love, the books we disagree about, and the books we can’t wait to get our hands on.

As a new year approaches, we are waiting in anticipation for all the exciting new books that will come with it — from queer time-traveling folklorish fantasies to reproductive health guidebooks, and everything in between. Did we miss some that we should cover in 2024? Let us know at info@lilith.org!


Dear Edna Sloane by Amy Shearn

(Red Hen Press, $18.95)

Edna Sloane was an up-and-coming author in New York’s vibrant 1980s literature scene, until she disappeared and her work was largely disregarded. That is until decades later, when Seth Edwards sees his own path to success in rediscovering it. Dear Edna Sloane is “a novel infused with insights and meditations about what our cultural obsession with the ‘next big thing’ does to literature, and what it means to be a creative person in the world.”

City of Laughter by Temim Fruchter

(Grove Hardcover, $27.00)

Jewish folklore, queerness, and intergenerational secrets are the starting point for queer Orthodox writer Temim Fruchter’s debut novel, City of Laughter. Shiva Margolin, a student of Jewish folklore, jumps at the opportunity to visit her family’s ancestral home in Roshpitz, Poland, while reeling from her first queer heartbreak. What she discovers reveals secrets that have been kept for generations, and complex questions about her family’s past, present, and future. 

In Universes by Em North

(Harper, $26.99)

The latest installment in a recent rise of multiverse media, In Universes centers a queer physicist who travels through time and space in search of a universe where they can authentically be themself. A story about queerness, the fluidity of friendship, and quantum mechanics, “In Universes insists on the transgressive power of hope even in the darkest of times.”

A Brutal Design by Zachary Solomon 

(Lanternfish Press, $19.00)

After losing both his parents during the violent fascist takeover of his home country, Samuel Zelnik receives an unexpected path to safety: moving to and working in the utopian city of Duma. As an architecture student himself, Samuel is in awe of the city’s dramatic design, but the architecture quickly begins to reveal the dark truth about what’s really happening in Duma. 

Fruit of the Dead by Rachel Lyon

(Scribner, $28.00)

In Fruit of the Dead, Cory, an eighteen-year-old camp counselor, receives an offer she can’t refuse: to spend the summer on a luxury private island with the father of one of her campers. When Cory’s mother soon realizes that her daughter is losing control, she journeys across land and sea in an epic attempt to rescue her. Greek mythology enthusiasts will especially fall for this modern retelling of the myth of Persephone and Demeter. 

Housemates by Emma Copley Eisenberg

(Hogarth, $29.00)

In Emma Eisenberg’s new novel, two Philadelphia artists and housemates embark on a road trip through rural Pennsylvania, and fall into all sorts of conversations with strange and interesting people along the way. “Housemates is a warm and insightful coming-of-age story of youth and freedom, a glorious celebration of queer life, and how art and love might save us all.”

Rachel Weiss’s Group Chat by Lauren Applebaum

(Grand Central)

Rachel Weiss thinks she has it all figured out. That is, until her best friends start ghosting her, and her mom won’t stop trying to set her up with the arrogant tech bro next store. In this “Jewish, millennial version of Pride and Prejudice with Broad City vibes,” Rachel struggles to find love, maintain friendship, and build the life she truly wants. 

The Hebrew Teacher by Mara Arad

(New Vessel Press, $17.95)

In The Hebrew Teacher, three Israeli women lead parallel lives, as they immigrate to the United States and struggle to overcome their respective crises. Israeli writer Maya Arad’s heroines – Ilana, Miriam, and Efrat – each work to overcome generational gaps in pursuit of the truth. 

The Familiar by Leigh Bardugo 

(Flatiron Books, $26.99)

Best-selling author Leigh Bardugo returns with a historical fantasy set in Inquisition-era Madrid. The Familiar tells the story of Luzia Cotado, a girl who has a talent for making little miracles happen. As Luzia begins to rise through the ranks of this magical world, she is forced to reckon with the fear that a revelation of her Jewish identity will topple everything she has been working towards. 

Help Wanted by Adelle Waldman

(W.W. Norton, $28.99)

The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P. author pivoted away from the romantic foibles of the Brooklyn literary set to explore the rivalries, ambitions and foibles of a varied cast of characters working shifts in “Movement” at a big box store in upstate New York.

Displaced Persons: Stories by Joan Leegant

(New American Press)

Displaced Persons: Stories, will be coming out next spring. The collection by Elegant, who came to writing late in life and deeply engages with Jewish themes, won the 2002 New American Fiction Prize, judged by Weike Wang.

The Singer Sisters by Sarah Seltzer

(Flatiron Books, $28.99)

Lilith’s very own Executive Editor Sarah Seltzer has her debut novel coming out this year, and her colleagues cannot wait to read! In The Singer Sisters, an 90s alt-rock musician and her 60s folk legend mother negotiate their complex relationship through art, love, and family secrets. Ultimately, the book asks a poignant question: what do women artists need to sacrifice for success? 


Nearly Departed: Adventures in Loss, Cancer, and Other Inconveniences by Gila Pfefer

(The Experiment LLC, $27.95)

By 30 years old, Gila Pfefer had lost both of her parents to cancer. Set against the backdrop of Staten Island’s Orthodox Jewish community, this heartfelt and dark-humored memoir recounts the tragic losses she experienced, and the choices she made to stay alive despite the odds. 

“You Should Be Grateful”: Stories of Race, Identity, and Transracial Adoption by Angela Tucker

(Beacon Press, $17.95)

Throughout her childhood, transracial adoptee Angela Tucker often heard phrases like, “Your parents are so amazing for adopting you. You should be grateful!” Now, in her new book, Tucker challenges the fairy-tales of transracial adoption, and shares the full, complex lives of adoptees like herself. Part memoir and part historical account, we will all have a lot to learn from these stories. 

The Secret Mind of Bertha Pappenheim: The Woman Who Invented Freud’s Talking Cure by Gabriel Brownstein

(PublicAffairs, $30.00)

In 1880, Bertha Pappenheim was diagnosed with hysteria – and worked with Sigmund Freud’s mentor to develop “the talking cure.” Years later, Freud appropriated Pappenheim’s ideas to develop his own theory of psychoanalysis, setting the foundation for the discipline of psychology today. In his much-anticipated book, Gabriel Brownstein excavates Bertha Pappenheim’s life, finally telling the full story of this extraordinary feminist whose work continues to impact countless patients today. 

The Place of All Possibility by Rabbi Adina Allen

(Ayin Press, $19.95)

Rabbi Adina Allen, the co-founder and director of the Jewish Studio Project, offers her profound insights about how we can use sacred Jewish texts as a contemporary guide to enriching our own creative practices. Complete with interactive exercises, “The Place of All Possibility is for all people—from any tradition or none—who want to seed a world of imagination, abundance, and joy.”

It’s Not Hysteria: Everything You Need to Know About Your Reproductive Health (but Were Never Told) by Dr. Karen Tang

(Flatiron Books, $30.99)

Dr. Karen Tang is on a mission to make sure patients are informed and ready to advocate for their reproductive health needs – especially when everything from abortion to gender-affirming care is under attack. It’s Not Hysteria will be an essential new resource to educate and empower women and those assigned female at birth to take control of their health. 

YA/Children’s Books:

The Wilderness of Girls by Madeline Claire Franklin

(Zando Young Readers, $19.99)

Just out of foster care, Rhi’s new job at a wildlife preserve leads to her discovery of four feral and magical girls who live in the wilderness – and they believe Rhi is one of them. In The Wilderness of Girls, “Madeline Claire Franklin crafts a gripping exploration of how the world teaches young girls to cage their wildness–and what happens when they claw themselves free.”

The Lumbering Giants of Windy Pines by Mo Netz

(Clarion Books, $18.99)

11-year-old Jerry Blum is used to staying in run-down motels while her mom picks up housekeeping work in a small town. But, when her mom disappears from the Slumbering Giant motel, Jerry and her new friends – both real and imagined – start to search for her missing mom, and uncover dark and surprising secrets along the way. 

Time and Time Again by Chatham Green

(Bloomsbury USA, $19.99)

Phoebe Mendel is stuck in a time loop, where every day is boring, monotonous, and exactly the same. That is, until her childhood crush, Jess, is thrust into the time loop right along her. A story about queerness, chronic illness, and adapting to change, this YA debut is perfect for romance lovers of all ages. 

Sophie’s Monster Goes to Shul by Sandy Asher, illustrated by Alexandra Colombo

(Kar-Ben Publishing, $14.24)

In this adorably illustrated picture book, Sophie takes the monster in her closet to shul with her. When she uses her imagination to write a story about the monster, he doesn’t seem so scary anymore.