Fans of The Martian won't want to miss Weir's long-awaited return to his trademark action-packed, first-person narrative. When Ryland Grace awakens as the only surviving member of a last-chance interstellar mission, he must try to save the Earth with no memories of the threat he faces or how he came to be there. Offering a new spin on first contact, this book is weird, funny, and full of intriguing scientific mysteries and on-the-fly problem-solving.
A human and an alien on opposing sides of a galactic conflict while away their days selling alien liquor at a pub in a technophobic British enclave--but that's only the beginning of Skyward Inn, a book that over the course of its 200-some pages finds room for meditations on Brexit, colonialism, difficult parent-child relationships, fraught male adolescence, freakish body horror, and an endgame scenario that rivals Arthur C. Clarke's Childhood's End in scope, while having it beat for prose style and characterization. If you're a fan of Le Guin, Butler, or Vandermeer, or even have a soft spot for Du Maurier's Jamaica Inn, this is the best recent SF novel you likely haven't read.
A Darker Shade of Magic is a combination of immersive fantasy and historical fiction that never feels forced. Taking place in not one, not two--but four versions of London, and with a hefty dose of magic, it has something for everyone. Schwab's world is so lush, and her characters--including an aspiring pirate--are so likeable and complex, that I was rooting for all of them.