8 Unique June Nonfiction Releases to Kickstart Your Summer

Prepare yourself for summer by adding these diverse upcoming nonfiction releases to your personal library.

New Release Non-Fiction Recommendations

If you are anything like me, you are probably wanting to avoid the summer heat. There’s just one problem: what do autumn lovers do during the summer? We read! Luckily for you, I have a list of upcoming nonfiction releases to build your summer reading collection.

When Women Ran Fifth Avenue: Glamour and Power at the Dawn of American Fashion by Julie Satow (June 4th)

Following the lives of three women — Hortense Odlum, Dorothy Shaver, and Geraldine Stutz — of the 20th century, Julie Satow merges fashion and feminism in a compelling story of how these businesswomen gave rise to the chic department stores we know today. Satow recaptures all of the drama and societal obstacles the three women had to face while revealing their trade secrets that made the fashion business a success.

When Women Ran Fifth Avenue: Glamour and Power at the Dawn of American Fashion - Satow, Julie; book cover.
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Odlum, Shaver, and Geraldine walked so that women today could run. Stories like theirs remind us how far society has come with women’s rights. If fashion is your passion, then this is the book to add to your library this summer.

Get Me Through the Next Five Minutes: Odes to Being Alive by James Parker (June 4th)

We might be trying to recover from a worldwide pandemic, struggling financially in this horrible economy, or even caught up in the battle of corrupt politicians, but have you stopped to think about how much you love your morning coffee? James Parker can help you take a step back from this shit-show of a world and take a much-needed breath of fresh air.

Get Me Through the Next Five Minutes: Odes to Being Alive - Parker, James; book cover.
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For years, Parker has written odes to celebrate the small things in life, things we forget about too often. With said odes, he has now created a unique self-help book that aids you in finding joy in your own life. I know society is going up in flames, and I know you all have been doing your best to improve the situation, but take it from me — you need a little break, and this book is just the tool to use to recharge your mental and emotional battery.

We Refuse: A Forceful History of Black Resistance by Kellie Carter Jackson (June 4th)

You know the saying, “You can’t fight fire with fire?” Well, Kellie Carter Jackson proves you can. In fact, the black community has been forced to fight fire for centuries, successfully, I may add. Jackson recounts untold stories of violent protests that have brought about social and human rights reform.

We Refuse: A Forceful History of Black Resistance - Carter Jackson, Kellie; book cover.
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While all of us wish protests could be peaceful, there have been an outstanding amount of times when violent oppression called for violent rebellion. With these tales of heroic individuals, Jackson hopes to open our eyes to how “black violence” rightfully changed the course of the world and how it may be utilized today.

Kinky History: A Rollicking Journey Through Our Sexual Past, Present, and Future by Esmé Louise James (June 18th)

Have you ever been asked, “What is your favorite book?” and have to rack your brain for any non-smutty, socially acceptable book in your personal library? I can promise you are not the only one. Thanks to Esmé Louise James, we can now be comforted by the knowledge that all of our ancestors were kinky freaks like us.

Kinky History: A Rollicking Journey Through Our Sexual Past, Present, and Future - James, Esmé Louise; book cover.
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James educates us with a history of sexual shenanigans, bizarre forms of birth control, and even dirty secrets of famous historical icons. Curious about Albert Einstein’s sex life? So am I. James can answer all of our intrusive questions. It’s time to destigmatize sex and open our minds to how bedtime mischief has transformed over the years.

Night Flyer: Harriet Tubman and the Faith Dreams of a Free People by Tiya Miles (June 18th)

We all know and love Harriet Tubman (if you don’t, you should). From books to movies, we have been able to honor the woman who defied oppression and personally freed seventy slaves (even more after she joined the Union Army).

Night Flyer: Harriet Tubman and the Faith Dreams of a Free People - Miles, Tiya; book cover.
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While we are all grateful for her representation on the big screen, Tiya Miles seeks to humanize Tubman by exploring her life, which was filled with pain, loss, and trials. Miles’ new book breaks down the “mythical hero” and allows readers to build a personal connection with the real-life woman who changed not only history but also led us to a more progressive society.

Hood Wellness: Tales of Communal Care from People Who Drowned on Dry Land by Tamela J. Gordon (June 18th)

Mental health awareness has finally taken the spotlight in society. In her upcoming release, Tamela J. Gordon dives into today’s issues surrounding the healthcare system as she tells the horrific stories of underrepresented communities who face mental illnesses.

Hood Wellness: Tales of Communal Care from People Who Drowned on Dry Land - Gordon, Tamela J.; book cover.
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Calling out police brutality, LGBTQ+ rights restrictions, and society’s exclusivity, Gordon intertwines humor and brutal truth to advocate for a more inclusive healthcare system. Summer is always a good time to step away from academics and work on self-education. I believe this book will be a tremendous start on your awareness journey.

The Singularity Is Nearer: When We Merge with AI by Ray Kurzweil (June 25th)

Can AI bring back the dead? Ray Kurzweil sure thinks so. In 2005, Kurzweil published Singularity is Nearer, which predicted the future of technology. Many of his predictions came true and now he has updated his predictions with this new release. He largely follows how AI and the human brain will eventually intertwine, lowering poverty rates, violence, and climate destruction.

The Singularity Is Nearer: When We Merge with AI - Kurzweil, Ray; book cover.
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Now that AI has made its media debut, it’s time to really find out how this new technology will change the world as we know it. More importantly, we will have to ask the big question: Is AI something to embrace or something to fear?

The Garden Against Time: In Search of a Common Paradise by Olivia Laing (June 25th)

While restoring an eighteenth-century garden in 2020, Olivia Laing posed the question: “Who gets to live in paradise, and how can we share it while there’s still time?” She provides her own image of utopia while unraveling the atrocities of our history and examining literary gardens.

The Garden Against Time: In Search of a Common Paradise - Laing, Olivia; book cover.
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Can shared gardens reduce climate change? Is there a hope for paradise on Earth that’s not built off the backs of the underprivileged? Use this warmer season to step into the mind of Olivia Laing as she advocates for a shared utopia.

If I have done a good job of being persuasive, you should have a Bookshop wishlist by now. And if you are worried about buying too many books at once, let me make the decision easy for you— buy them all and worry about expenses later. If not, at least you have a pretty good range to choose from. What is the tone of this summer for you? Technological fortunetelling? Black history education? Mental health awareness? Kinky curiosity? I won’t judge. Summer is for enjoyment, so enjoy this list of upcoming nonfiction releases to the fullest!


Want to add fiction to your summer reading list? Click here

Browse these books and more on our Non-Fiction Titles for the Enlightened Mind bookshelf on Bookshop.org.

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