Bestselling author Stephenie Meyer’s long-awaited novel Midnight Sun will be published by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers on August 4, with a first printing of 750,000 copies. The title will be released simultaneously in hardcover, e-book, and large-print formats, as well as an audiobook from Hachette Audio.

Midnight Sun retells Meyer’s franchise-launching book, Twilight, from Edward Cullen’s point of view. It arrives 15 years after Bella Swan told her side of the love story that begins when she first sees “inhumanly beautiful” Cullen in the Forks High School cafeteria in the early pages of Twilight. In the new book, readers learn more details about Edward’s many years as a vampire as well as his emotional exploration of the complex struggle he faces in a relationship with Bella. The Twilight Saga, comprised of four core novels and three companion volumes, has sold nearly 160 million copies worldwide.

Meyer reflected on the timing of the release in light of the Covid-19 crisis. “It feels strange to be making this announcement when the world is suffering through a pandemic, and no one really knows what’s next,” she said in a statement. “I thought seriously about delaying this announcement until things were back to normal; however, that felt wrong, considering how long those who are eager for this book have already waited. I know how much I personally need distractions right now, how much I need something to look forward to, and most of all, how much I need more books to read. So, I hope this book gives my readers a little pleasure to anticipate and, after it arrives, a chance to live in an imaginary world for a while. I can’t express how much I appreciate the patience of my readers, and their support over the years it took to finish Midnight Sun.”

In announcing the new book, Megan Tingley, executive v-p and publisher of LBYR, noted that she was pleased to be able to celebrate the 15th anniversary of Twilight with the arrival of Midnight Sun. “In the past few months, many people have been finding comfort in reading, and especially in returning to classic characters and stories they know and love,” she said. “In Midnight Sun, Stephenie transports us back to a world that has captivated readers for over a decade, and brings us an epic novel about the profound pleasures and devastating consequences of immortal love.”

Fans may remember that Meyer began writing Midnight Sun even before her Twilight Saga had wrapped up. Just weeks after the fourth book in the series, Breaking Dawn, was released to great fanfare in August 2008, Meyer announced that she was putting her Midnight Sun project on hold “indefinitely.” The delay was the result of a partial rough draft of the book being leaked and circulated online. At that time, she posted a message to readers via her website: “I think it is important for everybody to understand that what happened was a huge violation of my rights as an author, not to mention me as a human being,” she wrote. “As the author of the Twilight Saga, I control the copyright and it is up to the owner of the copyright to decide when the books should be made public.”