It’s no secret that my favorite pastime in the summer is to lay around with my nose in a book. There’s something about the sounds of an early summer evening surrounding me as I escape to imaginary places with characters that stay with me long after I read the last page. And, if there are waves crashing nearby when I’m inhaling the words of my favorite writers, welp, let’s just say that’s a little slice of nirvana for me, folks.
My friends and I are always trading titles and recommendations for juicy summer reads and this summer, I’ve found a number of them that I think you’ll love. And, don’t worry, I’ve read all of them and I promise, I won’t lead you astray. If you are in the mood for a thriller, I have one you’ll love. Want a romantic story that will make you swoon? Got it. How about a book that will challenge your beliefs? I have two, thank you very much.
And, in case anyone is wondering, yes, I will get at teeny tiny bit of compensation if you purchase any of these books from my links. But, listen, help me, help you: I promise to put that money towards buying more books to share with you, m’kay? Great, glad we understand each other.
The Keeper’s List of Summer Books You Should Read Because She Said So, Dammit:
Ever since I read her debut novel, The Bungalow, I have been obsessed with Sarah Jio’s writing. She writes rich, complicated love stories, often spanning decades with gorgeous storytelling. Always is a story of a woman who is about to be married to the perfect guy, only to find the man who broke her heart suddenly reinserted into her life. But, there’s a twist: her first love is now homeless and doesn’t remember her. I KNOW, RIGHT? Go buy it. You’ll be swooning from page three on, I promise.
There are very few authors who make me giddy when I hear they have a new release coming. Elin Hilderbrand is one of those authors for me. I discovered her books years ago and I have eagerly read every single one of her 21 books. All set in or around Nantucket, her books are the quintessential beach reads. The Perfect Couple, her latest, promises not to disappoint. And it’s her first murder mystery: a body is discovered just before a lavish wedding and all of the guests are suspects. Yes, please.
Oh, and fun fact: the bride in the book hails from my town because Elin has close friends who live here. I’m not saying I’m one of those friends but just going to pretend I’m one of those friends, okay?
This book should be required reading for every human on the planet. And beyond. I gave this book to Fruit Loop #1 last summer and we can’t stop discussing every single thing about the story. I’m not going to ruin it or even begin to try to explain to you what it’s about because I won’t do it justice.
Buy The Hate U Give. Read it. Take the message to heart. Spread the word.
When one of my friends mentioned this book to me, I shushed her because I couldn’t believe the title was a real thing. But, turns out, it is and Crazy Rich Asians is a mega best seller. Think Amy Tan meets Sophie Kinsella, only, it’s a dude. If you love books with dysfunctional families who wear couture in Asia, run don’t walk to buy Crazy Rich Asians, trust. I loved it! And, sidebar: Kwan’s subtitles and footnotes are HILARIOUS.
In her steamy follow up to Beyond the Break, Kristen Mae gives us Claire’s side of the story in the Claire/Hazel love drama that was brewing in BtB. When I finished reading BtB last year, I called Kristen and yelled at her because I didn’t like Claire’s character (that’s what you do when your friend is an author. I’m super supportive like that, yo). I’m not going to say that Kristen wrote OiM for me and my reading displeasure but let’s just say I was first in line to buy this sequel when it was released in March. Also? The love scenes are hooooooooooot. Just saying’…..
Have you ever wanted a Hall Pass from your relationship? Have you ever looked at your partner and wondered if the grass was greener in a different pasture? Or, have you ever just wanted a break from your partner to play the field a little, knowing you’d come straight back to the person you’ve chosen to live your life with? The Arrangement is a jaw dropping, juicy tale of a couple who does just that: they give each other a six month free pass to fool around and play the field with anyone of their choosing. But the catch is that they only have six months to get it out of their systems. As you can imagine, things don’t go as planned and The Arrangement might be my favorite book of Summer 2018.
One of the best parts of summer reading is finding that whodunit book that keeps you guessing until the last few pages. Sure, we’ve all ready Gillian Flynn but, I’m telling you, Kate Moretti is even better at whipping you into a thriller frenzy. I read The Blackbird Season in two days because I just. could. not. put. it. down. Set in a rural Pennsylvania town, it’s the story of a high school sports coach who is accused of murdering a local teen. But, it’s just not that simple and Moretti’s story telling gift will have you wondering exactly what all those blackbirds really mean. Go buy it. Now. Because I said so.
Okay, listen up: when I first heard about this book, I could not believe the story. It was stranger than fiction and I had to read it for myself and I’m here to tell you that The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lack will blow your mind. Rebecca Skloot deftly tells the story of Henrietta Lack, a poor black tobacco farmer in 1951, and how her cells were taken by doctors without her permission during an OB/GYN visit. Those cells were used in research and, to this day, are at the center of a multimillion dollar research industry. And she never gave her permission. This story will make you angry and will make you question modern medical science. You won’t be sorry you picked this one up and read it cover to cover, trust.
Listen, up men: Clint Edwards has you covered when it comes to apologizing to your wives. And ladies? You’ll be nodding your head and laughing your asses of with Edwards’ self deprecating humor. This book is for anyone who is married, wants to be married, or who needs to apologize profusely for doing whatever it is you’ve done to piss off the partner in your life.
Fun fact: Clint and I worked at Scary Mommy together and he’s the only dude on staff at SM. He put up with an awful lot of estrogen in the halls of SM. Sorry ’bout that, Clint. You should buy his book to make up for all the ways we terrorized him at work. Ahem.
Let’s face it: Jodi Picoult reigns supreme when it comes to writing books that stop us in our tracks. I didn’t think she could out do her novel, 19 Minutes, but man, oh man, was I w.r.o.n.g. Small Great Things is the story of an African American labor and delivery nurse who is assigned a white supremacist couple during a shift. In a split second, her life changes after an emergency unfolds and the nurse finds herself on trial. I mean, WHOA. As usual, Picoult’s gift for story telling lies within her characters who come to life and the stories that change us forever. Don’t miss this one.
Well, that’s all I have for you for now, bitchachos, but that should keep you busy until I can compile a list for the Fall.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to have a spending accident at Barnes and Noble. And Amazon. And Kindle. And….I’m sure you understand.