Summer time is a great time to pick up a book. I’ve had several friends ask me for some recommendations as they head to the library for story time with their kids or to the beach without their kids. So, if you need some hints, these are some of my favorite reads.
The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion: This is my recommend of the summer. It’s funny. It’s sweet. It has all the elements of a great summer read, and anyone would like it. Seriously, anyone. (A little language, a little talk of hanky-panky, but nothing explicit). A socially awkward professor of genetics decides he needs to find a wife and goes about it in the most scientific way possible, creating a 16 page questionnaire.
The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley: A precocious eleven-year-old turned detective in 1950s Britain sets out to solve a mysterious death in her back garden. Plenty of mystery and intrigue, Bradley’s funny and observant Flavia de Luce and her commentary on life make the novel stand out. I’m working on the second in the series called The Weed that Strings the Hangman’s Bag. Also, just from random internet searching, I found out a television series is brewing, too. (I wrote a review for The Library Adventure here.)
Maisie Dobbs by Jacqueline Winspear: I’m a new reader to Maisie Dobbs novels, but I love these. Set in England in 1930 in the midst of a Depression and recovery from World War I, Maisie Dobbs serves as an Investigator/Psychologist. In Pardonable Lies, the third in the series, she’s on the case to fight for a girl accused of murder, her best friend’s brother, the circumstances surrounding a young pilot’s death in France, and, in the end, Maisie’s own life. These books came out in the early 2000s, so they should be easy to find at the library. (As of this post, Pardonable Lies is only $2.99 via Kindle).
Me Before You: JoJo Moyes: A romantic story of redemption and love between two unlikely characters: a young waitress and a paraplegic. (Warning: I cried reading this.) Also, Don’t Read With Your Eyes.
The Lunar Chronicles: Cinder, Scarlet, and Cress. This YA series is fun, sweet, and packed with adventure. It takes on fairy tales (Cinderella, Red Riding Hood, and Rapunzel) and sets those fairy tales in a futuristic society with Lunar queens, cyborgs, and space ships. And it works. (Cinder is only $2.99 right now. Grab it!)
The Nesting Place by Myquillyn Smith: Looks like a design book, but it’s more a book about embracing where you are now and eliminating your insecurities to create the home you love, no matter the circumstance. It’s beautiful. I recommend buying the hardback for $13.32 right now.
One Summer: America 1927 by Bill Bryson: This book focuses on pivotal moments in culture during the summer of 1927 through stories about several historical characters: Charles Lindbergh, Babe Ruth, Al Jolson, Al Capone, Herbert Hoover, Calvin Coolidge, and others. (I wrote a review of it here.)
The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton: The opening scene of this book is chilling and jarring. The rest of it is also fabulous.
Someday, Someday Maybe by Lauren Graham: I’ve talked about this book before at The Library Adventure. I recommended it on my Christmas Gift List, and I’m recommending it again. It’s funny with Gilmore Girls-esque banter.
My Go-To, Always Recommend First Before Just about Anything Else Read:
The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls: A memoir of compelling depth, warmth, and fascination. Follow Walls and her remarkable journey through childhood with her nomadic family, led by her unconventional parents. If this girl can survive childhood and live to tell the tale, then there’s hope for all of us. The reason why I love this book: Jeannette Walls is absolutely grateful to her parents and feels genuine love and affection for them, despite their flaws.