A summer like no other, this year, many have had to adjust to a new way of living, rescheduling travel and canceling backyard barbecues and holiday get-togethers. A season that lends itself to exploration, connection, and adventure, it’s the only one that promotes outdoor enjoyment while getting lost in a good book. And though your summer plans may have changed, you can still getaway in the escape of a great read. Sure to take you to another place and time, here are five books to add to your summer reading list.
Beach Read by Emily Henry
When January Andrews lands broke, broken-hearted, and bogged down, she finds refuge in the only place she can afford—the lake house her father left her in Michigan. A bestselling romance writer, she’s come to the lake house to finish her book, now with a fast-approaching deadline. Coincidentally, she finds that her college writing rival, Augustus Everett, is her next-door neighbor. This book takes us through their journey as they team up to help each other get out of their writing rut while discovering creativity, love, and strength.
The House at the Edge of Night by Catherine Banner
Set on the fictional island of Castellamare in Italy, this book follows four generations of a family facing the secrets, mysteries, trials, and sacrifices of life. You’ll find it easy to get lost in the stories of each character that finds themselves at the heart of rumors, conflict, and struggle. The bougainvillea-draped café The House at the Edge of Night provides an idyllic location, centered among piazzas, cobblestoned streets, and palm trees. Transport yourself to a different time and place as you see these characters grow and flourish—all along the backdrop of the Mediterranean.
Book Woman of Troublesome Creek by Kim Michele Richardson
Eastern, rural Kentucky is a geographically isolated area, cut off from much of the country. Prior to the creation of the Pack Horse Library Project, a real program initiated by the Works Progress Administration in 1935, many people in rural Appalachian Kentucky didn’t have access to books. This story follows Cussy Mary Carter, a traveling librarian with the Pack Horse Library. We’re with her as she travels through the mountainous, wooded terrain to get to the remote town of Troublesome Creek. Even though this book is fiction, its depiction of the library service and Appalachia are all based on truths. You’ll be inspired by the power of Cussy’s strength and determination while reminded of the innate power of books, as well.
The Last Mrs. Parrish by Liv Constantine
If you’re looking for a quick summertime read, this is it. It’s the story of Amber Patterson, whose quiet existence leads her to yearn for more. What is she looking for? To have the life of wealthy socialite Daphne Parrish. A book that goes into the twists and turns of her deceit, it’s an entertaining look at the lives of the super-rich and an engrossing portrayal of envy, friendships, and trust. Sit back and let yourself escape into the lives of these sometimes-relatable characters.
Next Year In Havana by Chanel Cleeton
It’s the smell of gardenias and jasmine, the taste of plantains and mamey fruit, and the voice of Celia Cruz playing through an old record player that we’re able to feel and experience the sweetness of Havana. Drawn to Cuba by her grandmother’s dying wish to spread her ashes in the country of her birth, Marisol Perez finds herself enamored with its beauty, but distressed by the political climate. A book that will take you through the Havana of long ago to the city it is today, you’ll lose yourself in this story of love, loss, identity, and courage.