Heading to the beach this summer? Need a few good book recommendations to help you relax with the sand between your toes and a drink in your hand? I have a few book selections that I think you will enjoy. Most of these are new and are not available in paperbacks yet. Great for you ereaders! My summer reading criteria are books that are engaging, interesting, and not too technical. If you are looking for mindless lighthearted reads, skip these because I’m not into romance novels or fluff. I like good stories and some of these are gut wrenching. Also, I want to be able to jump into a book, yet be able to put it down at a moments notice to refresh my drink or carry on a conversation with my hubby or a friend, and pick the book up right where I left off.
Get the blender going, pour a glass of wine, sip on a bourbon, or make your own concoction and dive right in. Here are my suggestions for summer reads:
Killers of the Flower Moon– by David Grann. A novel based on the Osage tribe who sat on an oil goldmine in Oklahoma in the 1920’s and were slowly killed off in unusual circumstances. This is one of the first homicides the FBI took over.
Gone by Min Kym- a memoir of a brilliant violinist who had her prized instrument stolen and how it affected her life.
Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain- The author takes us on a journey of all things introverted. She introduces us to stories of successful introverts, how to negotiate differences between extroverts and introverts, and how to live in a world that undervalues introverts.
Girls in the Garden by Lisa Jewell- a preteen girl is injured in a supposedly safe, friendly neighborhood. Who did it and how well do you know your neighbors? That is the premise of this mystery.
Into the Water by Paula Hawkins- the new book by the author of Girl on a Train. This book is a suspenseful story with twists about how the past always leaches into the present. A single mother is found in a river and her daughter is left behind to be cared for by her mother’s sister. The sister must come back to face a place that she never wanted to come back to.
Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult- racial tensions spill out all over the pages as Jodi serves up another moral dilemma.
The Keeper of Lost Things by Ruth Hogan- a story about objects that have meaning to us and finding their rightful owners.
My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry-by Fredrik Backman- a story of the of a seven year old girl who is different and her grandmother who teaches her that it is ok.
FICTION SELECTIONS ON THE HEAVIER SIDE
Warning: may contain some not so lighthearted tales.
Music of the Ghosts by Vaddey Ratner – This book is about a child refugee who returns to Cambodia to discover information about her parents and what happened to her father. This author wrote a great book called In the Shadow of the Banyan, which I recommend if you haven’t read it. It is a compelling story but quite graphic in it’s portrayal of the horrors of war, so be warned.
Homegoing by Yaa Gaasi- two half sisters are born in two different villages in the 18th century in Ghana. Their lives are vastly different as they navigate the world among major historical events.
The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead- a book about a slave named Cora who tries to escape her life by using the Underground Railroad. The author in this book creates the Railroad as an actual transportation unit with engineers, conductors, networks of tracks and tunnels, and not just a term we learned in history.
Mischling by Affinity Konar- a WWII book about twins that are part of Josef Mengele’s horrors and what happened when they were separated.
Between Shades of Grey by Ruta Sepetys- a 15 year old Lithuanian girl is ripped from her home by the Soviets and learns to endure and survive with her art. A story of strength, love and hope.