Creating a list of “Top 10 Reads” is always tricky – especially for summer. For some reason, summer always brings out the worst in my book choices. I think it harkens back to my years spent in school. I spent so much time reading “good” literature, and at many times, books that were really a slog. So when summer hit, I broke out the Danielle Steele. Well, not quite, but I really preferred the stereotypical, mindless beach read. It was fun, I could put it down at any time and it didn’t involve much brain power. Never fear, this list does not have Danielle Steele on it, but it might have one or two beach reads you can take to the lake. Danni and I have each contributed five books we love, or are sitting on our nightstand waiting for us. Here is our list of top 10 reads to check out this summer. You might just find a little something you like.
1. The Gifted School by Bruce Holsinger
This one is not available until July 2, but I will be first in line to pick this up. Timely, because of the recent college admissions scandal, this book details the lengths parents will go to get their children ahead. Nothing like a school for gifted kids to bring out the crazy in parents!
2. Peace, Love and Fibre by Mairlyn Smith
There is nothing more satisfying than sitting out on my back patio and cracking open a fresh new cookbook. Especially when it features beautiful photos, healthy yummy recipes and it’s Canadian to boot! I love Mairlyn Smith – she is quirky and fun and this book has so many amazing fibre filled recipes, I can never decide which to try next. If you love reading cookbooks, this one should be your next buy.
3. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Yes – you may have heard of this one. I read this the first time years ago on a trip to Hawaii. My kids were young, and this book pulled me in so much, I begged my husband to take them to the pool so I could finish it. I COULD NOT put this book down. Loved it. I know it has since been made into a movie, but do yourself a favour. Read the book. It is a magical tale.
I actually purchased this as an audio book a few years ago, and I recently came back to it. If you have a teenage girl, I highly recommend this book for light bulb moments on explaining their behaviour, sudden outbursts and general miserable-ness in the teen years…
5. The Island by Elin Hilderbrand
Well, you can’t have a “top reads for summer” without a good beach read. Yes, this book is not deep, it is not literature, but it will transport you to “summer.” I love Elin Hilderbrand for a good story, fun characters, and delicious descriptions of Nantucket – which feels like the ultimate summer locale. If you love a good beach read, any of her books will fit the bill, but this one was top of mind when picking a fav.
When we set out to prep our top reads for summer, I knew exactly what books I was going to pick. I have to say now that my kids don’t have me driving them to the next activity, to a friends house or to the mall, I am finding I have a bit more time to myself. When the kids were younger, I would really only read when we were on summer vacation while laying on the beach. And yes, like Christine, I would pick more of the ‘chick lit” reads. Quick, easy and maybe not always the best story lines but a book that I could read uninterrupted. I also l like a ‘book’. Not an e-reader of any type. There is just something to be said to actually hold a book in your hand and the sound of the pages you are turning. Also, it is also easier to flip to the final chapter if you can not hold back your curiosity and want to know how it ends before you finish ;).. Does anybody else do that?
1. Educated by Tara Westover
This book caught my attention from the get go. A young girl growing up in a family with very strong religious beliefs and values which did not allow her to go to school outside the home. Learning the ways of natural healing but longed to learn so much more. It really does show that resilience and wanting to make a change is really in the power of the individual.
2. Crazy Rich Asians, China Rich Girlfriend, Rich People Problems by Kevin Kwan
Initially I was only going to recommend Crazy Rich Asians, but really you can not read the first book and not the other two. This trilogy chronicles the outrageous lives of billionaire families that have more money then what they know what to do with it. This is a great ‘chick lit’ read for the beach. For sure!
3. Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis
Rachel Hollis breaks down the lies that us moms, daughters, sisters all tell ourselves over time that do not let us live authentically. What I loved about this book is that Rachel is so raw and open about her life and how she overcame the misconceptions by not caring what others thought. Geez, it took me until my 40’s to finally realize what she has realized in her early 30’s. Get over it!! Girl, Wash Your Face and get back out there!
4. The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang
This book was what I would call a surprise! I really never expected it to go the way it did. It is a love story that overcomes the stigma of a woman with Asperger’s and how she approaches life and love. Comes with some added ‘spicy’ scenes 😉 Another one for the beach!
5. The Alice Network by Kate Quinn
I am not normally a history buff when it comes to reading content but this book was recommended to me and I have to say it was a good one. Two strong female characters and how the lives of a war heroine and a young unmarried pregnant women intertwine. This one will have you engaged in the adventure that lies ahead.
So there you have it! Our Top 10 Reads for the Summer.
We would love to hear your feedback on any of the books we have recommended and if you have a book or 2 that we might like, drop us a note in the comment section below.
Happy Reading 🙂
Christine and Danni