I was the nerd in elementary school who couldn’t wait for the summer reading assignment (and was then slightly devastated when the next semester rolled around and no one remembered to collect the assignments).
Summers involved constant trips to the library because my grandma (a former librarian) wanted to make sure I enrolled in summer reading activities. I was part of a summer reading program in high school that met every month and I was kind of bummed that only 10 people ever showed up.
Reading my summer days and nights away was (and still is) a dream. Now that I work summers I really miss all the hours I was glued to a book inside, missing out on valley heat and smog.
As an adult I’ve initiated summer reading groups with some friends. Mostly, we read really lengthy classics like ‘War & Peace’ and ‘Ulysses’ so we could have a support group for slogging through. My local library has a summer reading contest where all ages can log their reading and maybe win a prize. I never win a prize, but I do read a ton.
So, what’s in my beach bag this summer? Here are the top 10 books I’m looking forward to reading this summer:
- ‘Persuasion’ by Jane Austen – I can’t wait to read about Captain Wentworth and Anne Elliot falling (but not like Louisa) in love again.
- ‘Alexander Hamilton’ by Ron Chernow – I’ve been attempting to finish this all year, but work and moving gets in the way. Can’t wait to finally get through it.
- ‘The Story of a New Name’ by Elena Ferrante – I wouldn’t say I have Ferrante-fever, but I have been on the holds list for almost half a year just to read this one. The descriptions of people and locales makes me think of ‘L’avventura’ and ‘8 1/2.’
- ‘How to be a Woman’ by Caitlin Moran – I reread this every summer. I adore everything Moran writes and this book always leaves me raging against the patriarchy.
- ‘Imprudence’ by Gail Carriger – Do I inhale everything this women writes? Yes. Like a Victoria sponge, her books are devilishly good and multi-layered.
- ‘Hunger’ by Roxane Gay – For everyone that adored ‘Bad Feminist,’ there’s now more Roxane Gay for us to read.
- ‘Sex Object’ by Jessica Valenti – A book I can’t wait to read, the Feministing.com founder is bringing us her memoirs.
- The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling – Because I haven’t revisited this childhood favorite in far too long. Plus I need to prepare for –
- ‘Harry Potter and the Cursed Child’ by J.K. Rowling – If there isn’t a midnight release party for this I’m going to cry.
- ‘Salvador’ by Joan Didion – It’s been on my shelf since I was a kid. No, really. I inherited a collection of books about El Salvador because my father fled the country on asylum during the war. I haven’t read a Didion book yet (GASP) and I’ve been meaning to delve into my family history, so this book serves a dual purpose.
What are you looking forward to reading this summer? What’s your favorite beach book? Do you have a book club with friends? Is there one book you have to read every summer?