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Summer Reads

woman reading book in lush green grass

On those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer there is nothing quite like a compelling book to keep you company. If you are lucky enough to take a vacation, or even if you get to stay home, you will need something to read. Here is a short list of hot reads for this summer’s reading pleasure, and all are available in several formats, including eBook.



The Women in the Castle

The Women in the Castle by Jessica Shattuck

If you read and loved The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah, try this bestselling novel by Jessica Shattuck. It takes place in post WWII Europe, where much of Germany has been laid to waste. Marianne returns to an ancestral castle, determined to honor the promise she made her late, Hitler-fighting husband. Her goal in life is to bring other Resistance widows under her wing, and to help them find a way to move forward in the new world order.


The Forever Summer book cover

The Forever Summer by Jamie Brenner

One reviewer calls this new novel by Jamie Brenner “Engaging and not too fluffy, an excellent choice for summer vacation reading. Soap-opera twists and turns are tempered with the believable goodness of the characters, the messiness of their journeys, and just a hint of unpredictability as events unfold.” Marin Bishop’s perfect life has crumbled—anything that could go wrong did, and in the midst of her life crisis a woman claiming to be her half-sister shows up at her door. Marin ends up spending the summer with her new found sister and grandmother at a beach house. It’s an interesting situation and a good read.


Magpie Murders Book Cover

Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz

Fans of Agatha Christie and Dorothy Sayers should love this one. Anthony Horowitz’s the Magpie Murders is a modern classic “whodunit” in which a book editor reviews her famous client’s new manuscript—and suspects that its murder and mayhem might not be as fictional as the author would have her believe.


Anything Is Possible Book Cover

Anything Is Possible by Elizabeth Strout

You will probably enjoy these stories by Elizabeth Strout more if you have already read her previous work, My Name is Lucy Barton. Although technically these are stories, they all work together; a novel-in stories. It works very well. One review says “these nine linked tales about people who overcome miserable childhoods, severe losses, disheartening marriages, and war trauma to experience moments of amazing grace offer comfort and reassurance. They remind us that a little kindness and compassion can open up surprising possibilities.”


Since We Fell book cover

Since We Fell by Dennis Lehane

Lehane’s 14th novel takes place in the same New England setting of his previous novel Mystic River. It is a pleasantly twisted character study of a disgraced photojournalist, who shoots her husband in the first scene of the book. The title is based on the ballad Since I Fell for You. It’s not a song of love and devotion, but “a loss song, the lament of someone trapped in a hopeless addiction to a heartless lover who will, there is no doubt, ultimately destroy him. Or her, depending on which version you listened to.”


Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles

If I could only recommend one book, I would pick this one. I listened to it on audio, which enhanced the experience listening to the narration by Nicholas Guy Smith. This is the story of a Russian aristocrat, Count Alexander Rostov, who is sentenced by the Bolsheviks during the revolution to a lifetime of house arrest in Moscow's luxurious Metropol Hotel. Slowly, Count Rostov builds a life within the confines of the hotel. The book tracks the Count's life from the Revolution to the Cold War; 30 years of tumultuous history taking place on the doorstep of the hotel.

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