four books to put on your summer reading list, right now

summerreading_1

the circle | the vacationers | the fever | tiny beautiful things

up until a few years ago, i was one of those semi snooty people who deemed kindles irrelevant and unnecessary. i’d see people reading them on the beach, or toting them around on the train, and i’d feel like a bit of a literary savant as i lifted my giant 500-page hardcover library book out of my bag.

now, i look back at that girl, and i think, GIRL, WERE YOU SMOKING CRACK i scold myself for being a snot, and for thinking i was above an e-reader, because let me tell you, e-readers are the SHIT. there is something incredibly magical about being able to carry around HUNDREDS of books in the palm of your hand. i mean really, that’s some harry potter style stuff right there, is it not?

do i miss the scent of real books? of course. my kindle smells nothing like a library book (i’ve sniffed it). but the whole i don’t have to carry a heavy hardcover version of the goldfinch around each day thing? it’s kind of wonderful. as a girl who participates in not one but two book clubs, i’m constantly reading – i go through a  book or two a week, depending on length – so i love that my kindle allows me to tote my reads wherever i go, whether it’s sitting on a bench on west broadway while the sun sets or crammed into some guy’s smelly armpit on the 1 train.

as a somewhat unpopular child, i spent many an hour reading by myself in my room (it’s what all the cool kids do, trust), but these days, i’m lucky if i get an hour in bed before lights out to catch up on whatever i’m currently obsessed with. part of the reason i love beach vacations so much is because they’re the perfect excuse to do what my mother calls “gorking out” – aka, sitting on your butt while drinking a cocktail and reading ’til the cows come home. while in nicaragua last december, i made it through three whole novels that had been on my list for far too long. this summer, i’ve already made a hefty dent in my list, and i’ve happily got a beach getaway planned for every single weekend of august. you know what that means: kindle here i come!

above are four of my favorites from what i’ve read over the past 6 months. each book is different, but all have one thing in common: you won’t be able to put them down.

the circle is dave eggers latest, and it caused a whole lot of conflict in my book club. some of us loved it, others hated it, but all of us agreed on one thing: it hit just a little too close to home, especially for those of us who check our instagram feed more often than we’d like to admit. it’s the story of a girl who gets swallowed by social media. say no more.

the vacationers is the perfect beach read. it’s not too lofty, not too fancy, not even too literary – but it’s well-written, funny, and interesting; the story of a somewhat broken family who takes a two week trip to mallorca (you know, as families do when the shit’s hitting the fan). i loved it.

the fever is my latest book; i just finished it the other day. i read megan abbott’s dare me – a darker look at the world of high school cheerleading – a few years ago (WHEN is someone going to pounce on that ish and make it a movie? the PLL crowd would be all up in that grill) and loved it, and was psyched to see that she was the one who’d be taking on the challenge of fictionalizing the tale of the girls of le roy.

tiny beautiful things deserves a special spot on this list, because it’s not just one of my favorite recent reads. it’s one of my favorite things i’ve read, well, ever. cheryl strayed is an emotional genius, an advice giving machine, the sort of woman that every woman should strive to be. i’m kind of obsessed with her, if you can’t tell. this collection of columns, curated from her time spent as advice columnist “sugar” at the rumpus will make you laugh, cry, scream, and smile – maybe all at once.

and, just for fun, a few of my favorite books from last summer:

the love affairs of nathaniel p

where’d you go, bernadette?

gone girl (DUH)

the yonahlossee riding camp for girls

the fault in our stars (double duh)

beautiful ruins

wild (triple duh)

tell the wolves i’m home

the interestings

the paris wife

i could go on and on…

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