Summer Beach Reads

summer beach reads

The Rumor by Elin Hildebrand (available June 16)

Elin Hildebrand is one of my favorite “summer” authors. All of her books take place on Nantucket, and you can’t help but feel like you’re on the beach and completely entrenched in the lives of the characters she creates.

Synopsis: “Nantucket writer Madeline King couldn’t have picked a worse time to have writer’s block. Her deadline is looming, her bills are piling up, and inspiration is in short supply. Madeline’s best friend Grace, is hard at work transforming her garden into the envy of the island with the help of a ruggedly handsome landscape architect. Before she realizes it, Grace is on the verge of a decision that will irrevocably change her life. Could Grace’s crisis be Madeline’s salvation? As the gossip escalates, and the summer’s explosive events come to a head, Grace and Madeline try desperately to set the record straight–but the truth might be even worse than rumor has it.”

The Knockoff by Lucy Sykes 

I was really intrigued by this new novel that was compared to “The Devil Wears Prada”, a classic girly girl novel. If I’m not reading about a beach town, I want to be reading about fashion in NYC. Both are lives I’ll never truly live, but it’s fun to live vicariously through the characters. I also love books that cause little to no thinking, and this is definitely set to be one of those!

Synopsis: “An outrageously stylish, wickedly funny novel of fashion in the digital age, The Knockoff is the story of Imogen Tate, editor in chief of Glossy magazine, who finds her twentysomething former assistant Eve Morton plotting to knock Imogen off her pedestal, take over her job, and reduce the magazine, famous for its lavish 768-page September issue, into an app.”

Beach Town by Mary Kay Andrews  

I’ve only read a few books by Mary Kay Andrews (“Spring Fever” & “Summer Rental“), but I love all of her novels. They are perfect beach reads, and I’m sure “Beach Town” will not disappoint!

Synopsis: “Greer Hennessy needs palm trees. As a movie location scout, picture-perfect is the name of the game. But her last project literally went up in flames, and her career is on the verge of flaming out. Greer has been given one more chance, if she can find the perfect undiscovered beach hideaway for a big-budget movie. She zeroes in on a sleepy Florida panhandle town called Cypress Key. There’s one motel, a marina, a long stretch of pristine beach and an old fishing pier with a community casino-which will be perfect for the film’s explosive climax.

There’s just one problem. Eben Thibadeaux, the town mayor, completely objects to Greer’s plan. A lifelong resident of Cypress Key, Eben wants the town to be revitalized, not commercialized. After a toxic paper plant closed, the bay has only recently been reborn, and Eb has no intention of letting anybody screw with his town again. But Greer has a way of making things happen, regardless of obstacles. And Greer and Eb are way too attracted to each other for either of them to see reason.

Between an ambitious director and his entourage-including a spoiled “It Boy” lead actor-who parachute into town, a conniving local ex-socialite, and a cast of local fangirls and opportunists who catch the movie bug, nothing is going to be the same in Cypress Key. Now Greer is forced to make some hard choices: about the people and the town she’s come to care about, and about her own life. True love is only for the movies, right? Can Greer find a way to be the heroine in her own life story? Told with inimitable heart and humor, Mary Kay Andrews’ Beach Town is the perfect summer destination.”

Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee (available July 14)

I know there is a lot of anticipation for the next novel by Harper Lee. Will it live up to “To Kill a Mockingbird” standards? Do we want it to? I’m a little nervous that I won’t get as much out of it, since I’d be lying if I told you I understood all the nuances of “To Kill a Mockingbird” on my own…I’m up for the challenge though!

Synopsis:Go Set a Watchman features many of the characters from To Kill a Mockingbird some twenty years later. Returning home to Maycomb to visit her father, Jean Louise Finch—Scout—struggles with issues both personal and political, involving Atticus, society, and the small Alabama town that shaped her.

Exploring how the characters from To Kill a Mockingbird are adjusting to the turbulent events transforming mid-1950s America, Go Set a Watchman casts a fascinating new light on Harper Lee’s enduring classic. Moving, funny and compelling, it stands as a magnificent novel in its own right.”

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

I don’t know much about Paula Hawkins, but I’ve heard rave reviews about “The Girl on the Train”. This book takes me slightly outside my typical beach-read into more of a “thriller” category instead of romance/chick-lit. After surviving (yes, surviving) all 3 Gillian Flynn books, I’m desperate to take a break from murder mysteries & thriller novels, but I’m willing to make an exception for this one!

Synopsis: “Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. “Jess and Jason,” she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost.

And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel offers what she knows to the police, and becomes inextricably entwined in what happens next, as well as in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good?

Compulsively readable, The Girl on the Train is an emotionally immersive, Hitchcockian thriller and an electrifying debut.”

French Coast by Anita Hughes 

Taking place in Cannes, focusing on a Vogue fashion editor, and a romantic plot twist???? Sold…

Synopsis: “Serena has the job she’s always dreamed of and Chase, the man her heart never dared to. As a new editor at Vogue, she bags the biggest interview of the year with Yvette Renault, the infamous former editor of French Vogue, in The Carlton-InterContinental Hotel during the Cannes Film Festival. She eagerly jets off to France while Chase stays home, working with her father, a former senator, on his upcoming mayoral campaign.

Everything feels unbelievably perfect…until it doesn’t. The hotel loses her reservation hours before her big interview. Serena fears that she’ll have to go home without her story, but then she meets Zoe, a quirky young woman staying in the suite below Yvette’s who invites Serena to stay with her. Serena is grateful for her mysterious roommate’s generosity, but it seems that there’s more to her story than meets the eye. To make matters worse, soon after arriving in Cannes, Serena learns a shocking secret about her parents’ marriage, and it isn’t long before she begins to question her own relationship.With her deadline looming and pressure mounting, Serena will have to use her investigative journalism skills, new
friendships, and a little luck to get her life and love back on track. Fast paced and impeccably written,
French Coast will draw readers in to the intoxicating world of the Cote D’Azur. Hughes’ beautiful prose and sense imagery bring the food, fashion, and feel of the ocean to life in this audacious new novel.”

*All synopses are provided from Amazon

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  • I’m a fan of Mary Kay Andrews too, and am looking forward to Beach Town this summer. I just read an older one of hers called “Hissy Fit”, and I have to say I think it is my favorite so far! Check it out. It’s a good one. 🙂