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15 Books to Read This Summer

Celia Sterrn, Staff

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Take a break from your phone this summer and pick up a book.
Evil Under the Sun by Agatha Christie
Detective Hercule Poirot is taking a vacation in Devon when the dead body of a young starlet is found murdered. As Poirot investigates he uncovers evidence that eventually leads to the identity of the murderer in a logical and satisfying way.
Go Set A Watchman by Harper Lee
The sequel to To Kill A Mockingbird twenty years later where Scout Finch returns home for a two week visit and learns to deal with race relations in the South. This book isn’t a sequell as it is a first draft of To Kill A Mockingbird, but that doesn’t mean it’s a bad book; it gives an insight to the original Lee had for her book and what life was like living in the 50s in the South.
Summerland by Elin Hilderbrand
The aftermath of the death of a young girl told through the eyes of her mother, best friend, and boyfriend. This book explores grief of losing a loved one and how it can affect people with varying amounts of intimacy with deceased.
Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty
The lives of six adults are forever changed after terrible accident occurs at a friendly barbeque. The perspectives in this book switch between each of the characters on the day of and a few months after the barbeque which builds the suspense of what happened and shows how different people react to calamity and they deal with the fallout.
The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
In the not too distant future, due to declining birthrates and a new social order, fertile women are forced to bear child for high ranking members of society and their wives. The narration is incredibly fascinating as the reader learns how the United States has changed into a dystopia and is paced very well so you never feel as if the book is dwelling on a plot point longer than it should.
Out of My Mind by Sharon Draper
An eleven year old girl with cerebral palsy and a photographic memory enters the fifth grade and defies the expectations of her disorder. Draper captures the voice of a young girl incredibly well and is able to communicate her frustrations and her triumphs in a realistic form.
The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
A series of letters recounts the first year of high school for a shy teenage boy. This book uses its endearing narrator as a catalyst to explore high school from an idealistic lens and can act as reflection for how you spent your freshman year.
The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
A teenage girl looks down from heaven and observes the effect her murder had on her family. Despite the somewhat dark premise, the book has a very relaxed narrator and an almost ethereal atmosphere. The different storylines, the lives of people the narrator left behind on Earth, are switched between frequently but transition smoothly so no change of subject feels jarring or abrupt.
Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn
A journalist returns to her home town to report to the death of one adolescent girl and the disappearance of another and has to face her estranged mother and half-sister. The best part of this book is the exploration the main character experiences as she learns her angel faced half-sister is far more sinister than she lets on and the death of her real sister several years ago is a lot more suspicious than she initially suspected.
It by Stephen King
A group of friends are terrorized by a monster that takes the form of a clown during the summer of 1957 and return 30 years later to kill it once and for all. This book is a bit infamous for its length (its over 1,000 pages) but every chapter used to develop the characters and build up the horrific atmosphere.
Beautiful Children by Charles Bock
The lives of several Las Vegas residents intersect, a married couple with a missing son, a comic book writer, a young artist, a girl with a shaved head, and man who has a tumultuous relationship with his girlfriend. Each storyline is equally interesting because the different range of ages and personalities given allow the author to explore the overarching theme of lost innocence.
The Likeness by Tana French
Detective Cassie Maddox must go undercover to investigate the murder of her doppelgänger. Though the premise might seem farfetched to some the book is worth reading for those who like engaging dialogue and police procedurals.
Chocolate Chip Murder by Joanne Fluke
A small town cookie store owner assists her brother-in-law with the murder investigation of her delivery man. The atmosphere of small town is perfectly captured as well as the classic detective story where every piece of evidence leads to another until it all fits in to a fully formed story.
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle
Meg Murry, her younger brother, and a classmate travel to an alternate dimension in order to save her father. This is a classic book that stills holds up due to its memorable characters and engaging plot.
World War Z by Max Brooks
A collection of interviews from a variety of people after humans have survived the zombie apocalypse. Everyone’s seen some sort of zombie themed movie or tv show but this is the first book I’ve encountered to address the threat of a zombie virus so realistically. The book provides a variety of perspectives from retired Hollywood directors to Russian soldiers and if you don’t feel like picking up a book, the audiobook is a masterpiece in and of itself.

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15 Books to Read This Summer