June 19, 2018
Lighter Reads: 10 Books to Read By the Pool or Ocean
*Linking up with That Artsy Reader Girl for Top Ten Tuesday: 10 Books to Read By the Pool or Ocean. If you’ve clicked over from there, Welcome Book Buddies! Thanks for stopping in. I’d love to hear in comments what you’re reading by the pool or ocean this summer.
As an avid reader, I think that any book you take to read by the water is a pool or ocean read. It doesn’t necessarily need to be light even though that’s what many readers think of when grabbing a book for vacation. “Fluffy” or “Beach Reads” are typically not my favorite genre. Once in a while I find some light (or beach) reads that are somewhat substantial. Listed below are some lighter reads I can recommend. (in no particular order) Titles are Amazon links.
Escapist: Castle of Water by Dane Hucklebridge
I often think of this story when readers ask me to recommend a vacation read. It’s purely escapist, beautifully written, with a bit of romance and a “castaways” theme. I would not recommend it while flying because the story begins with a plane crash!
Chick Lit: Love Walked In, Belong to Me, I’ll Be Your Blue Sky
all by Marisa de los Santos
I seldom read chick lit, but I was tempted by these because of many favorable reviews.
The first, Love Walked In, I rated the lowest because it was wordy and packed with too many literary and movie references for my taste. However, it does introduce the characters for the series. Of the three, it’s my least favorite, but it has received rave reviews and it’s popular with many readers.
Belong to Me is better written in my opinion and told from three perspectives. I loved the theme of belonging, “drawing a wider circle,” and creating a welcoming home.
I’ll Be Your Blue Sky is my favorite of the three because it brings in some historical fiction elements and has a complicated and engaging story line. This could be read as a stand alone but knowing the back story of the characters always makes for a richer reading experience. My Goodreads review here.
Chick Lit: How to Find Love in a Bookshop by Veronica Henry
I adored this story! Better than average chick lit, it was filled with complex characters and a variety of engaging story lines. In addition, the author created a delightful sense of place. Also, I’m in love with books about books!
Mystery/Detective: The Dry and Force of Nature
both by Jane Harper
Full Review of Force of Nature Here
If you’re in the mood for some crime fiction, these are well written, solid reads without a focus on violence, profanity, or fright. Some readers refer to them as “atmospheric thrillers” because the author is skilled at developing a sense of place that helps to build tension. Although Force of Nature is a sequel, they can each be read as a stand alone. Reading The Dry first gives the reader some background information about Agent Falk which will enrich the reading experience of Force of Nature (but not necessary).
Literary Fiction and Music: The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto by Mitch Albom
Music lovers will find an extra layer of enjoyment in this read by the popular author Mitch Albom (Tuesdays With Morrie, etc). Reading it feels like a Music Appreciation Class as many famous musicians make appearances as characters in the story and well-known music compositions are referenced; as a bonus, there is a Musical Companion on iTunes. It’s well written in typical Mitch Albom style with a touch of magical realism.
Historical Fiction: The Way of Beauty by Camille Di Maio
No war in this easy reading, light, histfic selection (for those who are burned out on WW11 histfic!). The backdrop in this story is New York City’s historic Penn Station in the early 1900s. The story involves a. bit of romance and intrigue and is told from a mother’s and daughter’s perspectives. Architecture as historical treasures and symbolism, the Suffragette Movement, and mother/daughter relationships are prevalent themes.
Quirky Characters: The Music Shop by Rachel Joyce
and Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata
Some of my favorite characters are quirky and are usually struggling to overcome challenges as they strive to lead their best lives. For example, I’m especially fond of Eleanor (Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine), Ginny (Ginny Moon), Ove (A Man Called Ove), and Britt-Marie (Britt-Marie Was Here).
Full Review of The Music Shop Here.
Goodreads review of Convenience Store Woman Here (blog review coming Friday).
These two recent releases have quirky characters: Frank in The Music Shop is frightened to fall in love and finds it difficult to accept help and other gestures of love from his neighbors and friends even though he is a great friend to them; Keiko in Convenience Store Woman is most likely on the autism spectrum (undiagnosed) and strives every day to appear normal by copying the clothing, mannerisms, and speech patterns of her coworkers and finds comfort and success in her routine tasks at the convenience store. I also love that this story explains the important role that convenience stores play in Japanese culture. Convenience Store Woman is almost a novella that can be read in one day and perhaps in one sitting.
That’s all book buddies! I could go on and on and on with book recommendations, but for this post I’ll cap it at 10 + 1 novella. For more reading ideas, you might look at my Summer TBR list or look through the A-Z Index Tab to find more great reads!
Here’s a FB video that depicts my reactions when someone asks me for a book recommendation!
Happy Reading Bookworms!
“Ah, how good it is to be among people who are reading.”
~Rainer Maria Rilke
“I love the world of words, where life and literature connect.”
~Denise J Hughes
“Reading good books ruins you for enjoying bad ones.”
~Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
“I read because books are a form of transportation, of teaching, and of connection!
Books take us to places we’ve never been, they teach us about our world, and they help us to understand human experience.”
~Madeleine Riley, Top Shelf Text
My Summer TBR
I’ll be updating my Summer TBR list as I complete each read, so check this link often!
(So far I’ve read a handful, and I’ve only abandoned one)
Links I Love:
This might be fun for summer: SnapShop Kids: Online Photography Class For Kids (and the entire family!)
More about summer reading for children in this link: The Ardent Biblio: How to Design a Summer Reading Program For Your Kids
In case you missed it: my post highlighting some diverse reading recommendations for MG children here.
If you are a fan of the Louise Penny “Inspector Gamache” series, here’s a new interview with the author who has a new installment in the series coming out in November.
This is an interesting podcast featuring an interview with Gail Honeyman, author of “Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine.”
I’ll be writing a full review of Convenience Store Woman for Friday.
Sharing is Caring
Thank you for reading today! I’d be honored and thrilled if you choose to enjoy and follow along, promote, and/or share my blog. Every share helps us grow.
What books are you packing in your beach or pool bag this summer? We’d all love to hear your suggestions in the comments!
***Blogs posts may contain affiliate links. This means that at no extra cost to you, I can earn a small percentage of your purchase price. This money will be used to offset the costs of running a blog and to sponsor giveaways, etc.
Unless explicitly stated that they are free, all books that I review have been purchased by me or borrowed from the library.
Book Cover and author photos are credited to Amazon or an author’s website.
Great list! How to find love in a bookshop sounds adorable! Here’s my TopTen for this week: https://myendlessshelf.weebly.com/home/toptentuesday-books-to-read-by-the-poolat-the-beach
I was surprised by how much I enjoyed How To Find Love In a Bookshop! I hope you like it too! Thanks for commenting and leaving your link!
Great list! I loved The Dry and Force of Nature too – they are fantastic mystery/crime books!
My TTT: https://lifewithallthebooks.com/2018/06/19/top-ten-tuesday-books-to-read-by-the-pool-or-beach-summer-tbr/
Thanks for commenting and leaving your link! Happy summer reading!
I’ve got The Dry sitting on my shelf just waiting to be read! I’ve heard so many good things about it that I wanna read it soon.
TTT – My Summer TBR.
Oh I hope you enjoy it! Thanks for stopping in and commenting!
I don’t really have different summertime reading either. I guess the idea that people will be reading in distracting places, but I wouldn’t go somewhere distracting to read!
I agree that any book you read in the summer is a summer read! I can read pretty much anywhere….I’m not usually too distracted. Thanks for commenting and happy summer reading!
Yes!! I second the Jane Harper picks! I’m obsessed with her work!
She’s a talented new author! I’ll look forward to her next! Thanks for commenting and your link.
The Dry sounds like an interesting read for sure.
Here is our Top Ten Tuesday.
Thanks for commenting and leaving your link!
I want to read Convenience Store Woman! Seems like a nice quite but interesting read
If you like quirky and like to read about other cultures I think you’ll like this! It’s a really quick easy read too! Sometimes that’s appealing! I hope you enjoy it.
I like the idea of How To Find Love In A Bookshop, but I am so not a romance reader!
My TTT: https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2018/06/19/top-ten-tuesday-164/
Romance is not my genre either…..this story includes just a bit about finding the love of your life…..it’s mostly about how she’s going to hang on to the legacy of her father’s Bookshop after his death. There are zero steamy scenes….it’s just sweet. I hope you give it a try!
Oh well that does sound slightly better, I might try it.
Thanks for the list. Heading to the library today after a house full of company leaves!
Happy reading! Thanks for visiting and commenting!
I LOVE MITCH ALBOM but I haven’t read Frankie Presto yet, so I’m hoping to get into it in the future!
Here’s my first ever TTT – https://goo.gl/CA2xZw
I hope you’ll love it as much as I did! It’s longer and more ambitious than his other work. Enjoy! Thanks for commenting and leaving your link!
Awww thanks so much! I hope I won’t get intimidated.
It’s still easy and engaging reading though!