When the days grow longer and the weather grows warmer, there's one word that perfectly encapsulates the sentiment of the oh-so beloved season of summer: relaxation. And while there are a slew of family-friendly summer activities and summer cocktails that would no doubt help anyone relax, you would be hard pressed to find something more relaxing than cracking open the perfect beach book to read this summer. The sound of the waves hitting a sandy beach + a warm breeze + a nice cocktail + an interesting book = perfection.
Of course, the perfect beach book can be found in any literary genre. Whether you're a fan of chilling thrillers, romantic novels, hilarious memoirs, or thought-provoking essay collections, there is something on this list that is sure to please any book-lover. And of course, every book here (or the entire list!) would make a great addition to any book club or summer book reading list.
So whether you're planning a stateside family road trip to the nearest beach or you're heading off on a post-vaccination vacation to a tropical beach with clear-blue water, make sure to pack any one (or all) of these perfect summer reading books. Your time on the beach will be made better for it.
After Leda and her crush Ian flirt all night at a Halloween party, things seem as if they're looking up for Leda. That's until she wakes up the next morning in his bed unsure of what happened between the two of them the night before. In addition, Charlotte — Leda's classmate who she briefly spoke to at the party — is now missing.
Delivering a suspenseful plot and a necessary conversation around sex, consent, and power, this thrilling debut novel by Anna Caritj is one you won't want to put down.
This legal suspense novel by Georgia politician and voting rights activist Stacey Abrams follows a brilliant young law clerk by the name of Avery Keene as she steps into her unsuspected new role as the legal guardian of a Supreme Court Justice who has fallen into a coma. As she's plunged into this new reality, Avery begins uncovering a carefully constructed sequence of clues left behind by her boss and realizes that this controversial case just might put her directly in harm's way.
When a young New York lawyer named Ethan discovers that his father has a secret second family living in Queens — a Thai wife and two sons — things fall apart quick. Caught in a love triangle of his own, Ethan discovers that the interwoven fates of the two families will lead to surprise loyalties, reveal inner strength, and displays just how we can all forge our own forms of joy.
Tea, cake, books, and... murder? That's exactly what you're going to get in this Agatha Christie-style murder mystery novel. Following the lives of nine seemingly ordinary women who come together to share their love of books, readers will quickly discover that everything is not as perfect as it seems between the so-called friends. And when one of the women ends up dead, all signs point right back to the members of the book club. Filled with twists, turns, and plenty of unsuspecting moments, this Whodunnit novel will suck you in from the first page.
After recently divorced therapist Tallie Clark saves a young man named Emmett's life on rainy October night, the result is an unexpected friendship. As Tallie works to provide a safe space for Emmett during their emotionally charged weekend together, she soon discovers that she, too, needs healing and that they are both carrying a heavy load of secrets. Telling an uplifting story of chance encounters through the perspectives of both Tallie and Emmet, this page-turner will take you on a journey of intimacy, heartbreak, and healing.
In this candid reflective novel, activist Frederick Joseph tackles a list of race-related anecdotes that he — along with many other Black people — have faced in society. Writing from the perspective of being "the Black friend," Joseph's look into white privilege, overt racism, and the negative impacts they bring about in the lives of Black children-turned-adults is the read that everyone needs.
This heartbreaking and heart-racing novel in verse by Tami Charles tells the story of 17-year-old Denver — a Haitian-American girl longing to escape her small town. After Denver and her two best friends Dali and Shak grab the attention of a big time R&B star with their melodic voices, their lives transform into everything they've wanted overnight. What they don't realize, however, is that everything is not all it seems to be in the music industry. Inspired by true events, Muted reveals both the exploitation of girls in the industry and what it takes to grab ahold of your dreams.
Looking to become the mother she never had to her newborn Violet, Blythe Connor soon begins to think that something may be wrong with her baby. As her husband Fox tells her it's all in her head, Blythe starts to question her own sanity and makes readers question if everything else she tells them about her life is reality or all in her imagination. A chilling and tense psychological drama about family, The Push will challenge all the things you thought you knew about motherhood.
When Abby takes a DNA test to try to push her best friend (and secret love interest) Leo into looking into his familial history, she's shocked to find out she has a sister that she didn't know existed. And, to make matters worse, her slightly older sister turns out to be Instagram star Savannah Tully. As she devises a plan to meet up with her rigid rule-following, completely opposite-than-her sibling, Abby learns just how the hardest things in life can produce some of the best results.
Serving as the follow-up to the bestselling novel The Hate U Give, Concrete Rose delivers a poignant exploration of what it means to be a Black boy forced to grow up quick. Taking place 17 years before the events of its predecessor novel, Concrete Rose follows Maverick Carter and his journey into becoming a father, escaping the streets, and finishing school — all while still being a child himself.
When people start calling Pamela Druckerman — an American living in Paris — madame, she's forced to confront how the age she feels inside differs from the way people see her. Part memoir, part instruction guide, this well-researched book will keep you laughing and pondering what it really means to grow older.
In this fast, witty read, Olive is asked to take her newlywed sister’s place on her non-refundable honeymoon after she and her husband get food poisoning at their wedding. While a free trip to Hawaii sounds great, there's just one problem: her plus one is her detestable new brother-in-law, Ethan.
Erin and Mark couldn’t be happier when they set off to Bora Bora for their honeymoon. Things quickly change, however, when they spot something suspicious — and immediately life-changing — in the crystal-blue ocean. Follow along in this captivating psychological thriller as the newlyweds must decide if they keep their discovery a secret or speak out and risk it all.
One of the best-reviewed books of the summer, Fleishman is in Trouble does not disappoint. Dropping the reader into the life of recently divorced doctor Toby Fleishman, the novel follows the series of unfortunate events that erupt immediately after. When his ex-wife goes missing, Toby is forced to unravel his own internal monologue about how he's lived his life.
Nina Browning is living the good life raising her children amongst Nashville's elite, while Tom Volpe is a single dad who works multiple jobs to provide for his daughter. When a photo is taken during a drunken moment at a party, their lives become unexpectedly intertwined and both are left questioning the relationships closest to them.
Every year, the Levin family retreats to Nantucket, in 1969, things are a little different. Blair is too pregnant to travel, Kirby takes a gig on Martha’s Vineyard, and Tiger’s deployed to Vietnam. That just leaves 13-year-old Jessie alone with her grandmother and mother — both distracted by their own secrets. Travel back in time to the year man walked on the moon, Ted Kennedy crashed his car, and everything changed both within the Levins’ insular world and our nation’s history.
After two earthquakes strike San Francisco within an hour of one another, the fate of a group of survivors — Max, Vashti, and Gene — become intertwined in ways that couldn't have imagined. As Max and Vashti face the truth about their past together and Gene frantically embarks on his way back home, what results is a beautiful story about the enduring strength of love.
In an effort to grapple with the separation of her parents, 12-year-old Alice makes the decision to camp out in the back yard until her father decides to come back home. In an effort to keep one part of her summer normal, Alice packs her days with swimming, babysitting the next door neighbor, and an odd new friend named Harriet.
Historical fiction at its best, this novel lays out the rivalry between two great artists and brings them to life in Florence in the 16th century. Their feud runs deep as Leonardo is at the peak of his career (but has lost the commission for The David) and Michaelangelo is desperately trying to establish himself as a great artist while struggling to sculpt The David.
In the TV show Younger, Sutton Foster plays a book editor in New York City who signs a novel by her boss's estranged wife. In real life mimicking fiction, the book actually exists. It's about a woman who takes a trip away from her husband and kids to remember who she is outside of her roles as wife and mother. It's steamy, smart, and just the right amount of suck-you-in fantasy.
When 17-year-old Charle was sent off to the elite boarding school her wealthy father attended, she didn't imagine being recruited for the school's secret society. But before she can become a member of the A's, she must first play The Game — a scavenger hunt that begins to uncover ugly truths about her own family and her mother's disappearance years earlier.
In order to afford her beloved Hamptons home, Ruthie Beamish's family moves out each summer so that it can be rented. But this year's rich celebrity tenant wants to take over more than just her house — she's moving in on Ruthie's ex-husband, her daughter's affections, and even the museum where she's head curator.
When Charlotte’s beauty queen twin sister suffers from an allergic reaction that leaves her face unrecognizable the night before the preliminaries of a pageant, she asks Charlotte to take her place. Though it’s the last thing she wants to do, Charlotte agrees: after all, this is her sister’s last chance to follow in their late mother’s footsteps.
In minutes, Margaret Jacobsen’s life changes twice. First, when her dreamy amateur pilot boyfriend proposes mid-air, and again when the plane crashes, leaving Margaret permanently injured. Her fiancé is unable to cope, her big new job offer is rescinded, and she is forced to depend on her family. Though aren't as she initially imagine, Margaret learns to heal with grace, humor, and even finds romance.
Cat Carmichael is the owner of a thriving naughty bakeshop — who hasn't been intimate with her boyfriend in almost two years thanks to a muscular condition called vaginismus. Determined to find a cure before their next anniversary, life gets more than a little awkward when the shop's cutest customer offers to be her physical therapist.
When Georgia returns from Los Angeles to her family's small Sonoma, CA, vineyard in a mud-covered wedding dress, things are not what they seem. The ceremony is still five days away, but big secrets about her fiancé and her family are surfacing — and, as a result, Georgia's marriage plans are unraveling.
Controversy surrounds a London neighborhood after a young girl finds her 13-year-old sister, Grace, unconscious and hidden in a remote corner of a communal garden. As an investigations goes underway, he entire community denies any part in the act. Ultimately though, all of the secrets of the community are revealed and betrayals that lie beneath the neighborhood's picturesque exteriors begin to come to surface
Emilia Brown is an elderly widow who was never one for frivolity, but when she spots a beautiful Oscar de la Renta dress while helping inventory an estate, she is entranced — she must own it. Motivated by a moving secret, she embarks on a journey to raise enough money to travel to New York City and purchase the dress of her dreams.
When a young girl named Frances flees to an isolated artist's colony in Norway, she finds a friend in Yasha — who is there to bury his father. As a result of the budding new friendship, the Viking museum near the top of the world proves an unusual setting for an even more unusual romance. Ultimately, this funny and deftly written novel reflects on how running away and coming home can be one in the same.
Madeline Hyde thought she lived a comfortable life with her handsome, well-to-do husband. But when he suddenly drags her to Scotland in search of the Loch Ness monster, Maddie is forced to rethink her way of life and the people in it.