Summer days have more hours to fill, on the beach, idling in a hammock, or commuting into work at a more leisurely pace. These are the perfect times to unplug and unwind with a new book. We’ve gone through the latest crop of excellent summer reads to cull out our top picks.
This coming-of-age novel set in the world of New York’s high-dining follows Tess, 22, who recently moved to the city and is trying to navigate her way through her chaotic, enchanting, punishing work and life as a waitress in a celebrated Manhattan restaurant. As Tess develops an education and an appetite for food, wine, and a glamorous lifestyle, she also struggles with “the unbearable beauty, the fragility and brutality of being young in New York.”
Set in the late 1960’s in northern California, teenager Evie Boyd gets wrapped up in a thrilling group of older, daring girls – and their charismatic cult leader. Emma Cline’s debut novel – part psychological thriller, part coming-of-age adventure – explores teenage obsession and our powerful need to belong, which for Evie might lead her to committing unthinkable violence.
The Whale: A Love Story by Mark Beauregard
A novel of forbidden love, longing and estrangement, Mark Beauregard’s The Whale is a beautiful and heart-wrenching glimpse at the secret relationship of two of America’s most iconic writers. In 1850, Herman Melville, broke, down on his luck and with a string of literary failures in his wake, takes his family on vacation in New Hampshire, where he meets Nathaniel Hawthorne – changing his and American literature’s future. Beauregard uses historical and personal letters to reimagine their passionate and impossible love, which inspired Melville to go on to write Moby-Dick.
Modern Lovers by Emma Straub
Emma’s Straub’s follow-up to her hit beach read, The Vacationeers, is a page-turning, humorous novel about a group of college friends as they move through their new “adult” lives. In their college glory days, Elizabeth, Andrew and Zoe were friends in a band. Now they are reaching middle age, raising kids in a comfortable Brooklyn lives. But one summer, things start to unravel, secrets get unearthed and they realize that “our passions—be they food, or friendship, or music—never go away, they just evolve and grow along with us.”
Do you have any other good read recs that we should add to our lists? Let us know by leaving a comment below.
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