Friday, July 22, 2016

Five Unlikely Beach Reads You Need To Toss Into Your New Summer Tote

If you haven't yet bought yourself a new bag for the summer, well, you simply must. Go look at my list of ten totes that will make your summer easier, pick one, buy it and then come back to order a few books to stuff it with.

Beach reads.

What defines a beach read?

Honestly, any book can be a book you take to the beach. We all know that. But sometimes, because we're sitting in the sun, sweltering, or hiding out under the umbrella with SPF 100 on our pale bodies, we need an escape that's filled with summer energy and flair. And because of that - we have the beach read category. I'm going to share with you ten books you'll want to bring to the beach, even if they don't quite fit into that category.

Here are five perfect books you need to toss into that new summer tote.

* As always, affiliate links are provided to make your shopping experience super simple. Just click and buy these amazing reads! *

Have you read anything by Sarah Addison Allen yet? If not, stop right there and order this book immediately. It's her first novel and it's fantastic. A story with a focus on family - and a touch of magic thrown in for good measure - and it's so beautiful. There's something about Addison Allen's style of writing that pulls you in and holds on tight. She includes mystical tones throughout and it's the kind that you find yourself believing in. Your heart can't help it, even if your head isn't so sure. Garden Spells is the kind of book you'll consider reading over and over again. But you won't have to - because you'll decide right away - maybe even before you finish reading - that you need all of her other books. Trust me on this one. I won't steer you wrong. 

I really loved this book. It was one of my favorite reads in 2015. In Secrets of a Charmed Life Susan Meissner has created the kind of story that sticks with you, along with characters you don't want to let go of. The story of Isabel weaves back and forth between the present day and a history that she has only just decided to share. It's a beautiful book - even without the cover - but how gorgeous is that cover, right? You definitely need to get yourself a copy this summer. 

I'm sure by now you've heard of this book. The follow up novel, After You, is out, as is the movie. But I read this book several years ago and loved it then. I saw the movie a few weeks ago and kind of want to re-read the book to see if the movie did as well as I seemed to think it did. Like, I think it was the best movie adaption of a book I've ever seen - honestly. Anyway, Me Before You is an amazing read. It's not just powerful and intense, it's emotional and raw. 

I find that you either loved or hated this book if you've read it. With the craze of books like Gone Girl being one that blew up over recent years and kind of went forward in a way that pulled other books with it, The Girl On The Train was a follow-up in the same genre. I will say it wasn't my absolute favorite book of all time, but you'd be hard pressed to compare to some of my forever faves. However, have a look at my review of this book, you can tell I kind of loved it, even if I don't remember singing its praises quite this highly. It's the kind of book you can read and find yourself shutting out the rest of the world to do so, so it's perfect for the beach, just don't forget the sunscreen on before you dive in. Also - note - the paperback just came out and it's less than $10, so that should make it even more appealing, because it's even less than the Kindle version. What a deal!

You guys, The Flood Girls is one of the most moving books I've read this year. I reviewed it back in February and personally my favorite line from my own review was: 

It's moving. It's gritty. It's entertaining. It's a great read. It's also disturbing in some ways. 

That sentence right there sums this book up in a nutshell. It's a phenomenal debut by Richard Fifield. It also left many of us (his readers) in need of therapy. I'm going to quote myself again to tell you that you want to take some time to check it out. Because you'll be glad, or maybe really pissed off, and then eventually glad again - that you did. Basically it's a must-read for 2016. And you don't want to wait until November for the paperback, I can promise you that. 

And if this list of recommendations is not enough, no worries, I have plenty more for you. 

Happy reading!


  1. I've read 4 out of 5 of these (and I have Garden Spells in my tbr pile). I can attest that they are all very good. Probably the least well known of the bunch is The Flood Girls, which I highly second your nomination of a great book!

  2. This is perfect - I was looking around for books to suggest to my book club... Thanks Andrea!

  3. I can't say I hated The Girl on the Train, but it was a DNF for me. On the other hand, I had not heard of The Flood Girls and, having checked it out on Goodreads, I am now going to be looking for it. But won't be reading it at the beach. My backyard should be fine. Thank you!


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