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The Ultimate Summer 2015 Book Guide

Unless it’s an article titled How To Prevent Impending and Hereditary Turkey Neck With The Flip of a Switch, nothing catches my eye like a good, solid Summer Reading List.  I’ll stop whatever I’m eating doing to scan the list faster than you can say flash. Books are my bath salts, and I’m not talking the lavender aromatherapy kind.  So Imma make this short and sweet. I’ve rounded up 20 books for you to read this summer. All types of ’em, too!  And for all you procrastinators, plenty are great to get Pops in time for Father’s Day. Now, the books to escape into this summer:

“In the Unlikely Event” by Judy Blume – Yes! The Judy Blume, aka the grand dame of pubescent angst and first periods. But did you know she also writes adult books, and they’re good?  Believe it. PS, Ramona Quimby is 37 now, so that’s right… we’re all old as dirt.  NEXT:

In the Unlikely Event by Judy Blume | Summer Reading List | Covet Living

“The Same Sky” by Amanda Eyre Ward – Say hello to the most recent can’t-set-it-down-but-my-eyes-are-closing book I’ve just finished. Told from the POV of two women: Carla, a 13-year-old being raised by her grandma in Honduras who decides to embark on a dangerous journey with her little brother to join her mom in Texas; and Alice, a married 40-year-old with a seemingly perfect life but the inability to have kids. Reading their journeys was both heartwrenching at times but also completely uplifting, if not until the ending.  Very timely, too:

The Same Sky by Amanda Eyre Ward

“The Martian” by Andy Weir – Do you have a goofy, funny male bestie who’s always cracking jokes and giving you sh*t?  Ok, so picture your guy pal as the center of this novel, a funny young astronaut named Mark Watney who’s left stranded on Mars when the crew of his mission is forced to evacuate, leaving him there accidentally. Soon to be a movie starring Matt Damon, might I suggest this as a book for ol’ Pops, unless of course you’ve already lovingly made him a homemade wooden clock with a howling wolf picture stuck to the face, like my brother just did:

The Martian by Andy Weir

“My Sunshine Away” by M.O. Walsh – This begins in the summer of ’89 (a great year), and unfolds in a Southern neighborhood with the narrator being a 14-yr-old boy at the start of the book.  A terrible crime happens in his neighborhood, and we find out the narrator was indeed one of the suspects.  All reviews describe the book as gripping, totally engrossing, and “completely unexpected.”  Sold:

My Sunshine Away by M.O. Walsh

“The Rocks” by Peter Nichols – The cover is just so purdy, but the content sounds nothing like a light summer beach read. Set in Mallorca off the Spanish coast and told in reverse, this book tells the tale of a group of two interconnected families over three generations. After the book opens with a rather jarring event, it then works backwards and we learn why the two central characters have spent so many decades not talking to one another.  I can’t make it to Mallorca this summer, so I’m ready to mentally frolic there thru this read:

The Rocks by Peter Nichols

“Modern Romance” by Aziz Ansari (Out June 16) – You guys, I love Aziz Ansari.  If you’re ever having a sh*tty day and need a good, solid 45 minutes of laughter, head to this link before it gets pulled off Youtube and watch it, trust me. Or if you’ve only got 25 seconds, watch this.  Anywho, I need this pint-sized guy in my life, so I’m pumped for his new book.  He actually teamed up with a sociologist and embarked on a journey to explore all things modern love-related and why singles today find themselves with tons more options to finding love, yet even more frustrated than ever:

Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari

“Being Mortal” by Atul Gawande – Aaaannnnd completely changing course here, this next book was our Book Club pick a couple months ago. When I first started reading I admittedly worried it was gonna be too much of a downer to get through, but I persevered and came away thinking it was one of the most enlightening books I’d ever read:

Being Mortal by Atul Gawande

“We Are Called to Rise” by Laura McBride – Similar to “The Same Sky”, this book has different narrators all tied together by one split-second event: an immigrant boy, a wife trying to save her marriage, a social worker and a recovering vet, whose stories converge in the city of Vegas, and not to spin the Wheel of Fortune wheel and watch a Cirque du Soleil show:

We Are Called to Rise (6/3/14)by Laura McBride

“The Legacy of Ruth Bader Ginsburg” by Scott Dodson – I can’t wait to get my hands on this book about the Notorious R.B.G., who at 5 ft tall and 100 pounds wet has stood mightily through the decades to fight for positive social change.  She is a complete and utter badass:

The Legacy of Ruth Bader Ginsburg by Scott Dodson

“The Art of Racing in the Rain” by Garth Stein – The most perfect book for Dad, like for real. I thought for sure I’d written about this before on le blog, but I just did a quick little search and I HAVEN’T.  Oh my goodness, just stop whatever you’re doing and order this book off Amazon, right now. You’ll never look at your dog the same. Oh, and get a Costco-sized supply of tissues to have at the ready.

The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein | Summer Reading List | Covet Living

“Straight to Hell: True Tales of Deviance, Debauchery, and Billion-Dollar Deals ” by John Lefevre (Out July 14) – Something tells me this could be a fun read for Pops. Imagine a tale of excess and greed, and we’re not talking about that time Dad went back for thirds at the dessert bar at Hometown Buffet.  Written by the man behind @GSElevator, the Twitter feed that exposed conversations heard on the Goldman Sachs elevator, this is Lefevre’s torrid account of being a globe-trotting financial exec in the high stakes, overindulgent world of investment banking. Greed is good indeed… right Dad?!

Straight to Hell by John Lefevre | Summer Reading List | Covet Living

“Still Alice” by Lisa Genova – Heartwrenching… you’ve been warned. But if it’s anything like the movie starring Julianna Moore which won her the Oscar this year, about a professor who’s diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s, it’s also emotionally gripping and poignant.

Still Alice by Lisa Genova

“The Girl on the Train” by Paula HawkinsWe know we know, even the Bible’s being touted as “the next Gone Girl”, but I’m only about 25 pages deep into this book and already really intrigued by it.

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

“Small Mercies” by Eddie Joyce – A family saga about one multi-generational Staten Island family affected by the loss of a family member on 9/11 and the ways in which they’re trying to recover, over a decade later.

Small Mercies by Eddie Joyce

“Rooms” by Lauren Oliver – I’m dying to read this!  Supposedly a page-turner.  A pair of ghosts inhabit the house of a man named Richard Walker, whose family gathers after his death to clear out his house. The two ghosts, who can’t escape and keenly observe the dysfunctional family in their presence, all have painful truths exposed – culminating in the ghosts and humans colliding.

Rooms by Lauren Oliver

“Luckiest Girl Alive” by Jessica Knoll – Gone Girl comparison? Check. Reese Witherspoon endorsement? Check. Worth a read? Why not?!

Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll

“Everything I Never Told You” by Celeste NgFrom online: Lydia is the favorite child of Marilyn and James Lee, and her parents are determined that she will fulfill the dreams they were unable to pursue. But when Lydia’s body is found in the local lake, the delicate balancing act that has been keeping the Lee family together is destroyed, tumbling them into chaos. A profoundly moving story of family, secrets, and longing, Everything I Never Told You is both a gripping page-turner and a sensitive family portrait, uncovering the ways in which mothers and daughters, fathers and sons, and husbands and wives struggle, all their lives, to understand one another.  In the words of Lil’ Jon, OH-Kay!

Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng | Summer Reading List | Covet Living

“Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces that Stand in the Way of True Inspiraton” by Ed Catmull – Truly an interesting read about the company culture of Pixar, the masterminds behind some of the most successful animated films (Toy Story, Monsters, Inc, Finding Nemo). Maybe it’s cause I work in a creative environment, or cause I’m kinda a geek for this stuff, but I loved this book and found it really interesting:

Creativity, Inc by Ed Catmull | Summer Reading List | Covet Living

“Before I Go” by Colleen Oakley – Right before her “Cancerversary” celebrating 4 years of being in remission, 27-yr-old Daisy finds out her cancer’s returned, and it’s Stage 4. So what’s a girl to do, but make it her mission to find her “charmingly helpless” hubby a new love interest.  I smell an upcoming rom-com starring, hmm… Rachel McAdams? Reese maybe? Seeya there with my Milk Duds.

Before I Go by Colleen Oakley

“A Man Called Ove” by Fredrik Backman – When grumpy Ove, a bitter, curmudgeonly old man gets a new family next door, an unexpected friendship blossoms.  This has been called one of the most charming books of the year, “a thoughtful exploration of the profound impact one life has on countless others.”

A Man Called Ove by

Happy Summertime, darlings. Please feel free to pass this along to the book lovers in your life, and add any and all book suggestions YOU’VE read and loved!


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