It happened this past long Memorial Day weekend that I lost myself in a book, a fictional book no less, which is often not what I reach for. But after lounging in my Adirondack chair and then moving to my hammock and reading until the sun put me to sleep, I awoke and moved to the sofa inside to finish a book I couldn’t put down and didn’t until I finished it.
For the first time in a long time, I finished a book for pure pleasure in less than an afternoon, and my thoughts are still dancing around the ideas said book presented.
To find a book and the time to devour such a book is a pure simple luxury, and something that is often more available during the summer months as we find ourselves en route to our travel destination, enjoying our travel destination without a worry of glancing at the clock or simply enjoying the beauty of our backyard without endless demands and long daylight hours.
Each summer scores of new books are released for just such occasions of enjoyment, and after perusing and reviewing many that were scattered and suggested, I found 10 books released between April 2016 and by July 2016 that I think you will mightily enjoy. If my enjoyment of the first one on the list is any indication, it is going to be a most lovely and enjoyable three full months.
1. The Course of Love by Alain de Botton
Who would love this book: Anyone who believes in love, wants to believe in love, is questioning if love is possible.
Being released on June 14th, I was able to receive an early copy to review, and while I will be going into much more depth and explanation (and even offering a giveaway of a copy on June 13th episode of the podcast), order or reserve this book now. It is amazing and served as a reminder of what the true course of love requires. Shared as a fictional journey following a couple when they meet through their marriage, it also pairs insights of relationships along the way. Read this excerpt shared in The New York Times to get a taste of why you will not want to the only person not reading this book this summer.
2. The Bonjour Effect: The Secret Codes of French Conversation Revealed by Julie Barlow and Jean-Benoit Nadeau
Who would love this book: Francophiles, French language learners, anyone who wants to live or travel to France
The opportunity to travel to Paris a multitude of times over the course of ten years and a year to live in Paris with their twin daughters, authors Julie Barlow and Jean-Benoit Nadeau reveal the truth behind how to actually converse (rather than communicate) with the French in France. No matter your level of proficiency with the French language, you will read, and enjoy and be reminded of why you will want to return immediately to the City of Light.
3. The Muse: A Novel by Jessie Burton
Who would love this book: lovers of history, art, a touch of mystery
Not being released until July 26, Jessie Burton’s book looks to be a treat to read. Taking readers back to England in the 1960s and Spain in 1933, it intertwines two different narratives and reveals how one can indeed influence the other. Art, desire and mystery are skillfully contained in this book’s tale.
4. Tears of Triumph: The Spiritual Journey from Suffering to Enlightenment by Marianne Williamson
Who would love this book: Anyone looking for inspiration and healing
The best-selling New York Times author comes out with her new book on June 14th. Reminding us all that the only way to truly heal is to embrace and understand what is hurting us, she guides readers through the process and reveals the power of the journey on the entirety of our lives.
5. Siracusa by Delia Ephron
Who would love this book: Delia Ephron, Nora’s sister, lovers of witty story-telling about life, relationships, travel
Being released on July 12th, this will be a book that most likely will be on the screen soon. Following two couples that go to a small island close to Sicily, Siracusa, the drama ensues with swapping points of view telling the tale throughout the novel and allowing Delia Ephron to do what we’ve come to love her for, offer uncanny insight into the human perspective on living as well as relationships and travel. What a lovely combination.
6. Rich and Pretty by Rumaan Alam
Who would love this book: New York City, friendships, growing up, figuring out life
A debut novel set in New York City, two close friends try to navigate their friendship as they try to figure out how to pursue the life they want. Following their relationship through their twenties and thirties, the two women, Sarah and Lauren, once inseparable and sharing everything with each other, find their lives going different ways. But does that mean their friendship is over? Read to find out.
7. Invincible Summer by Alice Adams
Who would love this book: Generation Xers, anyone intrigued by love and friendship
Yet another book following a group of friends from their twenties to their thirties, over the course of twenty years and now living in a handful of different places throughout Europe, the friends confront life and its adventures and disappointments.
8. An Innocent Fashion by
Who would love this book: lovers of the fashion world, millennials, fans of The Devil Wears Prada
This time it is a male protagonist that dives into the fashion elite world of New York City and sets out to see if his soul will be compromised as he pursues what he thought he always wanted. After attending a top Ivy League school, Ethan, formerly known as Élian where he grew up in Texas, offers a modern coming-of-age tale of confusion, disappointment and finding one’s identity.
9. Break in Case of Emergency by Jessica Winter
Who would love this book: looking for humor, a release from a stressful work place, the modern woman
A satirical look at the celebrity culture in the 21st century as well as one woman’s navigation during her 3os, rectifying what she thought it would be like and what it actually is. A comedic breath of fresh air and a reminder to us all to let go a little bit more.
10. Free Speech: Ten Principles for a Connected World by Timothy Garton Ash
Who would love this book: the politico, the curious, the traveler who appreciates their technology, the global citizen
Many of the tragic events that have come to be splashed on the top folds of newspapers around the world have involved some level of communication supported by technology. As well, the ease that social media provides us all to communicate, share and discover has as many pitfalls as it does opportunities. And while Timothy Garton Ash is a professor of European Studies at Oxford, he is also leading a major research study around the 13 language debate and free speech which came to be the foundation of his new book released on May 24th. The power of free speech is a right for all, but there is a way, he argues that one should be smart with their speech. Thought provoking, yes. A mandatory read by all? Perhaps.
~To discover more of TSLL picks, check out my Amazon book store here.