14 “Older” books for your summer reading

I’ve been busy with mom life and getting stuff sorted out for our summer and doing my own thing, so the blog has taken a spot on the back burner again but it’s pretty much summer reading time!! I love seeing a million “books to read this summer” lists pop up at this time of the year, and I have my own list of ARCs and new releases to pick up which I will share in the future. Today, however, I wanted to dive into books that have already been published and might be somewhere lower down on your TBR that you’ve forgotten about them. I love rediscovering books that I REALLY wanted to read at one point and then just digging in!!

So, here are 14 backlist titles perfect for the summer!! Of course, these are all based on my own opinion, but I loved all of these books and a few of them might be a bit more on the “obscure” or lesser-known side. They might be easier to pick up at the library without waiting forever on a holds list too!! Let me know if you share my love for these selections!!!

Take Me with YouTake Me with You by Catherine Ryan Hyde

This book takes place in the summer, and it would be a great one to read during these months. I loved this a million times more than I expected to based on the synopsis. Contemporary fiction 

Lessons in GravityLessons in Gravity by Megan Westfield

This was such a fun read. I loved the wilderness setting & the backdrop of filming some dangerous rock climbing. The setting seemed beautiful and it made me want to visit Yosemite someday. I loved the couple and the emotions behind their relationship. This is a great debut novel and I enjoyed her second book, Leaving Everest, quite a bit too. New Adult fiction with some romance.

The Great AloneThe Great Alone by Kristin Hannah

Wow, this book was so powerful and thought-provoking. The tension and plot-building in this story reminded me of Beartown although that book is completely different. This book has been a bestseller for awhile now, but if you haven’t read it yet, do yourself a favour and pick it up!! Historical fiction that really reads like contemporary fiction. 

Happiness for BeginnersHappiness for Beginners by Katherine Center

If you’ve heard me talk about books at all, you know that I absolutely love this book SO much. I also really enjoyed The Lost Husband (which is becoming a movie with Josh Duhamel!!), How to Walk Away, and her upcoming August release, Things you Save in a Fire. Happiness for Beginners will probably always be my favourite of hers though. This is another book that is such a good summer read – there is so much in this even though it’s a bit chick-lit-ish too. It’s not really a romance, but there is some romance in it. It’s about finding yourself and learning more about who you are regardless of other people. It is SO readable. I love a post that Hannah did about this book too which made me want to go and highlight my entire copy. Contemporary fiction. 

Forget Me Not (Detective Jess Bishop, #1)Forget Me Not by Kierney Scott

I read the first 50ish pages of this while waiting in a line and then kind of forgot about it for a little bit before picking it up again and finishing the rest in one night. It definitely held my interest and was SO.MESSED.UP. the way that serial killer books should be. I liked Jess Bishop and her background was pretty cool (her childhood though- whoa). Police procedural / thriller with some twists – first in a series and I need to pick up the other 2! 

One of Us Is LyingOne of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus

The hype for this book is definitely well-deserved. I was unable to put it down until I found out what happened. The characters were interesting and I really liked the way it was told in multiple POVs. It definitely kept me guessing. YA mystery/thriller

Somewhere in France (The Great War #1)Somewhere in France by Jennifer Robson

I actually just finished this book in the past couple of weeks. It was so readable. I feel like this was a less sad version of Last Christmas in Paris, which I also loved. I know lots of people don’t really like to read “heavier” books in the summer, understandably, but this one was surprisingly light for the content. WWI fiction/romance. 

Textbook Amy Krouse RosenthalTextbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal by Amy Krouse Rosenthal

Every once in awhile, I feel like I’m getting to the point of being able to see Amy Krouse Rosenthal’s name without crying (don’t follow that link with her NYT letter if you don’t want to tear up), but then I realize that nope, I’m not there yet. Her death is still so sad to me. I love her children’s books, and I love this memoir written about all the little things that make the world what it is. This is such an easy book to read with profound tidbits of ordinary wisdom. If you did follow that link to her article, I also highly recommend her husband’s response. Their whole story is so moving and heartwrenching and beautiful. Highly readable memoir

The Storied Life of A.J. FikryThe Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin

I’ve said once or twice that books about bookstores/bookshop owners are all the rage right now, and I really can’t quite get enough of them. This one might just always be my favourite of them all though. I adore this book and can’t wait to re-read it sometime later this year on audio! Contemporary fiction.

What Alice ForgotWhat Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty

My favourite by Liane Moriarty and a book I think of often. This one is so fun to read. Contemporary fiction. If I might help to convince you, here’s a lovely quote from it:

“Each memory, good and bad, was another invisible thread that bound them together…It was as simple and complicated as that. Love after children, after you’ve hurt each other and forgiven each other, bored each other and surprised each other after you’ve seen the worst and the best…-well, that sort of love is ineffable. It deserves its own word.” 

Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles, #1)Cinder by Marissa Meyer

I’ve never read a series like this one and I doubt there will ever be anything that emulates it. This is the fantastic start to a series of wonderful fairy-tale-retellings in such an imaginative setting. YA fantasy 

The Happiness Project: Or Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More FunThe Happiness Project: Or Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun by Gretchen Rubin

This book is a good one to read in the summer in order to increase motivation in the fall. I’ve read a bunch of these self-help-make-your-life-better type books that contain tons of “common sense” type pieces of advice, but I love the way this one is laid out so that you could really do your own happiness project using some of her structure and advice. I need to do my own. non-fiction, self help

The Thousand-Dollar Tan Line (Veronica Mars, #1)The Thousand-Dollar Tan Line by Rob Thomas

I love Veronica Mars so much and I can’t wait to watch the new series that comes out this summer. The newest season (YEARS after it was cancelled) loosely follows this book and the one after it as well as the movie. You could read this book easily without knowing the characters though and it is a pretty solid mystery. #marshmallowforlife Adult mystery 

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Millennium, #1)The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson

This series is so intense and even though it’s been years since I’ve read them, I know they are still pretty popular. Pretty gruesome though! Adult mystery/thriller

Have you read any of these? Are you interested in any of them?! 

Honourable mentions: Attachments by Rainbow Rowell, The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion (the third in this series comes out next week and it is GOOD!), One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid, The Women’s Murder Club series by James Patterson

In the summer, I always get the urge to read thrillers and romance books (let’s be honest, I love romance anyway though). But thrillers feel like summer to me. Any good ones to recommend? I have quite a few on my TBR but not sure where to start. I’m thinking Lisa Jewell, for one. 

Happy long weekend, American friends!! And happy almost-end-of-May to everyone else!!!

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