The 2019 Summer Reading Guide is here!

It’s one of my favorite days of the year: the eighth annual Summer Reading Guide is here!

Summer is made for reading, and my goal in this guide is to help you discover the books that are perfect for you. You’ll find great books, all carefully selected with the tastes of MMD readers in mind. I’ve tried to give you some fabulous reads that probably aren’t on your radar, as well as some hot summer releases readers everywhere are buzzing about.

I read hundreds of books (yes, really!) to choose this year’s titles. The result is a user-friendly guide that whittles the overwhelming array of readerly options down to just 30 titles. Every book in there has earned its spot, and I’ve personally read them all, front to back. I can vouch for them, and answer any questions you have. In every description, I give you the information you need to help you decide if that book sounds like a good fit for you.

This year we’re doing things a bit differently. I wanted to create and share an immersive summer reading guide that is beautiful to look at, easy to reference, and packed full of extra information to make your summer reading the best it’s ever been. To accomplish this, we formatted the guide as a PDF in the style of an e-magazine. It turned out wonderfully and I hope you’re as pleased with the results as I am.

We created this guide as a gift to our subscribers, but if you’re not already a subscriber, have no fear. Sign up here to get the guide delivered to your inbox. When you sign up, we’ll also send you my monthly-ish newsletter with stories and content only for subscribers.


• To get the guide, please sign up on this page and you’ll receive the guide in your inbox.
• If you don’t get the guide within a few minutes, check your spam folder.
• If you still don’t have it, do not leave a comment here. Please email [email protected] and we’ll get you sorted out.

Readers, I hope you find a book (or twelve) you LOVE on this list.

If you find something great in the Summer Reading Guide, would you spread the book love? Share on your favorite social media platform or with your favorite bookish friends. Our official hashtags are #summerstooshort—because summer is too short to read books you don’t love—and #IdRatherBeReading, because we’re all book lovers here. (Follow me on Instagram at @annebogel and the podcast at @whatshouldireadnext for summer reading goodness all season long.)

Happy summer, and happy reading!

P.S. There’s plenty more bookish content ahead this summer. On Tuesday, What Should I Read Next? Episode 185 is a deep dive into the Summer Reading Guide. The 5-book minimalist Summer Reading Guide is also coming next week! (Check out last year’s version while you wait.) The Book Club has some amazing summer selections. And if that’s not enough, I’ll also be sharing Hot Summer Books and our first ever Summer Romance Picks soon! We’ve got a great season ahead of us.


Leave A Comment
  1. Shannon Hsu says:

    What a wonderful 2019 Summer Reading Guide! My TBR list just keeps getting longer and longer and I love it. I look forward to reading many great titles as the days get warmer. THANK YOU!

    • Anne says:

      It’s a PDF, so make sure the security settings on your device allow files like this to open. So far this is the only real technical issue we’re seeing.

  2. Victoria says:

    This was the first email I opened this morning and was not disappointed. I had read two, had 5 on hold already at the library and there were plenty of new and unexpected surprises to keep me busy this summer!! My hold list has just doubled in length and I’m going to be devoting some serious vacation time to non stop reading. Thank you Anne, another winner!!!

  3. Taylor says:

    Another fantastic guide! I go to two different libraries so I placed a hold on every single book from the guide and look forward to all of them! Every summer these guides encourage me to expand my reading horizon and I find out I love some very unexpected books.

  4. Rose says:

    Christmas in May! Last night I felt like “One more sleep until the MMD Summer Reading Guide!”

    I wish I had a crate-full-of-books vacation planned where we could just sit and read most of the day. I still have books from last year’s guide on my TBR. We’re already talking about perhaps taking one next year, though.

  5. Lauren D says:

    I was on the edge of my seat… Thank you so much! I recently read “Save Me the Plums” and “Inheritance” after hearing your recommendations on a podcast episode (or two). These were EXCELLENT. “Inheritance” will stay with me for a long time. I’m already checking out the backlists of these authors, so I was happy to see another Reichl title in the summer reading guide. Cheers!

  6. Sarah says:

    I love the details in the PDF, but I miss the clean list with descriptions and release dates that I could print out and attach to my planner 🙁

    • Catherine says:

      Yes! You can tell a lot of effort has been put into the pdf and it is beautiful.
      Maybe Anne will put out a list later?
      I do find that helpful as the summer wears on and I want to quickly scan for the title that I’m thinking of but can’t quite remember the name of.

  7. Jen says:

    I appreciate the PDF as well but really wish you would also just post the list here on the blog. I found that much easier. Thank you for a great list, though! 🙂

    • Kaitlin says:

      I am so excited about this year’s picks! Thanks for taking such good care of us, Anne! Excited to try some books that are a little out of my comfort zone this season.

  8. Michelle Ann says:

    I read you on Bloglovin, Anne, as my inbox is already jammed up with too much stuff. The nice thing about a blog reader is I can look at blogs when I have a few spare minutes, rather then mass-delete e-mails as I used to do, as I don’t have time to read them all. Your list sounds great, so please consider adding it to your blog.

  9. Heather says:

    Anne, you’ve done it again. Thank you. I am jumping up and down and shouting YES inside my introverted heart. The 2019 Reading Guide is magnificent. I love the magazine format (anything magazine appeals to me) and although I have only yet skimmed the titles, I know my TBR will be hugely expanded. This is going to be a great summer.

  10. Heather says:

    PS. Me again. How do I get a picture uploaded, to go with my name in comments? I love to see who is commenting, but don’t know how to reciprocate.

  11. When I got my email this morning, I immediately opened the PDF, plus new tabs for Goodreads, my local library website, Overdrive (for Kindle & audio through the library), and ILIAD (so I could request my library acquire new books). And then I poured through the list of 30 books!

    I have only read one so far (“Save Me the Plums” on audio a few weeks ago), and had 5 on my TBR already (some already on hold or on my shelf at home). But I added 11 new titles, and added them all to my library holds list! Can’t wait to start digging into these.

    Thank you for doing all the reading/researching, to find us some truly great summer reads, even if I don’t actually get a summer break! 🙂

  12. Natalie says:

    I love the new format, and also that it is printable for easy reference…a lot of intriguing books on this list!

  13. Elise says:

    Thanks for this list! I love the format – and the inclusion of some older titles along with the new releases. I just put The River on hold at my library, and I texted my husband the blurb about Blake Crouch’s upcoming release. I think we’re going to enjoy that one together.
    Thanks for the wide variety of recommendations. Lots to be excited about!

  14. Hilary says:

    I knew this was coming out today and deliberately held off until my lunch break before looking at it. I am so excited ! It does t matter the format – i love it all ☺️ Thanks for all the work that goes into it!

  15. Lisa says:

    Thank you so much! For me, this is like Christmas in May! I barely survive May so I have been looking forward to it for months. I started the Huntress 2 weeks ago and it does not disappoint. You raise the bar every year on the summer reading guide. Can’t wait to dive In deeper and make my lists!

  16. Jocele says:

    One of my favorite days of the year is when this list comes out! I certainly won’t read all of them, but I love to look at the list and wish I had more time. This new format is awesome as well. Thanks for all your hard work, Anne!!

  17. Hayley says:

    Stayed up until it arrived in my inbox so I could order the whole minimalist set for my sister whose Birthday is on 16 May.

  18. Coreline says:

    I thought the magazine format was not only beautiful but an absolute delight to peruse! Clearly, a lot of time was spent putting it together to make it as visually appealing as it was while also cramming in a lot of information. Great job and this list has made me even more excited that summer is almost here!!

  19. Pam says:

    Beautiful format to the reading guide this year. I love it! Reading is my refuge from real life right now, and I so appreciate all you do for us.

    I spent an absorbing couple of hours looking over the guide yesterday and seeing which books I could find at the public library. I can’t read them all, so I’m focusing on the suspense and minimalist lists for now. I can’t wait to jump in when my first hold is in. Anticipation!

  20. Eileen says:

    I’ve tried to subscribe more than once, but never get the email to confirm the subscription. I also never receive any emails from your site. They’re not in my spam folder either. I always love the Summer Reading Guide and it’s frustrating not to be able to get it.

    • Anne says:

      Eileen, sorry for the trouble. Sometimes we have trouble delivering to yahoo email addresses; I imagine that’s the problem. We can fix it—-please email [email protected] (It’s SO much easier to troubleshoot that way, which is why we ask everyone to email if they have any trouble.)

      I appreciate that you’re excited to get the guide! We’ll make sure you get it.

  21. mary gregory says:

    This is fantastic! I just stumbled across your blog and I’ve been an addicted reader for 40 years! I love your choices and share it with all my other 60 year old book lover friends. To be sure I can get the books, I keep my library tab open with the summer guide open, and fill my library hold shelves up! North Carolina heat and humidity calls for books as salvation!

    • Anne says:

      Thank you for the kind words, and seeing as it’s 90 degrees in Kentucky this weekend I can appreciate this point of view! Hope you find some great reads for the season in this year’s guide.

  22. Heard you mention “Maybe You Should Talk to Someone” on the Popcast, and I had to agree with you, bcs I was well into it by then. Finished it last night! Was so satisfied with John’s outcome! This is, so far, my fave nonfiction read of 2019–so far!

  23. Gina Petrie says:

    This is my first year with your Summer Reading Guide. Thank you so much! Quick question–are the book covers on page 18 in a particular order? I’ve tried to guess (alphabetical by author or title, by genre), but I can’t figure it out. I wanted to share with library colleagues and thought they might wonder. Thanks!

  24. Elvira says:

    For me the summer reading guide often transforms in a backlist reading guide. As many of the books are recent or brandnew releases they are not translated yet. Maybe now is the time for the 2013 guide for me 🙂 on the other hand: it’s lovely to discover new to me authors (sadly my library doesn’t seem to have many of them in their collection). I’m a bit jealeous of the ebook/audiobooks your libraries seem to have available. Here in Belgium they haven’t figured that out yet…
    anyway, your guide counts as the official start of summer season! Yay!

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