This is my (incomplete) summer reading list, and it comes with a massive disclaimer: I haven’t read any of these titles, and I have no idea whether or not I’ll love them enough to recommend them.
A couple of things you may notice:
1. When it comes to finding good books, I rely heavily on recommendations from other readers. In my opinion, this is the best way to find the good stuff.
2. This list is heavy on nonfiction. I read a ton of novels when I was putting together the 2015 summer reading guide, and kept postponing the more serious nonfiction picks until “later.” Later is now.
This is my list; I can’t wait to hear what’s on yours.
I've never actually read anything by Erik Larson before (I know!) but my son has been obsessed with the Titanic and Lusitania for so long that his newest book made my must-read list. I'm generally a fan of narratives that read like novels, and the reviews on this one are terrific. (I especially like NPR's, which called it "thrilling, dramatic and powerful.") More info →
I've heard amazing things about this book ever since it came out last October, and can't believe I haven't gotten to it yet. The publisher says that it's about "how medicine can not only improve life but also the process of its ending"—not exactly summer reading material, right? That was definitely my first impression, but everyone I know who has read this book gushes about it, calling it riveting, absorbing, paradigm-shifting, life-changing. I'm looking forward to it. More info →
This book came out on March 31, and it's sparked a great conversation (along with Monica Lewinsky's TED talk) in the public sphere about public shaming, especially as it so often happens with social media. It's been called an important read, especially for those of us who spend time online and on social media. More info →
This is one of those I-can't-believe-I've-never-read-this books: I never read it as a kid (though I have seen the movie a half-dozen times), and now it's been on my to-read list for more than a decade. (I even bought myself the gorgeous Puffin in Bloom edition in the fall to give myself a nudge!) This summer, it's happening: I'm already 150 pages in. Alcott fans have told me I'll want to read Little Men and Rose in Bloom after I finish her best-known classic. More info →
I love a good grammar book (my favorites are On Writing Well, Eats, Shoots & Leaves, and Ex Libris), so I have to take a look at this, even though the reviews are all over the place. (I'm currently 47th on the library waiting list, so it's obviously gotten plenty of good buzz.) More info →
This is the fluffiest book on my list, hands down, and sounds like a mashup of The Devil Wears Prada and In Good Company. The story is heavily inspired by All About Eve (which you must watch immediately if you never have): when 42-year-old Glossy magazine editor Imogen Tate returns from a 6-month sabbatical, she finds that her fill-in, a twenty-something Harvard Business School grad, is actively trying to usurp her position—permanently. (And worse—turn the magazine into an app!) I'm hoping for a fresh and funny read: I'll let you know how it goes. More info →
Ann Patchett called this the best book she read in 2014, a fabulous book club pick, and a moving true story. That's enough for me, and I'm clearly in good company: I'm going to have to buy it because I'm number 300-something on the library waiting list. More info →