I am (and always have been) a voracious reader. My favorite way to spend a lazy Saturday is under a blanket, with a big mug of tea and whatever book I’m binge reading. When I was home on Cape Cod for a week, I went through four books, which is pretty standard for me. When I pack for vacation, I’ll always pack at least three or four books (and I refuse to buy a kindle, it has to be a real book that I can hold in my hand.) I’ll read anything… my taste spans from classics to business books, to downright embarrassing and lowbrow (I love YA.) Today I’m rounding up my five favorite beach reads… I devoured each one of these!
1) Everybody Rise, by Stephanie Clifford. I’ve always been fascinated by New York society and the social-climbing that (I would imagine) comes with it. This was juicy. You find yourself loving and hating the main character all at once as she tries to pass herself off as old money… making some really terrible decisions along the way. Clifford has been called a modern day Edith Wharton and I can totally see why. It’s set in Manhattan in 2006 and provides an inside look at the Upper East Side, designer wardrobes, debutante balls, society etiquette, and so much more. I was transfixed, and couldn’t put it down.
2) The Knockoff, by Lucy Sykes and Jo Piazza. You know a book is really good when you are late to dinner because you got out of the shower, sat down in your towel, and thought to yourself… “I’ll just read a few more pages…” only to finish the entire book. This happened. As someone who spent the last four years working in fashion/tech, I really enjoyed this one. If you work in the industry you’ll find yourself nodding your head and laughing as you pick up on uncanny resemblances for some of the characters. It’s like The Devil Wears Prada, but better.
3) The Royal We, by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan. If the authors of this book sound familiar, it’s because they’re the Fug Girls! I’d been a big fan of their site for a long time but I wasn’t sure if I’d love reading a whole book about the royals. (I’m just not an obsessive royals person.) But it was so, so good. It’s basically (very imaginative, awesome) Kate Middleton fan fiction. The character development here is great. It’s bad because I see Kate & Will and think that they are Nick and Bex (the two main characters). You really feel like you know the characters, inside and out. It’s a bit longer, but I wished it could go on forever.
4) Eight Hundred Grapes, by Laura Dave. I read this one while in Sonoma, which was fun as the book is actually set there. Do you know when something goes wrong in your life, and then you expect things to get better and they just keep getting worse? That’s what happens here. The author has a life changing event, and returns home only to find secret after secret unraveling at her family’s winery. I thought it was very real and raw and managed to perfectly capture the complexity of relationships. That being said, I still managed to finish it within an afternoon.
5) Summer Secrets, by Jane Green. I’ve been a big Jane Green fan for years now, ever since reading Jemima J, and was excited that she had a new book coming out. I read it in one day. It follows the main character from her late twenties into her forties, dealing with her battle with alcoholism + single motherhood… after a shocking family secret is revealed. Similar to Everybody Rise, she makes a lot of mistakes… but you really come to root for her. I fell in love with both of the main characters.
What are you reading this summer? I always love reading all of your recommendations!