Hey y’all! If you follow me on Instagram, then you know that spending hours reading a good book by the pool or on the beach is my favorite summertime activity! Although I no longer have schoolwork that prevents me from reading for pleasure during the other seasons, I still read significantly more books during the summer! Today I’m sharing six books to add to your summer reading list! These are all books I’ve read in the past year. A few of them are books I read during the second part of last summer, after I published my first-ever summer beach reads recommendation blog post. And a few of them are books I’ve read so far this summer.
I’m not going to give super detailed plot synopsis because I don’t want to give away too many details. Furthermore, it’s been almost a year since I’ve read some of these books. However, I have linked to the Barnes & Noble and Amazon page for each book, where you can read additional info from the author and publisher. Life hack-if you have a Barnes & Noble near you, you can order online and pick up in store. I like to do this because the online price is almost always lower, but you can still get your book the same day!
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When Life Gives You Lululemons by Laura Weisberger
This is a spin-off of The Devil Wears Prada, except this time Emily is the main character. She is struggling in her career as a PR rep for celebrities, and feels like a washed-up “has been.” Then one day she gets a new client with potential to turn things around. As the title suggests, NYC suburban mom life is a big theme of this book.
You don’t necessarily have to have read The Devil Wears Prada to enjoy When Life Gives You Lululemons, but it definitely helps.
Shop When Life Gives You Lululemons on Barnes & Noble and on Amazon.
Two Weeks by Karen Kingsbury
Karen Kingsbury is hands-down my favorite author, and Two Weeks is her latest book. It features the story of Cole Baxter, a high school senior with dreams to go to med school and become a doctor. At the beginning of the second semester of his senior year, he meets Elise, a girl in his chemistry class, who immediately takes his breath away. Elise soon realizes that she is pregnant via the abusive ex-boyfriend she recently ended things with. Meanwhile, a couple in their 30’s has been trying to have a baby for seven years, and are starting to lose hope.
As the characters wrestle with difficult decisions, Two Weeks addresses powerful themes of teen pregnancy, the sanctity of human life, trusting God in the midst of uncertainty, and keeping the faith during long seasons of waiting. Although the season of waiting I’m currently in is different, I could honestly relate to a lot of the feelings the couple struggling with infertility had.
Two Weeks might be one of my favorite Karen Kingsbury books ever, and that says a lot because I’ve read and enjoyed them all!
Shop Two Weeks on Barnes & Noble and on Amazon.
When We Were Young by Karen Kingsbury
When We Were Young is Karen Kingsbury’s second most recent book. It features an Insta-famous couple, Noah & Emily, who appear to have the perfect life and marriage. Everyone considers them #relationshipgoals and wants to be them. However, little do their hundreds of thousands of social media followers know that they are about to call it quits. The plot includes a variation of A Christmas Carol, in that the night before he is about to walk out on his marriage, Noah gets a glimpse of the future without his wife in it.
In When We Were Young, Karen Kingsbury touches on the theme of how social media can be detrimental to our lives and relationships if not used wisely. The theme of God changing hearts and working miracles is also at the forefront.
Shop When We Were Young on Barnes & Noble and on Amazon.
The High Tide Club by Mary Kay Andrews
Mary Kay Andrews is one of my go-to authors for beach reads, and The High Tide Club is her 2018 release. Josephine Warrick, a wealthy heiress, is on her death bed in coastal Georgia, and wants to make amends with her girlhood friends by willing her estate to their closest living relatives. However, more than one complication arises, and many plot twists emerge along the way too. There’s also the element of an unsolved murder on Talisa Island, where Josephine Warrick’s long-time residence sits. The book jumps back and forth between the present day and 1941, the night that the Talisa Island murder took place.
Shop The High Tide Club on Barnes & Noble and Amazon.
Rush by Lisa Patton
I actually just read Rush last weekend at Wrightsville Beach, and it might be one of my favorites ever. The plot is extremely captivating, and I had a hard time putting it down! Although I was not in a sorority, I am familiar enough with Greek life to know how the recruitment process works. I also enjoyed the element of Southern college life, even though the book is set at Ole Miss, and I went to a small Southern school.
The main characters in Rush are three Ole Miss freshmen who are planning to go through sorority recruitment, an overbearing alum who is president of the Alpha Delta Beta House Corp and will do whatever it takes to ensure her daughter gets a bid, another alum who gets roped into serving as a rush advisor, and the Alpha Delta Beta housekeeper-who loves the girls like her own but struggles to make ends meet with a low-paying job.
Rush chronicles the events of move-in day and the weeks leading up to rush, rush week, and the weeks after Bid Day. However, this book is so much more than a frivolous depiction of sorority life. It features themes of friendship, social justice, standing up for what is right, and challenging the status quo. Definitely a must-read!
Shop Rush on Barnes & Noble and on Amazon.
The Masterpiece by Francine Rivers
The Masterpiece is Francine Rivers latest book. I read it towards the end of last summer, and it’s my favorite book by her other than Redeeming Love. Roman Velasco is a wealthy and successful artist, but he is fighting demons from his past and remains closed off emotionally. However, once he hires a new assistant, Grace Moore, he starts to experience some changes within. Grace is strong in her faith, but is wrestling with regret and the consequences of her previous decisions as well.
“The Masterpiece” was such a sweet encouragement to me because it is a story all about how God is able to do great things in us and through us despite our brokenness. My favorite quote from this book is “we’re all God’s Masterpiece, created anew in Christ. . . . For His good purpose.” I bet I will reread this one in the future!
Shop The Masterpiece at Barnes & Noble and on Amazon.
(Photo by Amelia Cassar Photography)
I hope you found this post helpful and that it gave you some ideas for your next book to take along to the pool or beach with you! What are some of your favorite books you’ve read lately?
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