I don’t read any differently in the Summer than I do in other seasons so my title is a little misleading. I think book publishers imagine readers setting aside their copies of Proust with a sigh and turning to James Patterson and the like once the temperatures get above 80, but I kind of doubt that’s the case. Here’s a list of 5 books at the top of my list this summer. I have read some stinkers this summer that aren’t on this list and if you’re curious you can always look for me on Goodreads. Let me know what you’re reading – I’m always looking for something new!
- The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead. Horrific story of slavery that is beautifully written – it won the Pulitzer this year and the National Book Award last year. As dark as the subject matter is, it’s a quick read and it’s an important book that is affecting.
“If you want to see what this nation is all about, you have to ride the rails. Look outside as you speed through, and you’ll find the true face of America. It was a joke, then, from the start. There was only darkness outside the windows on her journeys, and only ever would be darkness.” ― Colson Whitehead, The Underground Railroad
- Dear Ijeawele, or a Feminist Manifesto in 15 Suggestions by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. I admit, I only heard about this author through Beyonce. This is a little book and it also felt important to me. I wish I had read it before I had my daughter.
“Your feminist premise should be: I matter. I matter equally. Not ‘if only’. Not ‘as long as’. I matter equally. Full stop.” ― Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Dear Ijeawele, or a Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions
- Gwendy’s Button Box by Stephen King and Richard Chizmar. I haven’t read this one yet – I just checked it out of the library. I’ve been a Stephen King fan ever since I read “It” in 7th grade and had to sleep with the lights on until I basically graduated from high school so I couldn’t pass this one up! (Quick Update: I did read this book and now I’m a little sorry it’s on this list as it felt and read like a light Young Adult book – a really light Young Adult book.)
“I am what you might call a rambling man, and America is my beat.” ― Stephen King, Gwendy’s Button Box
- A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles. I have a wonderful client (a librarian) who, during her project, was the best at recommending books. She gave this book to me recently and I am really looking forward to reading it.
“Fate would not have the reputation it has, if it simply did what it seemed it would do.” ― Amor Towles, A Gentleman in Moscow
- The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen. This won the 2016 Pulitzer for Fiction and I am having trouble getting into it. I am only 1/4 of the way through and I just put it aside so I could start Stephen King (that’s right). Anyone else read this one?
“I was in close quarters with some representative specimens of the most dangerous creature in the history of the world, the white man in a suit.” ― Viet Thanh Nguyen, The Sympathizer
What’s on your book reading agenda this summer? Do you change your reading habits in the summer time to lighter books and then read the heavy stuff the rest of the year? Also, as a designer I’m curious – do you buy your books, get them from the library or download them? I do all three of these still – with a heavy use on the library. I have a small house and if I owned every book I read we would be in trouble! I also haven’t fully gotten used to reading them on a device….