Summer Reading

summer readingYou know I love a good book, and reading is something I simply adore. Throw in some sunshine and a glass of wine (or sweet tea), and I’m all set! I’ve had several requests lately (via the blog and from friends) for new book suggestions and summer reading recommendations. Summer is beginning to wind down, but I’m sure there are plenty of beach and lake trips coming up! Here are some books that I really love, and I think you will, too…

Summer/beach reads:
  • To Kill a Mockingbird + Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee
  • South of Broad + Beach Music by Pat Conroy
  • The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd
  • any books by Liane Moriarty (Big Little Lies, The Husband’s Secret, What Alice Forgot)
  • The Cuckoo’s Calling and The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith aka JK Rowling
  • The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
  • Where’d You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple
  • All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
  • The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah
  • At the Water’s Edge by Sara Gruen
Favorite Christian reads:
  • Bread & Wine + Cold Tangerines by Shauna Niequist
  • Love Does by Bob Goff
  • Mere Christianity by CS Lewis
  • Same Kind of Different as Me by Ron Hall and Denver Moore
  • The Reason for God by Tim Keller
  • The Best Yes by Lysa Terkeurst
  • Make it Happen by Lara Casey

I’d love to hear: what are your favorite books to read at the beach or during summer vacation? I’m always looking for new recommendations, and please do share!

Harper Lee’s New Book

I am SO excited to hear that Harper Lee, the author of the beloved classic, To Kill a Mockingbird, is releasing another book on July 14th of this year. Happy dance!! Harper Lee is notorious for her incredibly private life, and she never published another book after To Kill a Mockingbird in 1960. She is a phenomenal writer, and I’ve spent a long time thinking about how much I would enjoy and devour another Harper Lee book. So I’m especially thrilled that “Go Set a Watchman” is coming out! This novel, which follows Scout as an adult woman, was actually written before Harper Lee wrote To Kill a Mockingbird, but her publisher advised her to publish To Kill a Mockingbird first. Harper Lee thought that this manuscript had been missing for the last fifty-five years, but a friend found it just last year. And now the much-awaited Go Set a Watchman will release on July 14th!

I’ve even listed To Kill a Mockingbird as one of my top books of all time and wrote more about Harper Lee!

Pre-orders are open!

Who else is eagerly anticipating this new book?! Scout is an all-time favorite literary character of mine, and I am so, so eager to read about her as an adult!

Books of 2014

In 2014, I read 71 books throughout the course of the year! For the last several years, I have always set a goal of reading 52+ books per year, and I’m happy I was able to surpass that goal again. Believe me, having a 45 minute metro commute (each way!) helps get a good amount of quality reading time in! Anyway, I devoured so many interesting, fascinating, well-written books throughout the year, and reading has always brought me so much joy. I’m always grateful that I keep a little handwritten journal of all of the books I’ve read so that I can remember them at the year’s end.  I wanted to share with you some of the best books I read in 2014…

books2014

Top Ten Books of 2014

  • The Signature of All Things, Elizabeth Gilbert
  • The Invention of Wings, Sue Monk Kidd
  • The Husband’s Secret, Liane Moriarty
  • The Cuckoo’s Calling, Robert Galbraith (aka J.K. Rowling)
  • The Rosie Project, Graeme Simsion
  • Bread and Wine & Cold Tangerines, Shauna Niequist
  • Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good, Jan Karon
  • Edge of Eternity, Ken Follett
  • Radical, David Platt
  • The Hundred Foot Journey, Richard C. Morais

Favorite re-reads:

  • A Prayer for Owen Meany
  • To Kill a Mockingbird
  • East of Eden
  • The Secret Garden
  • Anne of Green Gables

Favorite new authors from this year:

  • Shauna Neiquist
  • Liane Moriarty
  • Jojo Moyes
  • Robert Galbraith (aka J.K. Rowling)

Some additional great book recommendations from 2014:

  • The Painted Girls
  • Beautiful Ruins
  • Serena
  • Mrs. Poe
  • The Goldfinch
  • The Lowland
  • The House I Loved
  • The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen
  • Wild
  • Flat Water Tuesday
  • One Plus One
  • Happiness at Home
  • Frog Music
  • Big Little Lies
  • 7
  • The Mockingbird Next Door
  • The Vacationers
  • Start Something that Matters
  • State of Wonder
  • An Invisible Thread

What do you think of my book recommendations?! Do you wholeheartedly agree or disagree with any of my superlative picks? I would love to hear your thoughts!

What books are on your 2015 reading list? I can’t wait to get started with some new books soon… my queue at the library is filling up quickly!

A year ago, I wrote about my favorite (and least favorite) books of 2013, so be sure to check out that post with many other books recommendations and thoughts!