by Beth Cronk, Meeker County Librarian
Summer is the season of beach reads. So what is a beach read? It depends on who you ask, but it’s generally a fun, not-too-heavy or intellectual book. It could be a romance or a thriller, often something exciting that keeps readers turning the pages, or something sweet and lightweight. Our library has plenty of choices for something entertaining to read on the patio or on your vacation.
Beach House Reunion by Mary Alice Monroe is the fifth in her “Beach House” series. Monroe’s books are set in coastal South Carolina, and her stories always feature wildlife somehow. Sea turtles play a key part in this series. Beach House Reunion brings together three generations of a family at the cottage to face some destructive family patterns and find hope for moving forward. The descriptions I read from the book made me want to sit next to Lake Superior and feel the peace that comes from being next to a huge body of water.
The Perfect Couple by Elin Hilderbrand, which is set on Nantucket Island. The maid of honor’s body is discovered in Nantucket Harbor hours before the extravagant wedding of a prominent couple, and the story turns into a murder mystery, with flashbacks to the wedding preparations. Everyone has their secrets. Although some characters from Hilderbrand’s previous books make appearances, this one stands alone.
Her new book is Between You & Me. Caleb has returned to Amish life to raise his orphaned niece and nephew. Reese is an emergency room doctor expected to live up to her parents’ plans for her. They meet when she treats his nephew, and each learns about the other’s world and the restricting expectations they both live with.
London Rules by Mick Herron could be just the thing, especially if you also like some humor. This is the fifth book in the Slough House series about maverick British spies, some of whom have been relegated to dull desk jobs. Herron’s style is often compared to John Le Carré. In this novel, political shenanigans and a couple of odd terrorist attacks have the MI5 agents breaking the rules.
For some summertime chills, reach for the new Stephen King, The Outsider, a mixture of mystery and horror. A well-liked, respectable man is arrested for a terrible crime because of eyewitness, fingerprint, and DNA evidence. But he has evidence that he wasn’t there when the crime was committed. How can both things be true? This novel is being compared to King’s classic It but relevant for our current era.
Some other new books in our collection that sound promising as summer reads are Before and Again by domestic fiction novelist Barbara Delinsky, By Invitation Only by South Carolina author Dorothea Benton Frank, The Cast by the reliably popular Danielle Steel, Convenience Store Woman by Japanese author Sayaka Murata, and Lying in Wait by Irish author Liz Nugent. Take some time this summer to relax and settle in with a fun book.