Sandy’s Selections: Must-Read Summer Books

summer books

Summer has finally arrived, and it’s the perfect time to catch up on reading your favorite summer books. No matter where vacation takes you, this list of summer books will keep you entertained with stories of Hemingway, Eleanor Roosevelt, politics, foreign lands and intrigue. Take a look and make your selections!

The Happiness CurveThe Happiness Curve: Why Life Gets Better After 50 by Jonathan Rauch

2018, Self HelpThe Happiness Curve

combines experience and research that shows life satisfaction declines in the 20s—with a low point in the 40s—then it increases. International cases studies, even animal studies, confirm that with age comes happiness! This research will convince you. Just wait till you’re 60!!!

Readers Recommend:
Getting My Bounce Back by Carolee Belkin Walker
Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin
Disrupt Aging by Jo Ann Jenkins


White HousesWhite Houses by Amy Brown

2018, Historical FictionWhite Houses

is the love story between Lenora (Hick) Hickok, a prominent woman reporter and Eleanor Roosevelt, based on access to the many letters the two exchanged. The book follows them through three decades of their unconventional relationship. It was a secret to the world yet happening right in front of everyone’s eyes. Don’t miss this one! Read reviews here.

Readers Recommend:
First Women by Kate Andersen Brower
Upstairs in the White House by J.B. West
Eleanor and Hick by Susan Quinn


WarlightWarlight by Michael Ondaatje

Best Selling Author of The English Patient
2018, Fiction

Warlight is a poetic spy novel about secrets and loss that might be Ondaatje’s best work yet. This amazing piece of writing tells of a man’s life-long search to understand how his mother was involved in the world of spies. The book gets its title from the description of London’s dimmed lights, necessary to aid emergency traffic during W.W. II blackouts. An imaginative story filled with international intrigue. Read reviews here.

Reader’s Recommend:
Exit West by Mohsin Hamid
Cat’s Table by Michael Ondaatje
The Mars Room by Rachel Kushner


Love and RuinLove and Ruin by Paula McLain

Best Selling Author of The Paris Wife
2018, Historical Fiction

Love and Ruin is not a traditional romantic tale. This book captures the passionate love affair of Ernest Hemingway and his third wife, Martha Gellhorn. A fearless correspondent during the Spanish Civil War, she inspired his classic, For Whom The Bells Tolls. After a short, stormy marriage, Marty chooses writing in the world’s war zones over a life with the famous Hemingway. Read reviews here.

Reader’s Recommend:
Carnegie’s Maid by Marie Benedict
Hollywood Daughter by Kate Alcott
For Whom The Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway


The Italian PartyThe Italian Party by Christina Lynch

2018, Historical FictionThe Italian Party

about the power of secrets in politics and in marriage, this is both a genuine romance and a thoughtful spy story. Italy’s postwar optimism is intertwined with learning to live with the very real strains of poverty, injustice and desperation. The book is stylish and enjoyable and ends imaginatively. It should become a popular beach read this summer. Read reviews here.

Reader’s Recommend:
Women in Sunlight by Frances Mayes
Paris by the Book By Liam Callahan
House by the Edge of Night by Catherine Banner


TangerineTangerine by Christine Mangan

2018, Historical FictionTangerine

is a thriller set in Tangiers, Morocco, about college roommates with contrasting personalities—one meek and timid, the other brazen and steely. The sense of obsession and manipulation in this toxic friendship will leave the reader chilled to the bone. Picked up by George Clooney’s Smokehouse Pictures, as a film, the movie is sure to emphasize the colorful backdrop and exotic atmosphere of Morocco. Read reviews here.

Reader’s Recommend:
The Identicals by Elin Hillderbrand
Music Shop by Rachel Joyce
Female Persuasion by Meg Wolitzer


How To Stop TimeHow To Stop Time by Matt Haig

2018, Science Fiction – Time Travel

In How To Stop Time, Tom is more than 400 years old but looks like 40-something and expects to live till he’s 950. This inventive and captivating adventure tale includes flashbacks to drinks with Shakespeare, F. Scott Fitzgerald and Zelda. The reader learns that being blessed with long life can be a curse and is encouraged to relinquish the past and live fully in the present. Benedict Cumberbatch signed on to star in the 2020 movie adaptation of this creative, enjoyable fantasy. Read reviews here.

Reader’s Recommend:
Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman
The Humans by Matt Haig

For more of Sandy’s Selections, check out this post.