As I look out of my office window (I say ‘office’, I mean ‘cafe’), and I don’t want to jinx anything, but I think summer might finally be here. Yes, it’s a little windy and living in the UK means I live my life being prepared for every weather eventuality, but the sun is shining at last.
I’m going to Turkey in July and the countdown has most definitely begun. I debated whether to tell my son about the holiday, fearing the constant, “How many sleeps until holiday?” countdown, but so far, so good. And you know the one thing I’m looking forward to the most? Reading a book. A whole book. From beginning to end. I can’t remember the last time I managed that (probably my last summer holiday), but I thought it might be prudent to begin the search for what is going to be my summer holiday read.
I’ve browsed WH Smiths and Amazon and these are the books that are on my shortlist. Hell, I may well just buy them all!
- Her Fearful Symmetry – Audrey Niffenegger
You know how some books just stay with you forever? The Time Traveller’s Wife by Niffenegger was one of those books for me. I couldn’t get it out of my head for weeks after I read it and if you haven’t read it yet, I implore you to buy it. I can only hope that Her Fearful Symmetry is just as good.
It’s the story of Julia and Valentina Poole, two American teenagers who are identical ‘mirror’ twins. They have no interest in college or jobs or possibly anything outside their cosy suburban home, but everything changes when they receive notice that an aunt, who they didn’t know existed, has died and left them her flat in an apartment block overlooking Highgate Cemetery in London.
I love the idea of the book being set in London, especially as there’s a cemetery involved so it sounds like it could get a little creepy! I have high hopes for this book!
- The Girl on the Train – Paula Hawkins
Billed as Rear Window meets Gone Girl, there has been a lot of hype around this book. I commuted to London for nearly 20 years and so I can relate to re-living the same journey over and over (and over) again.
Rachel catches the same commuter train every morning. She knows it will wait at the same signal each time, overlooking a row of back gardens. She’s even started to feel like she knows the people who live in one of the houses. ‘Jess and Jason’, she calls them. Their life – as she sees it – is perfect. If only Rachel could be that happy. And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough.
Now if that isn’t the perfect intro to a thriller, I’m not sure what is!
- The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy – Rachel Joyce
This story runs parallel to The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, yet another beautifully written book by Joyce. When Queenie Hennessy discovers that Harold Fry is walking the length of England to save her, and all she has to do is wait, she is shocked. A new volunteer at the hospice suggests that Queenie should write again, only this time she must tell Harold everything.
I cannot wait to read this! Harold Fry is such a loveable character, an unlikely (OAP) hero that you root for from page 1. I always wondered whether Queenie had a secret (she does) so this book will definitely be bought this week.
- Survival of the Ginnest – Aimee Horton
I need to declare an interest here. I’m lucky enough to say that the author is one of my very good blogging friends and I couldn’t be prouder of her for getting a publishing deal. We have shared many a Facebook message about writing woes and had the, ‘Will I ever make it?’ conversation A LOT. So it gives me a lot of pleasure to be able to add this book to the list.
SOTG is a modern-day diary about Dottie Harris, who was living the self-indulgent lifestyle of every childless couple … and then she had kids. Struggling through pregnancy and motherhood, Dottie turns to social networking. She quickly becomes reliant on it, using it as a way to reach out to others and come to terms with the funny side of motherhood, whilst realising she’s not the only person to consider anything after a 7 am lie in.
If you’re looking for a funny chick lit book, this is the one for you.
- Go Set a Watchman – Harper Lee
If you’ve never read To Kill a Mockingbird, you really should. It’s a fantastic book that most people are forced to read when they’re at school – I was lucky enough to read it by choice as an adult, so I think I have a greater appreciation for it. When I heard Lee was writing another book I was shocked and delighted and Go Set a Watchman is due for release on 14th July 2015.
Go Set a Watchman is set during the mid-1950s and features many of the characters from To Kill a Mockingbird some 20 years later. Scout (Jean Louise Finch) has returned to Maycomb from New York to visit her father Atticus. She is forced to grapple with issues both personal and political as she tries to understand both her father’s attitude toward society, and her own feelings about the place where she was born and spent her childhood.
This book isn’t released until 14th July but is sure to be a bestseller.