It’s summer reading season! My favorite time of year. Of course, in my world, every season is reading season, but there’s something extra special about being able to kick back in a hammock or by the lake for several hours of uninterrupted bookish bliss. It’s the perfect time for to pick up one of these smart new page-turners.
Grab your poolside beverage of choice and add one of these to your beach bag stat!
Read and Recommended:
Olivia’s debut novel tells the story of a reality show that turns into an all too real fight for survival. The heroine, a young woman nicknamed “Zoo” by the show’s producers, takes part in the Survivor-style competition as a means of forestalling some more serious life decisions, namely whether she and her husband will have children. But while Zoo is out in the woods cut off from all communication, something terrible happens. Alone and disoriented, she finds it increasingly difficult to distinguish between what is real and what is staged by the show’s producers.
In addition to being impossible to put down, I found this to be a smart take on the role of reality television in our perception of the world around us. Think The Hunger Games meets The Road.
When I was out on tour this spring, a bookseller brought me a galley of this one and said “You just have to read this.” Booksellers are kind of my Reece Witherspoon, but if you need more convincing, know that the lady herself has snapped up the film rights.
Walker’s third novel, which is poised to be her breakout, tells the harrowing tale of a teenager Jenny Kramer who is the victim of a violent attack during a party in the small affluent town of Fairview, Connecticut. In the hospital during the hours immediately following the attack, her parents choose to give her a controversial drug that erases her memory of the events. We see the story from the perspective of the psychiatrist treating Jenny and watch as the incident begins to tear at the seams of Jenny’s family and the community around her.
The treatment at the center of this novel does not yet exist, but Walker based it on real experimental treatments for PTSD patients, making the questions that the novel raises about memory and the ethics of treating trauma all the more compelling. This was a terrifying and thoughtful psychological thriller with an ending that is both shocking and satisfying.
Books on my TBR
I’ve been following Aya’s work for a while, and cannot wait to get my hands on this talented multi-hypehenate (poet, essayist, professor) debut novel. Uptown Thief centers on a Latina Robin Hood who robs corrupt CEOs to fund her Lower East Side women’s health clinic. Her cover? An exclusive escort service. Marisol Rivera…the superhero the world needs now. In the meantime, catch up with Aya on The Debutante Ball.
Lo Blacklock, a journalist who writes for a travel magazine, has just been given the assignment of a lifetime: a week on a luxury cruise in the North Sea. At first, Lo’s stay is nothing but pleasant. But as the week wears on, she witnesses a terrifying nightmare: a woman being thrown overboard. All the passengers remain accounted for, so the ship sails on as if nothing has happened, despite Lo’s attempts to convey that something (or someone) has gone terribly, terribly wrong.
I have chills just reading the cover copy! I do love a tale of a vacation gone wrong.
I read The Fever last year and it is one of those books I could. Not. Shut. Up. About for weeks. So naturally I’m excited for her new one.
In You Will Know Me Katie and Eric Knox have dedicated their lives to their 15-year-old daughter Devon, a gymnastics prodigy and Olympic hopeful. But when a violent death rocks their close-knit gymnastics community just weeks before an all-important competition, everything the Knoxes have worked so hard for feels suddenly at risk. As rumors swirl among the other parents, revealing hidden plots and allegiances, Katie tries frantically to hold her family together while also finding herself drawn, irresistibly, to the crime itself, and the dark corners it threatens to illuminate.
Just in time to creep you out while watching the summer Olympics! (As if they weren’t creepy enough already).