Friday Five (Summer Reading!)

Happy Friday! I’m usually so excited for the weekend, but now every week that passes signifies the end of summer which kind of puts a damper on things. I have had a great summer full of fun happy hours, Thursday night corn hole, beach trips and spending as much time outdoors as possible. I have also read a lot of fantastic books. I almost always read fiction and usually prefer sci-fi/fantasy (think HARRY POTTER and more recently, Divergent, Game of Thrones and the Kingkiller Chronicle), but I have ventured into a lot of non-fiction/memoirs this summer that I have really enjoyed! Here are my fave summer page-turners:

  • Wild by Cheryl Strayed – Jeanette read this first and loaned it to me promising a tearjerker. She wasn’t joking, I started the book on a flight to Chicago and had to steel myself to keep from sobbing in the middle seat between two strangers. It’s the first part of the book that’s sad, but it was the rest of the story – about Cheryl’s journey on the Pacific Crest Trail – that really pulled me in and kept me reading. It’s hard to read about her adventures and not feel inspired to go out and spend some time with nature. Scheduling a hike right about…now. And I should probably see the movie too seeing as I love Reese Witherspoon.

Girl on the Train

  • The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins – This book is. so. freaking. good. There have been a lot of comparisons to Gone Girl and I actually liked this a lot better. My major problem with Gone Girl is that both the main characters were whackjobs and neither was likable or endearing (this is also why I can’t stand the show Always Sunny, I need a likable character!).  This was initially my struggle with Girl on the Train. However, as the story progressed I found myself rooting for Rachel, not just for her to get to the bottom of things, but for her to pull her life together too. This book was a lot of fun with a plenty of twists and red herrings – I had a blast trying to guess the ending.
  • Where’d you go Bernadette? by Maria Semple – I picked up this book in an airport bookstore (pretty much the only place I buy books besides Amazon) because it was small (good for traveling) and inexpensive (woohoo! books are pricey). It ended up being hilariously clever and a fast, easy read – perfect for at the beach or by the pool. Amazon reviews tell me the author used to write for Arrested Development which goes a long way to explain the quirky humor in this story about a reclusive mother who just doesn’t fit in.

Yes Please

  • Yes, Please by Amy Poehler – Oh, my beloved Amy! Only Amy could put another memoir on my top 5 books of summer list. I thought it was a little slow in parts, but overall a great look into Amy’s life and how she got where she is today (a lot of hard work!). She gives an inside look into her time on SNL and plenty of tidbits of life advice. My coworker also highly recommends the audio version which she says is even more hilarious so if you are looking for some road trip listening material look no further.
  • Devil in the White City by Erik Larson – I’m still in the middle of this one, but it has been fantastic so far AND they just announced that Scorsese is making a movie version featuring Leonardo DiCaprio which sounds amazing. After my mother-in-law and sis-in-law both raved about it, I knew I had to borrow a copy and dive into the historical/true crime story about America’s first known serial killer – complete with all the gory details.

If you’re interested in Bill Gates’ summer reading recommendations (Because who isn’t? The man is a genius) check out his post here. And check out KatieClare and Heather’s pages to see what the blogosphere is loving this week.

And if you’re in Baltimore, the Pratt Library has a ton of neighborhood branches to help cut down the cost of your book habit.

Have you read any of these books? What are your fave summer reads? 


7 thoughts on “Friday Five (Summer Reading!)

  1. breathedeeplyandsmile says:

    JUST finished Girl on the Train yesterday. Such a page turner! I didn’t really like any of the characters, but I loved all the drama. Such a fun read! Devil in the White City is a little dense at first, but it’s great.


  2. Kylie McGraw says:

    We have such similar tastes in books!! I have read all of these except Devil in the White City and that sounds really good, too! I struggled to connect with the characters in Bernadette, but I had to know what happened to the family, so that kept me reading. And I feel like everyone got so emotional reading Wild except for me! It’s a good movie but the book is better 🙂


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