The best summer reads

Written by on July 20, 2014 in Living, Travel - Comments Off on The best summer reads

If you’re like me; the kindle is compact, portable yet extremely disappointing. There’s nothing better than the smell of freshly cut paper and printed ink as you open a fresh novel. I love exploring book shops, getting lost among the titles and genres to find the perfect tale.

There’s something about summer that makes reading even more enjoyable. Every summer holiday, my family and I would head to the bookshop in the airport, competing for the most interesting story to immerse ourselves in.

These are my recommended reads this summer:

And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini

From the bestselling author of The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns, Hosseini yet again perfectly captures friendship, family and human emotion with the backdrop of troublesome Afghanistan. Hosseini creates characters so rounded and real that by the end of the novel you will miss them. The story tells of ten-year-old Abdullah would do anything for his younger sister. The story entwines several stories, characters, tragedy and hope. A deeply moving epic of heartache, hope and, above all, the unbreakable bonds of love.

khaled2. The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton

Set in Amsterdam in 1686. The Miniaturist focuses on two women’s very different journeys to find a slice of freedom in a repressive, judgmental society. There’s a trial, a hidden love, a voodoo doll style miniaturist and a plan to escape to the sea.

What appears initialy as an extraordinary wedding gift: a cabinet-sized replica of the bride and groom’s home, soon turns to something sinister, tiny creations that mirror their real-life counterparts in unexpected ways. Does the miniaturist hold their fate in her hands? And will she be the key to their salvation or the architect of their downfall? Beautiful, intoxicating and filled with heart-pounding suspense, The Miniaturist is a magnificent story of love and obsession, betrayal and retribution, appearance and truth.


3. A Girl is a Half-formed Thing by Eimear McBride

Eimear McBride’s debut tells, with astonishing insight and in brutal detail, the story of a young woman’s relationship with her brother, and the long shadow cast by his childhood brain tumour. A Girl is a Half-formed Thing is a difficult yet interesting read.

a girl is a thing half formed

4. Summer at the Lake by Erica James

Lake Como – beautiful, enchanting, romantic…For Floriana, it is the place where the love of her life is getting married to another woman. And she’s been invited to the wedding. For Esme, it is where, over 60 years ago, she fell in love for the first time. So often she’s wondered what happened to the man who stole her heart – and changed the course of her life. Adam is in danger of burying himself entirely in his work after his girlfriend left him. Could a trip to Lake Como be the distraction he needs? Now it’s time for each of them to understand that the past is not only another country, it can also cast haunting shadows over everyone’s lives…

summer at the lake

5. How to Build a Girl by Caitlin Moran

Sharp tongued and witty. Moran’s second novel is just as brilliant as her first. The 14-year-old Johanna Morrigan lives with her large, working class, eccentric family in a Wolverhampton council house, before escaping through writing to London in the early 1990s to work in the music press. The semi-autobiographic novel has the theme of reinvention running through its core. A relatable enjoyable read about rebellion and self-exploration.


6. The Last Dance and Other Stories by Victoria Hislop

If you have a busy lifestyle, a demanding job or restless children then this is the book for you. Having loved Hislop’s previous novels; The Island and The Return, her writing style is perfect for a relaxed summer read. The book condenses stories without compromising on imagination or location. Set in various Greek locations, the tales perfectly capture love, friendship and belonging.

The Last Dance and Other Stories - Victoria Hislop

Once you finish your books, give them to a friend or a charity shop and let someone else enjoy a summer read.

About the Author

Christina Latham

Christina is one of our original writers who helped with the launch of allmygoodness. She has a love for finding vintage treasures and organic products in unexpected, undiscovered places. She has previously worked as a journalist for CD News at the Institute for Cultural Diplomacy and Bader TV News in Berlin. She also writes freelance articles for Fitzrovia News and BetaTwentyOne. Follow her on Twitter @ChristinaLatha