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2011 Summer Book List for Beach Reading

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By Rachel Derry
Staff Writer LIFamilies

There is nothing better than reading a good book while soaking up the sun on the beach. But if you’re tired of the usual romance or mystery novels, as I am, here are some new reads that may tickle your fancy.

My first suggestion comes from a brand new author S. J. Watson, with her debut novel "Before I Go to Sleep". This enthralling page turner tells the tale of a heroine, Christine, who wakes up in a hospital bed with amnesia after a mysterious accident that she can’t quite get the details of. Follow her on a journey for truth, despite not having anyone to trust. This book will keep you in confused suspense from the beginning to surprising ending, and will definitely keep you on the edge of your beach chair.

A slightly lighter amnesiac story can be found in "What Alice Forgot", by Liane Moriarty. Alice is a 29 year old happy house wife, about to be a mother for the first time. One day, though she wakes up after a fall to find herself 39 with three kids and in the middle of a divorce. Not liking the person she has become, Alice realizes that forgetting her memory may have been the most memorable thing that’s ever happened to her. If you love solving the plot early on in the story, What Alice Forgot may be the refreshing change that keeps you guessing until the end.

"Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children" is a young adult novel by another debut author, Ransom Riggs, and full of twists, turns, and suspense. After the unexpected death of our protagonist, Jacob’s, grandfather, you follow him on a quest of discovery regarding the crazy stories his grandfather told him throughout his childhood. After finding a group of extraordinary people alive, supposed to have been dead for years, he unravels truths that he never would have expected. A great book to entertain readers of all ages, Riggs’ tale has plot twists and atmosphere that will make you forget all about being by the pool.

A new personal favorite, "Robopocalyse" is a new, fast-paced thriller about a not-so-distant future war between robots and humans. Although it is far from the first book in the genre, Daniel H. Wilson has created a fun and imaginative version of man versus machine, which is told as a history through camera footage, articles, and first and second hand testimonies. Already in pre-production with Steven Spielberg, I suggest reading it for fun long before the movie emerges.

A sweet, heartfelt read for the summer can by found in Jennifer Grant’s "Good Stuff", a memoir about her father Cary Grant. Although his life was surrounded by speculation, Ms. Grant tells the story of a cherished father who doted on his only child and loved to create tokens for her to remember him by; such as a hand drawn alphabet book with a portrait of himself under “F” for father. For a smile inducing summer read, bring "Good Stuff" with you on your next trip.

"Once Upon a River" is a heroine’s tale, written by Bonnie Jo Campbell, with a Huckleberry Finn flavor to it. Margo is a strong, resilient teenager who takes up sailing down the Stark River after the death of her father, equipped with nothing but a few supplies and a biography of Annie Oakley. Margo’s strong narrative voice will have you cheering her on and sorry to see the tale end.

Long Island Home & Lifestyle Articles > 2011 Summer Book List for Beach Reading

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