Monday, July 22, 2013

Summer Reading Recommdendations


I have been thinking about the whole concept of "summer reading"...basically, it's supposed to be mindless stuff you can read on the beach, under an umbrella, while sipping a cold frosty drink.

Now THAT'S what I'm talking about!

Then I realized that summer reading is all about the ANTI-ANGST. Nothing too heavy, too disturbing, too conflicted. In fact, it occurred to me that I love summer reading ALL YEAR LONG. Since I love quirky, funny, light-hearted stuff. My regular reading list is pretty much "summer reading"...I know, I'm shallow. I can live with that.

So, I decided to put together a summer reading recommendation list. Some fun, light books I've read recently and not so recently.


1. CASTAWAY DREAMS by Darlene Marshall

Light, sweet, romantic, adorable. And the hero and heroine are castaways on an island. PERFECT SUMMER READ! Historical romance.

2. PENELOPE by Anya Wylde

Over-the-top farce, charming and fun. Loved it! Historical romance.

3. SWEETENED WITH A KISS by Lexxi Callahan

This has some of the sexiest push-and-pull chemistry between a hero and heroine I've ever read. Also throws in an unexpected suspenseful storyline, which is another thing I really like with my summer reading. HOT! I read it TWICE over vacation I liked it so much. Contemporary romance with suspense.


I read a lot of mysteries over the summer. And this one combined some of my favorite history, Rome, and a sexy romance. Charming! This is a short, entertaining read that will really appeal to folks in love with all things Italian and art history. Romantic mystery.

5. SPOTTED OVERCOAT by Denise Janikowski-Krewal

Poetry in the summer? Sure! I like mixing it up. Here's a snippet from "Sassy Siren of Kalamazoo"...

Lean sophistication
In her rouged lips
Flim-flam, fur fancier
Dropped waist
Flimsy tail
Beaded swinging lariat
Cooing at the Model-T followers
Slithering out of her
Bent Duesenberg
Floozy doozy

I really enjoyed this debut book of poetry by Denise. Poetry.

6. AIRE by Lena Goldfinch

Lush, lovely, romantic YA fantasy. You can never have too many HEAs in your summer reading list. YA.

7. BURN by Scarlett Parrish

From my Goodreads review:

Wow. This is not your typical erotica writer. Scarlett has major writing chops, excellent character insight, fast-paced, humorous dialogue, intelligent details, and sweat-inducing sex scenes. I am freakin' impressed. And not only did I manage to read M/M in spite of my vanilla-self, I enjoyed it.

Quick read, extremely well-written. M/M erotica.

(As an aside: I have been on a Scarlett Parrish reading bender, since I discovered her incredible writing voice, unexpected prose, and highly original love scenes. I would call her writing a hybrid literary fiction/erotica.)


I heartily enjoyed the whole series, with lots of historical melodrama and romance. If you have a week on the beach somewhere, you should download the bundle, and read them all in order. Fun! Historical romance.

9. THE AMELIA PEABODY SERIES by Elizabeth Peters

Amber at Buried By Books reminded me how totally awesome this series is! She is doing a Summer Re-Read of the whole series. These books are bloody brilliant. Larger-than-life characters, romance, suspense, Egyptology, mystery. They have it all. HIGHLY RECOMMEND.

Coming up later this week: More books that look intriguing, fun, and addictive!

Hope everyone is enjoying the lazy days of summer.



Unknown said...

There's a few I might check out! Thanks.

Julia Barrett said...

I agree - it's the anti-angst season.

Penny Watson said...

Hi Amber! Lots of good ones to choose from! Hope you are having a good summer.

Penny Watson said...

Hi Julia! We need about 12 months of Anti-Angst.

Unknown said...

Thanks for recommending The Fornarina Affair, Penny! I'm glad you liked it. :)

Heidenkind said...

Poetry?! Hm might be worth a try. :)

Amber said...

Yea for the light-hearted reads! I'm a big fan of those stories that leave you laughing and smiling throughout. They can still be emotional, but I don't want heavy angst. Especially not for summer.

I'm at Seeing a Large Cat in my Amelia Peabody reread. Manuscript H and Ramses being stalked by various female people. I sometimes wish they'd make a mini series of this...then I remember how often they screw up the adaptations (always). Hope your summer has been going great!

Penny Watson said...

Hi Ellis! You have a new fan!

Penny Watson said...

Hi Tasha! :^) We all need some poetry on our summer reading list, right?

Penny Watson said...

Amber...Ramses could never live up to my expectations if they did a film adaptation of this series.

Jessi said...

Thanks Penny!
Burn and Canadian Mountain Series caught my eye. I've already bought Aire on your recommendation. It is on the TBR.
I'm a fan of lighter fare too. I need like 4 light "summer reading" titles after a Kristen Ashley to balance the hurt-so-good her angsty characters make me feel.
Can't wait to check out some of these authors I have not heard of before!

Denise Janikowski-Krewal said...

Penny, thank you for recommending Spotted Overcoat! I am delighted that you liked it! I will be under a beach umbrella checking out some of your other summer choices.

Penny Watson said...

Hi Jessi! Hope you like the books. Too much angst gives me hives. :^)

Penny Watson said...

Hi Denise! I loved your poems! Can't wait to read more.