Summer is coming! If you’re like me, you’re planning out the kiddos’ summer activities, camps, weddings, vacations, and more — and maaaaybe trying to squeeze in some solid reading time. I love sitting outside in the sun with a good book. I am rounding up 6 books to read this summer – that means you should be adding them to your summer reading list!
6 Books to Read this Summer
Blood Sugar was one of the best books I’ve read in a LONG time!! I finished, and sat in a stunned silence for a few moments, wishing I had a few more chapters to read! This definitely needs to be on your list of books to read this summer!
Here’s the gist, without spoilers: Ruby is a successful therapist, when her husband dies in the middle of the night, from a diabetic episode. Ruby is devastated. And then it gets worse: she’s suspected of his murder.
I love how the beginning of the book bounced between the police interview at the station in present time, and Ruby’s memories. It was kind of like breadcrumbs. The detective would ask Ruby a question, and she would be flooded with memories, and we (the reader) get sucked into a flashback. Through the questioning and memories, we learn 3 other people have died, and Ruby was mysteriously present at all of them. She miiiiight have played a part in those murders. But does that make her a bad guy? Honestly, I feel like I would be friends with Ruby! 😂
And that brings us to present time, Ruby in the police station, being questioned. The detective has pieced together Ruby’s past and all the mysterious deaths…But did she kill her husband? The detective and her mother-in-law are convinced she did it.
I was on the edge of my seat the whole time I read this. Blood Sugar had a few little twists I didn’t fully see coming, so it kept me on my toes!
I honestly didn’t know if the last page would be Ruby owning up to Jason’s “murder” or not! Cannot recommend Blood Sugar enough!!
The Lake House
The Lake House took me a while to read. I found the beginning to be very slow, and extremely descriptive – so descriptive, I started to skim paragraphs. That said, the plot line was fascinating!
It took a minute to get used to the timeline jumping – the story of The Lake House bounces between different time periods, leaving breadcrumbs like memories. Something tragic happened to a family at their fabulous summer party at their lake house in Cornwall in 1933. There were no leads, and it is a cold case.
Now, in 2003, Sadie is on forced-leave from her job as a police officer, because a case got to her – she got obsessed. She stumbles upon the deserted Lake House, and suddenly, Sadie is walking a fine line of getting too obsessed with another case.
Once I got to the second half of the book, things had picked up, and I was turning page after page after page… I was walking from room to room with my kindle; I was up late at night reading. In other words: I could not put it down! That is, until everything became very predictable stated to fall into place like a fairytale.
Basically, for as long and wordy as The Lake House was, the ending being this jolly and predictable was borderline infuriating! I was set to give it 4 stars, but I give it a 3. It was a very well-written mystery, but lacked some excitement in the ending for me!
I think Insomnia gave me insomnia — I was up all night reading it! 😅
Insomnia starts very slow. I actually set the book down on page 10, and it took a whole day for me to pick it back up. BUT THEN WOW!
Emma has it all! She is a successful lawyer, has a devoted husband, a beautiful house, and 2 happy children…until Emma stops sleeping a few days before her 40th birthday, and everything starts to fall apart.
Her mother went mad, and almost killed Emma’s older sister when they were children. The sisters were separated in the foster care system, and aren’t close. Now, her mother is in the hospital, her sister is back in down, and Emma must face those memories… all while trying to figure out if she’s slowly losing her mind as well. Things start happening. Emma couldn’t have done that… could she? She’d never shake a child… never push someone into traffic… would she?
This was a little “woman in the window” for me, and that’s meant as high praise! There were parts where I couldn’t tell what was real and what was in Emma’s head.
Once I got to page 90, I could not put it down. It got creepy in the best way possible. And, as mentioned above, I was up very late completely engulfed!
Ok, so then the ending. Where to start? The ending took a star away from an otherwise 5 star read. A) it was VERY predictable. If anyone didn’t know who Caroline was, they’re reading the wrong genre! And B) did the book go sci-fi at the end? Did we break the time space continuum? I’m not sure. That got weird, and I feel like it distracted from the whole story!
Overall, Insomnia was a solid 4 star story, and a very quick read that will likely keep you up at night, and needs to be on your list of books to read this summer!
The Guest List
I recently read The Paris Apartment and The Hunting Party by Lucy Foley. Out of the 3, I’d say The Paris Apartment was my favorite, followed by The Guest List, then The Hunting Party.
At first, The Guest List echoed the Hunting Party. A remote location for a celebration of frenimies, then – BOOM, a storm cuts them off from the world and brings all their drama to the surface!
It’s time for a wedding! The groom is a handsome and charming television star, and the bride is an ambitious magazine publisher. It’s going to be the wedding of the season, and the wedding planner is so lucky to have won a contest to have the wedding held at her venue: a castle on an island off the coast of Ireland, accessible by boat (and helicopter), and with spotty reception.
Things are full of tension at the dinner the night before, but it’s at the wedding (actually, the reception) where things get wild, the storm picks up, and a body is discovered. But whose body is it? Who killed them? And why?
I successfully guessed who was murdered, but I have to hand it to Foley — there were so many people who would have had motive!
Honestly, it took me until the last third of this book to REALLY get into it! (I think because the premise had been done and done again) BUT!! Once I did, I couldn’t put it down. The “and then the lights went out” chapters at the end had me on the edge of my seat!!
The Guest List is not a favorite, but it’s a short and easy beach read, and gets a spot on our summer reading list!
I’ll Be You
I loved Pretty Things by Janelle Brown, so I was excited to start reading I’ll Be You, her latest book release!
I’ll Be You is a story about twins Sam and Elli. They get “discovered” by a talent agent as children, and are launched into the Hollywood scene. Sam is a natural and loves it. Elli isn’t. Soon Sam spirals into partying and drugs, and she and Elli slowly grow apart. When Elli refuses to continue their show, things go from bad to worse between the sisters. Sam basically bottoms out, while Elli has the perfect life.
But looks can be deceiving!
I didn’t get into this until the end of part 1, once we switched from Sam’s perspective to Elli’s I was HOOKED. The ending was pretty solid. There was a lot of build, and the involvement of a child kept it interesting!
I love how Janelle Brown writes for modern times. Her books are thrilling, but also super believable!
One of Us is Dead
One Of Us Is Dead was like desperate housewives on crack!
At first, there were a lot of characters to keep track of, but I once I was a few chapters in, keeping everyone separate became easier. The story alternates through the perspective of 5 women: Jenny, Crystal, Shannon, Karen, and Olivia Everyone knows someone like Olivia. You just love to hate her. Jenny is “the” salon owner in town, and privy to all the gossip, despite not being “one of them”. Shannon’s husband left her for a much-younger Crystal. And Karen’s kind of caught in the middle – a friend, and she’s going through some emotional stuff herself. They all have one thing in common: each of them has secrets.. though, it seems, not as much as their husbands!
I loved the pace of One Of Us Is Dead! It starts with Jenny being interviewed by a detective. She’s not being held or questioned, she’s there on her own free will, to help with a murder case. But who was murdered? Who’s secrets finally caught go with them?
Cannot recommend this enough – it was hard to put down!!
Catch my previous book review post here, where I talk about The Guncle, What Happened to the Bennetts, and more!!