Essential Summer Reads

Beach season’s here, people, which means your weekend essentials boil down to a comfy lounge chair, sunscreen, and a good book. No time to nail down some good summer reads? Lucky for us, the experts at Watertown Free Public Library  have put together an awesome list of choices ranging from juicy page-turners to historical fiction and compelling memoirs. Here are some highlights from what they are calling Essential Summer Reads for 2017:

FICTION

The Ministry of Utmost Happiness: The latest novel by Mann Booker Prize winner Arundhati Roy, Ministry tells a tale spanning many years and miles across India, through the eyes of a female protagonist and the many men who have loved her. 

Rich People Problems: Best-selling author Kevin Kwan’s latest novel follows an heir to one of Asia’s biggest fortunes as he struggles to get his hands on his rightful inheritance. This sprawling family saga includes intrigue, sabotage, crazy love triangles – rich people problems for sure!

The Awkward Age: Blending families after divorce is never easy; when both parents and kids get into the act, it’s that much more complicated. Francesca Segal tackles this topic of starting over and creating a new normal in this funny and insightful page-turner.

Everybody’s Son: The critically acclaimed novelist behind The Space Between Us, Thrity Umrigar explores issues of power, privilege, and race in this gut wrenching story of two families – one black, one white – set during a terrible heat wave in 1991.

NON-FICTION

Murder in Matera: A True Story of Passion, Family, and Forgiveness in Southern Italy: Writer Helene Stapinski travels to the heart of southern Italy to research and unravel mysteries in her own family that involve murder, illicit love, and obsession. NPR called this book “Tantalizing” – sure sounds like it to us!

Jane Austen, The Secret Radical: In this fascinating take on one of the world’s most famous writers, Helena Kelly seeks to debunk the perception of Austen as just another romance novelist, making the case that Austen was in fact far more progressive and radical than history gives her credit for.

The Physics of Everyday Things: The Extraordinary Science Behind an Ordinary Day: Physics professor and bestselling author James Kakalios takes us behind the everyday objects that surround us (like smartphones and hybrid cars) to the fascinating science that makes them work.

The Road to Jonestown: Jim Jones and the People Temple: The man behind the largest murder-suicide in American history is the subject of this gripping memoir by New York Times best-selling author Jeff Guinn.

For the full list of recommendations, head to the WFPL website. Happy page turning!