Friday, June 24, 2011

Girlfriends Share Summer Reading Choices

I'm a big fan of deep beach reads. I save the light stuff for my day-to-day grind.

I read THE POST-BIRTHDAY WORLD by Lionel Shriver on my Hawaii honeymoon and just loved reading it by the pool:

Last year on our annual Hawaii vacation, I read FREEDOM by Jonathan Franzen (, GIRL IN TRANSLATION by Jean Kwok (, and WHO FEARS DEATH by Nnedi Okorafor (

This summer, I'll be going to Hawaii again and traveling for the paperback release of 32 CANDLES, so I'm hoping to get a lot of reading done, including THE SILVER SPARROW by Tayari Jones: , KINKY GAZPACHO by our own Lori Tharps , and the second book in the GAME OF THRONES saga, THE CLASH OF KINGS by George R.R. Martin:

Ernessa Carter

I am really curious about Before I Go to Sleep by S.J Watson. This is the description that grabbed me:

Every day Christine wakes up not knowing where she is. Her memories disappear every time she falls asleep. Her husband, Ben, is a stranger to her, and he's obligated to explain their life together on a daily basis--all the result of a mysterious accident that made Christine an amnesiac. With the encouragement of her doctor, Christine starts a journal to help jog her memory every day. One morning, she opens it and sees that she's written three unexpected and terrifying words: "Don't trust Ben."

Karen Neches

At the top of my summer reading stack are several Girlfriends' books, of course, like Alison Pace's A PUG'S TALE (which I won from GoodReads and have already started!), EARTHLY CHARMS by Karen Neches (I've peeked inside the pages and it looks so cute! Cannot wait to read!), the galleys for PROOF OF HEAVEN by Mary Curran Hackett (sent to me by my editor, since she's Mary's editor, too--looks fab), and Judy Moticka's COLLECTING FEATHERS manuscript (which I intend to savor once life is a smidge less hectic!).

--Susan McBride

I'm all over the map with my summer reads this year . . . currently, I snagged an ARC of Ellen Baker's I GAVE MY HEART TO KNOW THIS, and even though I've just started it, I know I'm going to love it. I also have Ann Patchett's STATE OF WONDER waiting for me, and I'm really looking forward to that. A couple of my English teacher buddies and I are tackling WAR AND PEACE--and I'm reading it on my iPad which is a first for me. I'm eagerly awaiting Melanie Benjamin's MRS. TOM THUMB, too.

Judy Merill Larson

I'm currently reading The Sonnet Lover by Carol Goodman. A mystery about a literature professor who goes to Italy for the summer--can't beat that for summer reading!

Another favorite escape book: Austenland by Shannon Hale. A woman who is a tad bit too obsessed with William Darcy heads to England for a vacation at an Austen-inspired resort.

Sara Rosett

So much sun, so much fun! My 2011 Summer TBR pile (in no particular order.)

1. Uncommon Criminals by Ally Carter

2. Bossypants by Tina Fey

3. A Visit From the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan

4. Ten Things We Did by Sarah Mlynowski

5. Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah

Maggie Marr

Oh, my most recent favorite book (in hardback still) is TOO MUCH PRETTY by Carah Hoffman

Michele Young- Stone

Right now I'm reading GONE WITH THE WIND which I somehow never got around to before. If I had known how magnificent it is, I would have made time sooner. Every writer should read this book. It's like taking a graduate course in constructing a novel. Later this summer I'll be reading a few books for professional reasons, as well as Sandra Novack's PRECIOUS, which I've been meaning to read for a good long while, and Gilbert Gottfried's RUBBER BALLS AND LIQUOR, because I need to laugh and he makes me fall right off my chair.

Ellen Meister

Some of my favorite summer reads are Breathing Room by Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Flirting with Forty by Jane Porter, Summer by the Sea by Susan Wiggs, and Younger by Pamela Redmond Satran. Plus, anything written by my fellow Girlfriends!!

~Marilyn Brant

My favorite summer read - so far - is The Lotus Eaters by Tatjana Soli. Great story-telling and gripping romance against the backdrop of the nightmarish Viet Nam war. Loved every page!

Deborah Blumenthal

Summer books I've loved/am loving: Kindred Spirits by Sarah Strohmeyer, Best Kept Secret by Amy Hatvany, Before Ever After by Samantha Sotto (think this comes out in August), and Wherever Grace Is Needed by Elizabeth Bass. Right now I'm reading Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan and peeking at Silver Girl by Elin Hilderbrand. Looking forward to the new Kristina Riggle: Things We Didn't Say. --

Melissa Senate

On my summer reading list (so far):

Money Can't Buy Love by Connie Briscoe
You Are Free by Danzy Senna
Best Kept Secret by Amy Hatvany
Black Girl @ The Gay Channel by Darlyne Baugh
The Four Ms. Bradwells by Meg Waite Clayton
Black Orchid Blues by Persia Walker
Summer in the City by Candace Bushnell
The Kitchen Daughter by Jael McHenry
Exposure by Therese Fowler
An advance copy of My Soul to Take by Tananarive Due
An advance copy of Passing Lane by Jacqueline Luckett

And I blurbed If Sons Then Heirs, which just came out, by Lorene Cary and HIGHLY recommend it!

Carleen Brice

I just read a phenomenal book. It wasn't necessarily on my "planned" summer reading list. I ordered it for my son for his birthday, then stayed up three nights to read it before wrapping it to give to him. It's MISS PEREGRINE'S HOME FOR PECULIAR CHILDREN, by Ransom Riggs, and it is wonderful! I highly recommend buying the hardback version because it has old, Victorian photos that accompany the story. It was heartwarming, odd, and sad and I can't recommend it enough!

Leslie Langtry

Currently, I'm reading "The Island" by Elin Hilderbrand. I'd never read her before and find her writing style quite unique. After that I'll finish up the Hunger Games trilogy and read "Mockinjay." Then I have "Summer Rental" by Mary Kay Andrews and "The Daddy Catch" by Leigh Duncan to keep me busy. Should be a fun summer!

Maria Garcia

Girlfriend News:

Ernessa Carter’s 32 CANDLES paperback releases this coming Tuesday, June 28, 2011. Here's the Amazon link:


  1. Oooo, these sound like interesting reads, especailly "Before I Go To Sleep." Will have to check that one out. Thank you for pointing me toward this great sounding book.

  2. Hey GirlFriendBooks - let me know how you liked BLACK GIRL @ THE GAY CHANNEL. The novel is doing really well. Would love your feedback! Email me at or Twitter @JohannesGirl - thanks so much for reading!

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