Last summer just a year ago I recommended my fave summer reads, being "The truth about Harry Quebert" by Joël Dicker and "The house we grew up in" by Lisa Jewell. Both highly recommended whatever time of the year it is! This summer I've read a lot - one week in a resort in the Mayan Riviera in Mexico with not much to do certainly helped - basically my so-loved Scandinavian crime fiction sagas and the always compelling romantic chick-flick novels :)
Here goes the list of the books I've read this summer so far:
SCANDINAVIAN CRIME FICTION
Always a must in my all time favourites, this year the queen of murder and mistery novels set in the northern countries has undeniably been Mari Jungdsted!! It all started in April when I read her latest book in Spanish, "The Double silence". I was so mesmerized by its characters (Detective Superintendent Anders Knutas and the journalist Johan Berg) and the beautiful Swedish island of Gotland, that I started looking for information about Mari and found out that the book was actually part of a crime series featuring the same characters and location - lucky me!!! So this summer I started reading the first three ("Unseen"' "Unspoken" and "Unknown"). I absolutely loved each of them. Though the criminal story is different in each book, the fact that the main characters remain makes you instantly bond with them and become interested in their personal lives: their love affairs, marital problems, families, work issues... Specially moving is the love story behind Johan. Who said you can't find romance in crime novels??? Reading a saga of several books makes me feel at ease: if I like the story I'm not dreading the moment it's over, because I know there are more books to read and the link with the book characters won't be broken :) And of course, I can't wait to visit Gotland!
I returned to 3 of my fave writers - safe bet!
- "Something you should know" by Melissa Hill: if you love secrets and stories that go back and forward, this is your book. Set in Dublin.
- "The unpredictable consequences of love" by Jill Mansell: loved the fact that the book was set in Cornwall (UK) in an old charming hotel overlooking the sea. Love story with its fair share of past secrets, gossip, friendship and some big life lessons.
- "The One and Only" by Emily Giffin: I've read all of Emily's books, starting with "Something borrowed" - turned intona film a few years ago. This book is a bit... Different. Not because it's not her usual style, it is. The book is collecting a lot of mixed reviews online... Most of them really bad... It's got to do with 2 things (no spoiler): it's absolutely based on the world of American football. In every page, in every chapter, you'll find reference to the game. Shea, the female main character, adores the game, it's her life, and everything revolves around it. At the beginning I was a bit dissatisfied because I don't like the game and I thought its over presence was annoying... Then I accepted it. And the second big issue... I won't dwell on it here in case you haven't read the book but the thing is: Shea falls in love with her best friend's dad (recently widowed) who's 30 years older and is the football Coach of the small Texas town team where the book is set. Some people consider it gross... Other people believe you can't control your feelings and being happily in love is above all... I personally don't know what to think - about the book I mean. I would't like it if this happened to my own dad, ouch! But the book is definitely addictive. And we owe it to Emily, she's a great writer and I think she's been very brave to write a story she knew would be controversial.
And then... THE BOOK I'VE LOVED THE MOST!
"The third wife" by English writer Lisa Jewell. Her first book, "Ralph's Party" (1999) was my first attempt at "adult literature" and casually it was also the first chick lit book I ever read. Of course, I did not know about the genere back then - I was only 15. But the book made a huge impact on me. I wanted to be a twenty something living in a victorian house in London, have cool friends to go out with, a crap job and a romanantic love story :) I have read all of her books, "Vince & Joy" is probably my fave. But last summer she published this gem of a book called "The house we grew up in" and I was flabbergasted. It's just brilliant. Couldn't think she could do any better... Until her latest book, "The third wife". I read somewhere that Lisa felt a bit weird while writing the book when she was asked what it was about... And I understand, because if you try to summarise it into a couple of ideas it may seem a creepy story ... A bit like what I was telling you about "The one and only". But, believe me, it's such a beautiful heart-warming book that will keep you up until the early hours... There's a family secret in the plot: one man, three marriages, a tangled web of lies. 5 star rating indeed.
And last but not least... The other day, scrolling down my Twitter feed, I happily found out that the great Mike Gayle -yes, the first male author in my list! - is releasing a new book in late August!! 28th of August to be precise. This is fantastic news!! He's just brilliant, probably the most hilarious writer I've found. And it's nice to read the kind of stories we girls love reading... written by a guy. This way things turn out to be more realistic, I guess, but let me tell you, he's got a big heart, so his stories are always romantic! It's great to read it the other way round: from the man's perspective. So anyway, his new book is called "Seeing other people" and it's available to pre order on Amazon! Wouldn't miss it for the world!
I hope you find this list complete enough! Should have posted at the beginning of summer, I know, but then it wouldn't have been my favourite summer reads :)