Thanks to a recent trip to the beach, along with some other travel here and there, we've knocked out a number of books already this summer. A few of them we've really loved, so we thought we'd share our reading list with you.
But here's the thing: We need some new recommendations! And we're sure a few other Bittens do, too.
Will you take a look through our list, and tell us what you think we should read next?
A Few Recent Books That We Loved
The Vacationers. Emma Straub's novel is getting a lot of attention as a good summer read, and it's easy to see why. The book follows a family on a fraught summer vacation to Majorca, with funny and also touching consequences. It's a perfect book to make you forget about everyday life. (And it's the first book we've read in a while that we wished was twice as long. So many good characters!)
Meg Wolitzer's The Position. This isn't a new book (it came out eight years ago), but we loved The Interestings so much that we decided to sample Wolitzer's earlier work. The Position introduces us to the Mellows, a couple who in the 1970s publish a how-to book about maintaining a healthy sexual relationship. The book then explores how that decision affects them and their four children over the ensuing decades. You need to meet the Mellows.
This is the Story of a Happy Marriage by Ann Patchett. Clay loves Patchett's fiction and highly recommends this collection of non-fiction essays in which the author writes about everything from learning to be a writer, to owning an independent bookstore to, as the title implies, a dissection of her own marriage. Much of the material is previously published but was new to us.
Creativity, Inc. This book falls squarely into the business book category -- and is somewhat of an oddball on this list -- but Pixar cofounder and president Ed Catmull has written an incredibly thoughtful book on how to lead and nurture a creative culture. For Pixar fans, there's a lot of behind-the-scenes tales of how some of your favorite movies came to fruition.
One More Thing by BJ Novak. The last time we gave book recommendations, we included Novak's book of short stories on our list of books that we planned to read next. It happens to be the one book we listed that we actually read. We're not usually hot for short stories, but Novak's are inventive and often hilarious. It's akin to a collection of Shouts & Murmurs essays from The New Yorker.
If I Stay. Clay fell back into the weepy teen books, reading Gayle Forman's novel that starts with a car accident, a coma, and then definitely doesn't get any lighter after that point. It's a compelling, quick read. And the movie is coming out later this year.
Other Books We've Read This Summer
Please tell us! What should we read this summer? We have a few small trips coming up. What should we take with us?