Today we're welcoming Carly from Writing From the Tub, who's talking about The Perfect Summer Book
The perfect summer beach read. It’s something I rarely come across but when the perfect novel really pulls me in and consumes me it’s pure magic. I always seem to amp up my reading during the summer months. Maybe it’s to do with the fact I can kick back in the sun and plow through book after book, cocktail in hand, oversized sunglasses across my eyes. Either way, the perfect beach read is a delicious treat that is sadly rare to come by. So, what is it that makes the ultimate summer read so great?
Number one on my list – beaches. Pretty obvious really but nothing says summer like miles of clear sandy beaches. Bliss. It seems as though all my favourite summer novels contain a pivotal scene set in the sand. One of the standard ‘summer novel’ fixtures is a bonfire on the beach, a la The OC. It’s a time for confessions, oversized hoodies and stolen kisses by firelight. The perfect recipe for romance, it seems as though the stereotypical beach bonfire is a catalyst for love – who am I to argue? It would work on me, that’s for sure.
The perfect summer read needs to be something light hearted, something you can pick up at a moment’s notice and dip in and out of as the sun dictates. Of course, our English weather isn’t exactly constant so it’s always comforting to find a novel that can transport you to sandy beaches an blistering sunshine, even when it’s chucking it down outside in distinctly un-July fashion.
For me, beach reads provide an opportunity to escape from reality and I find this is something echoed in so many of the books I read throughout the summer. There are so many great YA novels out there that focus on the protagonist escaping from ‘real life’ for the summer, be it for a summer job, a holiday or a few months spent at a swanky summer house in the Hamptons that I’ll never be able to afford.
Two of my favourite summer novels are Amanda Howells’ ‘The Summer of Skinny Dipping’ and Sarah Ockler’s ‘Twenty Boy Summer’. As you’d expect, romance features heavily in both but what I adore about the love stories in both of these novels is that they develop slowly throughout the length of the stories. These romances are slow burning, based on friendship and trust and it’s an absolute deal breaker for me. Chuck in a great love story and I’m there.
When it comes down for it, I think escapism is the main thing I’m after when it comes to a summer read. I want the characters, the dialogue, the world to completely consume me and take me to another place, whether it’s a contemporary or genre novel. If I can truly lose myself in the pages then, for me, that’s the number one sign of a perfect summer read.
Thanks Carly for a great post!
So what do you look for in a summer book?