School is almost out and the sidewalks are steamy, which means it's time for one thing: beach books! You know exactly what we mean: those seaside-set page-turners that are so engrossing you don't even notice as the NC sun melts half the skin off your body. Here are five we recommend you explore (and you can find them compiled in audiobook form on our Libro.fm playlist called "The List"):
1. Women in Sunlight by Frances Mayes
Frances Mayes, bestselling author of Under the Tuscan Sun, returns with a delicious book that unfolds amid beautiful Italian landscapes, fresh pasta, and four friends. Women in Sunlight drops just in time for sandy beach trips, ice cream parlor indulgences, and that renewed lust for life that accompanies the advent of warmer weather.
2. The Secret to Southern Charm by Kristy Woodson Harvey
Charlotte-based author Kristy Woodson Harvey hit shelves last year with Slightly South of Simple and readers responded, clamoring for more of the Murphy women. This spring, Harvey dropped the second book in what will now be a series. Named a "Best Spring Break Read" by Southern Living and selected as a Spring Okra Pick, The Secret to Southern Charm is full of first loves, missed opportunities, and second chances perfect for steamy after-work evenings spent on front porches.
3. The Summer Wives by Beatriz Williams
Beatriz Williams is the queen of drama, no matter which decade forms the backdrop of her characters' lives. Her newest release, The Summer Wives, is set in the 1950's and dishes out a perfect summer storm of romance, murder, class, power, and dark secrets among the rarified world of a resort island in the Long Island Sound. If you're looking for a plot-twisting, page-turner to take to the lake, look no further than The Summer Wives, which releases in July!
4. Tangerine by Christine Mangan
If you like a little hurricane mixed in with your breezy summer reads, then check out Tangerine by Christine Mangan. With razor sharp craftsmanship, Mangan forces two friends to reunite on the shores of Morocco, and delves headlong into the fallout as our protagonist, Alice, remembers why she, once glued to her friend's hip, has spent a year apart from her. When Alice's husband goes missing, she can't help but suspect her longtime friend and wonder whether the cost of her trip to Tangier will be her sanity.
5. Less by Sean Greer
Okay, okay this book isn't set on a coast, and it forgoes the intrigue and passion that typically characterize a breezy beach read. Instead, when you crack open Sean Greer's Pulitzer Prize winning novel you'll meet Arthur, a 50-year-old failed novelist who embarks on a worldwide literary tour to avoid attending the wedding of an ex-flame. Lyrical, laugh-out-loud funny, heartwarming, and satirical, Less is precisely what you need more of on your summer vacation.
Not sure if any of these books are for you, or feeling indecisive? Take our quiz for your perfect beach pairing: