What constitutes summer reading? Like any open ended question, this one has plenty of answers. To my sister, as a teenager, it meant reading all of Proust – in French. (I know. That annoyed me, too.) To my son, it means manga, manga, and more manga, with a little anime thrown in just to complicate things. To me, well, “summer reading” depends on the week and the location.
Just to be perverse, even if I’m at the beach I skip the beach reads, except that I do remember very fondly a weekend years ago when I lolled around reading THE beach read of that summer: Scott Turow’s Presumed Innocent. (Tony stuff by beach-y standards, I guess – but it was a more innocent time.) This summer I plan to finish the oeuvre of Elena Ferrante – I’ve got the Neapolitan Quartet covered, and a couple of the early books. (My favorite: The Days of Abandonment) But there are some beautiful paperbacks on my shelf from whatever-her-real-name is, so they’re going on the top of the file. Some other plans: Caleb Carr’s forthcoming novel, Surrender, New York, because I remember another summer engrossed in his first, The Alienist. And then, for fun, The Dollhouse, which is the kind of historical, New York-y novel I remember reading before I moved here; it’s about the Barbizon Hotel for women, which (of course) is alive mostly in the memory of longtime New Yorkers.
Hmm. Two novels about New York City, past and present. I guess you can take the girl away from metropolis, but you can’t... etc.
What do you consider the perfect kind of beach read? Are you city or country? Proust or pop? Whichever, Happy 4th!
See more in our Summer Reading Roundup.
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- The Best Books of the Year So Far
- Totes-Awesome Beach Bags for Books and Kindles
- Summer Reading: We're Going to Need a Bigger Bag
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