The Books in My Beach Bag

Posted July 24, 2015 by LeahAdmin in Literary Lists / 20 Comments

The Books in My Beach Bag

Tomorrow I’m headed to Keuka Lake for a week with my parents, dog, and myriad aunts, uncles, and cousins. After the roller coaster month I’ve been having, it will be lovely to spend some time tubing, swimming, kayaking, wine tasting, and lounging in the hammock with a book and a gin & tonic.

I’ve pretty much overcome my tendency to overpack for vacations… except when it comes to books. How can I know in advance what I’ll feel like reading for an entire week? Here are the books I’m taking with me (not including my Scribd library and e-reader; a girl’s gotta have options!*):

The Books in My Beach Bag

Girl Waits With Gun by Amy Stewart (coming from HMH, 9/1). “Constance Kopp doesn’t quite fit the mold. She towers over most men, has no interest in marriage or domestic affairs, and has been isolated from the world since a family secret sent her and her sisters into hiding fifteen years ago. One day a belligerent and powerful silk factory owner runs down their buggy, and a dispute over damages turns into a war of bricks, bullets, and threats as he unleashes his gang on their family farm. When the sheriff enlists her help in convicting the men, Constance is forced to confront her past and defend her family — and she does it in a way that few women of 1914 would have dared.” — Goodreads

This just sounds like so much fun — perfect beach read material.

Sweet Caress by William Boyd (coming form Bloomsbury, 9/15). “When Amory Clay was born, in the decade before the Great War, her disappointed father gave her an androgynous name and announced the birth of a son. But this daughter was not one to let others define her; Amory became a woman who accepted no limits to what that could mean, and, from the time she picked up her first camera, one who would record her own version of events.” — Goodreads

You know I can’t resist books about trail-blazing women, and this one sounds really wonderful. Plus, the novel includes found photographs, which become photos taken by Amory! I’m so intrigued.

Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff (coming from Riverhead, 9/15). “At age twenty-two, Lotto and Mathilde are tall, glamorous, madly in love, and destined for greatness. A decade later, their marriage is still the envy of their friends, but with an electric thrill we understand that things are even more complicated and remarkable than they have seemed. With stunning revelations and multiple threads, and in prose that is vibrantly alive and original, Groff delivers a deeply satisfying novel about love, art, creativity, and power that is unlike anything that has come before it.” — Goodreads

I have to admit that I’m basing all of my beach-read expectations on the cover. Because waves! But also, I love Lauren Groff, and I’ve been dying to read her newest book.

The Killing Moon by N.K. Jemison. “In the ancient city-state of Gujaareh, peace is the only law. Upon its rooftops and amongst the shadows of its cobbled streets wait the Gatherers – the keepers of this peace. Priests of the dream-goddess, their duty is to harvest the magic of the sleeping mind and use it to heal, soothe – and kill those judged corrupt.” — Goodreads

I haven’ read a fantasy novel (besides Harry Potter) since high school, but what better time to step outside your comfort zone than when on vacation? Besides, Julianne raved about it, and she is a poetic noble land mermaid with excellent taste in books.

This Is How You Lose Her by Junot Diaz. “At the heart of these stories is the irrepressible, irresistible Yunior, a young hardhead whose longing for love is equaled only by his recklessness–and by the extraordinary women he loves and loses: artistic Alma; the aging Miss Lora; Magdalena, who thinks all Dominican men are cheaters; and the love of his life, whose heartbreak ultimately becomes his own.” — Goodreads

I don’t know, this book has been on my shelf for like three years, and now seems like a good time to read it.

*I’m also hoping my library hold on The Royal We by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan comes in before I leave! [Edit: It did!]

  • You’ve got some great picks that I’m looking forward to as well! I can’t wait to read Fates & Furies! I’ve been holding off, but will probably take it on my late August vacation as well. I’m also looking forward to Girl Waits With Gun…I only have a hard copy, which doesn’t work as well for me…so, you’ll have to tell me if it’s worth pushing through the hard copy for or if I should just wait until publication to get the e-book! Enjoy your sounds relaxing!

  • I’m pumped to read Girl Waits With Gun! Can’t wait to hear what you think about The Killing Moon, because Julianne has me eyeing that one up too! Have a GREAT vacation 🙂

  • Have fun at the lake! Rest and recharge! And let me know how you like Sweet Caress. I have the book, but haven’t felt like reading it yet.

  • Have such a wonderful time Leah! I’m also a proud member of the Bringing More Books Than I Can Read On Vacation club. I’m about to go housesit in NJ for a week, and they have a pool so I’m really looking forward to some poolside reading time. My copy of The Royal We has NO chance of coming in before I go, I might just break down and buy it – seems like a perfect poolside read. I do have Summer Sisters to re-read though, so maybe that will tide me over. This is How You Lose Her is SUCH a good one – I hope you enjoy it too!

    • Oh my goodness, that sounds so lovely! I just put a hold on The Royal We a few days ago, so I didn’t think it would come in! Luckily, no one in Buffalo reads 😛 Summer Sisters sounds like a great pool-side read.

  • Relax and enjoy- you deserve it! I’m really interested in the new Lauren Groff as well. Hopefully, we won’t be disappointed.

    I hope you have beautiful weather and the perfect blend of quiet reading time and family fun!

    • There’s just one day that’s supposed to be rainy — and, really, we NEED a rainy day so we can go wine tasting! It’s perfect.

  • Amy Sachs

    SO looking forward to Fates and Furies! Girl Waits With Gun sounds amazing, too!

  • Enjoy your trip, it sounds absolutely wonderful!

  • Poetic noble land mermaid indeed. I’ve met her and can confirm. Also, she successfully planted The Killing Moon on my list, too.

    I’m eager to hear what you think about F&F! I feel like the hype train pulled out extra early for it, so I was nervous and didn’t end up requesting it anywhere. I hope it lives up!

    Also, enjoy your vacation! I can’t think of anyone more deserving of one right about now.

  • This is How You Lose Her is just SO good, and I’ve seen great ratings on Goodreads (from trusted friends) for Fates and Furies. Enjoy!

  • Looks like you got some awesome books. I loved This Is How You Lose Her and The Killing Moon.

    Tanya Patrice

  • Girl Waits with Gun *is* a fun book. I really enjoyed it.

  • Have yet to read Junot Diaz’s latest. I liked The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao. I saw him speak and absolutely loved him! He is just a rough and tumble in his speech/word choice as I might have expected! Definitely just who he is, no compromises, no PC talk! I admire that immensely. 🙂 The others all sound fascinating, too. Enjoy your break from the routine! 🙂

  • Chelsey @ Chels and a Book

    So exciting! Your week away sounds simply idyllic :). I can’t wait to hear what you think about Lauren Groff. I’ve heard wonderful things about her work. And so great that The Royal We came in in time! I’m dying to read that one too! Have a wonderful relaxing week!