The calendar is not lying to you–it’s May already. The sun is shining, the birds are chirping, and the flowers are popping out to say hello. As you wrap up the last of year-end inventory, you begin drifting into that age-old daydream.
You know the one–you’re lounging in your favorite chair, a cool breeze sweeps across your sun kissed skin and the sound of children playing blends with mowers in the distance.
Ah . . . summer, that one time of year you get a chance to catch up on the thing you love to do most . . . read.
Well, no need to waste any time, let’s dive right in with the 5 Must Reads for Summer.
#1. Paper Towns by John Green
Meet Margo–the unconventional girl next door–always plotting outrageous adventures as her wallflower neighbor Quentin admires her from afar.
One night, Margo ropes Quentin into joining her in one of her schemes. Quentin couldn’t be happier to finally be sharing in Margo’s spontaneity until the next morning when he discovers Margo has gone missing.
As Quentin and his friends piece together the clues of Margo’s disappearance, they develop a better understanding of themselves and reveal great insights about life in general.
This cleverly written romantic thriller is packed with detail, literary references, and bittersweet life lessons that everyone can enjoy. If this sounds like the book for you, pick it up and read it quickly–the movie will be in theaters soon!
#2. Lost Lake by Sarah Addison Allen
While mourning the death of her husband and struggling to keep her head above water, Kate discovers a postcard her great aunt Eby sent her depicting Lost Lake–a place she had spent the best summer of her life at the age of twelve.
Kate and her eight-year-old daughter, Devin, feel compelled to venture back to the enchanting hotel Eby and her husband purchased during the sixties.
To their surprise, their spontaneous drive to Georgia turns into a pilgrimage to save Lost Lake from a relentless land developer.
This magical, heartfelt tale is full of fanciful characters with wisdom to offer anyone feeling a little lost and Sarah Addison Allen does a fantastic job of painting this imaginative story.
Enjoy it this summer, with a box of tissues–you will smile through tears.
#3 To Kill a Mockingbird
Nothing brings back the nostalgic feeling of summer quite like reading an old classic–particularly one portraying young children enjoying an adventure-filled summer.
To Kill a Mockingbird makes our summer reading list because after 50 years this timeless tale remains a relevant, wise, and touching social commentary that continues to inspire readers with lessons about compassion, justice, and the harsh realities we face throughout our lives.
Readers find themselves tangled in the thick of the dramatic events spiraling through this small Alabama town–seeing it all through the eyes of a child.
Lee’s ability to develop unforgettable characters readers grow to love as the story slowly unfolds, along with her palpable descriptions of sticky summers in the South make this classic enjoyable at any age.
#4 Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer
Another on your list to read before it hits theaters this Fall is Into Thin Air. This biography is comprised of captivating memoirs Jon Krakauer wrote during his disastrous expedition scaling Mt. Everest in 1996.
Krakauer’s first-hand account reveals the journalist’s painful insights and personal failings which he questions while recounting the tragic events that transpired that May.
This epic adventure sheds light on the alluring appeal of the great outdoors and those who challenge their courage and will by attempting to defeat the impossible.
Readers will find Krakauer’s depiction of death, greed, and human nature haunting while they linger in suspense to find out what happens next.
#5 Man’s Search for Meaning
Man’s Search for Meaning has sold over 10 million copies since originally being published in 1946. This inspirational biography by Dr. Viktor E. Frankl about his experience being held captive in Nazi death camps from 1942 to 1945 remains a best-seller today because of the hope it continues to give anyone facing trying times.
Frankl’s ability to find hope and see the good in mankind while enduring the most horrifying situations gives readers a completely different outlook on life.
Frankl survived four concentration camps–during which time he lost his parents, brother, and pregnant wife. His memoirs are written from his point of view as a psychiatrist–trying to make sense of mankind and developing an understanding for the meaning in his own life.
No other book offers readers a better understanding of true human suffering. Despite some heart-wrenching moments, readers are left with a feeling of compassion, gratitude, and a genuine appreciation for the ability to get up and live.