Summer 2020 Reading List & Book Club Suggestions
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure here.
Summer 2020 Reading List & Book Club Suggestions – the best list of current summer reads and book club suggestions! From General Fiction to Suspense to Personal Development, this list has something for everyone.
Happy Summer! Every few months, I share some of my personal reading recommendations for my fellow book lovers. I’ve wrapped up my Spring Reading List and it’s time to share my latest list of must read books for the summer months ahead. Summer is probably my favorite reading season. I love to spend an afternoon on the beach or warm evening on the patio immersed in a great book.
I’m extra excited about sharing this list because my very own cookbook, Clean Eating for Weight Loss is included! As a lifelong book lover, it is a dream come true to have authored my own book. If you haven’t already, please check it out and let me know what you think!
One of the best parts of any great Book Club meeting is the food. If you’re looking for suggestions on what to serve at your next book club, I’ve got plenty of ideas! You’ll find lots of simple and comforting recipes here that are easy to prepare and great for feeding a crowd. Check out my Cajun Sausage & Veggie Kabobs, Asian Chicken Chopped Salad, or Fresh Pico de Gallo. Or head over to my archives for more inspiration!
For me, reading is like an escape. I hope you find something here to get lost in too! Please leave a comment with your own favorites – I would love to hear your book club suggestions. Let’s get reading!
Book Club Pick
The Book of Longings by Sue Monk Kidd
Amazon Description: n her mesmerizing fourth work of fiction, Sue Monk Kidd takes an audacious approach to history and brings her acclaimed narrative gifts to imagine the story of a young woman named Ana. Raised in a wealthy family with ties to the ruler of Galilee, she is rebellious and ambitious, with a brilliant mind and a daring spirit. She engages in furtive scholarly pursuits and writes narratives about neglected and silenced women. Ana is expected to marry an older widower, a prospect that horrifies her. An encounter with eighteen-year-old Jesus changes everything.
Their marriage evolves with love and conflict, humor and pathos in Nazareth, where Ana makes a home with Jesus, his brothers, and their mother, Mary. Ana’s pent-up longings intensify amid the turbulent resistance to Rome’s occupation of Israel, partially led by her brother, Judas. She is sustained by her fearless aunt Yaltha, who harbors a compelling secret. When Ana commits a brazen act that puts her in peril, she flees to Alexandria, where startling revelations and greater dangers unfold, and she finds refuge in unexpected surroundings. Ana determines her fate during a stunning convergence of events considered among the most impactful in human history.
Grounded in meticulous research and written with a reverential approach to Jesus’s life that focuses on his humanity, The Book of Longings is an inspiring, unforgettable account of one woman’s bold struggle to realize the passion and potential inside her, while living in a time, place and culture devised to silence her. It is a triumph of storytelling both timely and timeless, from a masterful writer at the height of her powers.
Amazon Description: Six years after the fight that ended their friendship, Daphne Berg is shocked when Drue Cavanaugh walks back into her life, looking as lovely and successful as ever, with a massive favor to ask. Daphne hasn’t spoken one word to Drue in all this time—she doesn’t even hate-follow her ex-best friend on social media—so when Drue asks if she will be her maid-of-honor at the society wedding of the summer, Daphne is rightfully speechless.
Drue was always the one who had everything—except the ability to hold onto friends. Meanwhile, Daphne’s no longer the same self-effacing sidekick she was back in high school. She’s built a life that she loves, including a growing career as a plus-size Instagram influencer. Letting glamorous, seductive Drue back into her life is risky, but it comes with an invitation to spend a weekend in a waterfront Cape Cod mansion. When Drue begs and pleads and dangles the prospect of cute single guys, Daphne finds herself powerless as ever to resist her friend’s siren song.
A sparkling novel about the complexities of female relationships, the pitfalls of living out loud and online, and the resilience of the human heart, Big Summer is a witty, moving story about family, friendship, and figuring out what matters most.
28 Summers by Elin Hilderbrand
Beneath a Scarlet Sky by Mark Sullivan
Amazon Description: Pino Lella wants nothing to do with the war or the Nazis. He’s a normal Italian teenager—obsessed with music, food, and girls—but his days of innocence are numbered. When his family home in Milan is destroyed by Allied bombs, Pino joins an underground railroad helping Jews escape over the Alps, and falls for Anna, a beautiful widow six years his senior.
In an attempt to protect him, Pino’s parents force him to enlist as a German soldier—a move they think will keep him out of combat. But after Pino is injured, he is recruited at the tender age of eighteen to become the personal driver for Adolf Hitler’s left hand in Italy, General Hans Leyers, one of the Third Reich’s most mysterious and powerful commanders.
Now, with the opportunity to spy for the Allies inside the German High Command, Pino endures the horrors of the war and the Nazi occupation by fighting in secret, his courage bolstered by his love for Anna and for the life he dreams they will one day share.
Suspenseful Page Turner
Amazon Description: The bride – The plus one – The best man – The wedding planner – The bridesmaid – The body
On an island off the coast of Ireland, guests gather to celebrate two people joining their lives together as one. The groom: handsome and charming, a rising television star. The bride: smart and ambitious, a magazine publisher. It’s a wedding for a magazine, or for a celebrity: the designer dress, the remote location, the luxe party favors, the boutique whiskey. The cell phone service may be spotty and the waves may be rough, but every detail has been expertly planned and will be expertly executed.
But perfection is for plans, and people are all too human. As the champagne is popped and the festivities begin, resentments and petty jealousies begin to mingle with the reminiscences and well wishes. The groomsmen begin the drinking game from their school days. The bridesmaid not-so-accidentally ruins her dress. The bride’s oldest (male) friend gives an uncomfortably caring toast.
And then someone turns up dead. Who didn’t wish the happy couple well? And perhaps more important, why?
Clean Eating for Weight Loss: 28 Days to Kickstart a Healthy Lifestyle by Nikki Behnke (yes, that’s me!!)
Amazon Description: It’s the perfect time to shift your dieting mindset―and make the move to whole, nourishing foods for life. The Clean Eating Cookbook for Weight Loss gives you all the tools you need to start eating balanced meals for lasting health. With an easy, 28-day plan filled with delicious recipes, you can begin transforming your lifestyle, losing weight, and feeling more energized.
Experience the benefits of eating clean foods from natural sources, integrating options for different dietary preferences and diverse palates. The Clean Eating Cookbook for Weight Loss’ practical approach to meal plans is stress-free and simple to sustain. Helpful exercise guidelines and lifestyle tips support you as you build healthy habits.
The Clean Eating Cookbook for Weight Loss includes:
- 4 weeks and beyond―The 28-day plan in this clean eating cookbook sets you up for success with detailed weekly menus and shopping lists, plus weekly exercise and habit trackers.
- 75 fresh, flavorful recipes―Savor recipes like Creamy Butternut Squash Soup, Avocado Tuna Salad, Thai Peanut Pork Lettuce Cups, Mango Soft Serve, and more―nutrition facts included.
- Exercise made easy―Get moving with a clean eating cookbook that includes simple at-home cardio and body weight exercises, plus a customizable workout plan.
Discover a lifestyle with positive, long-term results with the Clean Eating Cookbook for Weight Loss.
One of Us Is Lying by Karen McManus
Amazon Description: Pay close attention and you might solve this.
On Monday afternoon, five students at Bayview High walk into detention.
Bronwyn, the brain, is Yale-bound and never breaks a rule.
Addy, the beauty, is the picture-perfect homecoming princess.
Nate, the criminal, is already on probation for dealing.
Cooper, the athlete, is the all-star baseball pitcher.
And Simon, the outcast, is the creator of Bayview High’s notorious gossip app.
Only, Simon never makes it out of that classroom. Before the end of detention Simon’s dead. And according to investigators, his death wasn’t an accident. On Monday, he died. But on Tuesday, he’d planned to post juicy reveals about all four of his high-profile classmates, which makes all four of them suspects in his murder. Or are they the perfect patsies for a killer who’s still on the loose?
Everyone has secrets, right? What really matters is how far you would go to protect them.
Amazon Description: Bryan Stevenson was a young lawyer when he founded the Equal Justice Initiative, a legal practice dedicated to defending those most desperate and in need: the poor, the wrongly condemned, and women and children trapped in the farthest reaches of our criminal justice system. One of his first cases was that of Walter McMillian, a young man who was sentenced to die for a notorious murder he insisted he didn’t commit. The case drew Bryan into a tangle of conspiracy, political machination, and legal brinksmanship—and transformed his understanding of mercy and justice forever.
Just Mercy is at once an unforgettable account of an idealistic, gifted young lawyer’s coming of age, a moving window into the lives of those he has defended, and an inspiring argument for compassion in the pursuit of true justice.
We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. Read my full disclosure here