Every Summer Has a Story

What story has defined your summer? Climbing mountains? Exploring an urban jungle? Maybe a new job complete with colorful characters? There’s something about this time of year that sets it apart from the rest – the days are longer, and with those hours come endless opportunities.

There are plenty of stories to behold in the pages of books as well. In case you’re still looking for some summer reading, here are some seasonally appropriate recommendations before we come back to school.

Ernest Hemingway’s That Dangerous Summer

184808In this vivid account, Hemingway captures the exhausting pace and pressure of the season, the camaraderie and pride of the matadors, and the mortal drama as in fight after fight the rival matadors try to outdo each other with ever more daring performances. At the same time Hemingway offers an often complex and deeply personal self-portrait that reveals much about one of the twentieth century’s preeminent writers.

 
Richard Cox’s The Boys of Summer

28695774In 1979, a massive tornado devastates the city of Wichita Falls, Texas, leaving scores dead, thousands homeless, and nine-year-old Todd Willis in a coma, fighting for his life.

Four years later, Todd awakens to a world that looks the same but feels different in a way he can’t quite grasp. For Todd, it’s a struggle to separate fact from fiction as he battles lingering hallucinations from his long sleep.

The new friends Todd makes in 1983 are fascinated with his experience and become mesmerized by his strange relationship with the world. Together the five boys come of age during a dark, fiery summer where they find first love, betrayal, and a secret so terrible they agree to never speak of it again.

Sarah Dessen’s That Summer

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For fifteen-year-old Haven, life is changing too quickly. She’s nearly six feet tall, her father is getting remarried, and her sister—the always perfect Ashley—is planning a wedding of her own. Haven wishes things could just go back to the way they were. Then an old boyfriend of Ashley’s reenters the picture…

 
Sue Halpern’s new release Summer Hours at the Robbers Library

35068755For head librarian Kit, the public library in Riverton, New Hampshire, offers what she craves most: peace. Here, no one expects Kit to talk about the calamitous events that catapulted her out of what she thought was a settled, suburban life. She can simply submerge herself in her beloved books and try to forget her problems.

But that changes when fifteen-year-old, home-schooled Sunny gets arrested for shoplifting a dictionary. The judge throws the book at Sunny—literally—assigning her to do community service at the library for the summer. Bright, curious, and eager to connect with someone other than her off-the-grid hippie parents, Sunny coaxes Kit out of her self-imposed isolation… As they come to terms with how their lives have unraveled, they also discover how they might knit them together again and finally reclaim their stories.

Stephanie Perkins’ Summer Days and Summer Nights: Twelve Love Stories

“Maybe it’s the long, la25063781zy days, or maybe it’s the heat making everyone a little bit crazy. Whatever the reason, summer is the perfect time for love to bloom. Summer Days & Summer Nights: Twelve Love Stories, written by twelve bestselling young adult writers and edited by the international bestselling author Stephanie Perkins, will have you dreaming of sunset strolls by the lake… Featuring stories by Leigh Bardugo, Francesca Lia Block, Libba Bray, Cassandra Clare, Brandy Colbert, Tim Federle, Lev Grossman, Nina LaCour, Stephanie Perkins, Veronica Roth, Jon Skovron, and Jennifer E. Smith.”

Brian Sloan’s A Tale of Two Summers

109147A ten-year best friendship is put to the test when Chuck and Hal spend their first summer apart falling for two questionable mates: a sexy Saudi songstress and a smokin’ hot French punk. As Chuck heads off to summer theater camp and Hal stays in their hometown, learning how to drive, they keep in touch via blogging, reporting to each other about their suddenly separate lives and often ridiculous romantic entanglements. As both their relationships take some unexpected turns, Hal and Chuck struggle to come to terms with their growing differences…

Jen Malone’s Wanderlost

26244548Aubree can’t think of a better place to be than in perfectly boring Ohio, and she’s ready for a relaxing summer. But when her older sister, Elizabeth, gets into real trouble, Aubree is talked into taking over Elizabeth’s summer job, leading a group of senior citizens on a bus tour through Europe.

Aubree doesn’t even make it to the first stop in Amsterdam before their perfect plan unravels, leaving her with no phone, no carefully prepared binder full of helpful facts, and an unexpected guest: the tour company owner’s son, Sam. Considering she’s pretending to be Elizabeth, she absolutely shouldn’t fall for him, but she can’t help it, especially with the most romantic European cities as the backdrop for their love story.

Jim Lynch’s The Highest Tide

94673One moonlit night… Miles O’Malley sneaks out of his house and goes exploring on the tidal flats of Puget Sound. When he discovers a rare giant squid, he instantly becomes a local phenomenon shadowed by people curious as to whether this speed-reading, Rachel Carson obsessed teenager is just an observant boy or an unlikely prophet. But Miles is really just a kid on the verge of growing up, infatuated with the girl next door, worried that his bickering parents will divorce, and fearful that everything, even the bay he loves, is shifting away from him.

 

Graphic Novels

Mariko Tamaki’s This One Summer

18465566Every summer, Rose goes with her mom and dad to a lake house in Awago Beach. It’s their getaway, their refuge. Rosie’s friend Windy is always there, too, like the little sister she never had. But this summer is different. Rose’s mom and dad won’t stop fighting, and when Rose and Windy seek a distraction from the drama, they find themselves with a whole new set of problems. It’s a summer of secrets and sorrow and growing up, and it’s a good thing Rose and Windy have each other.

 

Michel Rabagliati’s Paul Has a Summer Job

806101“Paul Has a Summer Job continues the story of Paul, a Quebecois teenager in the 1970s, as he experiences the first conflicts of responsibility with his desire to be free. Paul is outraged that he is forced to stop his high school art training. But he’s been asked to put art aside because his other grades are so terribly low. Defiant, he quits school and anticipates a summer of leisure. But instead Paul follows the path of so many Quebecois teenagers: he lands a job as a counselor at one of the many summer camps in the mountains outside the city. There he finds himself guiding a motley band of kids, misfits and troublemakers, much like himself.

Check out Goodreads.com to find more good books!

 

Summer Book Scoop

SummerBook ScoopThis summer, there’s a whole lot of time to catch up on fun reads. You know — those delicious, can’t stop reading type of books. From romances to mysteries, here’s the scoop on what you might like to read next, courtesy of Brightly Books.

Just Out

Ash Princess by Laura Sebastian

32505753¨For ten years Theo has been a captive in her own palace. She’s endured the relentless abuse and ridicule of the Kaiser and his court. She is powerless, surviving in her new world only by burying the girl she was deep inside.

Then, one night, the Kaiser forces her to do the unthinkable. With blood on her hands and all hope of reclaiming her throne lost, she realizes that surviving is no longer enough. But she does have a weapon: her mind is sharper than any sword. And power isn’t always won on the battlefield

Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

34728667¨Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames, Tiders beckoned waves, and Zelie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls. 

But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were targeted and killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope.

Now, Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.¨

Genuine Fraud by E. Lockhart

33843362¨Imogen is a runaway heiress, an orphan, a cook, and a cheat.
Jule is a fighter, a social chameleon, and an athlete. 
An intense friendship. A disappearance. A murder, or maybe two. 
A bad romance, or maybe three.
Blunt objects, disguises, blood, and chocolate. The American dream, superheroes, spies, and villains…

 

The Smoke Thieves by Sally Green

34508382¨A princess, a traitor, a hunter and a thief. Four teenagers with the fate of the world in their hands. Four nations destined for conflict. 

In Brigant, Princess Catherine prepares for a loveless political marriage arranged by her brutal and ambitious father. In Calidor, downtrodden servant March seeks revenge on the prince who betrayed his people. In Pitoria, feckless Edyon steals cheap baubles for cheaper thrills as he drifts from town to town. And in the barren northern territories, thirteen-year-old Tash is running for her life as she plays bait for the gruff demon hunter Gravell…¨

Soon to Be Released

Jurassic World’s The Evolution of Claire by Tess Sharp

37569307¨During the events of Jurassic World, Claire Dearing faced the savage fury of dinosaurs unleashed . . . but it wasn’t the first time. In this entirely new coming-of-age story, Claire lands an elite internship working for Simon Masrani and soon discovers his plans to build an all-new theme park–Jurassic World! Along the way, Claire establishes valuable relationships with both her peers and the prehistoric creatures she studies, but when the situation turns dangerous, she begins to see the dinosaurs in a different light.¨

 

The Disappearance of Sloan Sullivan by Gia Cribbs

35750271¨No one wants me to tell you about the disappearance of Sloane Sullivan.

But I don’t care. I have to tell someone. If I don’t, you’ll never know how completely wrong things can go. How a single decision can change everything. How, when it really comes down to it, you can’t trust anyone. Not even yourself. You have to understand, so it won’t happen to you next. Because you never know when the person sitting next to you isn’t who they claim to be…and because there are worse things than disappearing.¨.

Nyxia by Scott Reintgen

27426044“Emmett Atwater isn’t just leaving Detroit; he’s leaving Earth. Why the Babel Corporation recruited him is a mystery, but the number of zeroes on their contract has him boarding their lightship and hoping to return to Earth with enough money to take care of his family…

Before long, Emmett discovers that he is one of ten recruits, all of whom have troubled pasts and are a long way from home. Now each recruit must earn the right to travel down to the planet of Eden—a planet that Babel has kept hidden—where they will mine a substance called Nyxia that has quietly become the most valuable material in the universe. But Babel’s ship is full of secrets…”

Always Never Yours by Austin Siegemund-Broka and Emily Wibberly

AlwaysNever_BOM_4p.indd“Megan Harper is the girl before. All her exes find their one true love right after dating her. It’s not a curse or anything, it’s just the way things are, and Megan refuses to waste time feeling sorry for herself. Instead, she focuses on pursuing her next fling, directing theatre, and fulfilling her dream school’s acting requirement in the smallest role possible.

But her plans quickly crumble when she’s cast as none other than Juliet–yes, that Juliet–in her high school’s production. It’s a nightmare… Between rehearsals and contending with her divided family, Megan begins to notice Owen–thoughtful, unconventional, and utterly unlike her exes, and wonders: shouldn’t a girl get to play the lead in her own love story?

Want more summer reads? Read the full Brightly Books recommendations here.

Best Books: Sarah and Kate

LFHS Class of 2020 members Sarah and Kate recommend their favorite books. Sarah’s is Power Play by Danielle Steel. “It has an interesting plot and you never know what the main character is going to do,” she says.

Kate’s best book is The Help by Kathryn Stockett. She says, “I like how it combines historical fiction, romance, and everyday stories.”

Goodreads Reviews:

18104697Fiona Carson has proven herself as CEO of a multibillion-dollar high-tech company – a successful woman in a man’s world. Devoted single mother, world-class strategist, and tough negotiator, Fiona has to keep a delicate balance every day.

Meanwhile, Marshall Weston basks in the fruits of his achievements… smooth, shrewd and irreproachable, Marshall’s power only enhances his charisma – but he harbors secrets that could destroy his life at any moment. Both must face their own demons, and the lives they lead come at a high price. But just how high a price are they willing to pay?

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Be prepared to meet three unforgettable women:

Twenty-two-year-old Skeeter has just returned home after graduating from Ole Miss. She may have a degree, but it is 1962, Mississippi, and her mother will not be happy till Skeeter has a ring on her finger…Aibileen is a black maid, a wise, regal woman raising her seventeenth white child. Something has shifted inside her after the loss of her own son, who died while his bosses looked the other way…Minny, Aibileen’s best friend, is short, fat, and perhaps the sassiest woman in Mississippi. She can cook like nobody’s business, but she can’t mind her tongue, so she’s lost yet another job… In pitch-perfect voices, Kathryn Stockett creates three extraordinary women whose determination to start a movement of their own forever changes a town, and the way women — mothers, daughters, caregivers, friends — view one another.

Best Books: Marc

Marc, LFHS class of 2018, has a best book titled Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl. He says, “It provides an amazing perspective on the sociology and psychology of prisoners in the concentration and death camps of the Holocaust. While following the story of Mr. Frankl and his survival of these horrific events you learn many enlightening concepts that I still ponder on long after reading the book.”

From Goodreads:

Psychiatrist Viktor Frankl’s memoir has riveted generations of readers with its descriptions of life in Nazi death camps and its lessons for spiritual survival. Between 1942 and 1945 Frankl labored in four different camps, including Auschwitz, while his parents, brother, and pregnant wife perished. Based on his own experience and the experiences of others he treated later in his practice, Frankl argues that we cannot avoid suffering but we can choose how to cope with it, find meaning in it, and move forward with renewed purpose.

 

Let the Graduation Stories Commence

Commencement – it’s what we call the ceremonies that take place this time of year. Speeches are given, accomplishments celebrated, and students are called to walk across the stage, marking the end of one chapter and the beginning of another. Here is a quintet of graduation stories that capture an essence of life beyond high school.

Kill All the Happies by Rachel Cohen

31823243This is it. Graduation. And Vic Navarro is throwing the most epic party Rancho Soldado has ever seen. She’s going to pull off the most memorable good-bye ever for her best friends, give Happies—the kitschy restaurant that is her desert town’s claim to fame—a proper send-off into bankruptcy, and oh yes, hook up with her delicious crush, Jake Zavala-Kim. She only needs to keep the whole thing a secret so that her archnemesis, Miss Ann Thrope, Rancho Soldado’s nightmare Town Councilwoman and high school Economics teacher, doesn’t get Vic tossed in jail.” Goodreads Synopsis”

I am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter by Erika L. Sánchez

29010395“Perfect Mexican daughters do not go away to college. And they do not move out of their parents’ house after high school graduation. Perfect Mexican daughters never abandon their family. But Julia is not your perfect Mexican daughter. That was Olga’s role. 

Then a tragic accident on the busiest street in Chicago leaves Olga dead and Julia left behind to reassemble the shattered pieces of her family. And no one seems to acknowledge that Julia is broken, too. Instead, her mother seems to channel her grief into pointing out every possible way Julia has failed. But it’s not long before Julia discovers that Olga might not have been as perfect as everyone thought. With the help of her best friend Lorena, and her first kiss, first love, first everything boyfriend Connor, Julia is determined to find out. Was Olga really what she seemed…”

Meet Me Here by Bryan Bliss

18190738“In a single night—graduation night—Thomas has to decide: Do what everyone has always expected of him? 

Thomas is supposed to leave for the army in the morning. His father was Army. His brother, Jake, is Army—is a hero, even, with the medals to prove it. Everyone expects Thomas to follow in that fine tradition. But Jake came back from overseas a completely different person, and that has shaken Thomas’s certainty about his own future. And so when his long-estranged friend Mallory suggests one last night of adventure, Thomas takes her up on the distraction. Over the course of this single night, Thomas will lose, find, resolve, doubt, drive, explore, and leap off a bridge. He’ll also face the truth of his brother’s post-traumatic stress disorder and of his own courage.”

Glory O’Brien’s History of the Future by A.S. King

17453303“Graduating from high school is a time of limitless possibilities–but not for Glory, who has no plan for what’s next. Her mother committed suicide when Glory was only four years old, and she’s never stopped wondering if she will eventually go the same way…until a transformative night when she begins to experience an astonishing new power to see a person’s infinite past and future. From ancient ancestors to many generations forward, Glory is bombarded with visions–and what she sees ahead of her is terrifying: A tyrannical new leader raises an army. Women’s rights disappear. A violent second civil war breaks out. And young girls vanish daily, sold off or interned in camps. Glory makes it her mission to record everything she sees, hoping her notes will somehow make a difference.”

The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness

22910900What if you aren’t the Chosen One? The one who’s supposed to fight the zombies, or the soul-eating ghosts, or whatever the heck this new thing is, with the blue lights and the death? Because sometimes there are problems bigger than this week’s end of the world, and sometimes you just have to find the extraordinary in your ordinary life.

What if you’re like Mikey? Who just wants to graduate and go to prom and maybe finally work up the courage to ask Henna out before someone goes and blows up the high school. Again.”

Best Books: Marilyn

LFHS sophomore Marilyn has a favorite book called Sophomores and Other Oxymorons, book #2 in the David Lubar series Sleeping Freshman Never Lie.

Check out the Goodreads review below:

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¨An honest and funny follow-up to the popular Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie, award-winning author David Lubar pens a tale that perfectly captures the ridiculous, tumultuous, and sometimes heartbreaking truths about high school

Read more at Goodreads.com.

 

Best Books: Elliott

The best book of Elliott, LFHS Class of 2019, is The Gift of Rain by Tan Twan Eng. He explains,¨The book explores relationships formed and broken in a setting during World War 2, taking place in Malaysia. The narrator’s voice matures throughout the story, as he witnesses the loss of loved ones to Japanese invasion and violent diplomacy.¨

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Goodreads Synopsis:

¨Set during the tumult of World War II, on the lush Malayan island of Penang, The Gift of Rain tells a riveting and poignant tale about a young man caught in the tangle of wartime loyalties and deceits.¨

Interested? Check out more here.