Books

16 Books to Read This Summer

Essential reading for the plane, the beach, and the patio.
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Hunker down in the nice weather and make a dent in these fun, summer reads.

1. Ayiti


BUY NOW $7.24 (P377.46)

Explore Gay's colorful imagination in this varied short-story anthology, which is being re-released in June. You'll encounter voodoo, unrequited love, bloodlust, and the pursuit of the American Dream—all in Gay's whimsical but biting tongue.

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2. Among The Lemon Trees


BUY NOW $10.87 (P566.71)

This absorbing family saga will keep you reading all day long. The first novel from journalist Nadia Marks chronicles the steep descent of Anna's seemingly perfect world as she separates from her husband and discovers long-kept family secrets while isolated on an Aegean island with her widowed father. Anna's exploration of her family's harried past casts new light on her own future.

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3. Tell Me Lies


BUY NOW $26 (P1,355.51)

This raunchy debut from Carola Lovering follows college freshman Lucy Albright and her complicated first love, Stephen, in alternating chapters. Over 7 years, the couple weathers breakups, makeups, and drug-induced drama, and prove to be entirely wrong for each other. So why can't they quit?

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4. The Ministry of Utmost Happiness


BUY NOW $14.99 (P781.50)

It’s been nearly two decades since Arundhati Roy shot to literary fame with her debut novel, The God of Small Things. Her sophomore effort, released last summer, brings together a wide cast of characters, at its center a transgender woman living in a cemetery, from the old neighborhoods of Delhi to Kashmir.

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5. Rich People Problems


BUY NOW $17.32 (P902.98)

Singapore’s richest family—a matriarch on her deathbed, various relations vying for their piece of the pie—is at the center of the light-hearted novel from Kevin Kwan (Crazy Rich Asians). Expect kidnappings, betrayal, ruined reputations, and billionaires behaving badly—and expect to love every last bit of it.

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6. Do Not Become Alarmed


BUY NOW $10.29 (P536.47)

Two families spending a holiday on a boat—seemingly insulated by money and influence from anything that could go wrong—find themselves separated from their children in a dangerous Central American country when things go haywire in the blink of an eye. This novel from T&C contributor Maile Meloy is both enthralling and terrifying… just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water.

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7. Fly Me


BUY NOW $15.99 (P833.64)

A 1970s stewardess with a drug-smuggling scam is at the center of this novel from Daniel Riley. In the seedy, action-packed tale, recent college grad Suzy Whitman has relocated to a Los Angeles-adjacent beach town and followed her sister into a career as a flight attendant—something that, over the course of the story, will find itself at odds with her taste for danger.

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8. Swell


BUY NOW $15.99 (P833.64)

Jill Eisenstadt’s best-known book might be From Rockaway, which came out 30 years ago. Her latest tome revisits that seaside New York City neighborhood in Swell, which follows a Manhattan family as they relocate to Rockaway, uncover family secrets, and make a case for the idea that beach living might not always be everything it’s cracked up to.

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9. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo


BUY NOW $16.00 (P834.16)

In her latest novel, Taylor Jenkins Reid tells the story of a struggling journalist who’s plucked seemingly from obscurity to write the biography of one of the world’s most famous—and reclusive—actresses. It’s a twisting tale of glamour, ambition, and what Old Hollywood can mean to a contemporary world.

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10. Our Little Racket


BUY NOW $6.99 (P364.42)

The debut novel from Angelica Baker charts what happens for five Greenwich, Connecticut women when the man they have in common—newly disgraced banker Bob D’Amico—finds himself in serious trouble and shutters his fund. This story, about the secrets we keep and the social rules that go unspoken, clocks in at over 500 pages, but promises to be one of the summer’s most entertaining reads.

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11. The Destroyers


BUY NOW $16.23 (P846.15)

Things aren’t quite what they seem on the Greek island of Patmos, where a down-on-his-luck American, Ian Bledsoe, has gone to forget his troubles among rich, carefree friends. Unfortunately for Ian (but not so much the reader), what he finds in this thriller from the author of Lightning People, is a bit more treacherous than anything he’d anticipated.

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12. To The New Owners: A Martha's Vineyard Memoir


BUY NOW $16.23 (P846.15)

In this memoir of a life on Martha’s Vineyard, the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Madeleine Blais recalls summers on the island from the 1970s, when her family’s house had no electricity or modern plumbing, through her adventures summering alongside politicians, movie stars, and some of the world’s most powerful people. Even if you won’t be spending summer in Edgartown, it’s a story worth reading.

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13. The Address


BUY NOW $14.59 (P760.65)

On the heels of last year’s The Dollhouse—about life at the Barbizon Hotel—Fiona Davis is back with a compelling novel about two women, a century apart, whose both find their lives forever changed by the Dakota, Manhattan’s most famous apartment building.

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14. The Bettencourt Affair


BUY NOW $19.04 (P992.65)

Former Time Paris bureau chief Tom Sancton follows what happened when the world’s richest woman, cosmetics heiress Liliane Bettencourt, became the center of a scandal that captivated Europe. This true story of the elderly billionaire, the artist to whom she gave a fortune, and the family that claims it’s all been a big con, is proof that truth is stranger—or at least makes better poolside reading.

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15. The Party


BUY NOW $15.99 (P833.64)

Elizabeth Day’s latest novel looks at two old friends, Ben, who comes from old money, and Martin, who’s had to make his own way, and the ways their backgrounds have divided them. When Ben, a London man about town, throws himself a 40th birthday party at his country spread, Martin and his wife attend, but what happens that night will change their lives forever. Not recommended as a hostess gift.

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16. The Burning Girl


BUY NOW $13.99 (P729.37)

This smart new coming-of-age novel from Claire Messud (she wrote The Emperor’s Children) follows two young women in a small Massachusetts town as their unusually close friendship first brings them together, and then drives them apart.

This story originally appeared on Townandcountrymag.com.
* Minor edits have been made by the Townandcountry.ph editors.

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Prices are based on the conversion rate of $1 = P52.14.

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