One of my annual summer traditions is to hop onto my Goodreads account an start making a shelf of all the books I want to read that summer. I don’t usually get to every one of them- I usually add about 15-20 to my list- but I try my best to get as close to the finish line as possible. This year, my list mainly consists of things that I feel I should have read by now but haven’t, as well as some fun new things I’ve just came across.
#1- The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Somehow, I have managed to graduate High School without having read this novel. Strangely enough, I took all the advanced literature and English classes at my school, yet it was the “regular” classes who read Gatsby, not my classes. The Great Gatsby is a short novel, so I figure it’s a good way to start off my summer reading.
#2- To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Another book I didn’t read in High School, for the same reason as Gatsby. Amidst news of a sequel coming soon, I figure I might as well read this acclaimed classic too!
#3- Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K Rowling
I can feel all of your eyes glaring down on me for this one. No, I have never read a single Harry Potter book. I know, I know! What was my childhood? Did I even have one? Was I abducted by aliens? Aliens who also didn’t read Harry Potter? It’s alright, guys, because I will finally read it, I promise, and it’s better late than never, right? Don’t get all Incredible Hulk on me.
To be fair, I did see the movies…
…and I loved them?
Not helping, OK, I’ll move on to the next book.
#4- The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien
I’m a big “I can’t watch the movie unless I’ve read the book” person. *Says the girl who watched Harry Potter and didn’t read it!* I’ve made a few exceptions, including Life of Pi and yes, Harry Potter, but otherwise I try my best to stick to this rule. I’ve never watched any of the Hobbit or Lord of the Rings movies, (I saw the beginning of one but that was a long time ago) and now I can finally start, once I read this book of course.
#5- Howl’s Moving Castle by Dianna Wynne Jones
One of my best friends to this day cannot get over the fact that I have not read or watched Howl’s Moving Castle. It is one of her all time favorite books and movies, aside from Harry Potter and Star Wars of course. To be honest, I hadn’t even heard of it before I met her. It has such a good rating, I can’t not give it a whirl.
#6- The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
The last book on my list that’s something I should’ve read a LONG time ago, especially for someone who adores YA sci-fi and fantasy novels. I even tried playing the H.G.G game, which I believe is hosted online by BBC, but it was perplexing after a while. Anyway, I’ve already started this book and I love it.
#7- Wolf in White Van by John Darnielle
I’m super excited about this one. As you all know, I am a huge Ready Player One fan. I think I’m actually going to re-read it this summer, actually. In my literature class, we had a Hamlet To Be or Not to Be project, and I re-wrote the soliloquy from the perspective of Wade Watts. Anyway, the synopsis of Wolf in White Van sounds like something gaming fans and nerds alike will enjoy, and I’m hella (yes I said hella) excited to try it out.
#8- The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski
The thing that most drew me to this book when I first heard news of its publication was the fact that it is a YA fantasy without magic in the world. I have nothing against the use of magic in YA novels, but this really sets it apart from others on the market. Assuming it’s as good as I’ve heard, this one might be a real winner.
#9- Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas
This book is the sequel to Throne of Glass. I wasn’t as floored by Throne of Glass as I would’ve liked to have been, but I have high hopes for its sequel. (Although I did name by Skyrim character after Celaena- I love that name!) In fact, C.O.M. has a 4.2/5 star review based on over 60,000 ratings, which is pretty remarkable.
#10- Seraphina by Rachel Hartman
One of the things I do in my job is recommend books to patrons that come in. A lot of the times, though, the books that first come to mind are checked out, so I’m forced to look through the shelves for anything I know anything about. I know what’s popular, what goes out a lot, what people seem to like, and of course things I’ve read in the past. I recommended Seraphina to someone recently, because it’s something that I know I’ve wanted to read but haven’t, and I gave it to the patron despite knowing only this about it. I knew it involved dragons, which is automatically a selling point for me. She came back and LOVED it, and was enthralled when I told her there was a sequel. Now I can finally read this one for myself, knowing it is apparently pretty fantastic. You know I’ll be reading the sequel too if I love it.
#11- I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson
It’s summer, which is when I tend to begin reading more lighthearted books and taking them to read by the water. A couple months ago I read Jandy Nelson’s other book, The Sky is Everywhere. I really enjoyed it, possibly because I felt I related to the main character in some ways, and was thrilled to hear the author had come out with another book. Plus, the cover is beautiful, so why not?
#12- All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
Goodreads really wants me to read this book based on the fact that I’ve read some John Green books and Eleanor and Park. I’ve read both good and iffy things about this one, but again, it’s summer, why not try it?
#13- Ms. Marvel comics
The new Ms. Marvel comics are really the only comics I follow. I read the collected editions, which means having to wait, but since I’ve now finished Volume 2, I think I may just have to venture to a comic store and get some individual issues.
Speaking of which, what comics do you guys recommend? I’ve been to a few comic book stores recently and get way too excited about the Marvel, DC Comics and Image Comics sections, but I don’t know where to start. I have favorite superheroes *cough* Captain America, Black Widow, Spiderman… *cough* and I’ve read some of the classic Frank Miller Batman comics, for example, but I haven’t really delved into this realm further. I’ve watched the movies, if that counts. But with Spidey alone there’s several different lines, like Amazing Spiderman or Ultimate, and yikes it’s overwhelming. What’s good? What’s not? Help!
#14- Bone Volume 2 by Jeff Smith
I’ve been shelving these graphic novels for years and somehow I never thought to actually read them in my childhood. The other day, though, someone returned the first Volume, and remembering a friend’s recommendation, I sat down and read it. It’s super adorable and fun, and I’m quite disappointed I didn’t read them as a kid. I’m not going to BookCon this year, but if I were I would totally get Jeff Smith to autograph a copy!
#15- Seconds by Bryan Lee O’Malley
Seconds is a graphic novel by the same guy who wrote the Scott Pilgrim graphic novels. Those are awesome, so I just have to try this one out.
That’s it for this year’s list! Of course, I never want to limit myself to just this list, so I will most likely venture off of it slightly, but lists like this set a nice track to begin my selections off of.
What books are on YOUR summer reading lists? Let me know in the comments down below!