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5 Books For Your Summer Reading List

Sydney Castillo | August 2, 2020 | Culture

Bookhampton owner Carolyn Brody shares her five must-reads.



1. SEX AND VANITY BY KEVIN KWAN ($27, Doubleday)

The iconic author of Crazy Rich Asiansbrings us a truly modern love story
of Lucie Churchill, a young Chinese American woman torn between two men. Veering between the privileged summer playgrounds of Capri and East Hampton, this is a breezy update of E.M. Forster’s A Room with a Viewand a memorable comedy of manners set between two cultures.


2. THE SPLENDID AND THE VILE BY ERIK LARSON ($22, Crown Publishing Group)

Erik Larson’s genius is his ability to take a slice of history and frame it so it reads like riveting fiction. Reading about Winston Churchill as England stands alone and is subjected to a relentless bombing campaign by the German Luftwaffe reminds us what great leadership looks like and how sorely it is needed. It’s a captivating historical saga.


3. ALL ADULTS HERE BY EMMA STRAUB($27, Penguin Publishing Group)

A thinking person’s beach read and Emma Straub at her best, this is a messy, layered love story about a multigenerational family, affirming why and how we should stay together and keep trying. It’s optimistic, funny, charming and warmhearted—perfect for this moment in time!



Colson Whitehead’s Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece is now out in paperback. Based on the disturbing true story of a Florida reform school, Whitehead takes us inside the stories of the boys sent to live there in a fictionalized tale. Short, intense and provocative, this book is painfully topical in its portrayal of racism and social injustice.



This is historical fiction of the first order by a U.K. author remarkably undiscovered by American readers—until now—a short, moving novel about the death of Shakespeare’s 11-year-old son, Hamnet—a name interchangeable with Hamlet in 15th century Britain—and the years leading to the production ofhis great play. A luminous portrait of a marriage, a family ravaged by grief and the tender reimagining of a boy whose life has been forgotten but whose name was given to one of the most celebrated plays of all time. It’s mesmerizing and impossible to put down.

Tags: books

Photography by: Portrait by Rick Wenner; book covers courtesy of publishers