It is officially summer in Nashville, and while I can’t really get to a beach from here, I’ve definitely been soaking up the rays in parks all across town. I’m still social-distancing, but hanging out with friends six-feet apart in a park has been the perfect way to catch up. I’ve also been loving bringing my books along and getting a few pages in while also getting a little vitamin D. Here’s a list of my favorite beach reads. Let’s get started!
1// The Unhoneymooners by Lauren Christina
I couldn’t have picked a better beach read than this hilarious rom-com by writing duo, Lauren Christina. The Unhoneymooners follows Olive and Ethan, sworn enemies, on a honeymoon meant for their siblings. Olive’s twin, Ami, and Ethan’s brother, Dane, have a seafood buffet at their wedding that leaves everyone sick except Olive and Ethan. Olive and Ethan reluctantly take the trip to Maui that Ami won, and subsequently have to lie their butts off to Olive’s new boss and Ethan’s ex-girlfriend when they run into them both in Hawaii. The two obviously fall in love, but the best part of the book happens after they get back from Hawaii, and they have to figure out what life is like when they don’t hate each other.
2// Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins
Lola is dating bad-boy Max who is 5 years older than her (very inappropriate since she is only 17) when her first love Cricket moves back to town. Cricket and Lola strike up an unlikely friendship, but obviously it’s more than that. Lola also has a complicated relationship with her birth mother who comes back into the picture when she least expects her. It’s a super light read, and is perfect for the beach.
3// All We Ever Wanted by Emily Giffin
All We Ever Wanted is special to me because it’s set in my home-base, Nashville. This book combines the complicated aspects of being a parent in the 21st century expertly with the hassle it is to be a kid at the exact same time. Small-town Nina has married into the Nashville elite. Single dad Tom has worked his whole life to make sure his daughter, Lyla, gets every opportunity possible. When an unfortunate photo of Lyla is snapped at a party, Lyla, Tom, and Nina’s lives intersect in the most unexpected ways.
4// Little White Lies by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Little White Lies features 18-year-old Sawyer who was raised by a single mother 40 minutes away from her posh grandparents, aunt, uncle, and cousin. Sawyer is perfectly content being her mother’s keeper until her grandmother shows up one day offering her $500,000 to participate in the upcoming debutante season. Sawyer was just hoping to get some money to pay for college in the next year, but she got way more than she bargained for. She’s thrust into the secrets and lies of the wealthy, southern, elite, and she even makes some friends along the way.
5// Verity by Colleen Hoover
Verity is about an author of a best-selling series who has lost two daughters to tragic accidents. She herself is comatose after a car accident, and therefore, her husband, Jeremy, has gone about hiring a ghost-writer to finish her book series. The lucky ghost-writer just so happens to be Lowen, the woman Jeremy gave his shirt off his back to after they both witnessed a man get run over by a truck in New York minutes before their meeting. Jeremy and Lowen immediately have chemistry, and that is only heightened when Lowen has to spend a few days at his house looking through Verity’s notes to continue her books. But strange things are happening in the house. Lowen swears Verity keeps staring at her, and can’t seem to figure out why the TV keeps turning itself off when she knows the nurse looking after Verity said she left it on. This book promises to leave you creeped out and unsure who to trust, which is why it’s best read in the light of day.
6// Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan
Crazy Rich Asians is about a Singaporean family that is, well, rich. Some of the members are snotty brats, but some are just like normal people. The book follows a handful of characters, but the main story is about Rachel and Nick. They are attending Nick’s best friend’s wedding, and Rachel has no idea what she is about to step into. Nick, who works as a professor in the state’s, hasn’t told her anything about his rich family, and she is in for quite the treat. From catty bridesmaids to an evil mother-in-law, Kwan’s story has it all.
7// Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis
Girl, Wash Your Face is your typical self-help book, which is why it’s perfect for the beach. Each chapter focuses on a specific lie Hollis has been telling herself for years. She tells an anecdote about the lie and then, wraps up the chapter with how she managed to break her loop. There’s nothing ground-breaking in the book, but if you need a little reminder to keep kicking butt, it’s a great book to through in your bag.
8// The Idea of You by Robinne Lee
The Idea of You is about a mom who takes her teenage daughter to an August Moon concert (think One Direction) and ends up having a worldwide romance with the lead singer, who’s about 20-years-old. They travel the world together, they fall in love, they support each other in all of their endeavors, but this was just supposed to be lunch, right? What are they supposed to do when the fame and the pushback from fans become just too much for them to handle? It’s a whirlwind love story that will leave you wanting more.