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Summer 2021 is fast approaching, and it’s time to put your laptop aside so you can read out in the sunshine. Here is a short list to satisfy any literary craving – from old favorites to new releases. All feature a strong female lead (or several) and have hints of romance and adventure – perfect for HerCampus readers. 

On the Come Up, Angie Thomas

From the same author as The Hate U Give comes another story set in Garden Heights, IL. Follow Bri, a young aspiring rapper looking to make her claim to fame. Her dream is to be a hip-hop artist like her father, who died before he could achieve stardom. After her big break, Bri has to face controversy after controversy, all while her family’s impending eviction weighs on her mind. Full of heart and vivid characters, this book is a page-turner. 

The Music of Bees, Eileen Garvin

This is a promising new release set to hit shelves at the end of April. The book tells the story of three lonely people who bond over bees on a rural Oregon farm. Together, they work through their grief and idiosyncrasies to become close friends. It speaks to compassion, friendship, and starting over after loss. According to GoodReads, if you enjoyed Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine, you’ll enjoy this debut novel from Eileen Garvin.

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, Ann Brashares

A staple from the early 2000’s, this series about four best friends and a pair of magical pants is about friendship, love, loss, and growing into yourself. The four friends are Carmen, Bridget, Tibby, and Lena, and the pants were found at a thrift shop. They agree to pass the pants between them over the summer to help them through all the hardships of life – a tradition that continues for years through all their ups and downs as friends. The movie adaptation is good, but doesn’t do the rich characters all the justice they deserve from the books.

My Plain Jane (The Lady Janies), Cynthia Hand

The Lady Janies series tells the stories of infamous women named Jane: Lady Jane Grey, Jane Eyre, and Calamity Jane. Each story is chock full of wit and humor, and the characters are lovable. Three authors collaborated on the stories, and each gives their personal touch to it. If you enjoyed the humor in SIX: The Musical, the comedic moments in West World, or didn’t enjoy Jane Eyre because it was too depressing – consider giving these a try.

 Twice In A Blue Moon, Christina Lauren

The final summer reading recommendation is for the romantics. Twice in a Blue Moon tells the story of the daughter of a famous actor who has been hidden away from the spotlight her whole life until her senior trip to London, where she falls in love with a boy who sells her out. Fast forward and she’s made it big acting in Hollywood, and she’s been cast in a film with her estranged father. If that wasn’t bad enough, she finds out that the boy who leaked her identity is working on the movie too, and that she’s still drawn to him. Filled with spicy romance and quirky characters, this book is the perfect way to kick off your summer reading.

Whether you’re looking for a short summer fling or a series to last you the rest of the season, we’ve got you covered when it comes to books this summer. GoodReads and many book bloggers also have lists available if nothing here takes your fancy. Happy reading!

Hi! My name is C, I'm originally from Oregon and came to MSU to pursue my passions: fencing, gymnastics, theater, and writing. In addition to writing for HerCampus, I'm an avid fanfiction author/reader and also write plays and novels. When not on the fencing strip with the MSU Fencing team, I'm nose-deep in a good book or painting some wild art. Follow me on instagram @c.rosewidmann to see pictures of my furbabies.
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