My Summer 2019 Beach Reads

Every summer my mom and I take a trip to Navarre Beach to relax before school starts back up.  Every summer I bring five books with me to read and every summer I have to make a special Target run for more books.  It's hard to find the perfect beach read, to be completely honest.  I always want something lighthearted, like a good romance, or just something that can hold my attention while children are screaming and planes are flying overhead. Beach reads are different for everyone, it really depends on your tastes.  Goodreads separates beach reads into six categories: Books That Draw You In, Books with Short Chapters, Books That Make Your Heart Race, Books with Sunny Settings, Books That Make You Laugh, and Books That Transport You.  With that being said, here are my Summer 2019 Beach Reads!

 

Books That Draw You In

Waiting for Tom Hanks by Kerry Winfrey

"Annie Cassidy dreams of being the next Nora Ephron. She spends her days writing screenplays, rewatching Sleepless in Seattle, and waiting for her movie-perfect meet-cute. If she could just find her own Tom Hanks—a man who’s sweet, sensitive, and possibly owns a houseboat—her problems would disappear and her life would be perfect. But Tom Hanks is nowhere in sight. When a movie starts filming in her neighborhood and Annie gets a job on set, it seems like a sign. Then Annie meets the lead actor, Drew Danforth, a cocky prankster who couldn’t be less like Tom Hanks if he tried. Their meet-cute is more of a meet-fail, but soon Annie finds herself sharing some classic rom-com moments with Drew. Her Tom Hanks can’t be an actor who’s leaving town in a matter of days...can he?" From Barnes and Noble.

This book had me from the very first page!  I loved the Nora Ephron film references and all the Tom Hanks mentions. Annie and Drew are the perfect main characters in this love story, though it's worth giving Nick and Chloe (Annie's friends) honorable mention for being ADORABLE. This book was a beach WIN.  I can't wait for book two!!

Books with Short Chapters

Maybe This Time by Kasie West

"One year. Nine events. Nine chances to . . . fall in love? Weddings. Funerals. Barbecues. New Year's Eve parties. Name the occasion, and Sophie Evans will be there. Well, she has to be there. Sophie works for the local florist, so she can be found at every big event in her small hometown, arranging bouquets and managing family dramas. Enter Andrew Hart. The son of the fancy new chef in town, Andrew is suddenly required to attend all the same events as Sophie. Entitled, arrogant, preppy Andrew. Sophie just wants to get her job done and finish up her sketches so she can apply to design school. But every time she turns around, there is Andrew, getting in her way and making her life more complicated. Until one day she wonders if maybe complicated isn't so bad after all . . ." From Barnes and Noble.

Since I've turned 20 and now 21, I find it really hard to relate to YA romances or YA books in general. This book read so easy I forgot I was reading YA.  Sophie was a surprisingly likable MC and Andrew seemed mature for a YA guy.  This book was adorable and enjoyable and I highly recommend it!

Books That Make Your Heart Race

Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

"What happens when America's First Son falls in love with the Prince of Wales?

When his mother became President, Alex Claremont-Diaz was promptly cast as the American equivalent of a young royal. Handsome, charismatic, genius—his image is pure millennial-marketing gold for the White House. There's only one problem: Alex has a beef with the actual prince, Henry, across the pond. And when the tabloids get hold of a photo involving an Alex-Henry altercation, U.S./British relations take a turn for the worse.

Heads of family, state, and other handlers devise a plan for damage control: staging a truce between the two rivals. What at first begins as a fake, Instragramable friendship grows deeper, and more dangerous, than either Alex or Henry could have imagined. Soon Alex finds himself hurtling into a secret romance with a surprisingly unstuffy Henry that could derail the campaign and upend two nations and begs the question: Can love save the world after all? Where do we find the courage, and the power, to be the people we are meant to be? And how can we learn to let our true colors shine through? Casey McQuiston's Red, White & Royal Blue proves: true love isn't always diplomatic." From Barnes and Noble.

THIS. BOOK. DESTROYED. ME. I started reading this book in July of this year and put it down for a whole month before I could finish it.  The story is absolutely stunning.  McQuiston tells a beautifully real and tragic and altogether WONDERFUL story of love and hope. I can't recommend this book enough.

Books with Sunny Settings

The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren

"Olive Torres is used to being the unlucky twin: from inexplicable mishaps to a recent layoff, her life seems to be almost comically jinxed. By contrast, her sister Ami is an eternal champion . . . she even managed to finance her entire wedding by winning a slew of contests. Unfortunately for Olive, the only thing worse than constant bad luck is having to spend the wedding day with the best man (and her nemesis), Ethan Thomas. Olive braces herself for wedding hell, determined to put on a brave face, but when the entire wedding party gets food poisoning, the only people who aren’t affected are Olive and Ethan. Suddenly there’s a free honeymoon up for grabs, and Olive will be damned if Ethan gets to enjoy paradise solo. Agreeing to a temporary truce, the pair head for Maui. After all, ten days of bliss is worth having to assume the role of loving newlyweds, right? But the weird thing is . . . Olive doesn’t mind playing pretend. In fact, the more she pretends to be the luckiest woman alive, the more it feels like she might be." From Barnes and Noble.  

I've been a fan of Christina Lauren for a while and when I first saw the description for this book I KNEW I had to get my hands on it.  This was the PERFECT beach read to end all beach reads.  Olive and Ethan take my DREAM trip to Maui and I found myself constantly jealous of the honeymoon.  The story had such a great climax and conclusion that it makes it one of Christina Lauren's best books yet.  

Books That Make You Laugh

The Friend Zone by Abby Jimenez

"Kristen Peterson doesn't do drama, will fight to the death for her friends, and has no room in her life for guys who just don't get her. She's also keeping a big secret: facing a medically necessary procedure that will make it impossible for her to have children. Planning her best friend's wedding is bittersweet for Kristen — especially when she meets the best man, Josh Copeland. He's funny, sexy, never offended by her mile-wide streak of sarcasm, and always one chicken enchilada ahead of her hangry. Even her dog, Stuntman Mike, adores him. The only catch: Josh wants a big family someday. Kristen knows he'd be better off with someone else, but as their attraction grows, it's harder and harder to keep him at arm's length." From Barnes and Noble.

To be completely honest, this book was not one of my favorites.  I thought that Kristen was a terrible MC until I had a conversation with a friend.  Sometimes the best main characters are the most complicated and the most like you.  I turn to books for an escape from my regular life so I was shocked to see such a painfully real woman in painfully real situations. Looking back, I think my snap judgment was wrong.  I enjoyed this book so much more than I let on. 

Books That Transport You

Lovely War by Julie Berry

"A sweeping, multi-layered romance set in the perilous days of World Wars I and II, where gods hold the fates—and the hearts—of four mortals in their hands. They are Hazel, James, Aubrey, and Colette. A classical pianist from London, a British would-be architect turned soldier, a Harlem-born ragtime genius in the U.S. Army, and a Belgian orphan with a gorgeous voice and a devastating past. Their story, as told by the goddess Aphrodite, who must spin the tale or face judgment on Mount Olympus, is filled with hope and heartbreak, prejudice and passion, and reveals that, though War is a formidable force, it's no match for the transcendent power of Love." From Barnes and Noble.

Julie Berry knocked this story so far out of the park.  This is technically a YA book but I genuinely can't imagine teenagers completely enjoying this story. I was taken with this book immediately after starting it.  Hazel, James, Aubrey, and Colette are such beautifully written characters and their story is told by the best of the Gods. I could read this book over and over again.