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Summertime Revival Reads: 4 Books That Made Reading Fun Again

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UCLA chapter.

I don’t know about you, but after the last school year I definitely fell off my reading streak. Reading used to be an enjoyable activity to end my day with, but with all of the reading I’ve done for classes, it became more of a chore. Over the summer I took it upon myself to make reading fun again. Here are the four books that helped me out of my reading slump:

Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid

This book captures the deepest secrets of the Riva siblings and specifically dives into the life of the eldest daughter, Nina. Reading books by Reid is always so much fun because her style and vivid descriptions make the story easy to imagine. Within the main storyline of the preparations for the annual Riva mansion party are touching flashbacks to their childhood trauma and upbringing with their absent parents. And the fact that it takes place in Malibu made it more personally engaging, since I knew the places being described and was able to fantasize being in Nina Riva’s shoes. If you’re looking for a drama-filled plot with inspirational takeaways, this is definitely the book for you!

The Midnight Library by Matt Haig

Starting this book strong with the common question of “If you were able to re-do everything you regret in your life, would you?” certainly grabbed my attention. The plot goes through the unfulfilled life of a 30 year old woman named Nora, who has the opportunity to live every life she could’ve had before she dies. Even though it seems a little morbid, this story has such important morals. It was a great reminder that the only way to learn is to live, which I definitely tend to forget when something goes wrong. The Midnight Library was a huge jump away from my usual reads, but stepping out of my reading comfort zone motivated me to not limit myself to one genre.

All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr 

Doerr has this rare creative ability to catch a readers’ attention and keep it for the entire 544 pages. The combination of historical fiction and romance was super interesting to me; I had previous knowledge on World War II and the fictional aspect added extra drama to the event. The story is an enemies-to-lovers trope as the main characters are a German orphan boy and blind French girl who loves to read. With their teamwork, the two navigate how to stay in her uncle’s home and away from Nazis. This is a book that I’ve read three times (and it gets better each time). The niche plot and fascinating characters make it extremely addictive once you pick it up! 

Carrie Soto Is Back by Taylor Jenkins Reid

I had to save the best for last because this was by far my favorite revival read of the summer! Once again, Reid’s creativity in her writing style quite literally pried me out of my reading slump. The whole idea of a strong female tennis player starting from the bottom and climbing her way up the athletic ladder inspired me to defy the odds and always be resilient. As a tennis player myself, the main character, Carrie, reminded me to never give up on my dreams, no matter what obstacles or negative opinions come my way. With a flare of romance, this story was perfect in almost every aspect. I highly recommend this book if you haven’t already read it because I can practically guarantee that you’ll fall in love with it.

All of these books revived my relationship with leisurely reading in different ways. The combination of so many genres and experiences, from romance to life lessons, essentially forced me back into a reading addiction. The ability to pick up a book and fall into the plot is amazing and I’m so glad that I’ve found that spark again. Hopefully these recommendations can help you rediscover the unmatched feeling of getting lost in a book again, too!

Hannah is a second-year Economics and Political Science major at UCLA, from Yuba City, California. She enjoys writing about a variety of topics from finance to up-and-coming trends! In her free time she loves baking, going to the beach, exploring the coffee shops of LA, and playing tennis.