Top 10 must-reads before summer ends

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Whether at home or on holiday, these books will transport you to exactly where you want to go.

A Small Hotel by Robert Olen Butler

Perfect for a couple’s romantic weekend away, this deeply moving novel chronicles the relationship between Kelly and Michael Hays, beginning with the official last day of their 20-year marriage. Butler, using the perspectives of both Kelly and Michael, tells the tale of all the unexpected turns on the road that is marriage all the while unearthing the never-ending feelings between man and wife and the consequences of words left unsaid.

The Red House by Mark Haddon

The Red House will provide the perfect escape from that family holiday you’re looking forward to (ish). You’ll definitely appreciate your own family a lot more after this one. A wealthy doctor invites his estranged sister and her family to join his family at their holiday home in the English countryside – and, of course, chaos ensues. This remarkable novel, told through the eyes of each of the eight family members, will provide you with more than your fair share of secrets, resentments and inappropriate desires as these disconnected relatives struggle to understand each other.

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

For the fun-filled girls’ weekend away, you’ll want to let your hair down and you’ll want to make sure you have a copy of Gone Girl in your purse. On the day of Nick and Amy’s fifth wedding anniversary, Amy goes missing and all the signs point to Nick. As he maintains his innocence and fights to prove it, this dark and fast-paced thriller will have you on the edge of you seat, racing to the end in search of the truth. The love story wrapped in mystery will make you contemplate how good relationships go bad – and it’ll leave you wanting to go back and start the journey all over again.

The House of Velvet and Glass by Katherine Howe

This one is for the independent traveller, the adventurer who relishes in alone time and self-reflection. Sibyl tries to put together all the pieces of her life after her mother and sister die on the Titanic, leaving her with an emotionally guarded father and a drunken, university-dropout brother. Set in Boston in 1915, The House of Velvet and Glass takes you on a journey through opium dens and high society salons, weaving in period detail, romance and a shocking twist that will take your breath away.

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

In Green’s fourth solo novel, he explores the relationship between a cancer patient forced by her parents to join a support group and an amputee she meets there. You’ll laugh, cry – and cry some more – as you make your way through this touching and honest story of two teenagers who find the beauty in life and love even as they’re dying. It’s perfect for a romantic traveller seeking out the extraordinary in everyday life.

Into the Darkest Corner by Elizabeth Haynes

Haynes’ first novel is just right for the woman travelling alone. This suspenseful psychological thriller gives you an up-close-and-personal look at the life of Catherine, an obsessive-compulsive woman running away from a troubled past and an overbearing boyfriend. Just when she begins to think she’s out of harm’s way, one phone call changes everything.

The Yard by Alex Grecian

If what you’re yearning for is a trip to the ever-mysterious past, consider this novel your time machine. With exquisite period detail and real historical figures, this tale of a detective’s search for a serial killer just after the days of Jack the Ripper will put you right in the middle of Victorian London searching for a cop killer on a mission.

Seating Arrangements by Maggie Shipstead

Maggie Shipstead’s debut novel is the perfect beach read so grab your shades and your sunscreen because you might be out there for a while. You definitely won’t want to put this one down. She explores the absurdities of high-class living through Winn Van Meter, a man who seems to have it all but still isn’t happy, a man whose trivial anxieties take over his life as he prepares for the wedding of his oldest daughter, Daphne, and stakes off his secret love for one of her beautiful and wildly flirtatious bridesmaids.

True Believers by Kurt Andersen

True Believers will tug at the heartstrings of patriotic travellers. Kurt Andersen tells the story of a famous US lawyer with a secret – a secret so big that she removes herself from consideration for the highest court in America – in this powerful and moving coming-of-age political thriller.

Heading Out to Wonderful by Robert Goolrick

Get the small-town experience without actually heading to the small town with Robert Goolrick’s latest novel. This one’s perfect for the weekend traveller. New to town in Brownsburg, Virginia, Charlie finds work at a local butcher shop where he quickly acquaints himself with all the townspeople and falls head over heels in love with the young wife of the richest man in town. A tale of obsession and love gone wrong, Heading Out to Wonderful will not disappoint.

(Images: feature, aafromaa; book covers, goodreads.com)

Top 10 must-reads before summer ends was last modified: June 26th, 2019 by Oonagh Shiel
Author: Oonagh Shiel (3252 posts)

Content Manager at Cheapflights whose travel life can be best summed up as BC (before children) and PC (post children). We only travel during the school holidays so short-haul trips and staycations are our specialities!