My 20 Books of Summer

I’ve generally been avoiding reading lists lately, except for this one. I love everything about summer, including thinking about what I want to read. Cathy’s 20 Books of Summer challenge is simple — it’s just a list of 20 books we plan to read over the next three months. This is coming in a bit late but I was waiting on some summer book club announcements.

My list is a mix of book club books, ARCs, books I own, and books I want to read for challenges. It’s also a mix of fiction, nonfiction, classics, historical fiction, romance, and science fiction. I try to mix in books of different lengths and difficulty levels – it is summer, after all.

I’m cheating a little. You’ll see I’ve got two books I’m already reading but expect to finish in June. And I’ve listed 22 books, not 20, so two of these can be alternates.

Currently Reading:

  • The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van der Kolk
  • You’ll Never Believe What Happened to Lacey by Amber Ruffin and Lacey Lamar

Advanced Reading Copies:

  • A Psalm for the Wild-Built by Becky Chambers (publishes July 13, 2021)
  • She Who Became the Sun by Shelley Parker-Chan (publishes July 20, 2021)
  • Certain Dark Things by Silvia Moreno-Garcia (publishes September 7, 2021)

Book club:

  • Elatsoe by Darcie Little Badger
  • People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry
  • The Shadow King by Maaza Mengiste

Books for Challenges:

  • Seven Fallen Feathers by Tanya Talaga
  • Braving It by James Campbell
  • Devil in the Grove by Gilbert King

On the Library Hold List:

  • Caste by Isabel Wilkerson
  • Venetia by Georgette Heyer
  • Written in the Stars by Alexandria Bellefleur
  • The Crossing Places by Elly Griffiths
  • Marlena by Julie Buntin

Books I Own:

  • A Wizard’s Guide to Defensive Baking by T. Kingfisher
  • The Mayor of Casterbridge by Thomas Hardy
  • Howl’s Moving Castle by Dianna Wynne Jones
  • Thin Girls by Diana Clarke
  • Babylon’s Ashes by James S. A. Corey
  • The Memory of Love by Aminatta Forna

Those are my 20 books of summer! Thanks to Cathy for hosting this challenge every year. Have you read any of these? What’s on your summer reading list?

  18 comments for “My 20 Books of Summer

  1. May 28, 2021 at 12:54 am

    Good luck! Caste is a must-read, in my opinion, and reading The Mayor of Casterbridge in college is actually what led to my decision to go to grad school!

    • May 28, 2021 at 1:24 pm

      I’m very much looking forward to Caste. And I love everything I’ve read by Thomas Hardy, so I need to read this one. I’m glad to hear it inspired you!

  2. May 28, 2021 at 3:44 am

    Thanks so much for taking part again. Great list! Happy reading and good luck x

    • May 28, 2021 at 1:27 pm

      Thanks Cathy, I always enjoy this challenge, and I’m all about summer reading! Hopefully I’ll finish my list this year, but we’ll see. The point is to read good books and challenge myself a bit. Hope you have a great summer!

  3. May 28, 2021 at 7:55 am

    That looks like an excellent list and well done for including ARCs and challenge books, unlike me; I apparently think I can read All The Books during these three months! Have fun!

    • May 28, 2021 at 1:24 pm

      I never get through my whole summer reading list, so if I don’t make it practical and include some lighter reads, I won’t finish it. Good luck with your summer reading!

  4. May 28, 2021 at 9:07 am

    Good list–I love the title A Wizard’s Guide to Defensive Baking

    • May 31, 2021 at 11:39 am

      I love Kingfisher so I’m really looking forward to this one!

  5. May 29, 2021 at 11:46 am

    Elatsoe is definitely on my list!

  6. May 29, 2021 at 7:51 pm

    Summer reading is special.

    Loved Mayor of Casterbridge–such an interesting premise, and such conflicted characters. Hope you can fit it in.

    Caste is on my own TBR list having recently finished Warmth of Other Suns. Excellent writing and compelling narrative.

    Venetia is pure fun — if you’re into audio, Richard Armitage has done a reading that makes me weak in the knees.

    Have fun and a good summer.

    • May 31, 2021 at 11:39 am

      I completely agree about summer reading, it just has a different feel to it. I think you’ve recommended Richard Armitage before so I just picked up Venetia on audio from the library. I’m looking forward to it!

    • June 8, 2021 at 6:25 pm

      I just finished Venetia on audiobook, wow! I loved the characters and the narration, thank you so much for the recommendation. I haven’t read a lot of Georgette Heyer but this book just made me smile.

  7. May 31, 2021 at 8:31 pm

    Oh, I’ve been wanting to read Caste too! What does it say about me that the only books on your list I’m even familiar with are Howl’s Moving Castle and the Wizard’s Guide…?

    • June 3, 2021 at 7:48 am

      Jean, your comment about Howl’s Moving Castle and Wizard’s Guide made me laugh, since I always put a few titles on my summer list just for fun, but then I feel like other people’s lists are so much more ambitious than mine. I’m excited to read both of these.

  8. June 2, 2021 at 7:05 am

    A Psalm for the Wild-Built is on my list too, Becky Chambers is always a win for me so I a looking forward to the new series. I have an inkling that She Who Became the Sun is going to be in one of my book subscriptions this summer.

    • June 3, 2021 at 7:43 am

      I’m looking forward to both of those books, I hope you enjoy them!

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