My Summer TBR list: A 20 Books of Summer update

Today’s Top Ten Tuesday topic is books on our summer TBR list. I’ve already written about my summer TBR in this post about the 20 Books of Summer reading challenge. My summer TBR list, with what I’ve read so far, is below. 

Normally at this point in the summer I’d be much farther along, but June turned out to be a challenging reading month.  I spent many hours in the car driving to Maryland to visit my dad, so most of my reading was limited to audiobooks, and in times of stress I tend to put aside TBR lists in favor of comfort reads. So as of today I’ve read three, almost four, of my summer reads.

  1. The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina by Zoraida Cordova (read)
  2. The Space Between Worlds by Micaiah Johnson (read)
  3. The Scent of Burnt Flowers by Blitz Bazawule (reading)
  4. Haven by Emma Donoghue (ARC)
  5. The Fortunes of Jaded Women by Carolyn Huynh (ARC)
  6. The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller
  7. The Secret Lives of Color by Kassia St. Clair
  8. The Dreamer by Pam Munoz Ryan
  9. The River by Peter Heller
  10. The Best We Could Do by Thi Bui (read)
  11. Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh
  12. Cannery Row by John Steinbeck
  13. Passing by Nella Larsen
  14. O Jerusalem by Laurie R. King
  15. Fevered Star by Rebecca Roanhorse
  16. Diary of a Young Naturalist by Dara McAnulty (reading)
  17. How to Give Up Plastic by Will McCallum
  18. Don’t Overthink It by Anne Bogel
  19. The Pilot’s Daughter by Meredith Jaeger
  20. Far Sector by N.K. Jemisin

Since I haven’t been writing a lot of reviews lately, here’s a recap of what I’ve read so far from the list. 

The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina by Zoraida Cordova: I loved this novel about a family who comes together when someone from their grandmother’s past begins stalking and killing family members, and the only way to stop it is to discover who their grandmother really was. The writing is lush and fantastic, and it’s a perfect summer audiobook, read by Frankie Corzo.

The Space Between Worlds by Micaiah Johnson: I’d seen this book recommended quite a few times, and it’s worth the read, though at first I had a hard time wrapping my mind around the main character, Cara, traveling to many different universes and meeting the same people in each universe, over and over again. An original and compelling read with strong character development and insights about what makes all of us who we are.

The Best We Could Do by Thi Bui: this is the author’s debut graphic memoir; it’s the story of her parents’ lives in Vietnam and how their family left and came to the U.S. When the author has her own child, she begins thinking about her past and what her parents endured. I’m not a huge reader of graphic novels or memoirs but the illustrations are beautiful and the story conveys a lot of information about Vietnam, the war, and what it means to be a refugee.

Here’s what I’m currently reading:

The Scent of Burnt Flowers by Blitz Bazawule: published today (I received an ARC from NetGalley) this novel tells the story of a young black couple in the 60s who flee the U.S. after a racial incident and take refuge in Ghana, where the President is a friend of theirs. So far it’s an interesting mix of history, political intrigue, and a bit of magical realism.

Diary of a Young Naturalist by Dara McAnulty: written by an autistic 16-year old in Ireland, this is a book about the beauty of nature and how important it is to care for it.

I’m not sure what’s next from my list, because I haven’t thought that far ahead yet. What do you think I should read? And what’s on your summer reading list?

  15 comments for “My Summer TBR list: A 20 Books of Summer update

  1. June 28, 2022 at 7:25 am

    The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina was one of my favourite books of last year!

    Cannery Row is my favourite Steinbeck. Curious to see what you think!

    • June 28, 2022 at 6:17 pm

      I actually got the idea for Cannery Row from you! I want to read more Steinbeck so this sounded like a good one, he’s such a powerful writer. I’ll let you know, thanks for the recommendation.

  2. lydiaschoch
    June 28, 2022 at 9:23 am
  3. June 28, 2022 at 9:56 am

    Good choices. I’ve been reading Diary of a Young Naturalist as the mood strikes. I’m also reading Haven from NetGalley and it is good so far–1/3 done. Passing is very good.

    • June 28, 2022 at 6:14 pm

      I love Emma Donohue so I’m excited for that one! Naturalist is nice so far, I’m listening to it on audio. I can see what you mean about “as the mood strikes”, it’s a relaxing listen, without a linear story so I don’t have to pay too much attention (so far).

      • June 28, 2022 at 8:34 pm

        Honestly I almost DNF Diary of a Young Naturalist–his voice lulled me to sleep and I listen and drive. I had a hard time with the print. SO, I decided to keep at it as the mood strikes.

  4. Poinsettia
    June 28, 2022 at 1:44 pm

    I hope you enjoy the rest of the books on your list when you get the chance! Here is our Top Ten Tuesday. Thank you!

    • June 28, 2022 at 6:11 pm

      Thanks, I’ll check out your list. Enjoy your summer reads!

  5. June 28, 2022 at 5:26 pm

    I’m curious about How to Give Up Plastic – every time we come to put our rubbish out for collection I complain about how much plastic there is and that’s despite our best efforts. If only the supermarkets would take this more seriously we wouldn’t be in such a mess

    • June 28, 2022 at 6:11 pm

      I’ve come up with a few strategies so far but hoping the book will help me learn a few others! I’ve cut way back on bath products, there’s a company that sells everything in the form of a bar or concentrate that I like, and I also use reusable silicone bags for leftovers. But there’s still so much more I’d like to do.

      • June 29, 2022 at 3:44 am

        if you do find some good tips please pass them on!

  6. June 29, 2022 at 10:54 am

    Lots of great books on your list. My husband has read O Jerusalem. The Song of Achilles is in my TBR pile. The Fortunes of Jaded Women and The Pilot’s Daughter caught my eye this week. Hope you enjoy your summer reading time. Thanks for sharing and for visiting my blog.

  7. June 29, 2022 at 12:38 pm

    You’re doing well and there’s no shame in having some comfort reading along the way! I’m on Book 7 but I have a very heavy NetGalley commitment for July …

  8. June 30, 2022 at 2:40 pm

    I enjoyed The Space Between Worlds a lot!

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