Written By: Tim Ehrenberg | Photography By: Tim Ehrenberg & Brian Sager

Nantucket’s beloved bookworm Tim Ehrenberg gives his summer reading list for July.

Your Nantucket summer is going to look a little different from years past and I encourage you to make the best of it and pick up a Nantucket book to experience the island. If you need a good beach novel, you will never go wrong with our “Queens of Summer,” Elin Hilderbrand’s newest 28 Summers and Nancy Thayer’s latest Girls of Summer. If you like mysteries, try Francine Mathews’ Detective Merry Folger series. Get outside with Walking Nantucket by Peter Brace and also the new kids’ book Let’s Take a Hike, Nantucket by Leslie Bains. Fishing Nantucket by Captain Matt Reinemo will get you out on the water for a fun family activity. Talk about a six pack this summer!


FRIENDS AND STRANGERS by J. Courtney Sullivan
I will be recommending J. Courtney Sullivan’s newest to my friends and even perfect strangers this summer. It’s that good! There are several of my best friends that are new mothers right now and I can’t wait to get this book in their hands. The perfect “grass is always greener” story; this book is smart, relevant, and touches on so many relationships from motherhood to marriage and from friendship to mere acquaintances.


THE PRETTIEST STAR by Carter Sickels
I usually like to keep my summer reading recommendations on the lighter side, but this book is just too stunning not to mention. It was my favorite book of June and the perfect celebration for Pride month. Set in 1986, a year after Rock Hudson’s death brought the news of AIDS into living rooms across America, the author writes a story on the epidemic I have not come across before. It’s about a man with AIDS who returns to the homophobic rural family and community who rejected him. I read this in one sitting and feel it is an important look at people in the midst of a pandemic and how they treat and interact with each other.


THE LIES THAT BIND by Emily Giffin
Where were you on 9/11? Everyone has a story. The Lies That Bind has all of the elements you love about an Emily Giffin novel, but this one might be my favorite yet. That fateful day is a character itself in this perfect summer beach read. It is hard to believe we are coming up on twenty years since that infamous Tuesday morning in September. Emily takes us back to that time along with her flawed, but lovable characters living in New York City. You feel for them as they dig themselves out of the ashes and search for love and truth – in their careers, relationships, and their own hearts.


A BURNING by Megha Majumdar
For readers of Tommy Orange, Yaa Gyasi, and Jhumpa Lahiri, this electrifying debut novel is about three unforgettable characters who seek to rise—to the middle class, to political power, to fame in the movies—and find their lives entangled in the wake of a catastrophe in contemporary India. This reads like a thriller with its expert pacing, involving characters you grow to understand and feel for. The book has complex themes about class, corruption, nationalism, terrorism, and social media. It’s for those of us that like their beach reads a little grittier.


UTOPIA AVENUE by David Mitchell (on shelves July 14th)
Travel back to the 60s music scene with Utopia Avenue, David Mitchell’s first new novel in five years. This is one of those groovy, epic sagas that you just become consumed by and nothing else matters. Perfectly written, it’s the “unexpurgated story of the strangest British band you’ve never heard of; of riots in the streets and revolutions in the head; of drugs, thugs, madness, love, sex, death, art, families we choose and the ones we don’t; of fame and stardom.” So dust off your records, put on your go-go boots, and get down with your mod self and go-go get this book on July 14th!

Support your Island Indies. All books are available at Mitchell’s Book Corner & Nantucket Bookworks!

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