14 Books to Read this Summer
Summer is the favorite time of the year for many people. It’s a season that tends to coincide with vacations and there is a cheerful atmosphere. Plus, it’s the perfect time to get into a good story. In this article, we’re going to recommend 15 books you can read this summer.
Reading has multiple benefits for personal well-being. Research from the University of Liverpool found that this habit contributes to increasing personal confidence, improving the ability to concentrate, promoting emotional well-being and increasing self-awareness, among others.
In this regard, reading can also be beneficial in helping to treat depression and promote well-being. Therefore, it’s never too late to implement this valuable habit in your life. Bearing in mind the many benefits, here are some books for different tastes that you can read this summer.
1. Memories of My Father by Héctor Abad Faciolince
Since the movie “Memories of My Father ” – directed by the Spanish filmmaker Femando Trueba – was released, it’s been a success in movie theaters. In 2020, it won the distinction of best Ibero-American film at the Goya Awards. This film is inspired by the novel of the same name by Colombian writer Héctor Abad Faciolince.
It’s a moving and heartbreaking story that tells the true story of a man who fought for rights in Colombia, narrated from the loving perspective of his son. The book is a testimony to the violence and inequality in this country.
2. Tomás Nevinson by Javier Marías
The latest novel by Javier Marías, a Spanish writer and member of the Royal Spanish Academy, explores the story of Tomás Nevinson, a character from his previous book, Berta Isla. In this story, agent Nevinson returns to the secret services after spending some time on the fringes.
“Kkilling isn’t so extreme or so difficult and unfair if you know who to kill,” says the narrator in Tomás Nevinson. It’s a book that explores moral dilemmas and terrorism with the sharpness and immersive narrative that characterize Javier Marías.
3. Know My Name by Chanel Miller
This book tells the intimate and heartbreaking story of Chanel Miller, a young woman who was raped in 2016 by a 19-year-old boy named Brock Turner on the campus of Stanford University. After the violent event, the author lived in anonymity for four years. The book allows the reader to broaden his or her view of sexual violence. It’s a reflection and testimony of the ability to overcome pain and the fragility of justice.
4. The Man Who Loved Dogs by Leonardo Padura
The Man Who Loved Dogs is a historical novel that mixes fact and fiction to narrate the assassination of Liev Davidovich Bronstein, better known as Leon Trotski, at the hands of Ramon Mercader, a Spanish communist. It’s a perfect book to read this summer because it grabs the reader from the first moment and maintains tension and intrigue until the end, thus generating a constant desire to know more of this wonderful story. Mexico, Cuba, Russia, France, Spain, and Turkey are the settings in which the story takes place.
5. The Seamstress by María Dueñas
María Dueñas has become one of the most recognized authors in Spanish literature in recent years. In The Seamstress, her new novel, she offers the continuation of the story of the protagonist of A Time in Between. Spain, Israel, England and Morocco are the scenarios through which Sira Bonnard will travel to face a destiny that’s prepared several unfortunate moves for her. However, in this novel, you’ll find a more mature Sira with more character. It’s a book that will keep you awake at night thinking about the outcome!
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6. Mestizo America by William Ospina
“Called Hispanic by the Spanish, Iberian by the Portuguese, Latin by the French, equinoctial, isthmic, insular and southern by Baron Humboldt and by the Creoles, our America has been trying to define itself for centuries.” These are the words with which the author introduces a series of essays on the complexity of Latin America.
Mestizo America speaks of the encounter and cultural clash between two worlds that gave rise to a continent full of contrasts, charm, and grandeur. This Colombian author narrates the history of miscegenation and the emergence of nations with extraordinary beauty and skill,
7. A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare
This literary classic is a comedy that explores love through a story full of magic, mythical characters, fantasy, and dreams. It takes place in Athens and consists of five acts. It’s entertaining and poetic, ideal for reading this summer and sighing with the adventures of couples who want to love each other without interference.
8. The Invention of Books in the Ancient World by Irene Vallejo
This is a work about the origins of the book, which begins when thousands of years ago the Egyptians discovered the wonder of a reed which they called papyrus. The Invention of Books in the Ancient World is a work that allows us to marvel at an artifact that has made it possible to store the history and depth of the human soul.
With the literary skill that characterizes this Spanish author, we travel through the battlefields of Alexander the Great, the rooms of Cleopatra, the library of Sarajevo, the bonfires in which manuscripts were burned, and the printing presses and bookstores that have allowed man to dream of letters. It also tells the story of those who have defended it.
9. The Enigma of Room 622 by Joël Dicker
This is the latest thriller by Swiss writer Joël Dicker, known as the little prince of noir literature. It’s an absorbing story that traps with its mystery from the first page. Through its pages, the author tries to decipher the mystery of the death of a person in the Palace of Verbier, a luxury hotel located in the Swiss Alps.
10. The Wild Iris by Louise Glück
A good book of poems is a perfect companion to read this summer. On this occasion, we’d like to recommend a collection of poems written by the American Louise Glück, who won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2020 and the Pulitzer Prize for poetry in 1993.
11. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
There are universal classics that every book lover should read in their lifetime. Crime and Punishment is one of them. This year marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of Fyodor Dostoevsky, one of the greatest Russian writers who has influenced several generations with his reflections on psychology. Thus, the anniversary of the birth of this important writer becomes the perfect excuse to read his masterpiece. It’s a psychological novel that narrates the life of Rodion Raskolnikov, a student who lives in St. Petersburg and faces his own conscience.
12. The Twisted Mirror by Silvina Ocampo
A book of short stories is an excellent choice for summer reading. Silvina Ocampo is one of Argentina’s most outstanding short story writers
The Twisted Mirror gathers 29 short stories written in the 1960s that mix fantasy and realism to offer stories that break the mold and are captivating.
13. The Art of Cheating Karma by Elizabeth Benavent
This is a book to laugh, cry, sigh and let your imagination run wild! In 2021, bestselling romance writer Elizabeth Benavent returns with this novel that tells the story of an actress and an artist who face crises that lead her to overcome obstacles and find rewards. It’s an easy and entertaining book to read, full of detailed descriptions and touches of humor. It’s quite long, but definitely not boring. It offers a view on many different forms of love: filial, romantic, passionate, and professional.
14. The Colors of Farewell by Bernhard Schlink
From the author of The Reader, we get these nine stories that delve into the human soul: love, death, family re-foundation, and divorce are some of the many themes it explores. Among the stories, German scientists in the field of artificial intelligence in the times of the Stasi, the intelligence agency of the extinct German Democratic Republic. A man in love with a young girl he taught as a child and senses that it wouldn’t end well, and a love story that dialogues with that of the music teacher who is reunited with a woman he loved in the past. There’s also the story of a lesbian daughter who confronts her desire to be a mother and tells her father. And one about the man who feels his brother as a stranger but must come to terms with his death. Plus, to pair with summer, there’s the story of a son who recognizes his mother’s face on an island and discovers himself. The collection is full of wisdom and mastery in serene writing that captures and moves.
Tips for getting back into the reading habit this summer
As we’ve already mentioned, reading has multiple benefits. However, for some people, it can be a difficult habit to maintain. Therefore, summer is the perfect time to take up and enjoy reading.
Like this article? You may also like to read: Reading and Keeping a Diary: “Magical” Strategies for Healthy Cognitive Aging
Set goals and disconnect
On many occasions, electronic devices and social networks can become distractors that lead us to procrastinate. However, with a little willpower, it’s possible to set daily reading goals and put the cell phone aside.
Join a reading social network
There are several social networks that allow you to rate books, make reading friends, share reviews, and find recommendations on Good Reads.
Start with short, entertaining books
If you’re struggling to get into the habit of reading, you may want to start reading short stories this summer that you find very entertaining. Don’t try to tackle very complicated books at the beginning, as this may make you lose your motivation.
Talk to your friends and family about the books you’re reading
Surely there’s someone in your family, circle of friends, or co-workers who likes to read. Human beings love stories by nature. Therefore, talking to someone about the books you are reading is an excellent idea to keep you motivated. Also, you can join a book club where you discuss reading with a group of people.
Get ready for book fairs!
After learning about this summer’s reading recommendations, you may find yourself craving more of the literary world. With the end of summer, the 80th Madrid Book Fair will be held from September 10 to 26 at Retiro Park. This year, the guest country will be Colombia, which is full of wonderful stories and talented writers. Meanwhile, Barcelona will have the Liber book fair, from October 13 to 15.
Likewise, each city has a cultural agenda that includes literary themes. Check which ones are best for you to go to and enjoy these events that bring discounts and conferences with writers!It might interest you...