Weekend Picks: The Best Reads For a Summer

The summer is just a week away, and it is understandable that sunny beaches, pleasant walks in a park, or a barbecue with friend could be more alluring than reading at home. But we are certain that our most avid readers will find time to enjoy the books that we recommend this week, while bathing in the pleasant rays of the sun or flying to some beautiful tourist destination. These books will be a wonderful accompaniment for your holidays.  

Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury

Dandelion Wine is a novella that is warm and pleasant, just like a summer which has been captured and poured into a bottle. Every page is a sip of a fresh and slightly intoxicating drink with an almost imperceptible bitterness which is comparable to the feeling one has on the last day of summer.

It is a story about the Spaulding family and the adventures of two of its members – Tom and Douglas. The reader will spend the whole wonderful summer of 1928 with these nice teenaged boys. Ray Bradbury has masterfully intertwined different story lines about people who live in the small but very lively community of Green Town, Illinois. Each chapter tells about different people with different backgrounds and experiences that are definitely worth sharing with others.

Dandelion Wine has certain autobiographical features which have been intentionally implanted in the story line by the author, who often admitted that there are plenty of similarities between him and Douglas. In his teenaged years, Bradbury also had a bright, lively, and optimistic personality and has painted the world only in the brightest colors.

“I want to feel all there is to feel, he thought. Let me feel tired, now, let me feel tired. I mustn’t forget, I’m alive, I know I’m alive, I mustn’t forget it tonight or tomorrow or the day after that.” 

The style and structure of this novel is truly amazing: the author describes every flower, beetle, star, or building as if it were the most beautiful thing in the world. Not every book has such an enormous number of great epithets and literary expressions which turn this book into a literary delicacy.

“The world, like a great iris of an even more gigantic eye, which has also just opened and stretched out to encompass everything, stared back at him.” 

Dandelion Wine is a quick and easy read, ideal for the summertime, when beauty and freshness encompass you all day long. And even in the winter, whenever you get cold or sad, just open this book, and it will rejoice our heart with its warmth and evergreen optimism.  

“Hold summer in your hand, pour summer in a glass, a tiny glass of course, the smallest tingling sip for children; change the season in your veins by raising glass to lip and tilting summer in.” 

Evening Class by Maeve Binchy

Maeve Binchy is an Irish writer who is one the most read authors in the world. Her novels, among which is Evening Class, have instantly became bestsellers, and some of them have even been ranked among the best books ever published in Ireland. Binchy is one of those authors who know how to captivate the reader with an interesting plot and smooth flow of words. The stories born under the pen of this immensely talented author are always transformed into intriguing novels with sophisticated plots.

Evening Class tells about eight people who develop a special interpersonal bond during the Italian language classes which they attend twice a week. The classes take place in one of the night schools in Dublin. When in class, they forget about day-to-day hassles, make new friends, and find new love. After the friends embark on an unforgetable journey to Italy, their lives change forever. It is strictly recommended that you read this wonderful book while feasting your eyes on the marvelous summer landscapes of Campania or Tuscany.

The Cuckoo’s Calling by J.K. Rowling writing as Robert Galibraith

Thanks to the unparalleled writing talent of J.K. Rowling, we have had a pleasure of following the adventures of a young magician named Harry Potter. However, the author thought that is was an appropriate time to have a shot at other literary genres under a new name. She has chosen the pseudonym Robert Galbraith and has created a mystery novel. We recommend reading this novel by an open window during summer nights to create a proper atmosphere.

Cormoran Strike is a private detective who has taken on an investigation of the mysterious murder of a famous female model who fell from a snowy balcony at her penthouse. The official report said that it was a suicide, but the girl’s brother couldn’t resign himself to this conclusion and hired Cormoran.

“The dead could only speak through the mouths of those left behind, and through the signs they left scattered behind them. Strike had felt the living woman behind the words she had written to friends; he had heard her voice on a telephone held to his ear; but now, looking down on the last thing she had ever seen in her life, he felt strangely close to her.” 

Strike has been to war, where he suffered physically as well as mentally. His life has been going downhill for quite a long time, and this investigation might give him a chance to bridge a financial gap.

“Matthew kept hinting that Strike was somehow a fake. He seemed to feel that being a private detective was a far-fetched job, like astronaut or lion tamer; that real people did not do such things.”     

However, the investigation turned out to be an artfully designed trap. While Strike has been focusing on the intricate story of the life and death of the young celebrity, he finds out the seamy side of the events and starts flying like an arrow from a bow towards a mortal danger.    

Photo: Shutterstock

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