One of my favorite questions is always about what I’m reading. A dear friend passed along some books she’s reading this summer and then came the reciprocal question. It’s my favorite question, but it’s also one that has become laden with a bit of anxiety. I simply do not have as much time to read as I wanted.
Now, with summer nearly here, so close I can conjure up early mornings with time to read, and to read and to read, I turn to making lists. As of this moment, on this day, these are the books I’m looking forward to reading this summer. Some are annotated with reasons while others are not. All of them, however, are ones that I hope will allow me to remember, yet again, why the best summers are the ones where there are endless numbers of books to read and time to read them…
- A Window Opens, Elisabeth Egan (doesn’t come out until September, but one of my favorite bloggers reviewed it and it sounds lovely)
- Saint Anything, Sarah Dessen; summer means Sarah Dessen. If you loved Dawson’s Creek (and the opening song “I Don’t Wanna Wait” just started playing in my head), then you’ll love everything she writes. Easy, breezy, YA
- Me, Earl and the Dying Girl, Jesse Andrews: one of the books that I couldn’t keep on the shelves of my classroom library. I want to read it before the movie comes out this summer (which, BTW, the kids said is also quite hilarious). It’s good because my students are always after me to have more funny books for them. This one fits their requests.
- Loving Day, Mat Johnson (Roxane Gay said it’s good. That’s enough for me).
- In the Country, Mia Alvar (another Roxane Gay rec; I want to read beyond single stories and haven’t read much about Filipino folks; this collection of short stories looks delicious)
- Make Your Home Among Strangers, Jennine Capo Crucet: Cuban American, immigration, elitism (I’ve now devolved into keywords; my shorthand helps me be able to write faster)
- The Other Side of Bird Hill, Naomi Jackson: from Brooklyn to Barbados, sisters, sent to live with grandmother, obeah
- Re: Jane, Patricia Park: Korean American orphan, au pair, Seoul, romantic wonderings
- The Light of the World, Elizabeth Alexander: memoir, poetry
- God Help the Child, Toni Morrison; let me give Toni Morrison ONE MORE SHOT
- Jam on the Vine, LaShonda Barnett
- Ordinary Light, Tracy K. Smith: memoir, poetry
- Balm, Dolen Perkins-Valdez (maybe; I remember enjoying Wench, but I don’t know if I can take the emotional gut punch another time)