Summer Reading: Are You Ready? Join the Club!

When Memorial Day comes around, my mind goes to two thoughts: gratitude for those who have given their lives to defend my rights and freedom, and summer reading.

The first book of the summer will combine both: Dogs of War, a graphic novel I discovered at my library.

After that is anybody's guess. Oh, I make a list, check it twice, and read some of the titles — but most summers, I stray from the list because the next new book captivates me, and I lose track of all of the books.

The best part? It's the beginning of the 2019 Summer Reading Club, which lasts from the Friday before Memorial Day to the first day of autumn — so, this year, from May 24 through September 23.

To join the club, just send me a message or comment below, then read as much as you wish. Spend long summer days lounging with a book and a cold drink. I want you to be so immersed in your books that you forget about lunch. The club member who reads the most will receive a book from me. You get a book you like, I get to give it to you: that's a win-win!

In return, I ask that you give back. For every book read, I want you to pledge time or money: donate to the public or school library, little free library, or literacy program of your choice. Choose cash (a buck a book, or the cost of all books read, or even a copy of the books themselves) — or find out how your library or literacy program prefers its donations. Remember: volunteer hours are an excellent way to give back, whether it's to the library or another organization of your choice.

So, back to the matter at hand: books. Right now, I foresee a Summer of Sequels, which includes (in no particular order): 

  • Of Blood and Bone
  • The Map of Days
  • Waking Gods
  • Wolf Hall
  • Lady Cop Makes Trouble
  • Time's Convert
  • The Bear and the Nightingale
  • As Chimney Sweepers Turn to Dust
  • The Map of Time (re-read)
  • After the End of the World
  • The Storm of Locusts
  • Mary Poppins Opens the Door
  • Peril in Paperback: A Bibliophile Mystery
  • Probable Paws: A Mystic Notch Cozy Mystery

Oddly enough, I am not really a fan of book series. Under most circumstances, I rarely continue beyond the third or fourth book, especially if there seems to be no end to the series or there are large gaps between the installments. I will pretend I waited until now to start the Cromwell series because Hilary Mantel has a publication date for the final book of the trilogy; thank you for playing along.

Here are a few other titles on my nightstand I'll add to the mix:

  • Severance
  • No Visible Bruises
  • Children of Blood and Bone
  • Where the Crawdads Sing
  • Small Great Things
  • Empire of the Ants
  • Gingerbread
  • I was Anastasia
  • One Day in December
  • The Book of the Unknown
  • The Lilac Girls
  • We Were Eight Years in Power
  • Behind the Scenes at the Museum
  • The Keeper of Lost Things
  • 4 3 2 1
  • Anything is Possible
  • Norse Mythology
  • The Power
  • Hamilton: The Revolution
  • The Intuitionist
  • Ready Player One
  • The Book of Harlan
  • The Lost City of Z
  • The Gun Seller
  • The Lowland
  • And the Mountains Echoed
  • Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter 
  • The Sixth Extinction
  • Bellman and Black
  • Just Mercy

Warning: my "finished" list will most likely look very different than the list above. That's fine. Your list probably will, too. If you share your STBR (Summer To Be Read) list with me, I am glad to share it with your fellow clubbers — or you may post it in the comments below.

We are all friends here. We do not judge each other's reading choices or media. Enjoy your E.L. James or your Encyclopedia Brown. Listen, or look at a page or pixel. Your fellow readers may ask questions, maybe offer suggestions for other similar reads or good book resources, and we always appreciate reviews or feedback. Reader to reader, we can have fun. 

Best of all, no pressure! No matter how many books you read (or don't), you are still a reader and we're glad you're in the club.

So, who's in? Let me know!