If I’m living in Texas during the ridiculously hot summer, I’m determined to make something good out of it. So, I’ve been spending my free time out on my patio, laying in my tanning chair, and plowing my way through book after book.
I figure I’m not the only one who finds reading in the summer sun a relaxing pasttime. So here, without further ado, are my reading recommendations. Some are new, some are old, but they’re all worth a read.
The Southern Mysteries Series, by Charlaine Harris
(AKA The Sookie Stackhouse Books)
Recommended if: You want a fun read
Dead in the Family is the latest in Charlaine Harris’ killer (literally) mystery series that spawned the HBO hit True Blood. I’ve read all 10 in the series since the summer began. They’re totally addicting. They’re funny, cheesy and even a little dirty. The books are fairly short and highly entertaining, so you go through them pretty quickly. Plan to buy a few at a time. Hint: you can get the paperbacks at Target for $5! Now, if you’re a Twilight hater, don’t automatically assume you’ll hate these just because there are vampires in them. They’re in a completely different realm than the Twilight series; they’re much more adult, and they can get you into watching one of the best shows on TV.
The Millenium Trilogy, by Stieg Larsson
Recommended if: You want a good thriller
The Girl Who Played with Fire is the second book in the late Stieg Larsson’s Millenium Trilogy, which also includes The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and the recently released The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest. These books are huge right now, especially since casting is currently going on for a Hollywood version of them. Jeff and I watched the Swedish film for Dragon Tattoo last weekend, and we’re headed to see Fire at the Angelika Film Center tonight. I’m so stoked!
Maybe it’s the fact the protagonists in the book are super interesting (an amazing investigative journalist and an awesomely crazy and independent feminist), or maybe I’m just a sucker for a good whodunit, but I’m in love with this series.
Invisible Monsters, by Chuck Palahniuk
Recommended if: You want your jaw to drop
Yeah, I know, Palahniuk is huge now. But admist his collection,which includes Fight Club and Choke, is this lesser-known gem. It’s the first book of his I ever read (I’ve read them all now), and this one remains my favorite. It’s gripping, funny, disturbing, sad and everything all rolled into one. You can’t put it down until the ending – which is an awesome one, by the way. It leaves you thinking “Where does he come up with this stuff?”
The Shining, by Stephen King
Recommended if: You want to be sleeping with all your lights on
This is my scary pick of the summer. I know you’ve probably seen the movie, and I know it probably scared the crap out of you when you were younger, but seriously, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet! The book is a million times creepier and scarier than the movie. When I read the book, I’m seriously sad that some of the parts aren’t translated into the film. It literally made my skin crawl.
If you’re on a budget, this book’s a great one to pick up. You can probably find it at any Half Price Books for like $5.