June 2, 2014

Summer Reading: New Releases Edition

School is out and the weather is warming up! That means two things.

The beach…and summer reading!

Now that we are grownups, it's time to fill your time reading books you can't put down instead of something you've been assigned (because nothing takes the thrill out of a book like a test). There are so many great lists out there right now (including the mother of all reading lists by Modern Mrs Darcy that you can find here), but I thought it might be fun to take a look at books being released just in time for your beach reading. Some of these are the newest book in a series, others are standalone. I'm very impatiently waiting to get my hands on all of them!

Get you library holds list or pre-order button ready :)

The Secret Life of Violet Grant by Beatriz Williams

You don't have to wait for this one since it came out last week! The story of Vivian Schuyler, a socialite in New York trying to make her own life in the magazine world in 1965, intersects with the story of Violet Grant, the aunt Vivian never knew she had. Violet's is an American physicist working in Germany during the lead up to World War I, struggling in a marriage to a much older man and trying to determine the true intentions of a British Army Captain. Williams was a hit last year with her A Hundred Summers, and the buzz on this one is already excellent. Released May 27, 2014

That Summer by Lauren Willig
Releasing tomorrow (!!!) is the latest from Lauren Willig. One of my favorite kind of stories, in which our heroine Julia inherits a house and all its secrets, That Summer alternates between modern day England and 1849, when the preraphealite painting movement was just beginning. When Julia finds a painting hidden in the back of a wardrobe, the history of the house begins to unfold. Early reviews are comparing this one to Elizabeth Peters, which is supreme praise in my book and every single one has said this is a book that can't be put down. Willig is doing lots of giveaways for the release, so keep an eye on her blog and Facebook page. Released June 3, 2014

The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith
JK Rowling, writing under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith,  follows up her 2013 mystery The Cuckoo's Calling with more from private detective Cormoran Strike. The first in the series was a solid mystery, if not the perfection we tend to expect from Rowling. In The Silkworm, Strike is hired to investigate the disappearance of a novelist who has just finished a very incendiary manuscript. This is due out June 19th, but appears to be part of the Amazon/Hachette debacle so you may want to go through your local indie bookstores. Indiebound is a great way to find them! Released June 19, 2014

Chu's First Day of School Neil Gaiman
My boys adore Chu and I adore all things Neil Gaiman. It's an added bonus that this book will be out just in time for Ben to start Kindergarten. Sniff, sniff. Adam Rex's illustrations are delightful and a perfect complement to the text. Will Chu sneeze at school? What will the other children be like? I've pre-ordered this already for Ben's birthday this summer. Released June 24, 2014

Prime Minister's Secret Agent by Susan Elia MacNeal
Maggie Hope is back for her fourth adventure. After a harrowing mission on the continent during World War II, she is assigned to teach at a spy school in Scotland. Things get interesting when three ballerinas, including one of Maggie's dear friends, are poisoned and she must work with MI-5 to find the truth. I've enjoyed the first two installments in this series about a female mathematician turned secretary turned spy in war torn London and I'm currently tearing through the third book now. July 1st can't come soon enough! (But you have enough time to catch up before the release date! Start with Mr. Churchill's Secretary.) Released July 1, 2014

Care and Management of Lies: A Novel of the Great War by Jacqueline Winspear
Winspear is the author of the award winning Maisie Dobbs mystery series which I adore. This is a stand-alone set in 1914, again ready for the centennial of World War One. Winspear writes of two friends whose relationship has begun to fail just as war breaks out and how the war wreaks havoc on the lives of those fighting in the trenches as well as those left behind. Winspear paints a vivid picture of the post-war period in Maisie Dobbs, and I have no doubt that this book will be both beautiful and distressing in it's depiction of the world at war. Released July 1, 2014

Mark of the Midnight Manzanilla by Lauren Willig
Willig is bookending the summer with a second release, this one the penultimate story in her Pink Carnation series about British spies in Napoleonic Europe.  The Convent of Orsino (the Regency version of Twilight) has caused a vampire craze among the ton in London, and Sally Fitzhugh is determined to get to the bottom of it. Of course, nothing is quite what it seems and Sally and the Duke of Belliston will end up trying to thwart French spies while falling in love. This series is always fun, intelligently written and full of great characters. Since there is only one more book left in the series, this would be a good time to catch up from the beginning. Start with The Secret History of the Pink Carnation and your beach bag will be full all summer! Released August 5, 2014

Percy Jackson's Greek Gods by Rick Riordan
This isn't the latest in the Heroes of Olympus series (that comes out in October) but more of a guide to the Greek Gods and myths. Percy Jackson meets Edith Hamilton if you will. As someone who will occasionally pick up Hamilton's classic Mythology just for fun, I'm really looking forward to this. Riordan's tongue in cheek modern spin to the Greek myths are smart and funny and he is adding depth and bigger issues to the teen characters as they age. Since this one is a stand alone I think it will be a great one to read aloud to my oldest.  Released August 19, 2014

What's on your summer reading list?? I'm always looking for new recommendations. You can always keep up with what I'm reading on Goodreads too. I love to connect with other readers! 

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  1. Oooh! I can't wait for The Silkworm, and these others sound fantastic! Thanks for sharing!

  2. I had heard about the release, but hadn't realized it was a stand alone until I was adding it to my holds list! I had it in my head that it was a new Maisie, but I think it might be a while until another one of those comes out!

  3. Glad to help! Always happy to expand my friends to-read lists :)

  4. Ana @ Lessons From YesterdayJune 2, 2014 at 10:26 PM

    You made my hold list take a hit! Put That Summer, as well as MacNeal, Williams and Winspear's on hold. And I just finished the first Maise mystery, so I have some catching up to do! These look like my kind of books!

  5. Since everyone's waiting for the Silkworm, I'll have to keep an eye out for it :).


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