Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.
I don’t usually set up seasonal TBRs since I do monthly TBRs, but I thought it would be fun to put together 10 books that give me summer vibes that I’d like to read this summer. Whether or not that actually happens is debatable, BUT at least I’ll have this list for reference!
Summer 2020 TBR
*=Author of Color
This one gives me all the summer vibes from the cover… the main character becomes Misty Haven’s Summer Queen.
*If It Makes You Happy by Claire Kahn
Winnie is living her best fat girl life and is on her way to the best place on earth. No, not Disneyland–her Granny’s diner, Goldeen’s, in the small town of Misty Haven. While there, she works in her fabulous 50’s inspired uniform, twirling around the diner floor and earning an obscene amount of tips. With her family and ungirlfriend at her side, she has everything she needs for one last perfect summer before starting college in the fall.
…until she becomes Misty Haven’s Summer Queen in a highly anticipated matchmaking tradition that she wants absolutely nothing to do with.
Newly crowned, Winnie is forced to take center stage in photoshoots and a never-ending list of community royal engagements. Almost immediately, she discovers that she’s deathly afraid of it all: the spotlight, the obligations, and the way her Merry Haven Summer King, wears his heart, humor, and honesty on his sleeve.
Stripped of Goldeen’s protective bubble, to salvage her summer Winnie must conquer her fears, defy expectations, and be the best Winnie she knows she can be—regardless of what anyone else thinks of her.
*Sexy in Stilettos (In Stilettos #1) by Nana Malone
I feel like this one will be light and fluffy – perfect for summer!
What’s worse than having to watch your sister marry your ex-fiancé? How about when that fiancé fires you from the family business?
Hyper-organized, event planner, Jaya Trudeaux is used to doing things by the book and never making waves. It’s a strategy that’s served her well until she finds herself in failure alley with no fiancé, no job and her thirtieth birthday looming. Maybe it’s time to change her methods. Starting with an unlikely date to the wedding from hell.
The only thing that can tie carefree, playboy, Alec Danthers down is his formidable step mother. When she calls him home to help find his wayward brother, he never imagines an uptight, list making, sass-talking woman would make him think about putting down roots.
Can Jaya put the lists down long enough to enjoy the ride that is Alec? Will Alec stop running long enough to recognize true love?
Warning: Sexy, sass talking women will make you laugh, cry and want a pair of killer footwear.
*Game, Set, Match (Love Match #1) by Nana Malone
For some reason I relate tennis to summertime. I think it is because my dad and brother play tennis all the time and I have memories of going to the park with them and watching them play in the summer.
Off the court, tennis star Jason Cartwright’s playboy image is taking a public beating. On the court, he’s down 40-love. A knee injury is shutting down his game, and the paparazzi are splashing his love life on every magazine. A comeback is in order, but the makeover he needs to save his faltering career is in the hands of the woman he loved and left 15 years ago.
While single-mom Izzy Connors sees people for who they really are through the lens of her camera, even without it, she knows Jason isn’t the star he appears to be. Although his charm and good looks haven’t dimmed since he broke her heart, all she sees is his wasted talent and playboy lifestyle.
Can Izzy put the past behind her and help Jason get his game, and his image, back on track? Or will the click of her camera shatter his world as well as his heart?
*Four Summers by Nyrae Dawn
I think it’s pretty obvious why I chose this one. Nyrae Dawn is a new-to-me author!
A moment can change everything…Charlotte Gates is tired of being Charlie Rae. She loves the lake she was raised on, their rental cabins, and spending her nights under the stars…but inside she yearns for more. After his freshman year, Nathaniel Chase’s family spends their first summer at The Village. From the beginning Charlotte intrigues him. She’s the girl who always says what’s on her mind, wins at night games, and gets lost in the sky, each time she looks through her telescope. Over the course of four summers together, Charlotte and Nathaniel become best friends, share firsts, mend broken hearts, protect each other’s secrets, overcome tragedies…fall in love. And say goodbye…Charlotte wants out of The Village. Nate wants her to have her stars. And they dream of being able to do it all together. But life isn’t as easy as their summers. Each summer is told in alternating points of view between Charlotte and Nate. Journey with the pair, and their friends, as they share their story about growing up, discovering who they are, making tough choices, and falling in love again and again.
Sunshine and Bullets (The Bullets #1) by CoraLee June
The main character’s nickname is Sunshine!
Sunshine. It’s a nickname I haven’t heard since I lived on Woodbury Lane, where the houses were pretty, but the secrets? Deadly. It was a pet name known only to the Bullets. Rough, violent, and ruthless, they laid claim to the town – and my heart.
I wasn’t supposed to fall for a boy from the wrong side of the tracks‚ especially not four of them. But they were the only ones who understood that sometimes hell hides in plain sight. I was the girl with all the conveniences a privileged upbringing could provide. The world only saw two loving parents and a pristine home life, but I knew the truth. And it was going to get me killed. So I disappeared from everyone and everything I’d ever known. I changed my name and my appearance, but the scars I carry, they’re still the same.
The Bullets are all grown up now, too – a crime boss, a pro fighter, a bounty hunter, and a federal agent. Life took them in different directions, but they once shared the bonds of a brotherhood forged under the harshest conditions. Together, they were fearless. Brutal. Unstoppable.
I’m praying they can find that unity again. If I’m going to survive this, it’ll take everything they have. Because that’s the thing about running from the past. It catches up with you eventually.
Love & Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch
The blurb says, “It was a summer of secrets.”
The dying wish of 16-year-old Lina’s mother was for her daughter to live in Tuscany and get to know her father, whom Lina has never met.
“Howard is the best man I’ve ever known,” her mother says, “he’ll keep you safe.” Why did her mother wait so long to tell her about him? Lina has a happy life in Seattle and doesn’t want to leave. Shortly after she arrives at Howard’s home, Lina meets Sonya, who gives Lina a diary that belonged to Lina’s mother, the one she had kept while she was a photography student in Florence. While Lina is living her life and exploring Tuscany with her handsome neighbour, Ren, she follows in the footsteps of her mother and gets to know her as never before. She also finds out the truth about her father. Mostly she finds out about herself.
*Like Lovers Do (Girls Trip #2) by Tracey Livesay
This is an ARC I received from the author and it sounds like such a sweet beach read! This comes out in September!
Sometimes faking it can lead to the real thing…
Driven and focused, Dr. Nicole Allen is an accomplished surgeon. With a tough past, Nic’s gone above and beyond everyone’s expectations. But when she disciplines an intern—a powerful donor’s son—a prestigious fellowship she’s awaiting is placed in jeopardy.
Coming from a successful family who runs a medical business empire, Benjamin Reed Van Mont is the black sheep, having chosen to start his own business instead. Though he’s not ready to settle down, he knows when the time comes it definitely won’t be with a workaholic doctor like his friend Nic—even if she’s had him re-examining his edict…more than once.
When Ben’s status-climbing ex-girlfriend finds her way back into his orbit, Nic proposes a swap of services. She’ll spend the week with Ben on Martha’s Vineyard, pretending to be his girlfriend—but only if he’ll have his family intervene on her behalf so she won’t lose her fellowship. How hard can the charade be?
But as they’re about to discover, they’ve sorely underestimated their true feelings for each other…
I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson
This has been on my TBR for far too long! I loved The Sky is Everywhere by this author and have heard great things about this book.
“We were all heading for each other on a collision course, no matter what. Maybe some people are just meant to be in the same story.”
At first, Jude and her twin brother Noah, are inseparable. Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door, while daredevil Jude wears red-red lipstick, cliff-dives, and does all the talking for both of them. Years later, they are barely speaking. Something has happened to change the twins in different yet equally devastating ways . . . but then Jude meets an intriguing, irresistible boy and a mysterious new mentor. The early years are Noah’s to tell; the later years are Jude’s. But they each have only half the story, and if they can only find their way back to one another, they’ll have a chance to remake their world. This radiant, award-winning novel from the acclaimed author of The Sky Is Everywhere will leave you breathless and teary and laughing—often all at once.
Night Music by Jenn Marie Thorne
This book cover gives me all the summer vibes and it sounds SO good.
Ruby has always been Ruby Chertok: future classical pianist and daughter of renowned composer Martin Chertok. But after her horrendous audition for the prestigious music school where her father is on faculty, it’s clear that music has publicly dumped her. Now Ruby is suddenly just…Ruby. And who is that again? All she knows is that she wants away from the world of classical music for good.
Oscar is a wunderkind, a musical genius. Just ask any of the 1.8 million people who’ve watched him conduct on YouTube – or hey, just ask Oscar. But while he might be the type who’d name himself when asked about his favorite composer and somehow make you love him more for it, Oscar is not the type to jeopardize his chance to study under the great Martin Chertok – not for a crush. He’s all too aware of how the ultra-privileged world of classical music might interpret a black guy like him falling for his benefactor’s white daughter. But as the New York City summer heats up, so does the spark between Ruby and Oscar. Soon, their connection crackles with the same alive, uncontainable energy as the city itself.
Can two people still figuring themselves out figure out how to be together? Or will the world make the choice for them?
The Music of What Happens Next by Bill Konigsberg
This book takes place during the summer!
Max: Chill. Sports. Video games. Gay and not a big deal, not to him, not to his mom, not to his buddies. And a secret: An encounter with an older kid that makes it hard to breathe, one that he doesn’t want to think about, ever.
Jordan: The opposite of chill. Poetry. His “wives” and the Chandler Mall. Never been kissed and searching for Mr. Right, who probably won’t like him anyway. And a secret: A spiraling out of control mother, and the knowledge that he’s the only one who can keep the family from falling apart.
Throw in a rickety, 1980s-era food truck called Coq Au Vinny. Add in prickly pears, cloud eggs, and a murky idea of what’s considered locally sourced and organic. Place it all in Mesa, Arizona, in June, where the temp regularly hits 114. And top it off with a touch of undeniable chemistry between utter opposites.
Over the course of one summer, two boys will have to face their biggest fears and decide what they’re willing to risk – to get the thing they want the most.