What books are you reading right now? Are you looking for your next novel to dive into? If you’re hankering after a thriller or you’re ready for some romantic fiction, allow us to bring you a roundup of the best books to read this summer.
Whether you’re after something to take away with you on your staycation or you’re planning on lounging in your garden with a good read, you’re sure to find something tantalising in this roundup of the latest literary releases.
Dangerous Women by Hope Adams
This is a tale inspired by true events that’s the perfect bedtime read. Pop on your favourite nightwear and get comfy as you absorb yourself in this murder mystery.
It’s 1841 and the Rajah sets sail for Australia. The 180 women that have boarded the ship are guilty of petty crimes and they have been sentenced to start a new life on the other side of the globe. Away from their homes and families and with tarnished reputations, the women only have one another to turn to.
When there’s a murder midway through the voyage, everyone on board is a suspect. Suddenly, the friendships forged between the women become fraught as the hunt for the killer begins.
Damart says: Hope Adams’ debut is a thrilling tale made all the more interesting by the fact that it’s based on a true story. Treading between a murder mystery and a look at female friendship, it is a riveting tale and one that will have you hooked.
Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Looking for the perfect beach read? Maybe you want to sit in your garden and curl up with a good book in the sun? If you’re planning on swapping your loungewear for a pair of summery trousers and heading outdoors, Malibu Rising is the perfect new book release to dive into.
This takes a trip back to the wild and excessive world of 1980s California and looks at fame, fortune, and family. We meet four siblings who are the children of singer, Mick Riva. When a party thrown by the musician’s children gets out of hand, the family mansion goes up in flames, secrets are revealed and their world comes crashing down.
Damart says: The evocative and heady days of life in 1980s Malibu are perfectly encapsulated in this engrossing tale. Reid opens the door to the world of the Riva family and gives readers the perfect piece of escapism. If you love juicy Dynasty-style plotlines and high drama, this is one of the best books to read over the summer.
The City of Tears by Kate Mosse
If you’ve loved Mosse’s previous novels, this is one not to miss. The second instalment of The Burning Chambers series was released earlier this year, so if you’ve been meaning to dive into this sequel, make the most of the summer days by joining Minou and her family once more.
As 16th century France faces more upheavals and scandals during the Wars of Religion, a moment of peace descends thanks to a forthcoming royal wedding that’s designed to reunite the country. Minou receives an invitation to this illustrious event, but, within days of the celebrations, her family is scattered and she must fight to bring them together once more.
Damart says: This sweeping tale is an epic piece of writing that evokes a world of war and love, secrets and betrayal. If you loved the first instalment of this saga, you won’t be disappointed.
I Couldn’t Love You More by Esther Freud
As with Malibu Rising, this is one of the new books released at the end of May in time for summer. It is a sprawling novel that ranges across three generations of women.
We meet Rosaleen, a teenager in the 1960s when she meets the dazzlingly dangerous Felix, a famous sculptor who sweeps her off her feet before leaving her alone. Then there’s Kate, living in 1990s London and in an unhappy marriage. Aoife is telling her dying husband about their life together, but something is missing from the tale.
All three women’s lives are interlinked. The bonds of family are for life.
Damart says: With themes of female longing and relationships, this is a book that shines a spotlight on the connections between mothers, daughters and grandmothers and reveals a desire to break free of convention.
Six Tudor Queens: Katharine Parr, The Sixth Wife by Alison Weir
If you’ve been following historian Weir’s saga, you’ll be ready for the final instalment of this series focusing on Henry VIII’s wives. Henry is getting old now and his health is deteriorating. However, he is captivated by Katharine and she must accept his advances, despite being in love with someone else.
This look at Parr’s time with the infamous Tudor king is a beguiling and at times gripping story of a woman who befriended the infamous ruler in his later years while harbouring her own secrets.
Damart says: We all think we know the story of Henry VIII and his six wives, but Weir brings little details and morsels of information to the fore, taking the well-trodden story and bringing these women to life. In this final instalment, we see how the last wife – the one who survived – had to sacrifice so much to honour her king.
If you’re asking yourself ‘what are the best books to read this summer?’, we hope you’ve found something worth dipping into here. Whether you want historical tales or you’re dreaming of Californian beaches, there are plenty of stories to discover this season. Also, don’t miss our Book Club competition.