My Summer Reading List: 2015

summer reading book list


“Activate on 6/5/15?”

This was the message I received from my local library as I hit “confirm” on my book queue. The little devil that sits on my shoulder hissed “No, now! Activate it nooooooowwww!”, but my brain won out as I scheduled my first library haul to arrive after June settled in.

You see, summer unofficially heralds in an intense three months of reading in my world, and I’m sure in many of yours as well. Summer is filled with seemingly endless time to delve into books — big books, cultured books, fluffy books, skimmable books — especially when you’re a school teacher. I can safely say that it’s the number one time of year when I fit most of my reading into my otherwise busy schedule.

I often get asked “What good books do you plan on reading?” and the true answer is often unsatisfying: I plan on reading all of the unread books that have been sitting on my shelves for years. Some Nabokov, some Ayn Rand, some Anne Rice, not to mention that ARC that’s been on my shelf for two years now. But to just read “those books” would take all of the fun out of summer reading. Practical, yes, but without reading books that you’re genuinely excited about, that are new or creep out of the woodwork, reading would quickly lose its allure.

So yes, I am planning on reading Lolita, and The Fountainhead, and The Witching Hour, but here are the books I’m itching to read this summer. This list is not conclusive (obviously.)

The Familiar vol. 1 by Mark Z. Danielewski | Honestly, I picked this up not knowing a single thing about it other than it’s written by Mark Z. Danielewski, author of one of my all-time favorite books, House of Leaves.

The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness | I excitedly received a digital ARC of this courtesy of Edelweiss. I’ve never read anything of Patrick Ness’ before, but the synopsis alone sold me:

“What if you aren’t the Chosen One?

The one who’s supposed to fight the zombies, or the soul-eating ghosts, or whatever the heck this new thing is, with the blue lights and the death?

What if you’re like Mikey? Who just wants to graduate and go to prom and maybe finally work up the courage to ask Henna out before someone goes and blows up the high school. Again.

Because sometimes there are problems bigger than this week’s end of the world, and sometimes you just have to find the extraordinary in your ordinary life.

Even if your best friend is worshiped by mountain lions.”

A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab | Victoria Schwab is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors. The Archived was phenomenal, Vicious was great, and I’m excited to see Schwab tackle alternate, parallel universe Londons. It sounds very Neverwhere-y to me.

Throne of Glass by Sarah Maas | The Hunger Games meets Game of Thrones? Kick-ass female assassin? Say no more.

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard | Each time I go to the bookstore I pick up Red Queen, I hold it between my hands, I stroke it lovingly, then I put it back on the shelf. I can’t explain why I haven’t caved and bought it yet, especially with all of the good things I’ve heard about it. But this summer, it’s happening. Finally.

Scarlett Undercover by Jennifer Latham | Muslim American female protagonist. Private eye. Supernatural forces. I’ll let you decide if this is going to be awesome or awesome.

Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins | If you recall, I was really late to the Stephanie Perkins party and just read Anna and the French Kiss last year while on vacation in Key West. Contemporary YA isn’t usually my thing, but seeing the beautifully coordinating trio of Perkins covers on every bookstagram account I followed piqued my curiosity. Long story short: it was cute; I got sucked in. And here I am at #2 in the series.

Lois Lane: Fallout by Gwenda Bond | Admittedly, I like Batman more than I like Superman. But Lois Lane (especially the animated Superman cartoon Lois Lane) takes no crap and is one of my favorite comic book ladies ever. Won’t say no to a book about her!

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon | I love Scotland. I love history. I love time travel. Seriously, can this kind of thing just happen in real life already?

On the Road by Jack Kerouac | Is there a book that is more quintessentially summer? No? Okay.

What’s on your summer reading list?

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  • Oh man, you have such great titles in your TBR pile! You’re going to LOVE A Darker Shade of Magic and Throne of Glass! And I have such fond memories of On the Road!

    • I’m excited that YOU’RE excited about it xD

  • smbrink

    Have heard great things about Red Queen— can’t wait to see what you think of it.

    I’m currently reading Me Before You, which has been on my shelf forever. Also just finished All The Light We Cannot See, which was an AWESOME pick for NovelTea! I’m with you for summer reading plans, I’m hoping to get through quite a few of the books that have been sitting on my shelves neglected for too long…

    • I’m so glad to hear that so many people are enjoying All the Light We Cannot See!!! And Red Queen, well, I’m excited but I’m worried now about having high expectations, haha. I think it’s going to be part of my next library haul!

  • I am dying to read Patrick Ness book but unfortunately I have to wait till it released to read it. I want to start The Outlander series but I m intimidated. But hopefully someday I will pick it up.

    • It is really intimidating to jump into a series as big as Outlander, especially with how long the individual volumes look! I hope you get to it someday, too!

  • My answer would be exactly “I plan on reading all of the unread books that have been sitting on my shelves for years”. Seriously. This is my goal for 2015, so… I have the bad habit of buying tons of ebooks (thanks to Amazon’s amazing deals!) and never having enough time to read them. My reading list also includes Robert Galbraith’s first two books (hope to enjoy them way more than The Casual Vacancy!). I’m about to write a post like yours including also some TV series 🙂

    • Amazon’s deals are too good, ugh! That’s exactly why I’m in this bind (and now trying not to buy anything new until I whittle down some of these. It’s hard). Believe it or not, I still haven’t read even The Casual Vacancy! Can’t wait to see your post, tv series and all!

  • I loved Red Queen!! It’s one of my favorites for the year!! And I very much want to read Throne of Glass, one day!

    • I keep hearing such good things about Red Queen, I kind of want to drop everything else and read it now, haha.

  • Kay

    I really really like A Darker Shade of Magic. And I loved the Archived as well – definitely need to read Vicious! Have you read any Anne Rice before? I didn’t enjoy all of the Vampire Chronicles books, but most were really good, and both Interview with the Vampire and the Vampire Lestat are two of my absolute favorites.

    • I loved Anne Rice growing up and read a fair number of the Vampire Chronicles (Interview!!! Forevaaaaaa!!! <3) but haven't revisited her since I was like, 16. Should be interesting 🙂

  • I’ve heard a lot of good things regarding Red Queen. I should see the local bookshop if it’s available there 😉

    Dara | Hola Darla | @DarlaOct

    • It seems to be THE book right now, everywhere you look!

  • There are a bunch of books here that I want to read too! I’ve never read anything by Patrick Ness either, so I’m looking forward to a review. Now that I’ve read A Darker Shade of Magic, I want to read The Archived!

    • I feel like you would really like the Archived!! Do it 🙂

  • Outlander is one of my favourite love stories (and novels) of all time.

  • I couldn’t help but read the line “What if you aren’t the Chosen One?” and reply out loud “But I am the Chosen One!” and brace myself for Hermione’s smack.

    Great list, lady! Need to add these to my list!

    • I really really really hope that’s what Patrick Ness/his editors had in mind when they included that in the blurb because it is a totally great and appropriate response and you are wonderful xD

  • Ooo thanks for sharing. I haven’t made a determined summer list in a while but On the Road is definitely a summer classic I’ve enjoyed in the past. Great reads!

  • Mary Kathleen

    If you haven’t read it before, you should totally look at Jonathon Strange and Mr. Norrell (by Susanna Collins). I just finished it and I loved it. Imagine Jane Austen meets Harry Potter. BBC made a miniseries out of it, so I’m currently trying to track that down.

    • Thanks for the recommendation, Mary 😀 Those are two of my favorite things ever, so I’ll have to check that out! You’ll have to let me know if the BBC miniseries ends up being any good, too.