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The Ultimate Summer Reading List: 100 Beach Reads

To finish this list, you'd have to read approx. 1 book every day between Memorial Day and Labor Day. Totally doable, right?

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1. Bittersweet

Goodness gracious, this book is addictive. For fans of ABC's "Revenge" and Gossip Girl, this books is suspenseful, thrilling, and a total guilty pleasure. What's that sound? Oh, that's your beach bag calling for this book.

3. We Were Liars

This book makes you feel feelings. We'll let one Goodreads reviewer, Blythe, speak for us:

"sobbing. sobbing. sobbing. so much love for this book, and its perfect, perfect ending.

i can't even capitalize right now. i don't even want to capitalize right now.

in fetal position.

sob.

my souuuuul."

4. The Vacationers

emmastraub.net

This book has been getting a lot of buzz, and rightly so. The story follows a family's trip to Mallorca, from take-off to return flight, and all the delectable family drama that happens along the way. This little book has a lot of heart and is full of scenes that will make you laugh out loud. Plus, this cover rocks.

5. Rules of Civility

amortowles.com

A fearless modern heroine claims her place in the New York City of Gatsby. The swooping descriptions of the big apple at that time reveal a place of dark alleys and soaring ballrooms. The perfect book for a city gal taking a break on a beach.

6. Frog Music

washingtonpost.com

Get transported to another time and place--namely San Francisco in 1876. A young woman is shot dead in a salloon. And her best friend is determined to hunt down the murderer.

7. Let's Pretend This Never Happened

theinquisitiveloon.wordpress.com

This book is probably the wackiest memoir we've ever read. Our favorite character is the wild-animal-obsessed father who does something with a squirrel that will stay with us for the rest of our lives. But seriously, this book has such a strong, brave voice that separates stories into chapters for easy reading between dips in the pool.

8. The Divorce Papers

crownpublishing.com

This book is a whole new kind of romantic comedy. The whole thing is shared through personal correspondence, emails, legal documents, and office memos. It's an easy breezy read that will make you laugh out loud.

9. Speak

heartbeathought.blogspot.com

This book is...breathtaking. The lead character's voice is so strong that even after only reading a few pages you feel as if you've known her your entire life. Her story is a heartbreaking yet empowering one that is especially relevant with the #YesAllWomen conversations dominating social media.

11. The Perks of Being a Wallflower

starswillsing.wordpress.com

This book has a cult following, and lots of Tumblr quote images created from it's pages, for a reason. The main character Charlie takes you back to high school and encounters familiar struggles--how to make friends, the intensity of a crush, family tensions, a first relationship, exploring sexuality, and experimenting with drugs.

12. Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?

crownpublishing.com

Mindy Kaling's book is just plain adorable, witty, and hilarious. It's such a fun rea (with pictures, too!) Mindy will be your girl crush by the time you reach the end of this book--guaranteed.

14. The Martian

crownpublishing.com

This book is a story about an astronaut who accidentally gets stranded on Mars. And Nasa says it's like...98% accurate. And did we mention that the astronaut in question has a bit of a potty mouth while he comes up with CRAZY GENIUS ways to stay alive. It's awesome.

15. Lean In

randomhouse.com

While this feels a little too real-life career-y for a beach read, Sheryl Sandberg's accessible advice and real-life stories are so interesting and readable you won't be able to put it down. Bottom line: Guaranteed, this will get you FIRED. UP. on the beach about how women can and should and need to rule the world. (Beyonce playlist optional but encouraged)

19. The One & Only

randomhouse.com

"What if the only one you want is the one you shouldn't have?" Yepp, that pretty much sums it up. This novel is an easy, captivating read about women and tough choices.

23. Devil in the White City

bookswami.blogspot.com

This book about the word's fair in Chicago came out a few years ago, but remains a classic beach read, in our opinion. Just a warning, you'll be so absorbed you may forget to reapply sunscreen.

31. Seating Arrangements

divadietitian.com

According to the New York Times: "...smart and frothy debut novel...Beneath the surface of this summery romp, however, lie animosities, well-paced sexual suspense and a clash between appearances and authenticity. " Enough said.

32. The Paris Wife

randomhouse.com

Just about as romantic as a book can get. This is beautiful, heartbreaking story of the love affair between literature’s original “bad boy” Ernest Hemingway and his first wife, Hadley Richardson Hemingway.

33. One More Thing

randomhouse.com

These short stories are funny, snackable and totally clever. Each one takes about as much time to read as it takes for your arms get tired from holding the book in front of the sun.

34. Much Ado About Nothing

dotmailer.com

We had to show Shakespeare some love on this list. The Bard's romantic plays were no doubt the beach reads of 17th century England. Much Ado About Nothing is a particular favorite, with witty Beatrice and her fantastic love-hate relationship with Benedick.

36. Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore

npr.org

From a Goodreads reviewer: "My boyfriend got just as hooked on Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore as I did—at the same time, in fact. While on vacation, I noticed my book would go missing, only to turn up a few hours later with the bookmark stuck between new pages. We began a heated battle to be the first one to finish the book."

38. The Hobbit

lotr.wikia.com

The shortest of the LOTR books, The Hobbit is an easy-reading journey into Middle Earth. Hobbits, dragons, elves, and all sort of magical mischief make this a great beach read for any fantasty-lover.

40. Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim

npr.org

This is a classic--laugh-out-loud funny yet heartwarming. David Sedaris' voice in this book crackles with energy. You won't want to put it down.

43. Under The Tuscan Sun

bluechinastudio.blogspot.com

In this memoir, Frances Mayes buys an abandoned villa in the lush Tuscan countryside. She takes the reader along as she discovers the beauty and simplicity of life in Italy. A gorgeous book in a gorgeous setting, with just the right amount of romance.

45. The Help

This book shares three perspectives on living in Jackson, Mississippi during the incredibly tense civil rights and feminist movements of the 1960's. Each character's voice is strong and totally unique. It is unputdownable.

46. Where'd You Go, Bernadette

amazon.com

Jonathan Franzen says: "The characters in Where'd You Go, Bernadette may be in real emotional pain, but Semple has the wit and perspective and imagination to make their story hilarious. I tore through this book with heedless pleasure." Sign us up.

51. Bossypants

npr.org

This is still one of our favorite covers of all time, and this book is ideal for a carefree day at the pool. Warning, you may find that one of your friends will abscond with the book while you're swimming.

52. Until You're Mine

randomhouse.com

"You're alone. You're vulnerable. And you have something that someone else wants. At any cost." This book is filled to the brim with twisted, psychological suspense.

54. Ophelia Speaks

lexile.com

This is such a powerful book. A collection of creative writing pieces from adolescent girls who have been through the real trials and tribulations of becoming a woman. Some of the pieces are desperately sad, some triumphant.

57. The Devil Wears Prada

addoway.com

if you never got around to reading this book, summer is the perfect time for it. A young woman starts a fast-paced career in NYC and learns important life, and love, lessons.

60. Flowers in the Attic

annadorfman.com

This book is a fascinating, twisted, shocking tale about children who are forced by their mother to stay trapped in an attic just as two of them, brother and sister, reach puberty.

66. Prep

7hillscanvass.org

An addictive book about coming of age and trying to fit in. Friendships, romance, politics, and more are all explored in the idyllic setting of a fancy boarding school in Massachusetts.

68. Like Water for Chocolate

destinyinbloom.com

Originally written in Spanish, this beautiful book is a tale of tradition and personal growth. A girl is forbidden from marrying the man she loves because it is her duty as the youngest daughter to care for her mother. She pours her feelings into her cooking.

69. The Accident

chrispavone.com

A non-stop, action-packed thriller that tells the story of a mysterious manuscript that bears such important secrets that some will stop at nothing to keep it unpublished.

72. The Cuckoo's Calling

vogue.com

A detective investigates the death of a supermodel in this excellent crime thriller. (Revealed to be the work of J.K. Rowling hiding behind the pen name Robert Galbraith.)

74. Water For Elephants

makeupandbeautyblog.com

Orphaned Jacob runs away to the circus. What he finds there is beyond what he could have imagined. A world of love, glamor, and danger is beautifully rendered in this book.

75. The Cider House Rules

bookmine.com

This is the kind of book that you read and find yourself really, really wishing it hadn't ended. Irving's character development and sense of place combine in the most magical way.

76. Wool

amazon.com

This is an intense book. It was originally a self-published short story that grew into a phenomenon of its own. This powerful sci-fi dystopia is sometimes genuinely terrifying but always totally exhilarating.

78. Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children

npr.org

This book is very unique. It combines fiction and photography to build the spine-tingling story of an abandoned orphanage for troubled kids. That might not be so abandoned after all...

79. Young Money

Amazon.com

If you were fascinated by world created in "Wolf of Wall Street" read this well-told exploration of the richest of the rich in Manhattan. This book takes work hard, play hard to a whole other level.

82. The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

brooklynbugle.com

A funny and heartwarming tale of a retirement community in a former guesthouse in Bangalore. It's a sunny read that also touches on some powerful themes, namely how cultures adapt and combine in modern times.

84. Kitchen Confidential

timescity.com

If we could describe this book in one word? Shocking. In his signature unapologetic voice, Anthony Bourdain reveals the sex, drugs, and craziness of the restaurant biz.

85. Defending Jacob

mulhollandbooks.com

Andy, a prominent lawyer, has everything going for him: a great career, a happy family, and respect from his neighbors. Suddenly, a horrible crime rocks his perfect world, and he finds himself defending his own son.

90. Confessions of a Shopaholic

blog.xuite.net

This light-hearted read tells the story of a young woman whose flashy lifestyle and penchant for expensive footwear drags her deeply into debt. Suddenly, her job as a reporter pulls her into a cover story that she truly cares about, changing her life forever.

91. The Luxe

fanpop.com

"Pretty girls in pretty dresses, partying until dawn.

Irresistible boys with mischievous smiles and dangerous intentions.

White lies, dark secrets, and scandalous hookups." This is Gossip Girl set in the 1890s. This book and the beach go together like peanut butter and chocolate.

92. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time

bookreviewsforrealpeople.blogspot.com

A unique, voice-driven book that tells the story of a young autistic boy living in England. The book begins with the mysterious murder of a neighborhood dog. The character's perspective on the world is so interesting, endearing, and carefully crafted by Mark Haddon.

93. Boneshaker