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Chapter 18 - Funny Story

We are moving into the time of year where lighthearted beach reads are in the mix. Beach reads for me include thrillers, fun relationship books, and books with uncomplicated plots. There are some authors who always seem to catch the summer crowd, Mary Kay Andrews and Emily Henry for example. There are other authors who only produce one book a year and it is delivered in July (I'm talking about you Daniel Silva). Warm and sunny days just beg for a beach, a cold drink, and a book in your hand.

Here are some books I can recommend for an indulgent summer afternoon. I mean who doesn't need a little me time?

Funny Story by Emily Henry - I mentioned this as being on my TBR pile a few blogs back. Well, I recently read it and think you should too. It is the story of Daphne, a children's librarian who has moved to Michigan with her fiance' Peter. At Peter's bachelor party, his best friend from childhood, Petra, declares that she loves him and that she should be Peter's bride, not Daphne. Daphne is given a week to move her stuff out of Peter's house and find a place. Miles, Petra's ex, now has an extra room so is it a match made in heaven?

Expiration Dates by Rebecca Serle - Serle dabbles in Magical Realism and she does a fine job of it. In her latest book Daphne Bell (Daphne must be the name of the summer) believes the universe has a plan for her. Every time she starts to date a guy she gets a piece of paper with his name and a number with the exact amount of time they'll be together. This has been happening for 20 years. On the evening of a blind date she gets a piece of paper with just a name, Jake. Daphne is not sure what this means only that she knows about some things that Jake doesn't and she is reluctant to share them.

Not a Happy Family by Shari Lapena - This one is not a new book but is a light thriller you might have missed. At Easter dinner Fred Merton has some news for his spoiled and greedy grown up children and their partners. Before he can tell them, two of the three pairs leave in a huff. Two days later Fred and Sheila Merton are found murdered and, of course, the children are the primary suspects.

Nightwatching by Tracy Sierra - This is not a book you want to read before bed, that is if you want to get some sleep. Home alone with her children during a blizzard, a mother tucks her son into bed and hears a noise, the tread of footsteps on the stairs. She sees the figure of a man in the hallway and hurries her children into the oldest part of the house and into a secret room concealed behind a wall. As the mother tries to remain calm and plan, she catches a glimpse of the man and she knows who he is and what he wants. This debut novel is chilling and beautifully written.

The Guncle Abroad by Steven Rowley - I mentioned this after seeing Steven Rowley at the Savannah Book Festival. The story takes place 5 years after The Guncle and Patrick O'Hara has unstalled his TV career with a new sit-com called Guncle Knows Best. His brother, the dad of Maisie and Grant, announces his intention to marry his bride in Italy. Of course, the children are not happy about the whole thing and it is left to Patrick to make it right. If you love witty banter and fun dialogue, this should definitely be on your summer reading list.

What's on your summer list? Let me know!


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