What do you do with those long summer days? Read a book!

Lulu's 2018 Summer Reading List

Experts, psychologists, and authors agree that reading can make you more empathetic. Literary fiction helps us better understand each other and how we think. That alone is interesting and notable, but what does it have to do with summer?

deckchairs on the beach

Summer is here!

Because summer is traditionally a time to read lighter, more character driven books. Spend a moment or two on the web and I’m sure you’ll find more than a few “summer reading lists” or “best beach reads” articles. In fact, since you’re reading this, it’s safe to say you’ve found at least one!

Make the most of your summer travels with a good book (or two or three). All the interesting scientific and educational reasons aside, reading a fun book on a beach—waves lapping gently, kids playing around you, sun shining—what could possibly be better?

You can always get caught up on some classic summer reading at the beach, but if you’re looking for something a little new or different, Lulu has got the Indie shopping list for you!

Travel Reading

Summer is always a time for travel and exploration. Indie writers are great for these kinds of books, since the most well-traveled among us are rarely the most literary as well. Lulu’s self-publishing gives them all an outlet for their awesome stories. Here’s a few of our favorites.

98 Days Of Wind By Ras & Kathy Vaughan

98 Days Of Wind: The Greatest Fail Of Our Life by Ras & Kathy Vaughn

A husband and wife team set out to break a world record, hiking the Grand Enchantment Trail. Here is a book about the absolute limits of our bodies and our relationships, all set against the challenge of overcoming a harsh environment. The story is exciting, inspiring, and delightfully human.

In the Driver’s Seat: An American Road Trip by Dan Murphy

Road trips. One of the more powerful and well-used tropes in American writing. Murphy sets out to see all 50 states in the USA. Inevitably, he encounters all sorts of adventures along the way. What makes a story about travel really potent? Leaving the reader with a desire to travel themselves. That’s what “In the Driver’s Seat” achieves that other books of this sort don’t.

In the Driver's Seat: An American Road Trip

My United States Travel Journal By Carolyne Cole

My United States Travel Journal by Carolyn Cole

This one is a little different. I’m guessing a few of our intrepid travelers have kids in the backseat staring at their iPhones or Nintendos while the miles roll by. Cole’s travel journal is designed for youths, inspiring them to enjoy the journey. And years from now, they’ll have the journal to look back on and remember the adventures they had!

Beach Reading

These are the books we pack into our beach bag alongside some SPF-50, a bottle of water, and our beach blanket. While the day beautifully passes us by, we get lost in a story. Beach reads are the purest essence of summer. These are the books that stay with us, even the most pulp of adventures or mysteries become vital during those warm and sunny hours spent at the beach.

Miss Understood by Lynette Greenfield

Poetry that firmly lands us in a place and time, Greenfield’s poems use setting to juxtapose her take on modern language. Exploring how a poet (and aren’t we all poets to some degree?) must interact with a world disinclined to elegant language using only words and images, Greenfield’s vibrant prose is engaging and enlightening without being oppressive.

Miss Understood

A Trufflesome Murder

A Trufflesome Murder by Cliff Robison

A clever “whodunit” story set against the back drop of an international culinary event, Robison spins out well defined characters who keep you guessing throughout the story. In the grand tradition of detective stories, “A Trufflesome Murder” builds on the depth of characters to create a captivating and exciting story.

Steel Town Shootout by David Lonich

Another mystery story, Lonich sets us in turn of the century steel town. Pairing deep and conflicted characters with a strong sense of place and time, “Steel Town Shootout” has all the elements to keep you reading during those mellow summer afternoons.

Steel Town Shootout

Get Real Reading

While the beach is historically the place to sit and dive into a lavish fictional world, some readers prefer keeping it a little more real. Memoir and creative nonfiction are both growing genres with excellent authors telling deeply personal stories of their trials, successes, and lives. If you’re more of a memoir reader, we’ve got you covered with these great titles.

From Fatherless to Fatherhood By Omar Epps

From Fatherless to Fatherhood by Omar Epps

Renown actor Omar Epps recently released a memoir about his childhood and his transition to fatherhood. At once touching and heartbreaking, Epps tells his own story growing up without a father, and relates that experience to his own efforts at understanding what fatherhood means.

Entrepreneurial Life: The Path From Startup to Market Leader by Robert L. Luddy

Don’t let the title fool you. Entrepreneurial Life is much more than a treatise on successfully starting and growing a business. Rather, this is the personal story of Luddy, a lifelong entrepreneur, and the many hurdles and challenges he overcame to find his success. Expertly blending personal narrative with business acumen, Entrepreneurial Life is captivating and informative.

Entrepreneurial Life by Robert Luddy

Amidst Latvians During the Holocaust by Edward Anders

Amdist Latvians During the Holocaust by Edward Anders

Straying from the lighter side of summer reading, the Kirkus Review called Amidst Latvians During the Holocaust “a testament of remarkable clarity and humanity, wrung from dark experience.” Tracing the history of his survival during World War II, Anders takes readers on a brilliant emotional journey filled with intrigue and danger, but never straying from the essential humanity of the author.

Keep the Kids Reading

While you’re kicking back, soaking in the sun and deep in your summer reading list, what are your kids up to? Are they staring with hunched shoulders at a screen? If so, get them off that device and give them some reading too! There’s never been a better time to start a vacation reading tradition than now!

The Art of Being Here by Pluto Irving & Ileena Irving

A story told through the perspectives of five individual teens, The Art of Being Here examines the very real and immediate concerns of young adults coming into their own. Fast paced and clearly written, this is a story your teen will not only relate too, they’ll find irresistible.

The Art of Being Here by Pluto Irving & Ileena Irving

The Wailing by Jennie Ford

The Wailing by Jennie Ford

Written in the burgeoning tradition called “relevant reads,” The Wailing is a tool for learning about writing and literature wrapped into a compelling and heartfelt story of one family struggling for a better life. Donating proceeds to crowd source new relevant reads, The Wailing is a powerfully emotional story with a great cause behind it.

Who Rescued Who?: Sashi’s Story by Juliana Morgan

Filled with important and relevant lessons for young readers, Who Rescued Who? is the story of a young girl and her desire for a family pet. While the story doesn’t go exactly as our young hero might have hoped, Morgan never-the-less proves that love knows no bounds. Based on a true story.

Who Rescued Who? By Juliana Morgan

Your Reading List

Lulu’s Bookstore is jammed full with new and independently published books covering a truly wild range of topics. When I think summer reading, it’s character-driven stories that take me to another world. I want to leave my day to day concerns behind and immerse myself in the story.

That’s not for everyone though. And that’s exactly what makes the Lulu Bookstore so awesome. You can find so many different kinds of books. History. Fiction. Fantasy. Memoir. Journals. Poetry. If you can imagine it, there’s a good chance a Lulu author has a book about it.

Share your summer reading list in the comments and help inspire other readers! 

Subscribe For Weekly Updates

Invalid email address
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.

3 thoughts on “What do you do with those long summer days? Read a book!”

    1. LEN, try going out on a limb and reading one of the recommendations. As the editor said, maybe doing so will expand empathy within you, and you might even surprise yourself.

  1. The main magic of reading, it seems to me, is that it awakens the imagination. One of the hypotheses, why man became so clever, separated from animals, in that he learned to imagine. And when we read, we give free rein to fantasy and imagination. Moreover, modern books in the non-fiction genre, in my opinion, in this sense are more interesting and significant than fiction. We meet in them both a detective story and elements of psychoanalysis, sometimes deep spiritual dramas unfold there. Did you know that, a quote from Wikipedia: “The history of reading dates back to the invention of writing during the 4th millennium BC. Although reading print text is now an important way for the general population to access information, this has not always been the case. With some exceptions, only a small percentage of the population in many countries was considered literate before the Industrial Revolution. Some of the pre-modern societies with generally high literacy rates included classical Athens and the Islamic Caliphate”, source -https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reading.

Join the Conversation

Scroll to Top
%d bloggers like this: