Beachy Reads & Sunshine Dreams.

Memorial Day has come and gone here in the 'hood which means one thing:  SUMMER!  OK, maybe three things....summer, sunshine and my BIRTHDAY!  I am such a summer baby at heart because I love anything that is related to the summer months and I especially enjoy the beach.  You're probably asking yourself, "then why the frack do you live in Ogden, Utah?"  To which I would answer, "uh....have you been to the Great Salt Lake?  We got beach."  Bazinga!  I dream of the beach almost daily and I especially dream of a vacation that includes the beach and a solid reading list and no cell service.  Just typing it makes my heart sing.  

Recently, I read a blog that I found on Twitter that addressed the topic "if I was stranded on a beach this is what I would read" or something like that....I'm not much of a reader, but when I am, I like the kinds of books that would be PERFECTO for a lazy day on the beach and the kind that I can escape in the plot and dream away.  Here is my current list for you to enjoy & maybe, just maybe, you will find one that can help you escape to beachy, sunshine dream land.  Cue twinkle music....or the sexy cabana boy with an umbrella'd drink....depending on the day.....and the dream.....
  • The Girls' Guide To Hunting & Fishing by Melissa Bank:  This is at the top of the list for a reason.  It is my all-time favorite modern book and it is the plot that I instantly escape in to as soon as the heroine starts talking smack about her brother's snobby girl friend and says, "don't mean to acid rain on your parade."  I wrote a blog post all about the book and you can find it HERE.  
  • Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell: This is a delightful YA read.  My lovely friend on Instagram recommended this book so I thought, why not!?  It is a sweet, but raw story of two teens who are the outcasts in their own crowd, but the perfect match for each other.  It also doesn't hurt that Eleanor is a feisty redhead.  If you have issues with the F-bomb, you may want to shy away from this one, but I'm telling you, you'll miss out on a super sweet story that is a thinker and heart warmer.  
  • Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert:  This non-fiction book was made famous by the movie starring Julia Roberts.  I am a weirdo and don't usually read the book before the movie like most normal people.  This was the case with Eat Pray Love and the reason I decided to read the book was purely because of the India scenes in the movie.  They were powerful and my friend who took me to see the movie said the book was ten times better than the movie so I was in.  She wasn't kidding either.  The book is enlightening and such a refreshing read.  I will also let you in on a little secret....the audio book is just as fab because Elizabeth is the person who reads it.  Talk about rejuvenating.  So if you were underwhelmed by the movie (most of us) and didn't give the book a shot, change your ways!  You'll be glad you did.  
  • The Impossible Lives of Greta Wells by Andrew Sean Greer: This is the most recent addition to my list of beachy reads and I wrote about it briefly in last week's blog post HERE.  This book was a lucky find on the Under $10 iBooks list and I was hooked from the first page to the very very end.  It is a time travel novel with a twist of dealing with death and the pain that comes when untimely death occurs.  However, it also has a historical/period fiction flair and the time travel that occurs because of electric shock therapy in an effort to work through depression.  Intriguing and gripping.  The reviews were divided on Amazon and Good Reads, but I loved it.  
  • Jane Austen Ruined My Life by Beth Patillo: This is a HILARIOUS book.  My sister-in-law's mom had this book in her collection and the cover and the title caught my eye.  She ended up giving me her copy and I was glad she did because I've shared it with a number of friends.  The main character is a professor and after a messy divorce and some career disappointments, she decides to head to England for some R & R.  What actually happens is she realizes that Jane Austen's depiction of relationships and love was all a load of bull and it turns her to have some internal rediscovery.  
  • The Friday Night Knitting Club by Kate Jacobs: This is a feel-good chick book about true friendship and girlfriends who stick together.  The main character is a single mom who owns a knitting store.  She and her daughter have had a roller coaster of struggles throughout their life, but they find comfort in knitting.  They have a knitting club that joins them after hours to talk about their lives and give each other encouragement.  
and last but definitely NOT least......
  • Love, Lucy by Lucille Ball: Who doesn't love a good biography and this lady loves Lucy.  I really enjoyed this book which is the only book Lucille Ball ever wrote.  Lucille Ball was ahead of her time as a woman professional, especially in Hollywood and she was very successful her entire adult life.  She was also a devoted mother and wife.  I've learned lots about her over the years as I've watched her many syndicated TV shows and the biggest fact is that she and Desi Arnaz created "I Love Lucy" because they wanted to divert the attention on their terribly strained marriage by having a comedy about a crazy redhead and her Cuban musician husband.  Luci and Desi loved each other deeply, but ultimately they were better business partners than lovers.  I wrote a blog surrounded around her famous quote, "once in his life, every man is entitled to fall madly in love with a gorgeous redhead."  You can read that post HERE.  
Well, there you have it.  I continue to enjoy good reads and even better dreams of the beach whilst enjoying summer in the 'hood.  I would love to hear your favorites so feel free to comment below and share!  I am grateful for books that can take me away on adventures of silliness, friendship and love.  Who can resist a small dose of Mr. Darcy mockery or an older man crush of great proportions?  I know I can't!  

The moral of the story:  Life can be a little beachy on its own so why not escape in a good read and dream of days gone by or fictional hotties who sweep their lady loves off their feet.  

Until next time, my lovelies!

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