Our Favorite Reads of Summer
As the Summer of 2021 draws to a close, the Summit County Library staff took a moment to reflect on some of our favorite books they recently. We read everything from junior to mystery and science fiction to historical fiction!
Here are some of our favorite books from this summer:
Dear Bob and Sue by Matt & Karen Smith
Katie Koop – North Branch
"Enjoyed reading, or should I say listening, to this collection of stories about a couple’s travels to all 58 US National Parks. They share their insights as well as their missteps when it comes to visiting some of the most remote and beautiful places in our country. I became more attached to their story and adventure after learning that they met at my alma mater and still travel there to visit their family. This “guide” to our National Parks has inspired me to expand my experience and has resulted in an upcoming trip to Acadia National Park in Maine. Looking forward to sharing some “Where in the world” photos with my Summit County Library card."
The Paper Palace by Miranda Cowley Heller
Genevieve Brusilow – South Branch
"The Paper Palace takes you on an emotional journey through Elle’s life: her struggles, her friendships, the love triangle you can’t get enough of and she can’t get out of. Heller beautifully weaves the past and present together and makes you feel as though you’re in Cape Cod with a family you have known forever. It’s eloquent and exciting and even when I was only 50 pages in, I knew this was my new favorite book.”
Home Before Dark by Riley Sager
Marissa Johnson – Main Library
"Maggie Holt was the subject of a bestselling haunted house horror novel as a child- a story written by her father. Upon her father’s death, Maggie returns to the home in question to learn what was fact and what was fiction. I loved this combination of ghost story and haunted house/murder mystery. I couldn’t put it down and devoured it in two days!”
Hail Mary by Andy Weir
Rebecca Kane – Main Library
"He’s done it again! What a masterpiece. And the ending…I won’t spoil it for you, but you can’t miss this one. I’ll admit, I skimmed thought some of the detailed science passages, but what I could make sense of worked really well. I see another movie in the making. "
The Sound of Things Falling by Juan Gabriel Vásquez
Meg Quirk – South Branch
“This is a beautifully haunting read. I am gearing up for a trip to Colombia and after watching the loud and horrific historical fiction show, Narcos, this book fills in the more subtle gaps on how the country’s citizens were affected during the Drug Wars. The title shows that throughout the novel things fall; Airplanes fall, drug empires fall, an old zoo and estate that once belonged to Escobar falls into disrepair, a country falls victim to drugs and terror, and lastly bodies that are shot fall soundlessly. ”
Bicycling with Butterflies: My 10,201-mile journey following the monarch migration by Sara Dyckman
Sheila Brockmeier– North Branch Library
“I thoroughly enjoyed reading Bicycling with Butterflies! As a child spending summers on Lake Erie, I spent many hours watching butterflies. Monarchs were my favorite and I learned how to differentiate a Monarch from its “copycat” Viceroy. Sara Dyckman is passionate in her efforts to save our environment and protect many species we overlook, like reptiles, amphibians and especially Monarch butterflies. She recounts her travels by bicycle following monarchs from their overwintering location in Mexico along one of their spring migration routes to Canada and then along one of their fall migration routes back to Mexico. She shares lots of research about Monarchs, their life cycles, what is threatening their ability to thrive and how they are tagged and tracked. (I actually participated in a butterfly “tagging” event about 20 years ago.) Sara’s factual information is never dull or dry and her courage, endurance and adventurous spirit are inspiring!”
People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry
Sarah Hulsey - Main Library
“A perfect summer beach read; this quick read rom-com is a lot of fun. Not to mention Poppy has my dream job of being a travel writer. Poppy and Alex's friendship is entertaining and the ending is predictable, but a good choice if you are in the mood for a happy ending.”
Surviving Savannah by Patti Callahan
Recommended by Megan Bushman - South Branch Library
"I love reading a story that introduces me to a piece of history I never knew about before. This story introduced me to the Pulaski, the Titanic of the South. This is a dual timeline story (these always seem to be my favorites) bouncing between 1838 and present day. Both storylines quickly captured my attention and I researched my way through the book wanted to know what was fiction and what was true."
Our Dogs, Ourselves – How we live with Dogs Young Readers Edition by Anthony Horowitz
Recommended by Barb Johns - Main Library
"This book makes you stop and think about the dogs in your life. The author is a scientist who studies dogs thru the Dog Cognition Lab at Barnard College where she is an instructor/researcher. Though I didn’t agree with all the findings in the book, it did help me develop a greater understanding of our dog companions."