While my beach days have been basically nonexistent this summer, I haven’t let that stop me from flipping a few pages on my commute. I try to always have a book going in case of emergency (slash no free wi-fi) because there’s nothing better than getting lost in a good story (and I don’t mean Snapchat).
Keep reading for my favorite hard copies you should get your hands on.
If you like hearing from “the voice of my generation”…
Not That Kind of Girl, Lena Dunham
I’m from whatever wing of whatever party Lena is a member of. She’s been through it and knows that the twenty-something struggle is real. If you’re a fan of the show GIRLS, you’ll appreciate how Lena splits up her life story into scattered anecdotes that are both independent and heavily reliant on each other for the story, and the person, she has become. If you’re not, you’re about to be because the realness with which she retells the life story of you, your bestie and your frenemies is so relatable you’ll want to give her a hug.
If you like Chelsea Handler’s books and only think they’re funny because they’re scary relatable…
Summerlandish, Summer Land
Life is funny. It’s also gross and romantic and scary and serendipitous. Summer Land (yes, that’s her real name) gets this because she’s lived it and she’s lived it in a lot of places. I loved this book because like Summer, I take whatever life throws at me, sip my latte and suck it up. There’s no use complaining (although sometimes it does feel better) about the misadventures on the way to happiness but if her Instagram is any indication, everything turns out alright in the end.
If you have a hard time striking a work-life balance…
The Nanny Diaries, Emma McLaughlin & Nicola Klaus
For a brief stint in the late spring I was a part-time many to two magical little boys. We made cookies and played baseball and built forts. It was the most fun I had ever had since summer camp. When I picked up this book, I completely forgot about the fact that it had been made into a major motion picture (starring ScarJo and the ever-charming, Chris Evans) and pictured myself in the main character’s shoes. It made me even more grateful for great parents, great kids to watch and great relationships to model my own after. (Follow the continuing adventures here.)
If you watch more Scandal and House of Cards than you’re willing to admit…
Blood Anger, Ken Politsch
I read the first of this series a while back and loved how gritty it was. Having not been much of a thriller fan before, I didn’t see a reason why it should be any different than my love for a show with a cutthroat Congressman whose ambition can’t be quenched. Both during and after college, I spent a little time in in the D.C.-Metro area and still have a fondness for one of the best cities I’ve never lived in, Baltimore. This book will make you travel, it will make you think and it will remind you that despite all the heavy stuff, there’s still some good in this world. (You can read more about the author (and politely pressure him to write another book) here.)