We love relaxing with a good summer read, and if you’re in need of inspiration, Poppy Rushforth, Editor of SheerLuxe's The Brief, has drawn up a list of the best summer books to add to your shelves this season...
As the matriarch of the incredibly wealthy Shang-Young family approaches death, relatives gather from across the globe to stake their claim to the family fortune. A sharp and lavish look at the lives of the Singapore elite, this book is the final instalment in Kwan’s Crazy Rich trilogy but is equally fun as a stand-alone read.
This is a compelling and heart-breaking offering from Umrigar, the critically acclaimed author of The Space Between Us, telling the story of ten-year-old Anton, who is adopted by a wealthy white family after his mother leaves him alone in a sweltering heatwave. The narrative is rooted in the tender but complex relationship between the child and his adopted father, David, and their evolving bond as Anton grows to question his identity in a society with vast racial and political inequalities.
Straub is an expert in depicting the absurdity of everyday domesticity, and this skill shines in Modern Lovers. Following two families over the course of a heady summer, the novel is a clever and enjoyable reflection on finally leaving youth behind as a set of formerly wild 50-somethings are forced to pass the torch to the next generation.
Roy’s last novel, released over 20 years ago, was the Booker Prize-winning The God of Small Things. She returns with a sprawling tale crossing from the burgeoning metropolis of New Delhi to the forests of Central India for a love story spanning many years in what has been described as “a dazzling return to form”.
Lockwood’s dry humour is a delight in this recounting of her Catholic upbringing in the Midwest, as the burgeoning poet attempts to navigate anti-abortion rallies and virginity pledges. Years later, when an unexpected crisis forces Lockwood and her husband move back to her parents’ rectory, she must learn to cope with her family’s religious idiosyncrasies all over again.
Pearlman’s book is an astonishing collection of testimonies and poetic fragments from a diverse group of Syrians whose lives have been transformed by the Civil War. Spanning six years of conflict, these stories give a heart-wrenching, horrifying account of the real human cost of the atrocities that too often go ignored.
Part of the Hogarth Shakespeare project that sees celebrated authors re-write the bard’s most famous plays as novels, New Boy is Othello reimagined as a playground drama in a 1970s suburban Washington school. As told through the eyes of four 11-year-olds, the jealousy, betrayal and racial tensions of the source text seem particularly present and raw.
One of the biggest hits of the summer, this novel examines the 21st century epidemic of loneliness with a witty, charming flourish. Eleanor, an awkward misfit whose weekends revolve around pizzas for one and mugs of vodka, is gradually pulled into the world of other people and connects with a web of believable yet hilarious characters, helping her to overcome the sadness at the core of her story.
This summer’s natural heir to past hit psychological thrillers, Girl on the Train and Gone Girl, Girl in Snow is a taught, simmering tale of intrigue and murder. Kukafka’s icy, cutting prose put the novel ahead of the crowd. One to tear through.
Len Catron’s New York Times essay, ‘To Fall in Love with Anyone, Do This’ was one of the most read articles of 2015, detailing the 36 questions developed by sociologists that can allegedly generate romantic love between strangers. Out of that essay comes this insightful, fascinating memoir that questions the romantic myths we create and whether it’s truly possible for love to last.
Not a new release, but these captivating true tales are perfect for a quick fix while enjoying the summer sun. One on One is a chain of 101 extraordinary real-life encounters between the famous and the infamous, coming together in a project of startling ingenuity and intricacy. The Royal Family laugh at T. S. Eliot, Madonna flirts with Michael Jackson, Marilyn Monroe commissions Frank Lloyd Wright…