Sometimes the thing about a cliché is that it is true. The truth about summer books, whether read on the sand, in our backyards or on the den couch, is that they should be light page-turners. Five-hundred-page classics need not apply. Romances, mysteries, family stories and comedies hit the spot with vacationers and staycationers and there are some terrific new ones on the shelves at the Monrovia Public Library. Beach-themed novels are always particular favorites.
Mary Kay Andrews, whose popular books are set in the South, has a new title called Beach Town. Combining show biz, romance and environmentalism, this is the story of a movie location scout who thinks she has found the perfect out-of-the-way community for a film, but the good-looking mayor wants to protect his unspoiled town.
New England is always popular beach book setting. In The Guest Cottage by Nancy Thayer, a woman puts some space between herself and her two-timing husband by renting a Nantucket beach house for herself and her kids. It turns out that someone else, naturally a handsome man, also has a lease on the same house.
Also set in Nantucket is The Rumor about a group of friends whose lives, families and husbands are much admired until rumors start swirling about each woman. Author Elin Hilderbrand, called the queen of the summer novel, has written a fast-paced and enjoyable book.
The fictional crowd of characters in Nantucket soars with Summer Secrets by Jane Green. Moving back and forth in time, this novel tells the story of a recovering alcoholic who seeks forgiveness for the harm she caused one summer many years ago. Here the charm of the setting levels the seriousness of the issues.