Summer books 2013

Summer is officially here and I’m hopeful that this means there are many warm and sunny days ahead. Days that involve girly sundresses, sunset bike rides, ice cream and, of course, books. Because as much as I enjoy frolicking in the English countryside when the weather is nice, I am very partial to spending lazy summer afternoons reading in the garden. So I thought it would be fun to compile a list of books I’m in the mood to read in the summer.


This season makes me crave books that I first read in the seemingly endless summers of my childhood, even though I no longer have months of school holidays just waiting to be filled with long reading lists and frequent visits to the library. This year I long to reread The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett or Enid Blyton’s St. Clare’s books that I adored. It would also be interesting to see if I still find Jules Verne‘s books like The Mysterious Island so fascinating still.

This is not a surprise to anyone but, for me, nothing complements long, sunny days better than a P.G. Wodehouse book. He created an irresistible world, so quirky and fun, and deliciously English; his books always offer a good dose of cheer and laughter. This summer I want to start reading the Blandings Castle books and I hope they will be satisfyingly full of sunshine, stately homes and silly escapades that always end well.

On a different vein, it seems that summer lends itself to reading books set in imaginary worlds, full of magic and epic adventures. For a while I had a tradition of rereading the Harry Potter books every summer and I’m seriously considering doing that again. A few days ago I started reading The Silmarilion as I have fond memories of summer afternoons spent lost in J.R.R.Tolkien‘s world in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings trilogy and would really like to recreate that.

Finally, I’m not going on a beach holiday this summer but, if I were, I would definitely be packing a big, scary classic in my beach bag. There’s just something about the combination of the carefree atmosphere by the pool or at the beach and the words of Tolstoy or Dickens that I love. It’s also funny because people tend to find it weird when they see you reading War and Peace on the sun lounger. Among classics that I want to read soon are Les Misérables by Victor Hugo and Middlemarch by George Elliot.

And so, this is my tentative reading list for the next few months and I hope I’ll have the time to read most of these books. What books are you planning on reading? Do you have a specific genre or author that you always want to read in the summer?

P.S. Here’s my list of books for The Classics Club if you’re looking for inspiration. Also, stay tuned for what I’ll be baking and eating this summer!

Top picture: Medieval Oxford college gardens make rather wonderful reading spots, right?

8 thoughts on “Summer books 2013

  1. Literary Relish says:

    I picked up Les Miserables yesterday. I suppose with all the excitement surrounding the film my interest was piqued all over again! 🙂 not quite ready yet though…..

  2. jama says:

    You’ve listed some of my classic faves! I’m always up for a reread of The Secret Garden and it would be nice to tackle Middlemarch again. Have never read War and Peace — it was daunting when I was younger and still eludes me. Just for fun I’d like to reread all the Paddington Bear books :).

    • bookworm says:

      Oh I saw a gorgeous edition of the Paddington bear stories in a bookshop the other day, it was very tempting!
      I read War and Peace two summer ago and it literally took me all summer to finish. But it was worth it!

  3. Charlie says:

    Certainly a peaceful place to read (at least when tourists aren’t around, I suppose!) Good list of books 🙂 Last year I read winter books in summer, not really thinking about the weather, but it doesn’t work. So although I haven’t a plan per se, I do intend to stick to summery settings as much as possible.

    • bookworm says:

      There are definitely books that invoke a sort of cosy feeling, more suited to rainy winter days than warm summer days.
      And yes, I love Oxford when the tourists are around! Not that it happens very often…

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