Here Are the Books SwearBy Editors Are Reading This Summer

There's something about reading in the summertime. While you might not necessarily have more hours in the day to relax, the warm sun reminds us to slow down a bit. What better way to do that than with an entertaining read. Whether you're still sheltering-in-place at home with nowhere to go or looking for the perfect book to bring along to a beachy retreat, these books will not let you down. From a coming-of-age story about a young woman living in New York City during the '40s to a book about two Nigerian sisters (one of whom is a serial killer), these books — hand-picked by our trusty SwearBy editors — promise a good time.

City of Girls: A Novel by Elizabeth Gilbert

“Set in New York City over the summer of 1940, this coming-of-age story brings together adventure, romance, friendship, and some major drama as 19-year-old Vivian Morris navigates her new life in Manhattan. This book reads and feels like a sweet summer fling that’s full of parties, wild nights out with friends, and a little mischief. While it’s a lengthy book, you’ll become so wrapped up in Vivian’s exciting new life and all of the colorful characters in it, that you won’t want it to end. And though there’s plenty of revelry, it’s the sweet friendships and Vivian’s inspiring evolution that make me want to read it over and over again.”— Jessica Leigh Mattern

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

“Based in coastal North Carolina, “Where the Crawdads Sing” is the story of Kya, the town’s “Marsh Girl,” and her entanglement in a local murder. Part romance and part mystery, this beautifully written story will have you guessing until the end. Full disclosure: I finished the whole book during one-weekend beach trip so definitely bring a back-up novel for longer vacation stays.” — Stephanie Perry

Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid

“I breezed through this novel in a matter of days. Not only is it filled with all of the juicy personal drama required of a sizzling beach reach, but it also confronts you with powerful observations about race and class that will stay with you long after the summer is over.” — Christie Calucchia 

Women Who Run with the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype by Clarissa Pinkola Estés

“I’ve re-read this book at least once a year since it was first gifted to me and right now, I’m revisiting it as a summer read. I always feel realigned with my most authentic self after reading it in such a way I wish I had dozens of copies to hand out to every woman I know. I guess this is a close second, though.” — Jayla Andrulonis

Autumn: A Novel by Ali Smith

“Yes, it might seem strange to be reading a book titled “Autumn” in the summer, but hear me out. Written by one of the U.K.’s most esteemed writers, Ali Smith, Autumn touches on the themes of friendship and surprising encounters that lead to powerful personal connections. The book looks at the unlikely bond between two people who couldn’t be more different: Daniel, an old man on the brink of death, and Elisabeth, an art lecturer in her thirties who’s increasingly disillusioned by the world in which she lives. Smith dissects their relationship against the backdrop of Britain’s Brexit summer in 2016 and the European refugee crisis, but the heavy themes are balanced by her smooth and flowy prose. The first of a quartet, Autumn is followed by Winter and Spring, with Summer set to be published this upcoming August. It’s the perfect book to read on a summer day when you prefer to just stay indoors and reflect on all the people whose lives have had a huge impact on you, while basking in the sun’s warm glow.” — Nina Huang 

The Woman in the Window by A. J. Finn

“I love nothing more than a good thriller, and this one kept me captivated from the start. Not only was it a real page-turner with plenty of twists and turns, but you really become attached to the main character Anna and want to help her decipher what’s real and what’s not. All-in-all it’s a great beach read that you won’t be able to put down. Plus, the movie version starring Amy Adams and Julianne Moore is being released later this year, so if you haven’t read this yet, now is the perfect time.” — Rebecca Carhart

Raven Smith's Trivial Pursuits

“Vogue writer Raven Smith’s obsessions with the minutiae of daily life, Sysiphean stabs towards social status, and Instagram nativism pour out in this just-as-obsessively penned collection of essays (of sorts!) in language that’s been honed so sharp you don’t even feel the moment it splits you open. If you’re fluent in internet allusions, you’ll burn through this one like butter. If not, it might not make any sense at all, honestly.” — Laura Reilly

My Sister, the Serial Killer

“Dark, but incredibly entertaining! This story of two Nigerian sisters — one of whom happens to be a serial killer — and how family loyalty and self-preservation impacts their relationship. I breezed through it, devouring Braithwaite’s sardonic humor and engrossing writing, then kept thinking of the dynamic characters long after I finished. It’s a great summer read that will capture your attention from beginning to end.” — Katie Macdonald 

I am Karla, a former Cosmetologist, and current Office Maven. As you know, life moves pretty fast these days, I would rather grab some great product recommendations from you, instead of spending too much time shopping...who has time for that! I spend my days with my kids, dogs, husband, and career while still trying to find time to travel and spend time with friends.