Riot Headline 10 Exciting Books to Read this Summer

If You Want A Brain-Melting Experience

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Amanda and Jenn discuss complicated relationships, summer books, shocking twists, and more in this week’s episode of Get Booked.

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Something Fabulous by Alexis Hall (rec’d by Mel)

Prosperity series by Alexis Hall (Jenn cannot believe she forgot!)


1. I just finished Sorrow and Bliss and A Very Nice Girl and I absolutely loved both. I’m looking for more books about complex romantic relationships like these two. While I prefer to read books about characters who are around my age (26). I enjoyed Sorrow and Bliss despite the protagonist being older because the story was told mostly through memories about her younger self. I truly fell in love with the characters in Sorrow and Bliss and hope to find another book where I can fall in love all over again. (also don’t recommend sally rooney because i’ve already read all her books and loved them. so if you thought of her you’re on the right track.)


2. I’m so excited summer is almost here! I usually have at least one summer best seller that I read by the pool. I’ve loved Summer of ‘69 and Malibu Raising. I have a few Elin Hilderbrand books on my list and anxiously waiting the new Taylor Jenkins Reed book. Can you give me a great summer read that you felt should have been a best seller but flew under the radar? I love the water so please set by the ocean or at a pool. Attaching my goodreads list. Can’t wait to hear your picks. 

Thank you!!


3. My mom, my sister, and I have been trying to do a book club for months, but are having difficulty finding a book that we’d all enjoy. While my sister likes horror, thriller, and puzzling books like Piranesi, my mom prefers books that aren’t too hard to digest and are amenable to bedtime reading. I’m pretty much in the middle, but not a huge horror fan. Also, for what it’s worth, my mom is about to retire while both my sister and I will be starting residencies in endodontics and internal medicine, so maybe a book about starting a new journey would be good? Thanks for the show! 


4. I really enjoy books that involve people adapting to live in a new or foreign culture. Not necessarily as the main subject of the book, but as an undercurrent that feeds the story. Recent books I’ve read and enjoyed are ‘In the Language of Miracles’ by Rajia Hassib and ‘Interpreter of Maladies’ by Jhumpa Lahiri. Both did an excellent job of immersing me in a new culture and making me look at life as an American from a different perspective. What else can you suggest?


5. I love books with a gigantic twist at the end that makes you want to immediately go back to the beginning and figure out how the author pulled it off.  Can you recommend your favorites that fit this criteria?  Some of my favorites are Liar, Liar, The Gentleman and the Players, And Then There Were None, (everything Agatha Christie actually), The Other Typist, Code Name Verity, multiple Sarah Waters books, The Reluctant Fundamentalist, Jennifer Johnson is Sick of Being Single, We Need to Talk About Kevin, Never Let Me Go & Remains of the Day


6. Hello Amanda and Jenn!

I’m looking for audio-books to share with my spouse. I’m a prolific reader, him not so much but we do spend our time in the car together with an audio-book. 

Books that top both our lists include Bird Box,The Bear by Claire Cameron, Joyland by S. King and Three Day Road by Joseph Boyden (that is until we learned of his cultural appropriation, no need to bring that up on the air). Books he enjoyed and I not so much were The Orenda (Boyden again), The Son by Philipp Meyer and The North Water by Ian McGuire. Some of my faves are The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman and Another Brooklyn by J. Woodson. Other books high on our list are The Jaguar’s Children by John Vaillant, The Call of the Wild, by J. London, In Order to Live by Yeonmi Park and of course, The Martian. We are just about to finish up with Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann.

If you recommend horror or blood and guts please do so with a light hand. No romance please. This is more long winded than I intended. Thanks a million!


7. Hey guys! Long-time listener, first-time requester here. I just finished the Court of Thorns and Roses series by Sarah J. Maas and I have INTENSE book hangover. I’ve picked up several things since then and nothing has tickled my fancy – I fear the dreaded reading slump. I want to read something else like what I just finished. Can you help? Things I loved about those books: 1) fantasy/fairy world building was on point; 2) unpredictable twists and turns; 3) super sexy and steamy love scenes!

Thanks guys! 


Books Discussed

Serena Singh Flips the Script by Sonya Lalli (tw domestic violence)

Shadow Tag by Louise Erdrich (cw: alcohol abuse)

The Guncle by Steven Rowley

Honey Girl by Morgan Rogers (cw: anxiety)

The Guest List by Lucy Foley (tw extreme bullying)

The Old Woman With the Knife by Gu Byeong-Mo with Chi-Young Kim (cw: harm to women and children, death of an animal)

The Expatriates by Janice YK Lee

We Need New Names by NoViolet Bulawayo (cw: animal death, harm to children)

The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides

Harrow the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir (cw: sooooo much body horror and gore)

Trouble the Saints by Alaya Dawn Johnson

The Map of Salt and Stars by Zeyn Joukhadar (cw: harm to children, sexual assault)

The Folk of the Air series by Holly Black (The Cruel Prince)

A post! Books Like A Court of Thorns and Roses

Wicked Lovely series by Melissa Marr (cw: drug use, coercion, probably things i don’t remember)