Riot Headline 10 Exciting Books to Read this Summer

5 New Books That Will Transport You to the Beach

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Michelle Regalado

Staff Writer

Michelle Regalado is a New York-based digital writer and editor. When she's not hunting down her next must-read book (recommendations are welcome!) or writing about all things pop culture, you can probably find her drinking iced coffee and hanging out with her dog, Lola. Follow her on Twitter: @mar8289

Looking for a beach read to whisk you into summer? These atmospheric new releases will transport you to seaside settings around the country, from the island paradise of Key West to the coastline of Maine to the bluffs of Martha’s Vineyard. Whether you’re looking for a heartfelt romance, a generation-sweeping debut, or a tantalizing family drama, these captivating beach-set books will make you feel like you’re at the shore — even while reading them from the comfort of your own home. 

If you’re daydreaming of a tropical getaway (or need an engrossing read to pack in your suitcase), here are some of the best new summer books to transport you to the beach. 

Anchored Hearts by Priscilla Oliveras

After spending years away from his hometown, award-winning photographer Alejandro Miranda decides to return to Key West while on the mend from an injury. But his long-awaited homecoming means more than just returning to his relatives and the beloved Cuban restaurant they own — it also means finally facing the girl he left behind years ago. Full of heart and warmth, Oliveras’s latest book in her Keys to Love series is a delightful story of family, romance, and second chances.

Summer On the Bluffs by Sunny Hostin

TV host Sunny Hostin’s debut novel centers on Wall Street power couple Ama and Omar, who spend every summer in their gorgeous home in Oak Bluffs,  an exclusive Black beach community on Martha’s Vineyard. With no children of their own, the duo typically bring along their three goddaughters, who they’ve always taken care of, despite that they have no apparent connection to their family.

Following Omar’s death, Ama invites the three now-grown women to spend one last summer in Oak Bluffs, with the promise that she’ll share some answers and choose one of them to inherit the house by the end of the season. Summer on the Bluffs is the first in a planned series set in Oak Bluffs that will feature both new and returning characters.  

That Summer by Jennifer Weiner

Jennifer Weiner returns with another engaging and twisty read to add to your TBR list. In her latest novel, two seemingly very different women, Diana and Daisy, develop an unlikely friendship after one receives several emails meant for the other. But what seems like a random coincidence becomes something far more complicated as their relationship develops and details of their connection come to light. At once suspenseful and heartfelt, That Summer goes far beyond your average beach read to explore friendship, trauma, and coming to terms with your past. 

Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid

In August 1983, the four adult children of rockstar Mick Riva are celebrating the end of the summer by throwing their infamous annual  party in Malibu. But as the evening unfolds, family secrets are revealed, forever changing the dynamic of the group. Moving back and forth between the past and the present day, Taylor Jenkin Reid’s latest book deftly explores what it means to be family and the bonds that shape you. 

Haven Point by Virginia Hume

Virginia Hume’s stunning debut novel follows three generations of women who spend their summers at a seaside town on the coast of Maine. While grandmother Maren has become fond of the community that her husband introduced her to after marriage, her daughter and granddaughter both find it snobbish and petty. Told in three timelines, set in 1944, 1970, and 2008, the sweeping family saga details each women’s experience with the home and the devastating secret that they must confront together. 

Wondering what makes a book a beach read? Check out our beach read primer here and our picks for best beach reads of 2020.