Books for every kind of holiday…

by Lara

Ah, summer! BBQ in the evening! Mosquito bites! Tackling that to-read pile waiting on the bedside table! Do you prefer to dive into crime fiction or do you want to take advantage of all those extra hours to finally get some one-on-one time with The Recognitions? Instead of recommending a list of “summer reads”, we would like to offer a different kind of selection, one that would be, as much as possible, in sync with the kind of holiday you are taking (or have already taken during the summer). Ready?

HOPPING FROM WEDDING TO WEDDING

Less by Andrew Sean Greer

And usually, it’s not your own wedding. It might even be one of your ex’s or your nemesis’s wedding (but why would you go, or even be invited to your nemesis’s wedding anyway?). In Andrew Sean Greer’s latest novel Less (Lee Boudreaux Books), its eponymous character Arthur Less is at the tail end of his forties, and just received a invitation to his former boyfriend’s wedding. What to do now?

RELAXING IN A SMALL, QUIET TOWN

The Locals by Jonathan Dee

Ahh, yes, the quietness. Away from the madness and the drama of the city. Nothing ever happens there. Until it does. In Jonathan Dee’s latest novel The Locals (Random House), a quiet New England town is the setting for some heavy financial skulduggery that disrupts the daily life of the locals. Not so quiet now…

ROAD-TRIPPING

Eat Only When You're Hungry by Lindsay Hunter

Do we ever only take the road because deep down, we’re looking for something? At least that much is clear in Lindsay Hunter’s novel Eat Only When You’re Hungry (Farrar, Straus and Giroux), in which 58-year-old Greg drives through America looking for his son, who has been missing for a few weeks and is, also, an addict. And for the rest, we’ll take the road with Greg. 

STUDYING AT THE LIBRARY

The Seventh Function of Language by Laurent Binet

It might be 5pm, and you might have been sitting there for, what, six hours now? Studying Phenomenology or French Nouveau Roman, and feeling like your brain is mush from too many concepts? In Laurent Binet’s The Seventh Function of Language (Farrar, Straus and Giroux), when Roland Barthes dies after having been struck by a laundry van, the cozy bubble of French academia suddenly bursts. And the atmosphere slides dangerously from French theory to conspiracy theories… 

KEEPING IT CULTURAL AT THE MUSEUM

Impossible Views of the World by Lucy Ives

A museum is always a worthy destination. Whether you’re not going on holiday and just relying on Vermeer and Monet to take your mind away for a bit, or actually visiting and happily losing yourself in discovering a new museum, you cannot go wrong. Of course, the experience is ten times more exciting when you work in the museum, that you just noticed that your co-worker has gone missing, and that you have decided you will unravel the mystery of a 19th century map. Which is exactly what happens in Lucy Ives’s novel Impossible Views of the World (The Penguin Press). Gladly embarking upon this journey.

STAYING HOME AND AVOIDING EVERYONE

Mrs. Fletcher by Tom Perrotta

Staying home, avoiding everyone, interacting solely through a screen, watching adult videos… This might be frowned upon, but this is what Tom Perrotta’s main character prefers doing in his latest novel Mrs. Fletcher (Scribner). And what if this unexpected activity revealed things about herself she would have never guessed?