This winter, you can’t go to the beach or the sun because it’s cold. As a result of the pandemic, many people are staying home and wishing they could go somewhere warmer. Those books will take you to some of the world’s most exotic and beautiful beaches, so don’t worry about that.
BEACH READ (Berkley) by Emily Henry
The beach: The eastern shores of Lake Michigan
Book: A romance writer who has lost her faith in love goes on a three-month beach vacation where she meets a writer who is in a slump of his own. They decide to write each other’s books in order to break through writer’s block and get back to writing. Because of this, this book is the perfect book to read to make you feel better in these hard times.
SAINT X (Celadon Books) by Alexis Schaitkin
The beach: The fictional tropical island of Saint X
The book: This haunting debut is about a college student who goes missing while on vacation with his family on a beautiful island. As in the real-life case of Natalee Holloway, who went missing during a senior class trip to Aruba in 2005, the story is very similar to that of Natalee. It’s a mix of a literary thriller and a travel brochure for the Caribbean. Saint X will keep you reading.
FATAL INHERITANCE (Washington Square Press) by Rachel Rhys
The beach: The south of France
Book: If something seems too good to be true, chances are it is. A woman in England in the 1940s escapes her marriage when a wealthy stranger leaves her a mysterious inheritance. To find out what it is, she travels to the south of France where she finds an enchanting villa overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. Her life, which was once gray and gloomy, is now glamorous and dangerous when people start to fight for her money.
THE GOLDEN HOUR (HarperLuxe) by Beatriz Williams
The beach:Second World War-era Nassau
The Duke and Duchess of Windsor, who almost brought the British monarchy to its knees five years earlier, are one of the most infamous couples of the time. The Duke and Duchess of Windsor were also spies and traitors in the Bahamas in 1941. This is a story about the rise and fall of a Royal couple. The stakes become very high in the Caribbean paradise when an ugly, and even treasonous, secret is found beneath the glitter of Wallis and Edward’s marriage.
SUMMER OF ’69 (Little, Brown) by Elin Hilderbrand
The beach: Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard
During the book: It’s 1969, and things are going through a big change. A lot happens in the United States. Ted Kennedy crashes a car on Chappaquiddick, and Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first people to land on the moon. And just like their country, the Levin family of Nantucket goes through a dramatic change during that historic and hot summer when everything changed.
THE LAST BOOK PARTY (Macmillan) by Karen Dukess
The beach: Cape Cod
There is a lot of nostalgia in this book, but it’s also very easy to read. When a young writer wants to be a writer but doesn’t know where to start, The Last Book Party is a good place to start. It’s set in the publishing world of New York and the beaches of Truro, a summer vacation community on Cape Cod.
EAST END (Park Row) by Jason Allen
The beach: The Hamptons
Billionaire: His lover died and he tried to cover it up. The Hamptons home is beautiful and has a beautiful view of the water. It’s fun to read about scandals, secrets, and drug use among the rich and famous, as well as the cultural differences between them and the people they hire.
SIRACUSA (Blue Rider Press) by Delia Ephron
The beach:Siracusa, Sicily
What does the book say?
It’s a psychological thriller that you can’t put down. It’s about a couple’s vacation that goes terribly wrong when two families go to the seductive, ancient Sicilian town of Siracusa, which is on the Ionian Sea.
A DROP IN THE OCEAN (She Writes Press) by Jenni Ogden
The beach:Australia’s Great Barrier Reef
“The book” Anna Fergusson, a Boston neuroscientist, is 49 years old, and the funding for her research lab runs out. This leaves her with no choice but to move on. On a whim, she rents a small cottage on Australia’s Turtle Island. She has a vague plan to write a book. On the island, which is full of wildlife, seabirds, and Green turtles, she finds not only literary inspiration, but true love and a chance to start over.
MAINE (Vintage) by J. Courtney Sullivan
Book: It’s summer and living isn’t easy. This fun story about secrets, irrational love, and sibling rivalry is about three generations of women who come back to their family home on three acres of beautiful beachfront land in Maine. It also has a lot of family dysfunction. From the author of Commencement.
OUTER BANKS (Harper Collins e-books) by Anne Rivers Siddons
The beach: Nag’s Head, North Carolina
Book: Four women who met at a southern university in the 1960s plan a reunion at a beach house 30 years later. They hope to recapture the magic of those early years, before a cruel betrayal sent them all over the world.
THE PRINCE OF TIDES (Dial Press) by Pat Conroy
The beach:Coastal South Carolina
Low country water is marshy and hard to navigate, which is the perfect setting for Wingo family’s traumatic events and complicated relationships. An instant hit book turned into a movie in 1991, with Nick Nolte and Kate Nelligan in the lead. Barbra Streisand was in the movie as well.
THE OLD MAN AND THE SEA (Scribner) by Ernest Hemingway
The setting: The Straits of Florida, Cuba
In this short book, the sea is very much a character. This is Hemingway’s last major work of fiction. One of his best-known works, the book tells the story of Santiago, an old Cuban fisherman who fights with a huge marlin far off the coast of Cuba. It won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1954.
BRIGHTON ROCK (Vintage Classics) by Graham Greene
The beach:Brighton, England
Despite the title, the book is about a group of gangsters who aren’t very sweet in this 1930s murder thriller set in a British seaside town. The book is called “The Sweets of the Sea.”
TO THE LIGHTHOUSE (Mariner) by Virginia Woolf
The beach:Isle of Skye, Scotland
There are a lot of great English-language novels in the Modern Library’s top 100 list, and this one is No. 15. Woolf’s philosophical modernist classic is about the Ramsay family and their trips to an old beach house on the Isle of Sky.