Top 10 books to read over summer

May 11, 2021 — by Atrey Desai and Nidhi Mathihalli

From mysteries to memoirs, we have culminated a list of the best books that everyone can find interesting.


10. “The Liars of Mariposa Island” by Jennifer Mathieu (2019 fiction)

Siblings Elena and Joaquin Finney live on Mariposa Island with their mother, a refugee fleeing the 1953 Cuban revolution. Through this book, readers explore the Finney family dynamic as the siblings attempt? to keep up their facade of a perfect life even as dark secrets and lies unravel. 


9. “The Committed” by Viet Thanh Nguyen (2021 fiction)

After author Viet Thanh Nguyen’s debut novel “The Sympathizer” won the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, he was instantly thrust into the forefront of the reading world. His next novel, “The Committed,” follows the same anonymous narrator who arrives in Paris as a refugee of the Vietnam war. Readers can expect slow-creeping suspense with a mix of metafiction and dry comedy.


8. “My Life in Full: Work, Family, and Our Future” by Indira Nooyi (2021 nonfiction)

Indira Nooyi can only be described as a trailblazer, becoming the first woman, person of color and female immigrant to run a Fortune 50 company. Rising quickly to CEO of Pepsi, she held the position for 12 years. During her time as CEO, she reformed the status quo and pushed for healthier beverages and an eco-friendly profile. Her memoir emphasizes how society can effectively integrate work and family values in a way that propels women forward.


7. “Anxious People” by Fredrik Backman (2019 fiction)

This book tells the story of a broke bank robber who attempts to rob a cashless bank and runs into an apartment showing while escaping the police. The apartment showing has seven people: a grumpy older couple, an indecisive younger couple expecting a child, an 87-year-old woman who doesn’t care about guns and a wealthy bank director who visits showings only to “be a part of the poor community.” Through revealing how the robber managed to evade the police, Backmann introduces themes like poverty and suicide, but also friendship and hope. . (Trigger Warning: suicide, depression)


Note: If you don’t like slow-developing books, skip this one.


6. “Suggested Reading” by Dave Connis (2019 fiction)

For all the bookworms out there, this is a book about books. Sixteen-year-old Clara Evans attends Lupton Academy, a private boarding school. After the principal decides to ban certain books, Clara starts an underground library. Through creating this library, Evans learns about the value of books and how the messages they convey can affect one’s life. (Trigger warning: suicide attempt)


5. “Tim Cook” by Leander Kahney (2019 nonfiction)

Tim Cook is the genius who took Apple to the next level. After the death of Steve Jobs in 2011, many were skeptical that the company could repeat its success. Journalist Leander Kahney uncovers how Cook not only kept Apple afloat but also made it into the most valuable company in the world through a combination of savvy business decisions and a commitment to core values.


4. “Now I See You” by Nicole C. Kear (2014 fiction)

At age 19, Nicole C. Kear learns that she is going blind, so she decides to carpe diem and make the most of her remaining time with vision. Told from a humorous and optimistic perspective, Kear shares the struggles she went through, but also how she relished every moment, taking nothing for granted.


3. “How to Avoid a Climate Disaster” by Bill Gates (2021 nonfiction)

Climate change is the fastest evolving environmental crisis facing the world, and more advanced technologies and legislation need to be implemented in order to mitigate this issue. In this enlightening book, the former Microsoft co-founder and CEO lays out an expansive and accessible plan to reach net-zero emissions through technology and social action. 


2. “Leviathan Falls” by James S. A. Corey (2021 fiction)

This is the 9th and final book in “The Expanse” series. Fans may recognize it from the popular TV show spinoff, “The Expanse.” The story crosses multiple genres, from hardcore science fiction to mystery and romance. Set in a futuristic Earth setting, a group of crewmates team up to expose the greatest conspiracy of the human race. Be forewarned: Books in this series averaged 500 pages.


1. “Know My Name: A Memoir” by Chanel Miller (2019 nonfiction)

Written by the victim of the internationally publicized criminal case of The People of the State of California v. Brock Allen Turner, the trial against Brock Turner for three counts of felony sexual assault, Channel Miller’s memoir “Know My Name” details her emotions and thoughts throughout the trial. This is an extremely insightful book for anyone who wants to know more about the prejudices of this case and the power imbalance at work in the justice system. 


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