There’s something about summer that just begs for a glass of wine, the coast, and a few great books. A weekend getaway in Florence is great, but being able to sit down in the sun and go on another adventure without ever having to move an inch is what summer reading is all about. That’s why we have taken it upon ourselves to dig far and wide to make a 2019 Summer Reading List, so you can come to us prepared and with a few good books in hand. Here are some suggestions we’ve collected from a variety of sources.

2019 Summer Reading List

We sure hope there’s a book here that sparks your interest (and joy). Don’t forget to tell us what you think if you read any of the books!

Dune by Frank Herbert

Genre: Sci-Fi

This science-fiction series was inspired by a trip to the Florence, Oregon, dunes, which is pretty cool. In 1959, Frank Herbert was walking along the dunes studying the ecology for an upcoming magazine story about how the US government was going to stabilize the shifting sands by introducing European beach grass. What Herbert learned during his research inspired him to write the book Dune and the entire series that followed.

Dune, taking place on the planet Arkkasis, is about a boy named Paul Atreides. Atreides is heir to a noble family who rules an inhospitable world that only has one item of value: the spice “melange,” which is capable of extending the life and enhancing consciousness. When House Atreides is betrayed, Paul goes on a journey full of adventure and mystery.

This adventurous story brilliantly blends environmentalism, politics, and mysticism. Dune was the first book to win the Nebula Award, has won the Hugo award, and is currently being made into a major motion picture in the Dune series with actors Jason Momoa, Josh Brolin, Zendaya, and more.

Enjoy this adventure on one of our balconies that face the very dunes that inspired the book series. You’re sure to love it!

The Most Fun We Ever Had by Claire Lombardo

Genre: Fiction

This book takes place in 2016 and begins with a set of flashbacks that recount Marilyn and David’s perfect, idyllic relationship. Unfortunately, their four daughters have not had the same luck in love. Read their personal accounts of love, which show just how complicated loving those close to you can be.

Searching for Sylvie Lee by Jean Kwok

Genre: Mystery

Sylvie Lee flew to the Netherlands to be by her ailing grandmother’s side. She was never seen again. Amy, Sylvie’s little sister, decides to take matters into her own hands and retrace Sylvie’s footsteps. In doing so, she discovers family secrets that turn her world upside-down. This book is the perfect mystery that will make it hard to put down as you wonder what will happen next.

The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead

Genre: Historical Fiction

Elwood Curtis, a young man abandoned by his parents and raised by his grandma in the 1960s, was about to enroll in the local black college. A simple choice and mistake changed his plans as he was sentenced to a juvenile reformatory called the Nickel Academy. Stunned by the horrors he endured at Nickel Academy, Curtis clung to what Dr. Martin Luther King meant when he said, “Throw us in jail and we will still love you.” Based on a real reform school in Jim Crow’s south, this book gives the devastating account of what happened to thousands of young black boys.

The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert

Genre: Mystery

If you’re looking for plot twists, shockers, and surprises, this is for you. Alice, a seventeen-year-old, embarks on the adventure of her life when she begins looking for her missing mom, after her grandmother passed away alone in her estate, the Hazel Wood. Alice’s only lead is a message her mother left behind: “Stay away from the Hazel Wood.”

All the Ugly and Wonderful Things by Brynn Greenwood

Genre: Romance

If you like a beauty-from-ashes type of romance book, this is for you. Wavy, a pre-teen who is the daughter of a drug dealer, struggles to raise her eight-year-old brother, Donal, all while being the only responsible person around. One night, while stargazing, Wavy witnesses the motorcycle crash of one her dad’s thugs and forms an unusual friendship with him. Kellen, an ex-con with tattoos all over, has a heart of gold and takes to caring for Wavy and Donal on his own.

By the time Wavy becomes a teen, Kellen is the only safe and redemptive person left in her world of crime, drugs, and pain. As time goes on, their relationship turns into something that challenges what we think about love while breathing life, love, and hope into an otherwise lifeless, hopeless, and loveless world.

The River by Peter Heller

Genre: Adventure

Two best friends, Wynn and Jack, embark on a canoeing adventure in the Maskwa River in Northern Canada. Expecting leisurely paddling, blackberry picking, and stargazing, Wynn and Jack are in for a surprise when a wildfire changes everything. They begin to paddle with urgency when they hear a man and woman fighting, so they go to warn them about the fire. However, when they arrive where their voices were coming from, the don’t find anyone. A day later, one man shows up in a canoe alone. Was this one of the people they heard fighting? And where is the woman? The adventure of wilderness survival sprinkled with mystery makes this book the perfect summer read.

Book a Room and Finish a Book

Book a room at the award-winning River House Inn and enjoy an escape from reality with a book and everything Florence, Oregon, has to offer. And don’t forget to tell us what you’re reading in the comments!


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