Friday, 20 September 2013

My top 5 books read this Summer by Megan

Another day, another fantastic selection of books.  Today's top 5 selection has been chosen by Megan from Reading In The Sunshine.

On The Island by Tracey Garvis Graves

When thirty-year-old English teacher Anna Emerson is offered a summer job tutoring T.J. Callahan at his family's holiday home in the Maldives, she accepts without hesitation: a tropical island beats the library any day.

T.J. has no desire to leave town, not that anyone asked him. He's almost seventeen and if having had cancer wasn't bad enough, he now has to spend his first summer in remission with his family instead of his friends.

Anna and T.J. are en route to join T.J.'s family in the Maldives when the pilot of their seaplane suffers a fatal heart attack and crash-lands in the Indian Ocean. Marooned on an uninhabited island, Anna and T.J. work together to obtain water, food, fire and shelter but, as the days turn to weeks then months and finally years, Anna begins to wonder if the biggest challenge of all might be living with a boy who is gradually becoming a man...

I’m a bit late in reading On The Island as it was actually released last year, but when I got round to reading it this month I was completely blown away. For me this was a book with such a fascinating plot line and the style of writing was so addictive – before I knew it I’d read half of the book. I’ve not read a book like this before and it was different – it had me thinking about what I’d do if I was stranded on an island and I wanted to read on to find out how they would survive. Fantastic.

The Gravity Of Birds by Tracy Guzeman

Sisters Alice and Natalie were once close, but adolescence has wrenched them apart. Alice is a dreamer who loves books and birds; Natalie is headstrong, manipulative – and beautiful.

On their lakeside family holiday, Alice falls under the thrall of a struggling young painter, Thomas Bayber. Natalie, however, seems strangely unmoved, tolerating sittings for a family portrait with surprising indifference. But by the end of the summer, three lives are shattered.

Decades later, Thomas, now a world-renowned artist, reveals the existence of a portrait of himself with Alice and Natalie from that fateful summer. The sisters themselves have disappeared without a trace. And Thomas is torn between taking the secrets of the girls to the grave, or using the painting to resurrect the past before it closes up on them all for good…

I didn’t know what to expect with The Gravity Of Birds but I was surprised in a very good way. This novel is very beautifully written, the detail is fascinating and it is a truly emotional and powerful story that pulls you in from the beginning. If you are looking for a special story then this is it.

Deep Blue Sea by Tasmina Perry

Beneath the shimmering surface lies a dark secret...

Diana and Julian Denver have the world at their feet. With a blissful marriage, a darling son and beautiful homes in London and the country, Diana's life, to the outside world, is perfect. But nothing is as it seems...

When Julian dies suddenly and tragically, Diana is convinced there is more to it than meets the eye. She calls on the one person she had never wanted to see again - her sister, Rachel.

A former tabloid reporter, Rachel appears to be living the dream as a diving instructor on a Thai island. The truth is she's in exile, estranged from her family and driven from her career by Fleet Street's phone-hacking scandal.

For Rachel, Diana's request opens old wounds. But she is determined to make amends for the past, and embarks on a treacherous journey to uncover the truth - wherever it may lead...

For me – I associate Tasmina Perry’s books with the summer, and they are in my opinion the perfect summer read. Deep Blue Sea is full of secrets, suspense and surprises. Tasmina’s books always make think, and have me guessing then re-guessing right until the very end. Deep Blue Sea is perfect if you want something gripping with a bit of an edge to your summer reading.

About A Girl by Lindsey Kelk

Tess Brookes has always been a Girl with a Plan. But when the Plan goes belly up, she’s forced to reconsider.

After accidently answering her flatmate Vanessa’s phone, she decides that since being Tess isn’t going so well, she might try being Vanessa. With nothing left to lose, she accepts Vanessa’s photography assignment to Hawaii – she used to be an amateur snapper, how hard can it be? Right?

But Tess is soon in big trouble. And the gorgeous journalist on the shoot with her, who is making it very clear he’d like to get into her pants, is an egotistical monster. Far from home and in someone else’s shoes, Tess must decide whether to fight on through, or ‘fess up and run…

Lindsey Kelk is an amazing author and I find I can jump into her books at any time and be completely engrossed in them. About A Girl is perfect for the summer because it is a hilarious story about Tess – the girl who decides that when her life isn’t going to plan, she’s going to live her flatmate’s life instead, starting with jetting off to Hawaii. This novel made me cry with laughter and by the end my cheeks where aching where I was enjoying it so much! This is a fabulous book for relaxing with.

Necessary Lies by Diane Chamberlain

North Carolina, 1960. Newlywed Jane Forrester, fresh out of university, is seeking what most other women have shunned: a career. But life as a social worker is far from what she expected. Out amongst the rural Tobacco fields of Grace County, Jane encounters a world of extreme poverty that is far removed from the middle-class life she has grown up with. But worse is still to come. Working with the Hart family and their fifteen-year-old daughter Ivy, it’s not long before Jane uncovers a shocking secret, and is thrust into a moral dilemma that puts her career on the line, threatens to dissolve her marriage, and ultimately, determines the fate of Ivy and her family forever. Soon Jane is forced to take drastic action, and before long, there is no turning back.

I’ve been a huge fan of Diane Chamberlain for many years, and her latest release is in my opinion her best book so far. Necessary Lies had me hooked to every single line, I couldn’t put it down, and I was even dreaming about the characters and wondering how things would work out for them. Diane Chamberlain is such a brilliant author because in her novels she always manages to challenge my opinions of what is right and what is wrong, and as soon as I finished it I just wanted to speak to EVERYONE about it. If you want a book that will get you talking – then try Necessary Lies.

Make sure you follow Megan on Twitter and check out her blog too for more great book recommendations.

Twitter: @MeganInTheSun

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