Summer is starting to wind down.
We know, we’re not quite ready to let it go yet – or, at least, we’ve got our fingers crossed the warmer temperatures will return for a little longer.
But there’s still plenty of time for one last mini-break or lazy beach days- and what better thing to bring along than a good book?
Here are 17 brilliant books worth adding to your end-of-summer reading list this August.
They Could Have Named Her Anything by Stephanie Jimenez
Every morning, seventeen-year-old Maria Anís Rosario takes the subway an hour from her boisterous and close-knit family in Queens to her private high school on the Upper East Side, where she struggles to fit in as one of the only Latina students—until Rocky welcomes her into this new life. White, rebellious, and ignored by her wealthy parents, Rocky uses her money toward one goal: to get away with anything. To Maria, it’s a dazzling privilege.
As a bond develops between these unlikely friends, neither can see what they share most—jealousy and the desire for each other’s lives. But crackling under the surface of their seemingly supportive alliance, the girls begin to commit little betrayals as they strive to get closer to their ideals regardless of the consequences.
The Right Swipe by Alisha Rai
Rhiannon Hunter may have revolutionised romance in the digital world, but in real life she only swipes right on her career – and the occasional hookup. The cynical dating app creator controls her love life with a few key rules: Nude pics are by invitation only;
If someone stands you up, block them with extreme prejudice; Protect your heart.
Only there aren’t any rules to govern her attraction to her newest match, former sports star Samson Lima. The sexy and seemingly sweet hunk woos her one magical night… and then disappears. And when he reappears again a few months later (this time, working with her business rival), it brings forth complicated emotions and buried secrets.
Love At First Like by Hannah Orenstein
Eliza Roth and her sister Sophie co-own a jewelry shop in Brooklyn. One night, after learning of an ex’s engagement, Eliza accidentally posts a photo of herself wearing a diamond ring on that finger to her Instagram account beloved by 100,000 followers. Sales skyrocket, press rolls in, and Eliza learns that her personal life is good for business. So she has a choice: continue the ruse or clear up the misunderstanding. With mounting financial pressure, Eliza sets off to find a fake fiancé.
Fellow entrepreneur Blake seems like the perfect match on paper. And in real life he shows promise, too. He would be perfect, if only Eliza didn’t feel also drawn to someone else. But Blake doesn’t know Eliza is “engaged”; Sophie asks Eliza for an impossible sum of money; and Eliza’s lies start to spiral out of control. She can either stay engaged online or fall in love in real life.
The Turn of the Key by Ruth Ware
When Rowan stumbles across the advert, it seems like too good an opportunity to miss: a live-in nanny position, with a staggeringly generous salary. And when she arrives at Heatherbrae House, she is smitten by the luxurious ‘smart’ home fitted out with all modern conveniences, by the beautiful Scottish Highlands, and by this picture-perfect family.
What she doesn’t know is that she’s stepping into a nightmare – one that will end with a child dead and her in a cell awaiting trial for murder. She knows she’s made mistakes. But she’s not guilty – at least not of murder. Which means someone else is…
Lost You by Haylen Beck
Libby would do anything for her three-year-old son Ethan. And after a traumatic year, a holiday seems the perfect antidote for them both. Their hotel is peaceful, safe and friendly, yet Libby can’t help feeling that someone is watching her. Watching Ethan. Because, for years, Libby has lived with a secret.
Just when Libby is starting to relax, Ethan steps into an elevator on his own, and the doors close before Libby can stop them. Moments later, Ethan is gone. She thought she had been through the worst, but her nightmare is only just beginning. And in a desperate hunt for her son, it becomes clear she’s not the only one looking for him…
The Wolf Wants In by Laura McHugh
Sadie Keller is determined to find out how her brother died, even if no one else thinks it’s worth investigating. She’s on her own, delving into the dark corners of a life her brother kept hidden and unearthing more questions than answers.Eighteen-year-old Henley Pettit knows more than she’d like to about the seedy side of Blackwater, and she’s desperate to escape before she’s irreparably entangled in her family’s crimes.
As more bones are found in the woods, time is running out for Sadie to uncover the truth and for Henley to make her escape. Both women are torn between family loyalties and the weight of the secrets they carry, knowing full well that while some secrets are hard to live with, others will get you killed.
Devotion by Madeline Stevens
Ella is 26, lonely, hungry and far from home. Lonnie is also 26, but rich, talented and beautiful – with a husband and son to match.
Their fates intertwine the day Ella is hired as the family’s nanny. She finds herself mesmerised by Lonnie’s girlish affection and disregard for the normal boundaries of friendship and marriage, but soon resentment grows too.
Inland by Téa Obreht
Nora is an unflinching frontierswoman awaiting the return of the men in her life – her husband who has gone in search of water for the parched household, and her elder sons who have vanished after an explosive argument. Nora is biding her time with her youngest son, who is convinced that a mysterious beast is stalking the land around their home, and her husband’s seventeen-year-old cousin, who communes with spirits.
Lurie is a former outlaw and a man haunted by ghosts. He sees lost souls who want something from him, and he finds reprieve from their longing in an unexpected relationship that inspires a momentous expedition across the West.
Is There Still Sex in the City? by Candace Bushnell
Candace Bushnell gets personal in her new memoir – an investigation into what happens when a woman of a certain age (ok, let’s call it ‘middle’) finds herself not-so-young, free and single in the city.
MILFs, cougars, love, sex, divorce – Candace’s brilliantly funny and honest first-person account lays bare the truth behind middle-aged romance. Among other revelations we read her Modern Day Cougar Compendium, including guidance on such important matters as the Unexpected Cub Pounce (sometimes the cub does the pouncing); what to do when your age-appropriate date asks you to pay for his kitchen renovation, and the Pluses and Minuses of Being Older and Wiser.
The Perfect Wife by JP Delaney
Abbie wakes in a hospital bed with no memory of how she got there. The man by her side explains that he’s her husband. He’s a titan of the tech world, the founder of one of Silicon Valley’s most innovative startups. He tells Abbie she’s a gifted artist, a doting mother to their young son, and the perfect wife.
Five years ago, she suffered a terrible accident. Her return from the abyss is a miracle of science, a breakthrough in artificial intelligence that has taken him half a decade to achieve. But as Abbie pieces together memories of her marriage, she begins questioning her husband’s motives – and his version of events. Can she trust him when he says he wants them to be together for ever? And what really happened to her, half a decade ago?
The Girl Who Lived Twice by David Lagercrantz
The girl with the dragon tattoo is finally ready to confront her nemesis, the only woman who is evidently and in many ways her match. Salander will not wait to be hunted. For months now Salander has been closing in on her target.
She has moved from Stockholm, her hair is newly styled, her piercings are gone. She could pass for any other businesswoman. But not all businesswomen have a Beretta Cheetah beneath their jacket. They do not wield the lethal power of a hacker’s genius. They do not carry scars and tattoos to remind them that they have survived the unsurvivable.
Love, Unscripted by Owen Nicholls
For film projectionist Nick, love should mirror what he sees on the big screen. And when he falls for Ellie on the eve of the 2008 presidential election, it finally does. For four blissful years, Nick loved Ellie as much as he loved his job splicing film reels together in the local cinema. Life seemed… picture- perfect.
But now it’s 2012, Ellie has moved out and Nick’s trying to figure out where it all went wrong. With Ellie gone and his life far from the happy ending he imagined, Nick wonders if their romance could ever again be as perfect as the night they met.
I Confess by Alex Barclay
A group of childhood friends are reunited at a luxury inn on a remote west coast peninsula in Ireland. But as a storm builds outside, the dark events that marred their childhoods threaten to resurface.
And when a body is discovered, the group faces a shocking realisation: a killer is among them, and not everyone will escape with their lives….
The Summer Villa by Melissa Hill
Villa Dolce Vita, a rambling stone house on the Amalfi Coast, sits high above the Gulf of Naples amidst dappled lemon groves and the fragrant, tumbling bougainvillea. Kim, Colette and Annie all came to the villa in need of escape and in the process forged an unlikely friendship.
Now, years later, Kim has transformed the crumbling house into a luxury retreat and has invited her friends back for the summer to celebrate. But as friendships are rekindled under the Italian sun, secrets buried in the past will come to light, and not everyone is happy that the three friends are reuniting…
Home Truths by Susan Lewis
Angie Watts had the perfect ordinary family. A new home. A beloved husband. Three adored children. But Angie’s happy life is shattered when her son Liam falls in with the wrong crowd. And when her son’s bad choices lead to the murder of her husband, it’s up to Angie to hold what’s left of her family together.
Her son is missing. Her daughter is looking for help in dangerous places. And Angie is fighting just to keep a roof over their heads. But Angie is a mother. And a mother does anything to protect her children – even when the world is falling apart…
Take It Back by Kia Abdullah
Zara Kaleel, one of London’s brightest young legal minds, shattered the expectationsplaced on her by her family and forged a glittering career at the Bar. All before hanging up her barrister’s wig to help the victims who needed her most. Victims like Jodie Wolfe.
Jodie’s own best friend doesn’t even believe her claims that their classmates carriedout such a crime. But Zara does. And Zara is determined to fight for her.
Jodie and Zara become the centre of the most explosive criminal trial of the year, in which ugly divisions within British society are exposed. As everything around Zara begins to unravel she becomes even more determined to get Jodie the justice she’slooking for. But at what price?
Give Birth Like A Feminist by Milli Hill
Birth is the feminist issue that nobody’s talking about – the land that feminism forgot – but this book aims to change that. This is for where it’s most needed: the birth room, from the founder of the global Positive Birth Movement.
Milli Hill lays bare the modern experience of pregnancy and birth in the developed world through research, personal testament and the accounts of hundreds of mothers. She illustrates how medicalisation and systems laid down by a patriarchal society have developed to disempower, even dehumanise, women at the gateway to motherhood. She then prepares the current generation of women for what to expect, setting out their often overlooked options and rights.
A good book can do just about anything; from taking you on a wild and fantastical adventure to making you feel like an all-knowing super sleuth (if you figure out the killer twist).
But what’s good to read? Each week, #Bookmarked will help you out – with an insight into the best novels hitting shelves right now and other faves that everyone needs to read at least once in their lives.