Get Ready for Summer Reading!


Some people wait all year for summer because of the warm weather, the trips to the beach, and the outdoor barbeques.  Me?  I wait all year for summer READING.  It’s the best reading of the year.  Prior to joining the team here at the Chelmsford Library, I was really into allllll the summer reading lists.  Now, I’m pretty much out of control.  I traveled an hour to An Unlikely Story in Plainville for part 2 of “Eclectic Bookaloo!” with their bookseller, Bill.  (Side note: this independent bookstore is worth the drive.  You won’t regret a visit.)  I paid my own cash money to purchase tickets to summer reading reveals by independent bookstores and for PDF summer reading lists.  My library holds list is out of control, I have double-digit numbers of ARCs (Advanced Reader Copies) for upcoming releases downloaded on my Kindle, and my husband informed me that the number of library books currently in our house necessitates an intervention.  (He’s wrong.)  I spied an ARC in the staff room that’s on one of my lists, and Jill told me I didn’t need another book.  I decided that she’s not the boss of me and took that book.  (She actually *is* the boss of me…)  There are so many amazing books releasing between May and August this year.  Join us at Book Brunch on Friday, May 17th and Friday, July 19th to hear more about some of these titles.


BUT–this post isn’t actually about any of these Summer Reading 2024 books, because new releases can also mean long hold waits.  THIS post is about Summer Reading Past–the amazing summer reading lists from 2020, 2021, 2022, and 2023.  That’s because these still-amazing books are actually available on our shelves and on our “Get Ready for Summer” display.  The great thing about these books is that if you missed them the first time around, you can easily get them right now.  Who else plans to dedicate some time Memorial Day weekend to reading a good book?  If you need one, this is where you find them!  Here are some of my favorites:


The Road to Roswell” by Connie Willis was SUCH a delightful surprise for Summer Reading 2023.  Level-headed Francie can’t believe that her college roommate is getting married in Roswell, New Mexico–complete with a true believer groom and a UFO themed ceremony and reception.  Francie rolls her eyes at the whole spectacle–right up until she herself is kidnapped by an alien.  What follows is a funny, heartwarming alien road trip adventure that would be perfect reading for a day at the beach or the pool.  It’s a fast read that you could finish in a weekend.


If you’re looking for something darker and more dramatic, try the “The Midcoast” by Adam White.  It’s spring in the tiny town of Damariscotta, a tourist haven on the coast of Maine known for its oysters and antiques.  Andrew, a high school English teacher recently returned to the area, has brought his family to Ed and Steph Thatch’s sprawling riverside estate to attend a reception for the Amherst women’s lacrosse team.  Back when they were all teenagers, Andrew never could have predicted that Ed, descended from a long line of lobstermen, or Steph, a decent student until she dropped out to start a family, would ever send a daughter to a place like Amherst.  As Andrew wanders through the Thatches’ house, he stumbles upon a file he’s not supposed to see: photos of a torched body in a burned-out sedan.   And when a line of state police cruisers crashes the Thatches’ reception an hour later, Andrew and his neighbors finally begin to see the truth behind Ed and Steph’s remarkable rise.  “The Midcoast” explores the concept of privilege, the dark side of the American dream, and the lies we tell to protect our loved ones.


Camp Zero” by Michelle Min Sterling is set in remote northern Canada, where a team led by a visionary American architect is breaking ground on a building project called Camp Zero, intended to be the beginning of a new way of life.  A clever and determined young woman, code-named Rose, is offered a chance to join the Blooms, a group hired to entertain the men in camp – but her real mission is to secretly monitor the mercurial architect in charge.  In return, she’ll receive a home for her climate-displaced Korean immigrant mother and herself. Rose quickly secures the trust of her target, only to discover that everyone has a hidden agenda, and nothing is as it seems.  Perfect for sci fi fans and those interested in climate change themed novels, this one feels like an ideal rainy day read.


You’ll find these titles and more in our “Get Ready For Summer” display in our display area.   For additional title suggestions, see the lists below: