What Are Some Great Books for Summer Reading?: Iowa Patch Book Club

Have some books you're gearing up to read this summer? Have some great books you've read past summers that you'd want to recommend? Tell us about them in our Patch book club discussion.

It might be because my mother is a librarian, but I've always associated summer with reading.

Even now that I have grown into adulthood from that wee lad who would read novel after novel to acquire King Size Snicker Bars, I am still getting excited to do some summer reading. I want to catch up on some books that I've been meaning to finish, such as George R. R. Martin's cult classic "Game of Thrones" novels. You may have heard of them.

But what about you? Do you have books you're looking forward to read this summer? Do you have suggestions for summer reading for readers young and old? Let us know in Comments!

Alison Gowans May 25, 2012 at 02:45 PM
First: Stephen, I will not lose all respect for you. I will just be completely baffled. Those books are so engrossing, I couldn't put them down. Second: To me, summer reading is about books that are enjoyable and fun reads. So, I plan to catch up on the Discworld novels by Terry Pratchett (further displaying my nerdiness), as well as the Number One Detective Agency books by Alexander McCall Smith. If you haven't heard of them, I highly recommend you check them out. The exploits of Botswana's only (fictional) lady detective. Delightful.
Anne Carothers-Kay May 25, 2012 at 02:48 PM
A friend of mine just finished "A State of Wonder" by Ann Patchett and recommends it. It's on the New York Times Bestseller list: http://bit.ly/MBd4UQ The Urbandale librarians have these handy lists as well for different genres: http://www.urbandalelibrary.org/page-index/?cat=6
Caron Osberg May 25, 2012 at 03:38 PM
I have recently finished two amazing books, one so popular the library lends it for a shorter period. That book is Quiet by Susan Cain. A great book for self-discovery as well as helping your children embrace their personalities. The second is The Gift of Fear by Gavin de Becker. It is on my short list of books that have changed something about my life. If you live in this world, this book should be required reading. On the to-read shelf on my www.goodreads.com shelf are mysteries by Mary Roberts Rinehart, a master of the genre, and Agatha Christie. I'd like to someday finish up their entire collections. P.G. Wodehouse stories of Bertie and Jeeves are favorite summer re-reads. This weekend kicks it off for me with The Red House by A.A. Milne! Don't forget the Urbandale library's adult summer reading program! Local merchants are so generous.
Alison Gowans May 25, 2012 at 03:55 PM
A.A. Milne? Of Winnie the Pooh fame? I don't think I realized he wrote other things!
Anne Carothers-Kay May 25, 2012 at 04:00 PM
I have read one of the Number One Detective Agency books. It was great fun. I've never been to Africa, but it seemed really vivid to me. Did you find it so Alison?
Alison Gowans May 25, 2012 at 04:05 PM
Yes! I've never been to Botswana, where the books take place, but there were so many things that were familiar to Southern Africa more generally. I think that's one of the reasons I love those books. They're kind of nostalgic for me.
Eileen Bogges May 25, 2012 at 04:20 PM
Here are my favorite children's/young adult books which have been released in recent years. All of these authors live in the Des Moines metro area The Hop by Sharelle Byars Moranville A & L Do Summer by Jan Blazanin Every Cowgirl Needs a Horse, Every Cowgirl Needs Dancing Boots, and Every Cowgirl Loves a Rodeo by Rebecca Janni Stork, Frost, and Flock by Wendy Delsol Slide by Jill Hathaway Track That Scat by Lisa Morlock
Deb Belt (Editor) May 25, 2012 at 04:52 PM
I read the first book in the Game of Thrones series on vacation this spring. It's really engrossing, but a lot to wade through. So I haven't attempted the rest of the series yet.
Jody Gifford May 25, 2012 at 05:54 PM
I will admit that I got completely sucked into "The Hunger Games" trilogy. I started and couldn't put them down. I'd recommend all three for a good summer read.
Ashlee Kieler May 25, 2012 at 06:37 PM
I also read "The Hunger Games" trilogy last year and loved it! Another trilogy that I read and enjoyed was The Millennium Series books - "Girl With The Dragon Tattoo" etc. They are long, which can be intimidating, but I found them to be really captivating. Recently, I've been on a huge comedian kick - for a raunchy laugh read the Chelsea Handler books. I also enjoyed "Bossypants" by Tina Fey and Mindy Kaling's book "Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me". Also, Heather Gudenkauf - an Iowa writer- has two fabulous books out "The Weight of Silence" and "These Things Hidden". I really enjoyed both books!
Nikki Staley May 27, 2012 at 01:33 AM
I also read the Hunger Games series and reccomend them. Being the mother of 4small children, it's sometimes hard to get out of the children's room. I found that just because a book is labeled "children's " doesn't mean it should be written off. Brandon Mull is a very good writer. His Fablehaven series is full of adventure and lessons for all ages.
Sarah Prineas May 27, 2012 at 02:44 AM
My summer read is Let's Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson (the Bloggess). *Hilarious* and weird.
Sarah Prineas May 27, 2012 at 01:14 PM
And, for your kid readers, don't miss Ellen Boggess' Mia books, starting with Mia the Meek!
Caron Osberg May 28, 2012 at 03:43 PM
Yes, it's the same A.A. Milne!
IC Patch Submissions Poster June 13, 2012 at 04:06 AM
The Iowa City Book Festival Submitted this Summer Reading List for me to share: Check out our summer reading list: Teen: Iowa Princesses by Molly Backes Fiction: My American Unhappiness by Dean Bakapoulos Fiction: Love and Other Delusions by Larry Baker Non-Fiction: Stories From Up Country Lane by Evelyn Birkby Non-Fiction: By the Iowa Sea by Joe Blair Fiction: Frost by Wendy Delsol Fiction: Red, White and Blood by Christopher Farnsworth Memoir: Sheepish: Two Women, Fifty Sheep, and Enough Wool to Save the Planet by Catherine Friend Fiction: Heading Out to Wonderful by Robert Goolrick Fiction: Midwest Farmers Daughter: In Search of an American Icon by Zachary Micheal Jack Science: The Disappearing Spoon by Sam Kean Fiction: Theft by BK Loren Fiction: The Chaperone by Laura Moriarty Science/Medicine: The Beautiful Unbroken by Mary Jane Nealon Fiction: The Sharp Time by Mary O'Connell Mystery: The Risk Agent by Ridley Pearson Fiction: The Devil All the Time by Donald Pollock Non-Fiction: A Few Small Moments by Carol Scott-Conner Non-Fiction: Everything is Going to Be Great: An Underfunded and Overexposed European Grand Tour by Rachel Shuckert Fiction: This Bright River by Patrick Somerville Science: Wicked Bugs by Amy Stewart Non-Fiction: My Two Moms by Zach Wahls Science: Planet of Viruses by Carl Zimmer
Rob Daniel June 15, 2012 at 02:46 PM
I'm currently reading "In a Sunburned Country," native Iowan Bill Bryson's travelogue about Australia. So far, his writing has been everything I ever heard it would be.
L Key June 17, 2012 at 05:51 AM
I loved "The Game of Throne Series" but lately have been on an audiobook kick (in addition to my reading). I like listening to books on my 2 hour walks everyday. I listened to all the George R R Martin books (the narrator is excellent), I listened to the entire series of Stephen King's "Dark Tower" (LOVED IT) again the narrator was superb), also listened to "The Hunger Games" - narrator made this all fresh and new for me and I did not want it to end. For young readers (and young at heart as myself) a "must listen" (or read!) are all of the Artemus Fowl series. An Irish writer of a plethora of delightful characters, with a plot that includes fairy detectives, colorful dwarves, and a geek satyr all helping (or hindering) the solution of mysteries that need solved, read by Irishman makes for hours upon hours of delightful entertainment. This series is like giving your brain a vacation. Now listening to Fantasy writer, Scott Lynch's "The Gentleman Bastards" series. I am reading (in real book form) "The Hill Bachelors" by William Trevor and "The Friends of Eddie Coyle" by George V Higgens. I love summer because there are so many opportunities to both read and to listen to books. If you haven't tried audiobooks check out the Iowa City Public Library's e-media lending library. I have borrowed e-audiobooks, e-kindle and Nook books all while at home using the Overdrive Media software. Thanks for the suggestions!


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »