Beach Bums

Booklist – June 2024

The tradition of reading by the seaside is likely just as old as the tradition of getting away to soak up the sun on one this world’s many beautiful beaches. Reading on vacation, particularly with our toes buried in the warm sand and an ice cold fruity or fizzy beverage in hand, is unlike any other reading we do all year.  Beach reads help us escape to a place where we can sit down, unplug, and relax with no interruptions.

The plots of the books we read on vacation should meet one simple requirement, pure pleasure! This booklist is intended to aid your escape to the beach no matter what your plans are this summer.



Force of Nature: Mind, Body, Sout, and of Course, Surfing by Hamilton Laird

Surfer Laird Hamilton outlines strategies and philosophies that have contributed to his successful career including his exercise and nutrition regimens, his family, and nature. He also describes his various surfboards and seeks advice from other inspiring and successful people.


The Salt Path: A Memoir by Raynor Winn

The author recounts how she and her terminally ill husband set out to walk the South West Coast Path from Somerset to Dorset. She describes the challenges and joys of their journey through a landscape of cliffs, sea, and sky. Some strong language.

BR023372, DB099409

Why We Swim by Bonnie Tsui

A journalist (and lifelong swimmer) explores the many reasons why humans, who are not natural-born swimmers, have always been drawn to water by sharing stories of swimming experiences.


The Beach: The History of Paradise on Earth by Lena Lencek

Describes the geological development of beaches and their use throughout history by different cultures. Compares recreational and therapeutic activities associated with shorelines from ancient Roman times to the twentieth century. Predicts a dim future for coastal playgrounds as a result of pollution, overdevelopment, and storms.



The Summer of Songbirds by Kristy Woodson Harvey

Nearly thirty years ago, in the wake of a personal tragedy, June Moore bought Camp Holly Springs and turned it into a thriving summer haven for girls. But now, June is in danger of losing the place she has sacrificed everything for and must rely on her family and friends to save it.

BR023359, DB100745

The Next Great Jane by K.L. Going

Jane Brannen wants to be a famous author just like Jane Austen. When a bestselling author comes to Jane’s small coastal town with her son, Jane plans to ask her the secret to literary success but thinks she misses her chance.  For grades 5-8, but sure to delight Austen fans of all ages.


Welcome to Beach Town by Susan Wiggs

Nikki Graziola returns to her hometown of Alara Cove after a scandal at her high school graduation drove her into exile for several years. She wonders if joy and redemption are possible among her old friends in the beach town where her blunder has not been forgotten.


The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman

On an island one hundred miles from the mainland, Australian lighthouse keepers Isabel and Tom Sherbourne discover a boat carrying a dead man and a crying baby. The decisions they make that day come back to haunt them several years later.


Tender is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald

An American psychiatrist falls in love with a beautiful, wealthy patient in this novel about American expatriates in the French Riviera. He reacts against her great dependence on him as both husband and doctor before he realizes (too late) his equal dependence on her.

Image Description: A beautiful beach scene. Blue sky with high wispy clouds hangs over the clear turquoise ocean, waves wash up on the white sand while palm trees in the back ground provide some shade.