Summer is here and it’s time to discover some thrilling beach reads to make your vacation even more of an adventure. There’s nothing better than cracking open a new book on the beach and diving into an intriguing story. What makes certain books beach reads versus others? Beach reads all have a fast pace and pull the reader in. They act as another level of escapism on top of your already great beach escape. So, something like War and Peace is not going to be a beach read for most but a zippy memoir or crime caper likely will be.
We decided to round up the best beach reads that have been released over the past few years to give you some recommendations for what to read while you’re soaking up the sun. These books are so entertaining and each one has something special to offer. Take a look at our picks for this summer’s best beach reads to find some paradise on the page!
$15.95 at the time of publication.
Fans of indie-pop musician, Michelle Zauner are probably more familiar with her stage name, Japanese Breakfast, but her signature brand of poignant honesty are found in both her music and her writing in her excellent debut memoir. The book documents Zauner’s coming of age which is remarkable because she wrestles with her Korean-American identity. The book also recounts the death of the writer’s mother and how she came to terms with it and how it shaped her personal identity. If you’re looking for beach reads that take you on a personal journey, look no further than Crying in H Mart.
$13.39 at the time of publication.
Lonely librarian, June Jones, has never ventured far from the sleepy English village where she grew up. Shy and reclusive, the thirty-something librarian would rather spend her time buried in books than venture out into the real world. Things change when her library is threatened with closure and June is forced to emerge from behind the shelves to save the heart of her community and the place that holds the dearest memories of her mother. She discovers a strength she never knew she had and might even find love as she tries to bring the community together to keep the library’s doors open. If you’re looking for feel-good beach reads, check this one out.
$14.49 at the time of publication.
Fans of the writer, Sally Rooney know that she never misses. Beautiful World, Where Are You follows Alice, Felix, Eileen, and Simon who are still young―but life is catching up with them. They desire each other, they delude each other, they get together, and they break apart. They have sex, they worry about sex, and they worry about their friendships and the world they live in. Rooney’s masterful third-person narration gives readers insight into the fully formed characters that she has created. If you like beach reads that are all about character study, this is the novel for you.
$18.26 at the time of publication.
Counterfeit is one of the beach reads that you won’t be able to put down. In it, a stylish and mysterious woman who buys and sells luxury purses gets an old friend from college to help her with her schemes and soon leaves her in a real pickle. You might not think the world of counterfeit bags would be stunning and thrilling but this book makes it feel like a high-stakes endeavor.
$7.35 at the time of publication.
Beach Read by Emily Henry is all about writers. The two main characters, both writers, challenge each other to work in a genre they’re uncomfortable with. What follows is plenty of biting banter and a summer romance. Augustus will spend the summer writing something happy, and January will pen the next Great American Novel. If you like your beach reads to feel like a rom-com, this is the best book for you!
$9.98 at the time of publication.
Another one of the beach reads from the author of Beach Read comes an equally engaging tale of two best friends and opposites, Alex and Poppy. For most of the year, they live far apart. He’s in their small hometown and she’s in New York City. Every summer for a decade, they have taken one glorious week of vacation together, until two years ago, and they haven’t talked since. When they have the chance to start over during one more vacation, it remains to be seen if they can recapture the friendship they once had.
$13.50 at the time of publication.
The Last Thing He Told Me features brisk pacing, plenty of plot twists, and a family drama that makes it one of the best beach reads to come out in recent years. It’s a riveting mystery about a woman who thinks she’s found the love of her life until he disappears. She is left alone with his 16-year-old daughter and a mysterious note that says “Protect her.” While on the surface he looks to be running from a white-collar crime, the truth is likely much darker.
$16.99 at the time of publication.
This novel from acclaimed author, AJ Pearce, is set in World War II London and follows a tenacious, aspiring journalist. She is eventually tasked with recruiting women for the war effort at home. The book is a meditation on female friendship, a celebration of the strength of women, and a tale about solidarity in difficult times. It’s one of the best beach reads to get into if you’re traveling with your girlfriends.
$13.99 at the time of publication.
Not a Happy Family is a taught family drama thriller and murder mystery that centers around the wealthy Merton family. The parents are murdered after an uncomfortable Easter dinner, leaving the three adult children, who will inherit millions, trying to process the murder of their parents and wondering who is the guilty party. If you like your beach reads a little dark and twisty, this is the one for you.
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE: 25 Romance Novel Excerpts that Will Make You Believe in Love
$14.99 at the time of publication.
One of the most irresistible beach reads to come out recently is Vacationland. In it, an aspiring writer heads to her parents’ home in Maine with three kids in tow. She has left her husband behind in Brooklyn but quickly finds her family at the center of a web of secrets. The book is a meditation on family, loss, ambition, and responsibility. You won’t be able to put this one down!
There you go! We hope you found these beach reads intriguing and that you’ll give one a shot the next time you find yourself lounging in the sand. Beach reads make your vacation thrilling and are the perfect way to pass the time while you’re soaking up the sun. If you liked these books but still are searching for more options, take a look at some of our other favorite books to by celebrities that are also great to take to the beach!
$13.28 at the time of publication
A New York Times Bestseller, this children’s book written by singer Kelly Clarkson is one inspired by her daughter River Rose. River Rose and the Magical Lullaby follows River as she anticipates a big day at the zoo and the magical lullaby her mother sings to her to help her fall asleep! And guess what, this book comes with a link so that you can download the actual lullaby sung by Clarkson!
$5 at the time of publication
Everything Is Mama was written by Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon. And it was inspired by the hope that it could be used to teach children different words so that everything isn’t always ‘Mama.’ This lighthearted book also features fun illustrations that include cartoon animals.
$8.64 at the time of publication
Another #1 New York Times bestseller is this one by actor and comedian B.J. Novak, best known for his work on The Office. It’s a unique children’s book in that it has no pictures, but don’t let that fool you. This book will still make you laugh and feel joy. The trick is to read it out loud.
$10.99 at the time of publication
The First Lady of the United States wrote a children’s book about her husband, President of the United States Joe Biden’s life. This book is a great way to teach your little ones about who our current president is. It’s also a great story that teaches how hard work and perseverance leads to success.
$11.97 at the time of publication
Former President Barack Obama also wrote a book during his time in the White House. The picture book is written as if it was an open letter to his two girls. And inside the letter are tributes to some of the United State’s most legendary heroes. So not only is this book beautiful, but it’s also a way to teach your kids about these important people in our country’s history.
$11.59 at the time of publication
From compassion and the importance of friendships, legendary performer, Madonna, created a fan-favorite book called The English Roses. Amazon calls it clever, humorous, and a story that everyone can learn from.
$8.62 at the time of publication
Ricky Martin authored a children’s book titled Santiago the Dream in Land Among the Stars. It’s a story about never giving up, never doubting yourself, and always reaching for your goals. It’s a book with lessons every little kid should learn at an early age.
$8.99 at the time of publication
Alan Cummings reveals it all in his memoir Not My Father’s Son. From his complicated relationship with his father to secrets that made him who he is today, if you’re a fan of Cummings and his extensive and impressive resume, you are going to want to grab a copy of his book.
$13.99 at the time of publication
Like Alan Cummings, actress Demi Moore also wrote a memoir. Her memoir was an instant #1 New York Times Bestseller and dubbed the best book of the year by several major publications. This book is a look at Moore’s life through her own eyes and words. From her battle with addiction to her divorces and her role as a mother, Amazon calls this book emotional and iconic.
$8.99 at the time of publication
And B.J. Novak doesn’t just write children’s books, he also wrote a comedic novel as well that consists of several different stories. It became a New York Times Bestseller and according to The Washington Post, it’s a book that leaves you “unselfconscious and with insuppressible laughter.”
$12.48 at the time of publication
A look into his past and the five kids he never thought he would have, comedian Jim Gaffigan knocks it out of the park with this relatable read called Dad Is Fat. In this read, you’ll get to learn about the many hilarious joys and horrors Gaffigan has lived through as a father of five and a husband.
$12.81 at the time of publication
Having lived an extraordinary life, Drew Barrymore sat down to write about her life and the journey she took to get to where she is today. The memoir is a New York Times Bestseller as well. So if you’re a fan of this legendary actress, then this one is a must-have.
$61.75 at the time of publication
Another memoir written by Barrymore is called Little Lost Girl. This book, written in 1990, is a detailed look into her battle with alcohol and drug addiction at a very young and her subsequent stint in therapy as a teen.
$9.78 at the time of publication
Scrappy Little Nobody is a series of autobiographical essays by actress and singer Anna Kendrick. The essays take the readers through her journey to one of the most recognizable faces in Hollywood. And as readers have said, it’s just as comical as many of her most successful movies.
$13.29 at the time of publication
For those who are fans of the late, great Carrie Fisher, this memoir is a deep, intimate, and at times, hilarious dive into her life. Wishful Drinking is full of twists and turns and it’s all real.
$11.29 at the time of publication
In 2006, Jane Fonda wrote about her own life in her own words. Her candid words lead readers through her life as a workout guru, an activist, an actress, and the many more hats she has worn in her lifetime. Fonda said that writing this memoir has even helped her see themes in her life that she otherwise wouldn’t have! Now that’s interesting!
$13.65 at the time of publication
Tiny Fey is an actress and comedy writer. And according to Amazon, her 2012 book, which like Anna Kendrick’s, is a compilation of autobiographical essays. Essays that have been described as spirited and a masterpiece. So if you’re looking for a fun read, it’s this.
$13.37 at the time of publication
Another fun read is this one from Fey’s best friend, Amy Poehler. A #1 New York Times Bestseller, this is the best way to get to know Poehler and her journey, straight from her own mouth.
$12.78 at the time of publication
If you don’t love Amy Schumer now, you will after reading this book, Vogue said in their review. The Girl With the Lower Back Tattoo by the comedian takes a look at her past relationships, her family, and the experiences that have shaped her life.
$14.07 at the time of publication
You may recognize the name of this author, Laura Graham, as she was one of the stars of the popular sitcom, Gilmore Girls. This story is about a struggling actress trying to keep it all together while chasing success in New York City. It ultimately became a New York Times Bestseller.
$4.98 at the time of publication
He may be best known for his acting chops, by Steve Martin is also a highly acclaimed author. And his book, Shopgirl, is also an aspiring artist who makes ends meet by selling gloves in Beverly Hills. Readers then get to follow her along with her love story with a successful businessman. The particular read has become known for being tender, witty, and oh so good!
$13.57 at the time of publication
Another fan favorite from The Office, Mindy Kaling has also written several books. One of them, a #1 New York Times Bestseller is this one called Why Not Me? Filled with personal stories and insight into all that she has learned, this is one you won’t regret reading.
$15.99 at the time of publication
After becoming a mother, Ali Wong put pen to paper and wrote an open letter to them and all the other girls who care to listen. From life lessons to how to be successful in the places that don’t want you to be successful, Wong’s book has been hailed as heartfelt and hilarious! Just like many of her movies!
$16 at the time of publication
Another #1 New York Times Bestseller, this book by Jessica Simpson was created after diving into the journals she kept since she was 15 years old. She discusses her struggles, growing up in the industry and becoming a mother. You’ll learn and relate to Jessica Simpson more than you have thought possible reading this.
$28.91 at the time of publication
In True Love, Jennifer Lopez uses photography to tell her story. The story of a specific time in her life, her family, and her journey as a mom and artist. This book will put you right into what Lopez’s life was like during that time. So if you’re a fan, you’re going to want to read this.
How many of these books have you read? And were you surprised by this list of celebrities who are published authors? From comedians to singers, it looks like their talents don’t just stop at acting, telling jokes, or recording albums! So if you’re interested in their lives or trying out one of the children’s books with your own kids, pick one of these up!
Mamas Uncut is a participant in multiple affiliate programs, including Skimlinks, ShareASale, Commission Junction, and the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. Mamas Uncut may earn a percentage of revenue generated from purchases made via the links in this post.
- 1 Crying in H Mart by Michelle Zauner
- 2 The Last Chance Library by Freya Sampson
- 3 Beautiful World, Where Are You by Sally Rooney
- 4 Counterfeit: A Novel by Kirstin Chen
- 5 Beach Read by Emily Henry
- 6 People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry
- 7 The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave
- 8 Yours Cheerfully by AJ Pearce
- 9 Not a Happy Family by Shari Lapena
- 10 Vacationland: A Novel by Meg Mitchell
- 11 River Rose and the Magical Lullaby
- 12 Everything Is Mama
- 13 The Book with No Pictures
- 14 Joey: The Story of Joe Biden
- 15 Of Thee I Sing: A Letter to My Daughters
- 16 The English Roses
- 17 Santiago the Dreamer in Land Among the Stars
- 18 Not My Father’s Son: A Memoir
- 19 Inside Out: A Memoir
- 20 One More Thing: Stories and Other Stories
- 21 Dad Is Fat
- 22 Wildflower
- 23 Little Girl Lost
- 24 Scrappy Little Nobody
- 25 Wishful Drinking
- 26 My Life So Far
- 27 Bossypants
- 28 Yes Please
- 29 The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo
- 30 Someday, Someday, Maybe: A Novel
- 31 Shopgirl: A Novella
- 32 Why Not Me?
- 33 Dear Girls: Intimate Tales, Untold Secrets & Advice for Living Your Best Life
- 34 Open Book
- 35 True Love
Mamas Uncut is THE online place for moms. We cover the latest about motherhood, parenting, and entertainment as well – all with a mom-focused twist. So if you're looking for parenting advice from real parents, we have plenty of it, all for moms from moms, and also experts. Because, at the end of the day, our mission is focused solely on empowering moms and moms-to-be with the knowledge and answers they’re looking for in one safe space.