Feature image credit: @love.books.and.coffee

Summer is one of the best times of year to read. You can relax in the sun and totally escape for hours on end with minimal work or school to worry about. With so many fantastic new releases coming out this year, we’ve rounded up the most anticipated beach reads of summer 2021. From thrilling page-turners to sweet reads and hilarious new stories, these books deserve a place on your summer #TBR.

The Break Up Book Club by Wendy Wax

Jazmine, Judith, Erin and Sara have little in common beyond their love of reading and wine, and the shared realization that none of their lives are where they want to be. Jazmine is a former tennis star turned sports agent who’s managing work and being a single mom. Judith is questioning her role in her marriage and missing her kids who have flown the coop. Erin’s dealing with her fiancé’s cold feet, and Sara is stuck living with her crazy mother-in-law. However, in their historic carriage house turned bookstore, the four women can laugh and fantasize their own versions of happily ever after.

 

The Summer Job by Lizzy Dent

Somehow Birdy has run away from her life and into her best friend Heather’s, but she hasn’t told Heather. Birdy is spending the summer in the world-class wine expert job that Heather ditched and it’s a lot more than she bargained for. Amidst these struggles, Birdy also falls in love. The only catch is that this man doesn’t know her true identity.

Anna K Away by Jenny Lee

When Anna, once New York City’s golden girl, has been brought low by a scandalous sex tape and the death of her lover, her father sends her to South Korea for the summer to hide her away. Meanwhile in the U.S., Lolly is moving on with her cheating boyfriend, while falling in love with a boy at theater camp. In Manhattan, Kimmie and Dustin struggle to consummate their relationship. And Bea has escaped from grief to LA, and has her heart stolen by a handsome stranger. Set over the course of a summer, Anna K Away is a story of heartbreak, love, loss, and adventure.

 

Excuse me While I Ugly Cry by Joya Goffney

Quinn loves to make lists. The lists can be about the days she’s ugly cried, or all the boys she’d like to kiss. Quinn’s list is what keeps her sane so that she never has to face any of her doubts or fears in real life. When Quinn’s list diary goes missing and an anonymous account posts them for the whole school to see, Quinn doesn’t know who to trusty. In an act of desperation, she teams up with Carter Bennett to find the blackmailer who posted her list online. Together, they face all of Quinn’s greatest fears and teach Quinn more than she ever could have learned about courage.

 

People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry

Poppy and Alex have nothing in common besides their decade long tradition of joint summer beach vacations. However, two years ago they ruined everything and haven’t spoken since. Poppy knows that the last time she was truly happy was the last beach vacation and she decides to take Alex with her on vacation once more. With only a week to fix everything, Poppy doesn’t know if she can face the one big truth that stood quietly in the middle of their relationship.

The Guncle Steven Rowley

Patrick is the beloved Gay uncle of his niece Maisie and nephew Grant. He loves them too, but he’s very overwhelmed. When tragedy strikes and Maisie and Grant lose their mother, Patrick finds himself in the position of being their primary guardian. Patrick has no idea what to expect but soon opens his eyes to the sense of responsibility and mistakes that come with responsibility larger than life.

Mona At Sea by Elizabeth Gonzalez James

Perfectionist millennial Mona is failing upwards in the midst of the 2008 economic crisis. She’s without a job, living with her parents, and living the world through a cynic’s eyes. She’s basically walking a knife’s edge as she navigates her own troubles as well as her parents’ shattering marriage. The more she searches for perfection, the more she sees how unattainable that is. Mona’s journey forces readers to confront the meaning of life, and how to be ready for those revelations.

Attachments by Jeff Arch

The award-winning screenwriter of Sleepless in Seattle, Jeff Arch is at it again with Attachments, which brings three former best friends back to campus 20 years later after the death of their boarding school dean. Stewart and Sandy both fell in love with Laura when they met at their coal-country Pennsylvania boarding school in 1972. The three form a fast bond with dean Henry Griffin, who’s dying words of the two male students. When they’re brought back, secrets and betrayals from the past are revealed, and the only one who can solve the puzzle is in a coma. To top it all off, the dean’s son Chip is about to figure things out that he can’t fathom and can barely handle.

The Photographer by Mary Dixie Carter

Delta Dawn observes the elite and perfect lives of New York City residents through photographing birthday parties, family portraits and creating moments parents long for. When Delta is hired for the Natalie Straub’s 11th birthday, she wishes she were part of the scene. So, Delta begins a plan to babysit Natalie, befriend her mom, and listen to her father. Soon, Delta no longer experiences richness through the camera but by bathing in their master bathtub and drinking expensive wine. Still, Delta feels like she’s far away, until she realizes that she can manipulate more than just photos.

The Husbands by Chandler Baker

Nora Spangler is a successful attorney by day, and super mom by night. When her family searches for houses in an exclusive suburban neighborhood, she meets a group of equally high-powered women. The difference is that these women actually have supportive husbands. Nora agrees to help with a resident’s wrongful death case and finds the secret to having it all. A secret that’s worth killing for.

 

The Therapist by B.A. Paris

Alice and Leo have moved into their dream house in an elite community. But all that glitters is not gold. As Alice meets her new neighbors, she discovers a secret about her house, and feels a strong connection to Nina, the therapist who lived there before. Alice is obsessed with solving the mystery, but none of her neighbors are willing to help.

Under the Southern Sky by Kristy Woodson Harvey

After separating from her husband, dedicated journalist Amelia Buxton finds the biggest story of her career is deeply personal. Amelia discovered that a cluster of embryos belonging to her childhood friend Parker and his late wife Greer have been deemed “abandoned” and must tell Parker. However, Parker has been unable to move on since Greer’s death and after Amelia reveals the embryos, Parker realizes his only way to get Greer back in his life is to accept his fate as a single father and find a surrogate. Parker and Amelia begin to find solace with each other in their childhood Beach house as they navigate their uncertain futures. In the process they learn about family, choice, and moving on.