Here there be a summer reading list!

It’s been a while since I posted one of these lists– the last time was in 2011, I think– so it’s high time I made another!

Spring and fall are kinda bleh seasons for me, but summer and winter inspire LOTS of themed reading. This summer I’m drawn towards kidlit, retellings of faerie tales, and high epic fantasy. So that’s what’s informed this here recommended reading list for the summer. Jennifer, Hecate, Macbeth, William McKinley and Me, Elizabeth

  • The Egypt Game by Zilpha Keatley Snyder (1967). It’s a fantastic magical realism MAYBE kinda story with lots of stuff about friendship and individuality and being who you are.
  • Jennifer, Hecate, Macbeth, William McKinley and Me, Elizabeth by E.L. Konigsburg (1967). More magical realism maybe but also just a fab book about friendship and weirdos.
  • The Long Secret by Louis Fitzhugh (1965). Did you know there were two sequels/companions to Harriet the Spy? (Written by L. Fitzhugh, I mean. There’s newer ones now written by someone else.) The Long Summer is one of them, and it shifts Harriet to a more supporting role. Beth Ellen is the star, and her narrative is slightly dreamy in a way that doesn’t sugarcoat anything. It’s kind of a tough book, but it’s still very much worth reading.
  • The Books of Pellinor by Alison Croggon (2002-2008). Okay, so, technically I’ve only read the first two (book #1 in 2009), but they were moody and dark and atmospheric. Lots of great epic/high fantasy elements AND the protagonist, Maerad, is a wonderfully strong character.
  • Sabriel by Garth Nix (1995). Sort of an alternate history/fantasy world adventure story with great characters and a truly terrifying baddie.
  • In a Glass Grimmly by Adam Gidwitz (2012). One of my favorite MG fairie tale retellings EVER. It’s got humor, heartbreak, and everything you could want in a fantasy story.
  • East by Edith Pattou (2003). Just in case it’s way too hot where you are right now, here’s a story set in the snow and ice. It’s a retelling of “East of the Sun and West of the Moon” and it’s great, just great.

Which books would you add to this list? Are you reading any good books this summer?

2 thoughts on “Here there be a summer reading list!”

  1. Insane hooray to Jennifer, Hecate, etc.; and to The Long Secret. Both of those were in heavy rotation when I was a kid, and I always wished they were a bit better known. I might even prefer The Long Secret to Harriet the Spy. Maybe!

    1. I think I might like TLS a little better, too? I mean, HtS will forever hold a place in my heart for getting me started on having journals/liking YA contemp books/etc., but TLS has just a little bit more layer-y stuff in it that I like (more as an adult than as a kid, actually).

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