The best plans take you to stunning places around the world and this summer you can take the perfect trip all without leaving your home. From a sexy adventure in Italy to a suspenseful journey in Greece, these amazing authors will take you on thought-provoking and compelling journeys. You can traipse to the city of Barcelona in a tale of longing, meet a man that doesn’t exist on Frick Island, lose technology in Lincolnwood, and even dip back in time to the 2008 financial crisis. Each of these literary reads would make for the perfect summertime treat.
A suspenseful read that follows a woman with no memory except for her arrival in Santorini with a man she’s drawn to trust. How can she trust this mysterious man if she doesn’t even remember his name? She navigates her own mind in search of her past and identity which is a journey derailed by memories of a life that wasn’t hers. Jessica Stilling sets the story among a backdrop of stunning scenes of Greece described as being almost visceral with a unique compilation of romance, mystery, and self-inspection. The Weary God of Ancient Travelers is considered compelling as the story weaves between her past life to her present one and set upon descriptions of Greece that come to life off the page.
Frick Island is where Piper Parrish has made home, living what’s considered an almost idealistic life. The only downside to the beauty of her life is the fact that her husband Tom is dead and has been since his boat capsized. You wouldn’t know such sadness has rocked Piper’s life as the widow has carried on as if her husband was still alive and well. Not only does she act as if he’s present for meals, taking walks to the docks with him, and keeping their regular meetings, but the entire town indulges her by pretending that nothing has changed. Enter Anders Caldwell who thought he would be a podcast star by now, instead, he’s stuck writing fluff news stories. Then he gets an assignment that brings him to Frick Island where he’ll cover yet another fluff piece. While he’s writing about the joys of a Cake Walk fundraiser, he discovers that the entire town pretends that a dead man is still alive. This strange behavior draws him back to the island to investigate where he meets Piper and discovers more than just a story.
Tiller is what you’d considered being a normal student in college and is known for being good, but he has one problem. He’s bored and has no interest in what college has to offer then Pong Lou enters his life. Pong is a successful Chinese American entrepreneur who quickly takes him under his wing and even takes him on an incredible trip throughout Asia. This delivers a story that is ripe with darkness, humorous, and possesses a suspenseful journey that transforms Tiller from a common student to a protege excited to see the world. His experiences throughout his vacation open his eyes to another side of himself and change how he sees Pong while crafting a new way for him to understand the world. Lee’s prose is considered to be precise and elliptical, told through alternating narratives which weaves between Tiller’s year abroad, his reflection upon how the trip affects his future, and the domestic life that he settles into upon returning home. His year abroad is described as riveting with a deep emotional complexity that delivers a brilliant commentary that Chang-rae Lee implores about Western attitudes and Eastern stereotypes. The story covers themes such as mental well-being, capitalism, parenthood, global trade, and being a mentor while also delving into the effects of cultural immersion through Tiller’s experiences being American in China and Pong’s experiences being Chinese in America.
Shaky Town is a timeless story that focuses on the working-class residing within Los Angeles and told in the writing style of Lou Matthews who uses his time as a street racer and mechanic reflected within the prose. The plot is told through a panoramic style that revolves around the various characters residing within a Los Angeles neighborhood and is explored through individual tales about tragedy and glory. Each of the characters is driven by their environment which features a shaky faultline with an assortment of personalities including a girl caught up in a gang war and a priest caught in the middle of a crisis of faith. The characters are connected to each other by the bond they have within the neighborhood which is brought to life through their complications and conflicts.
Journey back to 2008 where you’ll find yourself on the eve of the financial crisis in a tale of three stories that feature a rich assortment of personalities and a connection by time. The story weaves throughout three distinct stories that interlock. Get to know a gift shop-owning English woman, a jazz pianist that suffers from alcoholism, and a translator tormented by love not returned. Each of these individuals faces a journey that changes everything they know and each of their stories is centered around a Moroccan immigrant that has suffered at the hands of a crime. Themes featured in Barcelona Dreaming include immigration, self-delusion, racism, addiction, and longing. Rupert Thomson delivers a book about those longing for something out of reach and the nostalgia that we have for what we’ve lost. This stunning summer treat also serves as a love letter to the stunning city of Barcelona.
Marina Taylor is a writer that has big dreams to write her dream book Italian Women of Influence which is in the works with an incredible journey ahead of her and a ticket that will send her on vacation to Rome. Her plans quickly veer thanks to her knack for finding disaster and her attraction to a handsome stranger. Marina takes a note from actress Regina Lombardi as she’s inspired to master the art of the sexual gaze while she weaves her focus between research for her book and an assortment of alluring characters from footballers to scholars to Sicilian twins. She embarks on an adventure that takes her throughout the nightclub scene to a masquerade ball while she finds herself longing for a handsome photographer in a game of catch the stranger. Her escapades send her from one thrill to the next and leave her wondering about her sweet ex back home while she indulges in the sexy adventure that awaits her in Italy’s amazing cities.
This is a collection of linked stories that will create the feeling of being immersed within the literary worlds that Meg Pokrass has delivered. The assortment of stories provided will take you off to Mars thanks to the language of the writing that creates biting insight with each one. Spinning to Mars consists of what is considered to be Micro stories and is considered to be a short read with experiences that are illuminating and notable. The stories are chilling as well as humorous with a focus on human relationships through the gifts, surprises, and unfairness they can bring. Pokrass has written several collections of flash fiction including “The Dog Looks Happy Upside Down,” “Alice in Wonderland Syndrome,” and “The Loss Detector.”
Journey to the island of Madagascar through the eyes of a Black American woman in an epic tale that explores the dangers of love against the backdrop of paradise. Shay is a professor that finds love with the handsome Italian businessman named Senna and soon the two get married. The next character of her life takes her far from home when they leave Milan for life in Madagascar where they settle down in an idyllic life on the beach. They build a gorgeous vacation villa and Shay soon finds herself in charge of a household that puts her between the idealistic life she had grown up in America and the bond she feels with the continent that belonged to her ancestors. As she becomes captivated within this world, she begins to question if she can hold onto both her identity and her marriage against the wild surroundings still haunted by colonial sins.
The Altman family is your typical family consumed with their individual routine, work, and school as they live a mundane life in Lincolnwood, New Jersey. You’ll get to know each of the family members: Dan the former lawyer who now writes screenplays and is consumed by the demands of his boss, Jan who gave up a career to raise kids and now waits for the moment she’s alone so to pour herself a drink, daughter Chloe who’s consumed by upcoming college essays and semifinals for state tennis, and son Max who has a vape addiction and in midst of planning revenge against a classmate. Just as the family starts their regular days, the world comes to a stop. With Dan on the train to work, children at school, and Jan at home, everything around them stops with the technological infrastructure coming to a crashing halt which plunges this normal family and everyone else into chaos as they struggle to deal with a life without technology. The story takes place over the course of four days as this family adapts to a water shortage, paramilitary in the neighborhoods, and looting while trying to solve the mystery unfolding around them.
Venture into summertime in the city with three sizzling stories. Start with Night of the Museum by Lori Wilde which follows Ria Preston, an art restorer who knows all about beauty. When she and her Wall Street advisor crush are stuck in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, she sees her chance at admiring more than just the art. Priscilla Oliveras delves into the romance of a blackout in Lights Out about two theater troupe rivals whose high school competitions transition into their adulthood. Mateo Garza is aiming to achieve his dreams of being a Broadway star while facing the scathing reviews of his former rival Vanessa Rios who now works as a critic. A perfectly timed blackout creates the perfect opportunity for the two to be alone at Mateo’s New York apartment which will allow their friction to turn into chemistry. The last story is Mind Games by Sarah Skilton which is a tale of romance and revenge. Alison is still nursing a grudge carried over from her college days against the most popular guy in school who happens to now be a magician. She enacts the perfect plan of revenge. When his upcoming show takes place, she’ll sabotage it and ruin him, but a power outage provides her with an opportunity she never expected.
What happens when two exes take a road trip? There was a time when Dylan and Addie were completely in love. Dylan was a wealthy Oxford student when he spent his vacation in his friend Cherry’s French villa at the same time carefree Addie was working as the caretaker. That was four years ago. Their relationship lasted two years before they broke up. Now Cherry’s getting married and the exes have a literal run-in with each other which is the first time they’ve spoken since they’ve broken up. Dylan’s car is too banged up to drive to the wedding in rural Scotland, so the only option is for the two exes to make the journey together. To add to their discomfort, they pack into the car with Dylan’s best friend, Addie’s sister, and some random guy they met on Facebook for a humorous trip across Britain. The close quarters push the exes to confront the tension between them and to finally address what broke them apart two years ago which will lead them to question if they were hasty in their break up.