Ten top summer reads

Summer of Love by Katie Fforde
Summer of Love by Katie Fforde
Yachts taking part in last years Clipper Round the World Race			             	  Picture: onEdition

‘Team spirit’ will keep us buoyant on global challenge

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1The Saturday Big Tent Wedding Party by Alexander McCall Smith.

This is the latest in the No 1. Ladies’ Detective Agency series of mystery novels, some of the most charming books around.

With their focus on sound moral values, they have the feel-good factor and the lady detective in question is large – or of ‘traditional build’ – so you needn’t worry about being a bloater on the beach.

2 Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris

It isn’t a sunny read but vampires are all the rage at the moment and you’ll see a fair few books about them lying in the sand or covering the faces of sun worshippers.

Dead Until Dark is the first book in Harris’ Southern Vampire series which inspired the TV series True Blood.

3 Body Surfing by Anita Shreve

It opens with a description of a beach house and has been described as a ‘page-turner’, so what could be better? Body Surfing spans three summers in the life of a woman called Sydney and is by all accounts gripping and emotionally satisfying.

4 Invisibles by Ed Siegle

This is an engaging and thought-provoking story about one man’s childhood memories and his journey to discover the fate of his father.

The story moves from the shores of Brighton to pulsating Rio de Janeiro and is full of lush description.

5 Summer of Love by Katie Fforde

If you prefer something frothier for the beach then this is the romantic read to buy.

Sian falls in love with free-spirited Gus who returns to her life many years later and turns it upside down.

6 Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Who says the classics aren’t for the beach?

Austen wrote THE love story and you couldn’t do much better than delving into the developing romance of Elizabeth Bennett and Mr Darcy.

Just don’t expect to look up and see Colin Firth blocking the sun.

7 The Beach by Alex Garland

It might be about an idyllic waterside location but there is plenty of darkness in this sinister 90s bestseller.

Still, this book about backpackers is the sort of adventure perfect for... well the beach.

8 Coastliners by Joanne Harris

Keep Chocolat for Easter and Coastliners for holidays – at any time of the year. If you’re a fan of beaches – whether sun-drenched or windswept – you’ll love this tale of a woman’s battle to save a French community from encroaching development.

9 Anybody Out There by Marian Keyes

The chick lit giant tells the story of Anna who has left New York behind and is desperate to return. And as always she brings us a serious subject with a large dose of humour.

10 Evil Under The Sun by Agatha Christie

The queen of crime fiction produced the ultimate page-turners and it won’t take you long to get through this sun-drenched murder mystery. Just don’t go sunbathing alone.