Eight summer reads with ties to Austin, TX

View of shelves at Book People bookstore from the top of stairs

Oh, the Places You’ll Go... is not on this list, but give it a read anyway. | Photo by ATXtoday

The end of May means the beginning of summer (which officially starts on June 21 but who’s counting), so that means it’s time to break out the bug spray, grill, and sunscreen.

It’s also time to figure out what your next pool or beach read is, so we’ve compiled eight recently released summer reads by authors with ties to Austin to get you started.

  • Atlas of the Heart” by Brené Brown | This No. 1 New York Times bestseller (and accompanying HBO series) maps 87 emotions + experiences to provide language for being human and building connection.
  • The Lifeguards” by Amanda Eyre Ward | Three mothers from Zilker navigate secrets and betrayals while struggling to protect their sons from a dangerous world.
  • The Souvenir Museum” by Elizabeth McCracken | This short story collection contains 12 tales of puffins, water parks, marriage + challah. Stories come from Elizabeth’s work in various publications, including “The O. Henry Prize Stories” (another Austin writer).
  • Best Barbarian” by Roger Reeves | A Whiting Award-winning poet’s collection that explores themes such as love and loss, using everything from “Beowulf” to Drake.
  • Last Dance on the Starlight Pier” by Sarah Bird | Sarah’s newest novel tells a story of Great Depression-era Galveston and the dizzying world of dance marathons.
  • Four Treasures of the Sky” by Jenny Tinghui Zhang | Chinese folklore and the Wild West are woven into this coming-of-age story of a girl fighting for a place in 19th-century America.
  • Breathe And Count Back From Ten” by Natalia Sylvester | Here’s one for the 13+ crowd: this book follows Verónica, a Peruvian-American teenager trying to feel safe in her own body while auditioning to be a mermaid.
  • Seeking Fortune Elsewhere” by Sindya Banhoo | Explore the lives of South Indian immigrant women through short stories about family, hope, and regret.

Need more recommendations? Stop by BookPeople, Malvern Books, or Resistencia Books to get expert advice from Austin’s local booksellers. 📚

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