Womanista Book Club: Summer Beach Reads

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Grab your favorite giant wine glass and essential summer wine as it's that time again -- book club time, why of course! A few months have passed since we have gathered to gab about our favorite novels -- interjected with some Netflix, relationship and summer sales chatter.

This season we have created an all-star list of reads that are beach bag and book club ready. Make sure you send this list to your besties as book club is more fun with friends! So is wine on the beach, so why not combine all of the above?

Modern Lovers - Emma Straub 
Sometimes you just want a light and fun read that will make you giggle and smile! Modern Lovers is just that read and gives an insightful and humorous look into middle age, parenthood, and the funny way that passions never fade -- no matter how much time passes by. Staub authored the bestselling, The Vacationers -- which if you are heading to a tropical destination -- is also a great read.

Sweetbitter: A Novel - Stephanie Danler 
Stephanie Danler's debut coming-of-age novel follows Tess, a young girl that moves into a rented room in Williamsburg in the summer of 2006. She nabs a position at a hip downtown Manhattan restaurant, where she learns about everything from fine wine to love -- and everything in between. We love the rapid pace of this read and how relatable Tess is, taking us back to our own Womanista womanhood exploration.

Homegoing - Yaa Gyasi (available June 7, 2016)
This read will take you far away into a world of drama and intrigue that will provoke thoughtful reflection and discussion. Two half-sisters, Effia and Esi, are born into different villages in eighteenth-century Ghana. Effia is married off to an Englishman and lives in comfort in the palatial rooms of Cape Coast Castle. Unbeknownst to Effia, her sister, Esi, is imprisoned beneath her in the castle’s dungeons, sold with thousands of others into the Gold Coast’s booming slave trade, and shipped off to America, where her children and grandchildren will be raised in slavery. Homegoing makes history visceral and captures how the memory of captivity came to be inscribed in the soul of a nation. 

The Assistants - Camille Perri 
You have heard the saying time and again, "behind every successful man is a woman," and to that point, that woman is sometimes his assistant. Tina Fontana is a thirty-year-old executive assistant to Robert Barlow, the CEO of Titan Corp., a multinational media conglomerate. She’s excellent at her job and beloved by her famous boss, however, after six years of making reservations and pouring drinks from bottles that cost more than her rent, the glamour of working for a media company in New York has completely faded. This read begs the question, "How is it that after all these years, we are still assistants?"

The NestCynthia D'Aprix Sweeney 
If you think your family is dysfunctional, take comfort in The Nest as the Plumb family enjoys a very dysfunctional reunion of sorts. As the older brother comes homes from rehab, the family battles the grief of losing their deceased father, a terrible stock market rocking the family's fortune and a series of hidden family secrets. Each sibling's story is more interesting then the next as power, money and unexpected friendships come to the surface.

Eligible – Curtis Sittenfeld 
We love this updated retelling of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, with modern day characters that are sparkling and adorable. Liz is a magazine writer in her late thirties who, like her yoga instructor older sister, Jane, lives in New York City. When their father has a health scare, they return to their childhood home in Cincinnati to help—and discover that the sprawling Tudor they grew up in is crumbling and the family is in disarray. Don't worry, Mr. Darcy is involved in their return home and what ensues will not leave any Pride fan disappointed.

One True Loves - Taylor Jenkins Reid (Available June 7, 2016)
The beach is about to heat up with this passionate read about a woman who experiences a dual love story. Emma Blair fell in love and married her high school sweetheart only to lose him as his helicopter goes missing. Even more tragic? He goes missing on their first wedding anniversary. As Emma battles her terrible grief, she leaves her job and becomes recluse. Years later, she finds herself being brought back to life by an old friend, Sam and they explore a friendship that evolves into a deep love. Timing is again not on her side as her thought to be deceased husband is found -- who does Emma choose?

Be sure to check out the complete Womanista Approved list of our editors' favorite summer reads!

Megen DiSanto |

Megen (yes, it's spelled that way even though autocorrect claims false) is a cowboy boot wearing native Chicagoan with a passion for all things DIY.