Posted in Book review, Books, Helmet Reading Challenge, Popsugar Reading Challenge, Reading Challenge, Summer

Recently Read Books/ Beach Read Recommendations

Summer vacation has started and it is time to just chill, enjoy sunshine and obviously books too! Finland has been having an unusually warm summer so far, so if this continues I will expect to read plenty of books by the sea where the lovely breeze will balance the current heatwave. ❤

What does “beach read” mean? I’d say anything that you want to take with you to the beach, anything that will keep you interested, happy and enjoying the relaxing feeling of reading. For some it’s romance, for some it’s mysteries and for some it’s something completely else. I am a mood reader, and usually have multiple books I’m reading through, so there are usually also multiple genres represented. 🙂 A common combination would be one non-fiction, one fantasy/scifi and one mystery. Anyway, here are two books I read earlier this spring/summer and they could work well as beach reads.

They are both contemporary books, one romance and one mystery. I don’t usually go for contemporary ones but perhaps these social distancing/staying home times are making me miss the contemporary world too in addition to the usual historical or fantasy settings. For some reason both of these books are set in Scotland, I just realized! That’s still on our bucket list: travel to Scotland, rent a car and just enjoy looking around the amazing nature and historical sights, so I’m sure this is my subconscious telling me not to forget about these travel dreams!

The Bookshop On The Shore by Jenny Colgan

I think I will read Jenny Colgan from now on whenever I need a reliable comfort book. Last year I read the first of the Scottish Bookshop series and simply loved it (my post about The Bookshop On The Corner is here). So getting my hands on the second book of the series was great and it was all I wanted. Familiar, gorgeous surroundings of countryside Scotland, some familiar characters, life changing events and most importantly: love and enthusiasm for books. If you love books, love reading about people who love books then these contemporary romances are for you. The romance is both between people and also between bookworms and the books. 😀 ❤

It warms my heart when I recognise so much of myself whenever Colgan describes the power of books that she herself clearly has felt so many times. What would we do without books, the power of stories?

The Hunting Party by Lucy Foley

Ok so reading a winter themed mystery in summer might feel odd but I didn’t mind. This “locked-room” mystery was intense and quick to read. Just like in the newer Foley book (The Guest List, which I read last year) there is a group of friends, or frenemies, who gather to a remote location and guess what happens? Yup, someone ends up dead and things get scary when the group is cut off from the rest of the world and someone might be the killer. I like this kind of a setting, very modern day Agatha Christie in my opinion.

What I really enjoy about Foley’s mystery writing style is that it’s very fast paced. The chapters are short and you are shown the timeline of events from multiple perspectives, showing how differently a situation can be experienced by different individuals. This book isn’t about likeable characters, but you are still very interested in their backgrounds, likes and dislikes, as you try to gather the pieces of the mystery before the reveal at the end. This was a good book, good mystery, but in the end I enjoyed The Guest List more. Then again maybe it was better because The Hunting Party was a good “rehearsal book” for this type of mystery writing for Foley.

These books fill these prompts from the two Reading Challenges I’m doing this year:

The Bookshop On The Shore by Jenny Colgan
– A book whose protagonist’s life is changing (Helmet Reading Challenge)
– A book from your TBR list you associate with a favorite person, place, or thing (Popsugar Reading Challenge)

The Hunting Party by Lucy Foley
– A thriller or a mystery (Helmet Reading Challenge)
– A locked-room mystery (Popsugar Reading Challenge)


I love books, games and the coziness of our house (currently it's the kingdom of me and my husband). My work in a game studio as a Senior HR Specialist keeps me busy and social, but I am an introvert in my core. Navigating life between my very social work and my introvert, less social personality can be tricky and it goes hand in hand with my interest in overall personal well-being.

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