Beach reading is something we look forward to all year long. We can’t wait to pack up a bag with a few great paperbacks, a giant bottle of sunscreen, and—if we’re feeling particularly festive—a cooler with a selection of fine adult cocktails. Now we’ve combined our years of literary expertise with our oh-so-refined beverage preferences to create a list of exactly what books and what beverages you should be enjoying this summer. But in all seriousness, don’t forget your sunscreen!
Read with a Cosmo
THE SINGLES GAME is a dishy tell-all novel about Charlotte, a beautiful tennis prodigy who is suddenly thrust into a very glamorous world—one where copious cosmos are surely available. But as she starts to make headlines in her new life of celebrity stylists, private parties, mega-yachts, and secret dates with Hollywood royalty, Charlotte has to decide how much she is willing to change in order to reach her goals on the court.
Read with a Mojito
This classic is the story of follows an old Cuban fisherman who is down on his luck and engaged in a relentless and agonizing battle with a giant marlin far out in the Gulf Stream. Pair this one with a classic mojito in a nod to papa Hemingway’s Cuban home.
Read with a Whiskey Sour
Pour yourself a whiskey sour and dive into the world of this compelling historical novel set against the turbulent backdrop of American vaudeville. In THE TUMBLING TURNER SISTERS, four sisters embark on an unexpected adventure in the company of traveling vaudeville acts in a last-ditch effort to rescue their family financially.
Read with a Lime Spritzer
Citrus seems appropriate for a Southern California setting. At times funny and heart-wrenching, Patchett’s COMMONWEALTH covers a multigenerational saga that begins with a forbidden kiss. From there a road diverges for two families in very different ways. While Bert Cousins arrives at the fateful christening party with a bottle of gin, might we suggest a lime spritzer?
Read with a Moscow Mule
Maybe it’s the copper cup or the alliteration in the name that attracts us to this beverage again and again. And the perfect companion is A GENTLEMAN IN MOSCOW, set in the beautiful Metropol hotel in Moscow. Amor Towles spins the immersing story of Count Alexander Rostov, who is sentenced to house arrest after being deemed an unrepentant aristocrat.
Read with a Glass of Rosé
If you want to experience a wild life vicariously, just sit down with a nice glass of chilled rosé and enjoy SWEETBITTER. Stephanie Danler’s debut gives a peek into the world of a twentysomething who’s just landed a job at a downtown New York City restaurant with a pricey wine menu. It’s there that she learns important lessons about wine, about love, and about the world.
Read with a San Franciscan (also known as a Vodka Red Bull)
Armistead Maupin’s fast-paced 1970s comedy of manners follows a cast of characters who all live in the same apartment building. A vodka Red Bull will probably fill you with the same transient energy that the characters in TALES OF THE CITY feel as they go buzzing about San Francisco, blazing their own trails in a climate of freedom and inclusion for all—and for the LGBTQ community in particular.
Read with a Classic Martini
In this incredible first novel in the RED SPARROW trilogy set against the backdrop of modern-day Russia, Dominika Egorova is drafted to become a “Sparrow” for the Russian state intelligence. Her complex journey has all the makings of the perfect espionage tale: Moles, double lives, betrayals, and yes... even love. The only pairing that makes any sense with this book should be shaken—not stirred.
Read with a Wild Turkey on the Rocks
This debut novel by Cheryl Della Pietra was inspired by her time as Hunter S. Thompson’s assistant. So it’s only right that we would pair it with one of his favorite beverages, Wild Turkey on the rocks. GONZO GIRL follows a recent college grad trying to make it in the world of New York publishing, whose employer is a notoriously wild and difficult author with a vampiric schedule, a serious substance abuse problem, and a tendency to procrastinate.