Share The 5 Best Books I Read This Month

The 5 Best Books I Read This Month

Raised in London, Elizabeth graduated with a degree in English from Smith College in 2013. When not reading six different novels at once she can be found Instagramming artisanal pastries and working in the marketing department of Simon & Schuster. Follow her on Instagram: @eliz_bree.  

Most people look at the summer months on the calendar and fill in the days with vacations, outdoor plans, and long weekends with friends. Book people do this, too, but they also tend to fill in their calendars with epic reading goals. Long plane ride planned? Perfect for the family saga you’ve been meaning to dive into. Girls trip with party hats and mimosas? Must be time to pull out the friendship-gone-wrong suspense thriller. Stopping by a historic site on your road trip? Time for a critically acclaimed historical narrative. But whatever pages you end up turning, it’s always a shock by the time August arrives—how will you get through your summer TBR by the end of the season? Hopefully this list of my favorite recent books will help guide you through these last few weeks of summer reading.


Mornings with Rosemary
by Libby Page

When it’s 95°F in New York City, the idea of a lido—an outdoor swimming pool—sounds like heaven! In MORNINGS WITH ROSEMARY, an octogenarian widow Rosemary finds solace in daily swims at her local London lido, but is devastated when she learns the pool is the target of a developer’s plans to shut it down for good. Rosemary befriends local journalist Kate, and together they campaign to save the lido. It’s a charming story, both the women’s friendship and Rosemary’s own romance that began at the lido generations earlier, and a perfect poolside read.

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Mornings with Rosemary
Libby Page

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MENTIONED IN:

Readers’ Choice: Our 10 Most Popular Books in August

By Off the Shelf Staff | August 30, 2019

The 5 Best Books I Read This Month

By Elizabeth Breeden | August 19, 2019

The Gang’s All Here: 11 Wonderful Books About Friendship to Read Right Now

By Alice Martin | August 6, 2019

The 5 Best Books for Your Beach Bag

By Carrie Cabral | July 10, 2019

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On Trails
by Robert Moor

Nothing better than spending all summer in nature, especially if you have the option to go hiking! In ON TRAILS, essayist Robert Moor explores an idea he became captivated with while thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail: the paths beneath our feet. Weaving his own nomadic adventures with philosophical meditations and eclectic research, Moor follows this inquiry from the creation of mountain trails to national highways to information pathways like the Internet. It’s an informative and unforgettable read that will make you look at the world with new eyes.

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On Trails
Robert Moor

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MENTIONED IN:

The 5 Best Books I Read This Month

By Elizabeth Breeden | August 19, 2019

The Best Narrative Nonfiction Books for Non-Nonfiction Readers

By Kerry Fiallo | April 4, 2019

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The Dearly Beloved
by Cara Wall

One of my favorite books this month, and quite possibly this whole year! A stunning debut following the lives of two couples as they fall in love, marry, and eventually meet when the two husbands become copastors of a Greenwich Village church. The novel details the greatest tests of faith and devotion and leaves the reader thinking about the true meaning of love and belief.

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The Dearly Beloved
Cara Wall

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MENTIONED IN:

10 Books That Will Make You Feel At Home, No Matter Where You Are

By Alice Martin | November 20, 2019

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By Sarah Woodruff | October 3, 2019

Readers’ Choice: Our 10 Most Popular Books in September

By Off the Shelf Staff | September 27, 2019

The 5 Best Books I Read This Month

By Elizabeth Breeden | August 19, 2019

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Gilead
by Marilynne Robinson

I love when a novel leads me to another, which is exactly what happened after finishing THE DEARLY BELOVED. I was curious how other fiction dealt with matters of faith and big-picture questions of love and humanity, and happily picked up Marilynne Robinson’s Pulitzer Prize–winning novel. GILEAD written as a long letter from an aging Iowan reverend to his young son, begun first as a way to leave words of wisdom but becomes the story of their family’s history and meditations on life’s challenges, from morality to joy to inheritance and creation. Like THE DEARLY BELOVED, it’s not a religious book so much as a work willing to tackle the heaviest of topics with grace and light.

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Gilead
Marilynne Robinson

Amazon logo Audible logo Barnes & Noble logo Books a Million logo Google Play logo iBooks logo Indiebound logo

MENTIONED IN:

The 5 Best Books I Read This Month

By Elizabeth Breeden | August 19, 2019

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Queen Sugar
by Natalie Baszile

As much as everyone is reading all summer, there’s definitely a lot of binge-watching going on too! Queen Sugar is a critically acclaimed drama produced by Oprah Winfrey and Ava DuVernay, but everyone should read the novel on which it’s based regardless of whether you’ve seen the show. Set in modern-day Louisiana, it follows a young widow, Charley, who unexpectedly inherits a sugarcane plantation near her father’s hometown following his death. She returns to the area with her son in order to work the cane and is met with what seem to be insurmountable obstacles: modern racism, neglected lands, diminishing funds, even a bitter half-brother who believes the land should be his. Charley is a feminist firecracker of a heroine and faces everything this new world has to throw at her with grit and determination.

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Queen Sugar
Natalie Baszile

In QUEEN SUGAR, an African American woman from Louisiana unexpectedly inherits 800 acres of sugarcane land in Louisiana. But those who doubt her say that cane farming is a white man’s business and she struggles to keep up with the demands of a declining farm and a family.

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MENTIONED IN:

The 5 Best Books I Read This Month

By Elizabeth Breeden | August 19, 2019

12 Overlooked Novels with Southern Roots

By Taylor Noel | February 17, 2017

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