Books You Need to Read this Summer + Books I’m Reading Next

My Kindle has been getting a lot of use lately. I’ve been reading at work during lunch, at home before bed, at the pool, and even on long drives. It seriously has been attached to me all summer. Maybe it’s because I’ve been finding really great books. Today I’m sharing the four books that I’ve read over the past month or so {don’t worry, there are no spoilers}, as well as the others that are downloaded and ready on my Kindle. 


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1. Off Balance by Dominique Moceanu

Although I never tried gymnastics growing up, I still LOVED watching the sport on TV. I would create my own balance beam by placing two long strips of masking tape (4 inches apart) on the rug in my basement. I’d then dance and do cartwheels on the “beam,” and practice over and over until I got it right. Even though I’m no longer practicing on a fake beam, gymnastics continues to be my favorite sport to watch during the Olympics. 

When I found out that Dominique Moceanu (from the 1996 US Olympic team – “Magnificent Seven”) wrote a book, I had to download it. If you’re a gymnastics nerd like me, you’ll appreciate this tell-all book which details her negative experience training with Bela and Martha Karolyi, her journey to becoming an Olympic gold medalist, and even how she reconnected with a sister that she never knew she had. I read this book in two days. It’s THAT good. If you’re a fan of US Gymnastics, I highly recommend you check this one out. 

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2. When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi

When I look for new books to read, the first place I check is the New York Times Best Seller list. They ALWAYS seem to get it right. This autobiography by Paul Kalanithi was #1 for a while, so I knew I had to get my hands on it. Paul trained for years to become a neurosurgeon, but was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer at age 36. The book chronicles Paul’s transformation from a na├»ve medical student to a Stanford neurosurgeon. I think Amazon sums this book up the best: “When Breath Becomes Air is an unforgettable, life-affirming reflection on the challenge of facing death and on the relationship between doctor and patient, from a brilliant writer who became both.” 

Paul’s ability to take death on head first is so incredibly interesting, since as a society we generally fear death. This book will make you laugh and cry, and remember Paul’s story for a long time. 

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3. The Girl Girl by Mary Kubica

Oh man. This book. I read it so quickly, because it was so hard to put down. It’s frequently compared to Gone Girl, so if you like psychological thrillers, you’ll probably enjoy this one. The Good Girl is about a woman named Mia who goes to a local bar to meet her boyfriend one night. When he doesn’t show up, she decides to leave with a guy named Colin who she meets while there. Her choice to go home with Colin turns out to be the worst mistake of her life. What she doesn’t know is that Colin was hired as a hitman. Instead of giving her over to his employers, he decides to hide out with Mia in a secluded cabin in rural Minnesota. What happens next will keep you reading until you’re finished the book. 

There are so many twists and turns in The Good Girl.  When you think you know what’s going on, the author completely switches it up. 

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4. When I’m Gone by Emily Bleeker

I found this book while searching through Amazon’s $1.99 deals. I read the free sample download, and then decided to buy the full book. I would have definitely spent more than $1.99 on it, because it was so good!  The book starts with a character named Luke Richardson returning home from his wife Natalie’s funeral. Now he’s left with raising their three children all alone. That’s just the beginning of it though! He soon discovers a blue envelope with his name across the front in his wife’s handwriting. The letter was written by Natalie on her first day of cancer treatment. Little does Luke know that this is just one of many letters that he’ll receive. He’ll learn buried secrets that make him question everything he thought he knew about his wife. 

Like When Breath Becomes Air, this book make me cry. However, it also made me angry at times. I don’t want to spoil anything, so you’ll just have to read this book yourself to find out more. 


Up next on my summer reading list are the following:

// What’s on your summer reading list? Have you read anything good lately? Comment below!


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