Caught Reading at the Beach, July 2016

Chicago beach filled with people, high-rises in the background
Source:, Flickr

What could be better than catching up with a good book while sitting on the beach? Maybe the people watching? On a couple recent weekends, I combined these two beach favorites: I caught you reading along our beautiful lakefront. Your interesting and wide-ranging book choices were perfect for inspiring other readers.

I caught you matching your reading to the beach setting with The Rocks and The Other Story, both set in southern European coastal towns. The similarities don't end there—each features a complex protagonist, a rocky romance and reflections on a troubled past. Pick these up when you need a real page-turner.

The Rocks is also available as an eBook.

The Other Story is available in other formats.

These next two would be great choices for a book club. Favor fiction? I caught you reading Cutting for Stone, which traces the epic journey of twin brothers abandoned at birth as they move across continents and through the decades. Prefer nonfiction? I caught you reading The End of Your Life Book Club, a son's memoir of connecting with his mother through books as she faces terminal cancer. Read it as much for the book recommendations as the touching family story.

Cutting for Stone is available in other formats.

The End of Your Life Book Club is available in other formats.

As a longtime Margaret Atwood fan, I was thrilled to spot two of her books at the beach. I caught you reading The Handmaid's Tale, a classic dystopian novel with feminist themes, and The Blind Assassin, a Booker Prize-winning story within a story that explores the lives of two sisters. Both feature the beautiful writing, interesting characters and thoughtful insights you'd expect from Atwood.

The Handmaid's Tale is available in other formats.

The Blind Assassin is available in other formats.

Sports fans, I saw you, too. I caught not one but two of you reading Boys Among Men, in which journalist Jonathan Abrams investigates how the rise of high school-to-pro stars like LeBron James changed the NBA. And I caught you reading Fantasy Life, a mix of memoir and reporting that gives an inside look at fantasy sports.

Boys Among Men is also available as an eBook.

And, of course, magazines are perfect for the beach. I caught you paging through Cosmopolitan and Forbes. You can read these and many other magazines online via Zinio for Libraries.

What else are you reading, Chicago? Share your recommendations in the comments!

We welcome your respectful and on-topic comments and questions in this limited public forum. To find out more, please see Appropriate Use When Posting Content. Community-contributed content represents the views of the user, not those of Chicago Public Library