How to Build Your Summer Reading List and 15 Indie Author Links

Summer is well underway.  I’m happy when the sun shines and we’ve had lots of that for months,Sunshine, warmth, smiling now. We’ve all had plenty of time to make plans for enjoying the warmth and sunshine. Are you ready?

Have you planned your summer vacation?

Is the yard ready for outdoor entertaining? Gardening nearly done?

Good. The longer, more leisurely days of summer might afford you more time to read.

WAIT! Is your summer reading list ready? WHAT? You mean you have stacks of books all over your bedroom and your office and your living room? Oh, no! You’ve overloaded your eReader? How WILL you decide what to read this summer? YIKES!

Don’t panic. You can do this. We’re only two weeks into summer. Still plenty of time to prepare your list. Here we go.

1. Sort your TBR pile: Take a look at each title and decide whether it’s a book you want to read…ever. Create new piles: Keep, but read later; Give away; Top ten to read now.

2. Choose your genres: What are your go-to reads when you settled down in your hammock or stretch out on the beach? Chick-lit, romance, short stories, maybe a cozy mystery?

3. How much time do you have? As of today, there are officially 11 weeks of summer left; 8 weeks, if you consider Labor Day the end of your summer. Do you read a book a week, a book a month? Faster, slower? Don’t let anyone judge you on your pace but, do use it to figure out how many books should be in your Summer TBR Pile.

4. Check your favorite author’s titles: Have you read everything your favorite author wrote? Check his/her website or Amazon for more titles.

5. Destination or activity specific: Pick up a book that relates to your new passion. Maybe you’re planning to learn to grow herbs, travel to Alaska, or speak French.

6. Top ten pile: Only have 3 in your top ten pile?  Maybe you just need a new mix of books. Visit Goodreads  for recommendations on new books. You can find reviews there, too.But the best way to find new books to read is to ASK YOUR FRIENDS!

Reading a book on a tropical beach

Let’s have a summer reading round-up! Please offer your recommendations for this summer’s reading in the comments section. Here are several of mine:

Anything by these traditionally published best-selling authors:

For suspense/thriller/mystery:

Michael Connelly, Harlan Coben, James Rollins, Daniel Silva, Lee Child, Jeffrey Deaver

For Women’s Fiction and Romance:

Luanne Rice, Kristin Hannah, Barbara Delinsky, Christina Dodd, Barbara Freethy

Try some best-selling Indie Authors:

I could go on, but it’s your turn.

Lets load up the comments with tons of great books to read!

What are YOU reading and what authors can you recommend?

It’s Friday July 6th and that means it’s time to announce the winners of the Life List Club Milestone Party prize!

Today’s winner of the Sexy, Smart and Strong Women Blog prize is Kristin Nador!

Congratulations Kristin!

Please let me know whether you prefer an Amazon or Barnes & Noble eGiftCard.

You can email me at: Marcia dot A dot Richards at

The big gift card winner has been announced at the LLC blog! Head on over to see who it is!


19 thoughts on “How to Build Your Summer Reading List and 15 Indie Author Links

  1. I made my list and didn’t post it! I should have had that second cup of coffee first. Here it is:
    Out of Time–a time travel by Deborah Truscott
    Where the Wind Blows–a western romance by Caroline Fyffe
    1929–a historical by ML Gardner
    Dead Angler (Loon Lake mystery series)–by Victoria Houston
    Irreparable Harm–a legal thriller by Melissa F Miller

    Congrats to Kristen Nador! She has a great blog. Check it out.

    • So glad you came back with your list, Diana! 🙂 I’ve read and LOVED 1929! Haven’t read the others–I, too, love being exposed to new authors. Thanks!

  2. I don’t read much romance, but am reading Claire Delacroix for the first time, a local author (Toronto) The Beauty Bride, Warner Books. Medieval romance that rocks.

    • I think as a writer, it’s a good idea to read out of your usual genres. It gives you one more perspective on writing. Besides, you never know what ideas for stories might pop up when allowing your muse to experience something new. Thanks for the recommendation, Sherry!

  3. Marcia, I’m reading a yoga book right now and The Art Of War For Writers. Next up on my fiction list is…? Funny, but I was just looking at all the books on my Ereader and wondering what to read next. Your plan is excellent. Plus, I’ve discovered a few authors on your list that I want to try.

    Have a great summer reading!

    • I’m so glad you discovered some new authors. My Kindle is what prompted this post. I have at least 100 books on there to read as well as another 50+ on my shelves and I keep buying more. There is no such thing as too many books!

  4. Great post Marcia. Love the how-to list 🙂

    Let’s see…reading: Timepiece by Heather Albano (kinda steampunk, historical, and time-travel so far, not sure how to call it, LOL)

    You already listed a lot of my favorites but here’s some other recommended authors: Joely Sue Burkhart (BDSM romance in fantasy, contemporary, and steampunk/SF), Maria Zannini (SF/F, romance), Ciara Knight (YA), Brinda Berry (YA), Larissa Ione (paranormal romance), Sloan Parker (M/M romantic suspense), Alexandra Sokoloff (horror, thriller), Nadja Notariani (contemporary & historic romance), Jennifer Probst (women’s fiction, romance), Liz Fichera (romance, women’s fiction), Kait Nolan (paranormal romance, YA), Karen Marie Moning (romance, UF), Melissa Mayhue (romance), Lindsay Buroker (fantasy), Lisa Bergren (I’ve only read her YA series but she has others I haven’t got yet). I’ll stop there, LOL.

    • Wow, Raelyn! You are a super supporter of authors! Timepiece sounds good! I’m familiar with some of the others but there are so many to check out! A veritable treasure trove of reading recommendations. Thanks!

  5. Thanks so much for picking me for the contest. I’m thrilled! This is a great post. I’ve been overwhelmed with all the books on my Kindle and what to pick next. (When I see free, I download it. I think it’s become an addiction.) I’ve been working on a Lifetime Reading Plan, trying to read classics I haven’t ever read and different genres normally not my regular choices. I’m going to use your method and see if I can get it down to a top ten for the summer. 🙂

    • So cool that you’re doing a lifetime reading list. I love that idea! I have a gazillion free books on my Kindle, too! I love trying out new authors and that’s a perfect way to do it. Congrats on winning the contest here. Shoot me an email and I’ll get it right out to you!

  6. Why do I feel like I shouldn’t be commenting, but reading my summer book list? *looks behind me*

    I promise I listened to another audio cd this morning! Guess I’m back to my list! Gotta get going for the library’s summer reading program. And I’m ALMOST done with the final 50 Shades so we can do our book review! That’s a nice steamy read for summer.

    I recommend A Girl Named Zippy by Haven Kimmel for a plucky, quirky memoir. One of my faves and you’ll laugh out loud!

    For a new author: Check out Kait Nolan’s Red, a re-telling of the Little Red Riding Hood story, and Red can handle herself!

    For an ice tea on the veranda kind of read, try Blessings by Anna Quindlen. I’m reading it now and I love it!

    Be back to see more book recommendations!

  7. I finished the Ted Dekker Circle Series and loved it. 4 books. Fantasy genre.
    Last night finished up the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy – really enjoyed it. Romance/erotica genre.
    I am moving on to Diana’s Souled next and also on my list is Steena’s Finding Emma and Jillian’s That Wedding (I loved That Boy)! I also have a few books by Diane Capri that I want to give a read so I’m pretty set for summer…YUM!

    • Ooh, you’ve been busy! Loved 50 Shades and Steena’s and Diana’s books. I just started one of Diane’s and next will be Jill’s! So many awesome books on the market and so little time to read! Thanks, Natalie!

  8. Great list!! I hope I have some time to read books this summer!! I just read some YA books recently. Easy by Tammara Webber was fantastic. As were the Vincent Boys series by Abbi Glines.

I love it when you tell me what you think!

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