Fiction for Reading This Summer

By Skokie Staff Advisory Services

We love these fiction titles that are perfect for summer.

  • A Proposal They Can't Refuse

    2022 by Caña, Natalie

    This foodie-related fake relationship rom-com turns hot and heavy when meddlesome octogenarian matchmakers blackmail former childhood friends Kamilah Vega, who wants to modernize the family’s Humboldt Park Puerto Rican restaurant, and Liam Kane, who’s set to win a national competition for his family’s Irish American whiskey distillery, into an engagement, or the building they share will be sold. File this under smoldering in Chicagoland. Suggested by Sharon.

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  • Kamila Knows Best

    2022 by Heron, Farah

    A loosely inspired, South Asian twist on Jane Austen's Emma with an incredibly sweet, slow-burn, friends-to-lovers romance. A great mix of self discovery, humor, and a swoony yet low-steam romance. I really want to attend Kamila's Bollywood parties! Suggested by Rummanah.

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  • Chlorine

    2023 by Song, Jade

    This unflinching coming-of-age adult debut is easily one of my favorite reads of 2023. A refreshing twist on the horror genre, it follows swimmer Ren Yu as she navigates immigration, sexuality, abuse, and the pains of growing up. Disturbing, obsessive, and ultimately beautiful. Suggested by Elise.

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  • This Time Tomorrow

    2022 by Straub, Emma

    I loved this smart, funny, creative time-travel book. Our protagonist, Alice, about to turn 40, awakens one morning to find she's 16 again. The how and why are fun, though what really matters is how much Straub makes us care for Alice and her kindly father, how well she captures the feel and place of it all (New York City), and how surprisingly tender and joyful the story is. Suggested by Chris.

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  • You Made a Fool of Death with Your Beauty

    2022 by Emezi, Akwaeke

    Full of messy drama, love triangles, gorgeous scenery, and beautiful people, this contemporary romance novel doesn’t disappoint. Five years after the tragic death of her husband, Feyi is finally ready to start dating again. Her dating life becomes unexpectedly complicated the closer she gets to feeling alive and like her old self. Suggested by Michelle.

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  • Never Ever Getting Back Together

    2022 by Gonzales, Sophie

    If you like books that are warm and witty like those of Casey McQuinston, I think you will enjoy this enemies to friends to lovers rom-com with a sly critique on dating reality tv shows. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Suggested by Rummanah.

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  • Dandelion Wine

    1999 by Bradbury, Ray

    Drawing deeply from his own childhood growing up in Waukegan, this whimsical collection of short stories follows 12-year old Douglas Spaulding and captures the essence of he season. Yes, Bradbury's patented fantasy and magical realism are here and wonderful, though tempered, while the atmosphere of the stories is redolent of July crickets chirping, distant thunderstorms brewing, and languorous days of seemingly infinite leisure. Suggested by Chris.

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  • Malibu Rising

    2021 by Reid, Taylor Jenkins

    Complicated family relationships, beautiful California scenery, and a wild Hollywood party make this novel a must read for family drama enthusiasts. All of the action takes place in one night with flashbacks to inform the reader of the past. Suggested by Michelle.

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  • Rise to the Sun

    2021 by Johnson, Leah

    A swoony summertime LGBTQIA story that happens during a weekend at a music and arts festival. I loved spending time with these characters. It’s just the ticket to feel all the young adult feelings and appreciate the power of music. Suggested by Sharon.

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  • Best Served Hot

    2023 by Elliot, Amanda

    Sizzling with charm, this enemies to lovers foodie rom-com has a slow-burn storyline peppered with scrumptious descriptions of food. You’ll be left with a smile, not to mention a bit hungry. Suggested by Sharon.

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  • The Sunbearer Trials

    2022 by Thomas, Aiden

    Thomas’s Mexican inspired fantasy world is filled with captivating world-building, earnest friendships, and electrifying adventure. I was completely hooked. This is a perfect choice for readers who love Percy Jackson, The Hunger Games, and My Hero Academia. Suggested by Rummanah.

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  • Against the Currant

    2023 by Matthews, Olivia

    The first in the Spice Isle Bakery Mysteries Series. You’ll surely enjoy the mouth watering Caribbean delights, while delving into this cozy whodunit. Suggested by Sharon.

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  • Beauty and the Besharam

    2022 by Vale, Lillie

    A delightful enemies to friends to lovers rom-com between two high-achieving rival high school students with a light fairy tale touch to the story in a gender-swapped Beauty and the Beast. Perfect for fans of Netflix's Never Have I Ever and a joyful reminder to be true to yourself. Suggested by Rummanah.

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  • Sag Harbor

    2009 by Whitehead, Colson

    The third novel by Whitehead drew from his memories of spending his childhood summers on Sag Harbor, a Long Island beach community/haven for the Black middle class. It's a loose, funny, and charming book that has a lot of fun exploring the subcultures of the mid-'80s adolescents who populate it. Suggested by Chris.

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  • Killers of a Certain Age

    2022 by Raybourn, Deanna

    When you just want a book to escape from reality, this Charlie's Angels meets Golden Girls caper fits that bill perfectly. The characters are lovable, the plot moves at a swift pace, and there's plenty of humor. I'm crossing my fingers that we get a second book with these wonderful ladies. Suggested by Rummanah.

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  • Sunny Song Will Never Be Famous

    2021 by Park, Suzanne

    In this quirky, lighthearted coming-of-age story, 17-year-old Sunny, a social media influencer on the rise, is sent away to Sunshine Heritage Farms, enrolled in a four-week digital detox camp. Connections that weren't part of her summer plans are very much there. Suggested by Sharon.

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  • Chloe and the Kaishao Boys

    2023 by Coyiuto, Mae

    Chloe, a Chinese Filipina, is about to leave Manila to attend the University of Southern California's competitive animation program. First, her family wants to hold a traditional debut for her 18th birthday, and that means being set up on lots of dates that could lead to romance, some difficult choices, and taking chances. I was completely won over by this funny and heartwarming book. Suggested by Sharon.

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  • Happy Place

    2023 by Henry, Emily

    For fans of rom-coms, this is an ideal beach read. A couple on an annual weeklong get together with their besties pretend that they didn’t split up months ago. Follow the fake relationship trope and have a blast. Emily Henry hits the mark again! Suggested by Sharon.

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  • Rosewood: A Midsummer Meet Cute

    2023 by DasGupta, Sayantani

    Blending Jane Austen and Shakespeare, with a Bridgerton-like TV series/Regency-themed acting camp thrown into the mix--what’s not to like? Give a round of applause for this creative retelling of Sense and Sensibility. Suggested by Sharon.

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  • Luck and Last Resorts

    2022 by Ruiz, Sarah Grunder

    An emotional, high-seas, closed-door rom-com gives a new spin to the marriage-of-convenience trope. Nina and Ollie are dealing with heavy issues, but their push-and-pull romance is what kept me glued to the pages and rooting for this couple. Suggested by Rummanah.

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  • The Wisteria Society of Lady Scoundrels

    2021 by Holton, India

    Pure escapism at its finest. A delightful and fun historical fantasy romance romp filled with witty banter, a slow-burn romance, pirates, and scoundrels. What more can you ask? Suggested by Rummanah.

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  • A Caribbean Heiress in Paris

    2022 by Herrera, Adriana

    I stayed up way too late finishing this delightful and steamy read. I'm so happy to see diverse historical romance (more please!). Luz Alana and Evan's chemistry sizzles and pops. I can't wait to read more from this series. Highly recommended for fans of Sarah Maclean. Suggested by Rummanah.

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  • Big Swiss: A Novel

    2023 by Beagin, Jen

    Bold and strange, Big Swiss pokes and prods at all things gross, traumatic, and uncomfortable, while still remaining humorous and witty. If you like complex, character-driven literary fiction that isn't afraid to be a bit off-beat, this is for you. Suggested by Elise.

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  • Blackout


    You’ll catch the warmth with this sweet collection of linked short stories penned by six stellar young adult authors. It’s summer, New York City, the middle of a heat wave, and unexpected romance is in the air. Suggested by Sharon.

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