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Tuesday, May 14, 2024

Summer Reading


I hope that you had a wonderful weekend.  Our Mother's Day celebration was one less this weekend because my #2 had a bear of a head cold.  However, we had one more honoree - it was my #1's first Mother's Day!

We had lunch at FachiniThe Mister and I had never been there before. I give it 5-stars; the food and service were exemplary.  

Miss Lucy is a chip off the old block.  Her Mama never met a camera she didn't like. 

Our little Mama was positively glowing with her new arm candy by her side.

The Mister called first dibs on holding Lucy.
I let him because he could be such a sore sport.

See how much happier our girl is on my lap than Grampy's?

Lucy gave me this sweet memento of her handprint at one month old.
She also included a beautiful portrait of herself.

Another lovely gift I received from my #1 and AJ is this beautiful Best Day Bracelet, which commemorates sweet Lucy's birthdate. 

Apologies for that old hand.
If they make a hand photoshop, I couldn't find it.

If you have been reading my blog for a while, you know that it is customary for me to take the Summer off.  My last day is approaching, and I did not want to leave you high and dry without some book recommendations. There are so many great books coming out this Summer.  I was fortunate to get some advanced copies, and I included my thoughts with them.

On the outside they were the golden family with the perfect life. On the inside, they built the perfect lie.

I read this one, and it kept me guessing throughout the pages.

Pub date: 8/6


This is the second novel by the author.  

Never a dull moment in this page-turner. 

I loved it! 

A dream vacation turns deadly when secrets from the past catch up to a married couple in Paris. 

I'm a big fan of Kimberly Belle's, and she did not let me down with this fast-paced thriller. 

Pub date: 6/11

Secrets. Lies. Murder. Let the festivities begin...

Pub Date:6/18


A daughter races to uncover her mother's secret life in the wake of her disappearance. 

Pub date: 7/9

Nothing ever happens in sleepy little Fairhill, Vermont. But this morning, that will change. And one innocent question could be deadly.

I have read almost all of Shari Lapena's books, and I am looking forward to this one.

Pub date: 7/30

A newlywed librarian begins to suspect the man she married might be a murderer.

One of my favorite authors.
I'm waiting with bated breath.

Pub date: 6/11

An extraordinary new collection of twelve short stories, many never-before-published and some of his best EVER.

Pub date: 5/21

A man must contend with the long-ago disappearance of his childhood best friend—and the dark secrets lurking just beyond the safe confines of his picture-perfect neighborhood.

Pub date: 6/18

Author Lisa Jewell (None of This Is True) launches the Marvel Crime series of thriller books for adults with an original story starring the private detective Jessica Jones.

Pub date: 7/2

 This dramatic novel, based on the woman glamorized in The Sound of Music, brings Maria to life as never before.

How do you solve a problem like Maria?
Humble bragging: I know the whole score.

Pub date: 7/30

  A rich, transporting story that follows a family of glassmakers from the height of Renaissance-era Italy to the present day.

I'm a big fan of Tracy Chevalier.

Pub date: 6/18

A haunting and powerful story of female friendships and secrets in a Washington, DC, boardinghouse during the McCarthy era.

Pub date: 7/9

A sweeping novel inspired by the untold history of women pioneers who fought to protect children caught in the storm of land barons hungry for power and oil wealth.

Pub date: 6/4

A young woman wins the role of a lifetime in a film about a legendary heroinebut the real drama is behind the scenes in this sumptuous historical epic from the author of Mexican Gothic.

Pub date: 8/6

A novel about two women, centuries apart—one of whom is the real author of Shakespeare’s plays—who are both forced to hide behind another name.

I am not a huge fan of two timelines, but this one worked for me because I am Jodi Picoult's biggest fan.  As with all JP's books, I always learn something, and this was no exception. 

Pub date: 8/20

 A vicious game of cat and mouse where everything is on the line.

Spoiler alert:  I liked this one more than The Last Mrs. Parrish.

Pub date: 6/18

Two women—separated by decades and continents and united by an exotic family heirloom—reclaim secrets and lost loves.

I read this one and absolutely loved it!
Williams never misses a beat.

Pub date: 6/25

A novel of family, secrets, ghosts, and homecoming set on the seaside cliffs of Maine.

I have read all of J. Courtney Sullivan's books and enjoyed them.  I am going out on a cliff and predicting this will be a bestseller.

Pub date: 7/2

 When rich strangers move to the island, social mayhem and a possible murder follow. Can Nantucket’s best locals save the day and their way of life?

It wouldn't be Summer for me without an EH book!

Pub date: 6/11

A tender and touching novel about a young woman who discovers the family she has always longed for when she spends a life-changing summer in North Carolina.

Pub date: 6/25

Nobody writes Southern Lit better than KWH.

In the wake of tragedy, a group of friends makes a pact that will cause them to reunite a decade later and embark upon a life-changing adventure together.

Pub date: 7/9

Another brilliantly observed family drama in which the enduring, hard-won affection of a long marriage faces imminent derailment from events both past and present.

I cannot wait to read this one.  

Pub date: 6/18

She’s rewriting his love story. But can she rewrite her own?

Pub date: 6/11

Inspired by C. S. Lewis’s The Chronicles of Narnia, this wild and wondrous novel is a fairy tale for grown-ups who still knock on the back of wardrobes.

I enjoyed The Wishing Game and I am looking forward to this one.

Pub date: 7/16 

A group of wealthy Manhattanites escape to an astrology-themed retreat, where simmering resentments and long-held secrets lead to a shocking death.

Pub date: 7/16

A bestselling author finds love and second chances in the stacks of a quaint beach town bookshop.

I'm a big fan of Jamie Brenner's and look forward to this one.

Pub date: 7/16

A moving, hilarious story of a family summer vacation full of secrets, lunch, and learning to let go.

She had me at lunch.

Pub date: 6/18

A breathless true crime tale of sex, religion, and murder in the deep South.

Just another day in Paradise.

Pub date: 7/23

Happy reading!
If you have a recommendation for me, leave it in the comments.
I would love to see them.

Preppy Empty Nester
Preppy Empty Nester

Thanks for stopping by my blog. Feel free to contact me through comments and email. I love to hear from my readers!


  1. You have the best book and TV recs. I really appreciate your posts. It’s my Holy Grail for reading recs. Looking forward to the time Lucy will give us her pics.

  2. Sis - you've absolutely outdone yourself with this post. My summer reading list is done and dusted. As is my summer. There is no time for anything else but reading. Goodbye to hopes for a sequel to the wonder that is Never, Never, Hardly Ever. Ha!

  3. OMG! You're going to be gone for the summer :( But thanks for all the book recs. I especially can't wait for the new Jodi Picoult.

  4. I think Lucy favors Mister’s features

  5. These look like some really wonderful books for summer fun!

  6. About half of these books were already on my to read list, but I was able to add a few more to it. Shannon

  7. Thanks so much for you book list. At least I can keep busy reading until your blog writing comes back from your summer break :). You will be missed!! Baby Lucy is so beautiful!

  8. Deborah Hughes

    1. Hi Katie. I recently asked you about your lovely monogramed gold necklace and how to have one made. Our mutual friend, KTG, told me you contacted her about this. Have you any more info? If so, give her the details, and she'll contact me. She will also give you my email and text. I hope to hear more about this necklace. Thanks for being such a bright light!

  9. What a beautiful and sweet baby! There is nothing like a grandchild. Your heart will never belong to yourself again!
    Thank you for the book list-I have saved it so I can find it later.
    Have a wonderful, wonderful summer! xo Diana

  10. Hi Katie,
    What thoughtful beautiful Mother’s Day gifts you gave to one another. You all have such good taste.
    Baby Lucy just keeps getting cuter by the day, I can tell she favors you. Maybe not for long, you better be careful. Beautiful picture of daughter #1 I hope #2 gets to feeling better soon.
    Thank you for the book suggestions.
    Have a wonderful summer, unless we hear back from you again.

  11. Great list! I really enjoyed the Wishing Game that you recommended. I hope it becomes a movie . m in hi

  12. Our ‘Sweet Lucy’ makes every day a celebration and idk how she does it but every picture of her is more beautiful than the last! Your BDE bracelet is a classic and pairs beautifully with your friendship bracelet 💖 Looks like another chillaxing summer of great reads, thanks for posting. KTG

  13. Have an enjoyable summer. I will miss photos of Miss Lucy. Love the bracelet and the sentiment.

  14. Thanks for the reading suggestions. I always save these posts for when I run out of ideas for something to read. Today I ordered a couple of new ones, one of which is Mary Kay Andrews new one Summer at the Saint. I always like what she comes up with for summers. I also ordered one by a former CIA agent (female) The Peacock and The Sparrow by I.S. Berry which I am really looking forward to. It might be more your Mister's cup of tea as I often really like his suggestions, too. (Daniel Silva). She won a couple of major literary awards for it so it has to be good.

  15. Beemie here… anytime you’re up for it we can do a duet of the best of Sound of Music… I sing at least one line every school day when it’s appropriate (which is always) … no lie, at least one student is 16 going on 17, or one or two Maria’s problems to be solved, my seniors were the happy recipients of so long farewell yesterday, & a few of my favorite things just happen to be brown paper packages tied up with string… I could go on, but now I am just showing off:)

  16. What a wonderful list of summer reads! I have a feeling that I'll be referring to this post often during the next few months! Thanks for the recommendations! So happy for you (and your #1) on your first Mother's Day as a Grand (and your #1 as a mama)! Your gifts are precious and will always be such beautiful reminders of this special season of life!

  17. Katie,
    Thank you for the book recommendations. You always recommend such good books. I am set for the summer. I love the sentiment behind your Mother’s Day gift. Beautiful blanket and sweet Lucy’s will be a keepsake forever. Lucy is beautiful and there is nothing better than holding your grandchild. I am getting ready to watch the David Letterman interview you recommended. Have a wonderful summer. You will be missed.

  18. Blanket!?! Insert bracelet.


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