Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Books on My Summer TBR List

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This week’s prompt really forced me to stop and think about what books I’d like to read over the next few months. I always have a mental list on the go, but it shifts all the time and I tend to forget what I resolved to read in my mind after a few days. Writing it down is going to help me stay the course. This list doesn’t include the books I’ll be reading for Paris in July (I haven’t decided on them yet),  for my book group or for Mary Stewart Reading Week. I have to keep in mind that summer does go through September because, to me, summer ends in July. The school district where I work is on a modified year-round schedule and the kids start back to school on July 21 this year. For some reason, that puts an end to summer for me too, but it is really quite far from the end! Here are the books I hope to read by September 23, the first day of autumn:

1. The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters – This is my most anticipated book of the year and I have a galley that I am quietly hoarding. I will probably read it during a long weekend in July.

2. The Secret Place by Tana French – Can you believe I have never read Tana French? I’ve heard great things about her latest book so I will make it my first.

3. The Arsonist by Sue Miller – I’ve always liked Sue Miller. The Senator’s Wife is one of the most astonishing books I’ve ever read. The Arsonist sounds like it will be a good one, too.

4. The Frozen Dead by Bernard Minier – At atmospheric thriller that was a bestseller in France – I can’t resist.

5. Wild Strawberries by Angela Thirkell – I’m saving this one as a treat.

6. The Diary of a Provincial Lady by E.M. Delafield – I’ve owned this book for a few years now and am finally planning to read it sometime soon.

7. Crampton Hodnet by Barbara Pym – I haven’t read a Pym in over a year now – I look forward to entering her world again.

8. Heat Lightning by Helen Hull – I had a goal to read all of my Persephone’s this year and I haven’t read any! I think Heat Lightning is a good place to start and it also meets my goal of reading more American women authors.

9. Barchester Towers by Anthony Trollope – I also had a goal to read two Trollope novels and I haven’t done that either (yet). It’s time to get a move on.

10. Blaming by Elizabeth Taylor – I just finished Mrs. Palfrey at the Claremont and it was brilliant, to say the least. I must read more of Taylor’s books.


What are you looking forward to reading this summer?

23 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Books on My Summer TBR List

  1. If I might make a suggestion, I’d start with Tana French’s first book, In the Woods. There’s a bit of carry-over with the characters from book to book. It by no means “spoils” the experience to read them out of order, but if you are a bit OCD (like me), and like to see the characters develop, it’s kind of fun.

    Looks like a great list, and is inspiring me to make a summer list, too. Thanks!


  2. Oh I could not be more excited for the Sarah Waters books. She releases books all too rarely, and I have been craving and craving more of her work. I can’t even think what else I’m looking forward to this summer, because I can only think of wonderful Sarah Waters.


    1. I am so excited too! I’ve already heard rumblings of goodness about it so I know it is going to be another gem. What is your favorite of her books? I think mine is Affinity.


  3. I’m looking forward to the new Sarah Waters book too. It seems such a long time since her last one was published! I hope you enjoy it – and the other nine books on your list. I loved Barchester Towers!


  4. I can hardly wait to read your review of “Diary of a Provincial Lady”. I have it somewhere here amongst my 2547 books. My granddaughter came over today to count them. Hoping someone here has more!!!!!


  5. I hadn’t heard about a new Sarah Waters!!!! As soon as I finish commenting I’ll be searching Amazon to see the release date, and then frantically checking the library catalog to see if they’re taking holds yet.

    From your list, I’ve read Diary of a Provincial Lady and Barchester Towers, both of which I loved. I also have Heat Lightning but I haven’t read it yet. Time to make my list. . .


  6. Hmpf, I just checked Amazon and it’s not coming out here in the US until September. Oh well, I’ll have to knock some books off my own TBR shelves instead. I literally have 20 books by Trollope unread, plus a pile of Zola, Wharton, and Willa Cather, and about 20 Persephones.


    1. Karen, do you read eBooks at all? If so, you can sign up and request a galley of the Sarah Waters book from I got approved for it fairly quickly. As a librarian, you should too. Then you can download to your reader and not have to wait!


  7. I love your list, and not just because it has Trollope, the Provincial Lady, Angela Thirkell, AND Barbara Pym, but also some new-to-
    me authors to explore.


  8. You have so many good ones on your list! I’m in the middle of Barchester Towers right now and it’s definitely a good summer reading choice. The book I’m most anticipating, though, is actually The Silkworm, J.K. Rowling’s new mystery. I’m looking forward to seeing how she develops the characters that she introduced in the first.


    1. I never finished The Cuckoo’s Calling for some reason, but I’d like to so I can move on to The Silkworm. I’ve heard lots of good things about it – I hope you like it!


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