Updated: May 2
I recently went on a *kid-free* vacation with my husband in beautiful Playa Del Carmen, Mexico. We did nothing but eat, drink and read pool (and beach) side. It was incredibly relaxing and a great chance to reconnect without the daily parental duties that consume our lives. I brought along three books and was able to read 2.5 of them, which I think may be a record for me! I wanted books with plotlines that kept me interested but were easy enough to read while sipping on *several* adult beverages. (Isn't the definition of a beach read one where you can easily read and understand when you're three pina coladas in?! If it's not, then I am messaging Merriam-Webster for a revision.) The resort we stayed at also had an incredible bookshelf with so many amazing books. I was impressed!
We also loved the resort we stayed at: Mahekal Beach Resort. The food, drinks, service and ambiance were top notch. We stayed in a private palapa where we woke up to the sounds of birds and the ocean. Truly magical. Playa Del Carmen is such a fun city to explore, and this resort was walking distance to plenty of shopping and sightseeing. I highly recommend checking this place out! (Not an ad, just really loved this resort.)
The People We Keep
I went into The People We Keep by Allison Larkin thinking it would be more in line with Daisy Jones and the Six or Opal and Nev, but it was far from a rock n' roll fiction and more of a coming-of-age story of chosen family. I won't complain, because I loved it!
April is a tough nut to crack, and life has not been easy to her. At the young age of 16, she decides to leave her neglectful father and dilapidated motorhome behind to figure out life on her own. Split into three parts, April finds versions of home in different cities, but finds herself running away when the people around her are trying to support her. Eventually, April's running catches up to her and she soon learns the meaning of the quote, "friends become our chosen family."
Reckless Girls by Rachel Hawkins is perfection for a beach vacation. I read it poolside and beachside while on vacay in Mexico. Short chapters, changing timelines, multiple unreliable characters and a fast-paced plot set on a deserted island outside of Hawaii. Each character seems to have secrets they are hiding and everything comes out deliciously in the end. The twists won't blow you away if you are an avid thriller reader, but it is everything you want in a beach read: mindless, fast-paced and fun.
I flew through it. It gave me The Beach mixed with The Ruins vibes.
I am #currentlyreading Romantic Comedy by Curtis Sittenfeld, so jury is out on my final review, but I can tell you I am over 50% through and enjoying it. The writing is sarcastic and witty and reminds me of watching a Saturday Night Live skit. I honestly can picture SNL's Cecily Strong as Sally, Pete Davidson as Danny and a *slightly more handsome, blond and less douchey* version of Jon Mayer as Noah Brewster. The book is broken up into multiple formats, starting with the past timeline of when Sally and Noah first meet while he is guest hosting and the featured musician for that week's The Night Owls (TNO) skit. (See where the SNL reference comes into play?) They meet, some chemistry brews, then quickly fizzles out. Fast forward to the summer of 2020, both Sally and Noah are stuck in the midst of the pandemic and find themselves engaged in an email pen pal of sorts. It's cute and funny. I have chuckled to myself. I know this is a romance type book, so I'm not sure where this will all go, but so far I am really enjoying the writing and character development.
Update: Finished and really enjoyed! Plenty of depth, as well as feminism, social themes and relatable topics. I appreciated that this book, while 'romantic' is in the title, approaches from a different angle than typical romance books. I also adore the fact that Curtis Sittenfeld is a Minnesota author. Represent the Midwest!