Patricia’s Summer Picks

This summer I’m not going anywhere.  At least not physically.  Instead I’m taking a course in Children’s Lit and kicking back at home.  That doesn’t mean that I won’t be dreaming of adventure in far-flung locales.  Here’s where I’ll be travelling this summer:

australiaAustraliaBittersweet* by Colleen McCullough

I have fond memories of basking in The Thorn Birds one summer.  I’m eager to repeat the experience with this epic (and romantic!) tale of the Latimer sisters — two sets of twins, all of them aspiring nurses coming of age in the 1920s.

Release Date: August 2014

japanJapan:  Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki And His Years of Pilgrimage* by Haruki Murakami

Closest in feel to Norwegian Wood, this novel takes us on Tsukuru Tazaki’s quest to find out why his once close knit circle of friends excluded him.

Release Date: August 2014

 russiaRussia:  The Great Glass Sea by Josh Weil

Twins find themselves taking opposing sides in this dystopian alternative to present day Russia.

Release Date: July 2014

greeceGreece (and Norway, Canada and USA):  So Long Marianne: A Love Story* by Kari Hesthamar

The life story of Marianne Ihlen — Leonard Cohen’s muse and inspiration for a supremely beautiful song.

Release Date: June 2014

portugal Portugal:  Devil on her Tongue* by Linda Holeman

Canadian author Holeman whisks us away to 18th century Portugal where a 13-year old outcast and her mother are

abandoned by her father.

Release Date:  June 2014

africaVarious places in Africa: O, Africa by Andrew Lewis Conn

Similar in feel to (one of my favourites) The Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, O Africa tells the story of gambler Micah and his twin brother Izzy, who travel through Africa to film a comedy in the jungle.

Release Date: June 2014


I tried very hard to pare this list down so I wasn’t spending all my ‘travel time’ in the US.  There are three books I couldn’t bear to leave off this list:  2 A.M. at the Cat’s Pyjamas* by Marie-Helene Bertino (which traces a spunky girl jazz singer’s Christmas Eve adventures in Philadelphia) and two in New YorkThe Girls at the Kingfisher Club* (in which the roaring twenties meet the Twelve Dancing Princesses) & My Salinger Year* (which follows Rakoff as she interns for Salinger’s publisher in the 1990s — it’s one of my favourite reads so far this year).


Happy Summer Reading!  (I’ll won’t be back until my course ends in mid-August!)


*Many thanks to both NetGalley and Edelweiss for providing ARCs and keeping Heidi and I in fabulous reads!


  1. Great post Patricia! Books take our brains round the world and into space as long as we’re willing to get the ticket and take the ride. Have an awesome summer!

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