Heading to the beach this weekend? After a string of recent shark encounters along Long Island’s ocean beaches, we’re thinking about sticking to what we know best: the bay and the sound.
We may not even leave the sand, thanks to one of these engrossing summer reads selected by two local booksellers: Jocelyn Kaleita of the new A Book Place in Riverhead, which opened July 1, and Scott Raulsome of Burton’s Bookstore in Greenport. From history to thriller to romance, they helped us curate a list of picks for all tastes and ages.
As a bonus, many on the list have a connection to the area, which has always attracted authors and creatives, and some are set on Long Island. The others were just too good to leave off our list.
Two Nights In Lisbon by Chris Pavone
Raulsome recommended this latest book from bestselling author and part-time Orient resident Chrs Pavone, describing it as a “relentless thriller” about a wife who wakes up one morning while on vacation in Lisbon, Portugal to find her husband missing without a trace.
The Lost Boys of Montauk by Amanda Fairbanks
“This local-as-you-can-get read will bring you right back to March of 1984 and the last few days of March when the tile fishing ship, the Windblown and its crew were declared lost at sea. Written with such detailed research and respect for those who survived, you won’t let the book go for fear you’ll lose the men too.” — Jocelyn Kaleita
The Lady Lighthouse Keeper by Mary Korpi
This newly published local story offers a glimpse at the “rich and inspiring tale” of Stella Prince, the only woman to serve as a keeper at Horton Point Lighthouse in Southold. Raulsome noted that lovers of Long Island’s maritime past will enjoy this one.
The Right Swipe by Logan Kingston
Written by Hamptons-based author Logan Kingston, Kaleita praised the book for being “laugh-out-loud” and capturing the “strange-but-true” modern dating scene in a “relatable — sometimes horrifyingly so” way. “Place this book on the tippy top of your summer must read list!” she said.
On Gin Lane by Brooke Lea Foster
Setting: Southampton, 1957. A young socialite is whisked off to the enclave and begins to realize that her glamorous summer is giving her everything — “except what she really wants,” Raulsome said.
Julian is a Mermaid by Jessica Love
Ready to dazzle the world after seeing mermaids on the train with his abuela, Julian cannot stop imagining himself growing a tail and swimming among the fish in the blue-tinted water. “Jessica Love’s picture book is for young readers, but its message is for the human race,” said Kaleita.
Montauk Has a Busy Shark by Nina Ross
“From the widely popular series A Montauk Mike Adventure comes the latest tale following Montauk Mike and his friends as they clean up the beach and the sea,” Raulsome said.
Book Lovers by Emily Henry
An uptight book editor joins her little sister in North Carolina for the summer and has a series of unexpected run-ins with a well known literary agent she knows from back in NYC. A tribute to — and playful poke — at a popular romance trope, this quick read delivers a thoughtful message about family and life decisions.
Something Wilder by Christina Lauren
A second-chance romance story described as a “nonstop adventure” that combines elements of travel, treasure hunting, and the wild west.
The Measure by Nikki Erlick
How would you live if you knew when you’d die? Suddenly, every person alive receives a wooden box revealing how much time they have left. “[This book] follows the repercussions of numerous intertwined characters,” explained Raulsome.