Beach Reads

JT Ellison

I’m on a “working vacation,” which means I’m trying to get work done on the new book, casually read email and blogs, but also try to rest and catch up on reading. Hubby and I are sunburned, tired, have eaten some great food, and feel nice and relaxed.

More importantly, I’ve achieved the daily word count (and then some) and have read. A lot. So instead of an essay, I thought I’d share some of the books I plowed through this week.

RUSTY NAIL –  J.A. Konrath

Review to appear at Reviewing The Evidence

I was really looking forward to reading this book. I enjoy the Jack Daniels series, but to be honest, someone piqued my interest in this book a while ago. A friend whose opinion I trust had mixed emotions about the book, mostly due to the exceptionally graphic nature of the crimes committed. That made me want to read it immediately – face it, I’m a controversy hound. I see what she’s saying, the crime scenes are a little over the top, but the storytelling is solid, the criminals creepy and the laughs off the hook. Konrath captures morbid cop humor so well, and in RUSTY NAIL I think he made a leap past the simple “joking” and plugged into true human nature.  

THE HARROWING – Alexandra Sokoloff

Review to appear at Reviewing The Evidence

Another book I couldn’t wait to get my hands on, especially after meeting Alex Sokoloff at ThrillerFest. What a woman, and what a book. THE HARROWING is Sokoloff’s debut, too, which has me jumping for joy in anticipation of her fiction career. The book reads fast, is dense and atmospheric and is so realistic that I felt like I was at Baird, in Mendelhall, with the ghost. THE HARROWING comes out in September from St. Martin’s, so put it on your TBR lists.

WHISPERS – Lisa Jackson

I must declare this book the perfect beach read. It goes fast, the characters are engaging, the men by turns handsome, bad and cruel, the women intelligent but capable of making mistakes. It’s romantic suspense, but not at all fluffy. Jackson’s deft touch weaves the stories of three privileged sisters in Oregon and it had me captivated all day.

THE LINCOLN LAWYER – Michael Connelly

This one needs no introduction. A great read, solid writing — Connelly always does it up right.



Review to appear at Reviewing The Evidence

SHOTGUN OPERA — Victor Gischler

Review to appear at Reviewing The Evidence

What are your favorite beach reads? Is there a particular author that you hold out for?

Wine of the Week – Ah heck, forget the wine, we’re at the beach. Let’s have a couple of peach daiquiris, a frozen margarita and call it a day. (Though they sell decent wine in the grocery stores here and I did pick up a nice Chianti…)

13 thoughts on “Beach Reads

  1. guyot

    Want a great chianti for summer nights at the beach – especially the east coast beaches – try an ’01 Collelungo Classico Campo Riserva. A big, fruity wine from a solid winery.

    You probably know, but only Chiantis labeled “Classico” are from the central heart of Tuscany. If it’s not classico, it’s from another region.

    Oh, books… um, yeah, what you said.

  2. Beatrice Brooks

    Favorite beach reads? Well, heck, I live near the water [on Vancouver Island], but the “beach” is pretty rocky. So I’ll give you my summer “deck reads” (that’s deck, not dreck). I recently read Stephen King’s CELL (pefect summer fodder, eh?) and wondered why. Will the Zombies who captured King please return him! Right now I’m catching up on Tess Gerritsen (always captivating) and I’m looking forward to PJ Tracy’s SNOW BLIND, which comes out next month. I, too, can’t wait for Alex Sokoloff’s THE HARROWING. And in a few weeks Lillian Stewart Carl’s MURDER HOLE (set in Scotland) comes out. I hear we get to meet the Loch Ness monster (“Nessie”) in that book. On hold at the library is Thomas Cook’s Red Leaves and Harlan Coben’s Promise Me and…and…Hugs, Deni

  3. Pari

    What’s a beach?

    Albuquerqueans often read on the banks of the mighty Rio Grande. Of course, during drought, we can read IN the Rio Grande.

    Okay, I’ll get back to editing.

    Rest, J.T. rest and enjoy.

  4. Sue Trowbridge

    It’s usually far too cold by the water here in the SF Bay Area to “read on the beach,” but one favorite summer tradition is picking up the new Marcia Muller book, which usually surfaces sometime in June or July. I just finished VANISHING POINT and couldn’t put it down!!

  5. Iden Ford

    Hey, we go to the “cottage” up here in Canada. So we say, what are your favourite “cottage” reads. I never liked reading on a beach because of the wind, the sand, the sun, and the sights. So we sit on the deck at the cottage and read. I make it a habit of reading an Ian Rankin novel every summer. And I usually get to read my wife’s latest manuscript. So those two are at the top, I then usually bring a box of books that is an eclectic mix. Last summer my favourite read was Bob Dylan’s autobiography, vol. 1. The guy is as good a writer as he is a songwriter. But if you have time, and not meaning to promo on your blog, check out the beach on the cover of Maureen’s upcoming novel set in the outer Hebrides, here picture of this beach is one that would present a challenge to anyone who tried to put out a deck chair and umbrella.I took the photo. Thanks JT

  6. JT Ellison

    Iden, the cover is spectacular. You should be tooting that everywhere. I’d like to spend a week there — bet I could get some serious work done.Pari, Elaine and Deni, I know, I know. Next time will be the real vacation, and I’ll disappear! Deni, those are some seriously good reads! You’re going to love Alex’s book, it’s really great.Sue, SF is one of my favorite spots. That’s someplace I’d like to spend a week too. Great suggestion.Paul, I’ve added that wine to the list. Always looking for excellent sangiovese to consume!And Tasha, the sand is torment enough.;)

  7. JT Ellison

    Rob, Honolulu? I’m jealous! Such a beuatiful place — I haven’t been in a long time, but loved it when I was there. Safe travels.Just think, next summer, it will be your book everyone’s reading at the beach/cottage/coast/deck… Pretty cool, huh?

  8. Alexandra Sokoloff

    Oh, WHEW, I’m so relieved JT liked THE HARROWING. Not that I need everyone to love it, but I like all of you so much I’d just hate to have any awkwardess, avoiding me at cons, that kind of thing! 😉 It’s funny how with authors, you have two very different ways of falling in love with them – or – not. Reading a friend’s book or having them read yours is definitely a hurdle…



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