Some summer beach reads

Sunday , June 10, 2012 - 7:33 AM

Staff

Looking for a book for the beach? Here are a few:

"The After Wife" by Gigi Levangie Grazer; Ballantine ($25)

A charming tale of a grieving 40-ish widow -- and the wacky friends who love her -- as she attempts to regain control of her life in the sometimes-surreal L.A. landscape. (July)

"The Age of Doubt" by Andrea Camilleri; Viking ($15)

In the latest in the author's series, take another journey to Sicily with Inspector Montalbano, who seeks to penetrate the mystery surrounding two yachts and the discovery of a mutilated corpse. (May)

"Beach Season" by Lisa Jackson, Cathy Lamb and Holly Chamberlin; Kensington ($15)

Can't a good girl ever get a break in life and love? The tales of forlorn heroines gathered here are like a chocolate sampler -- romantic, brief, sweet. (May)

"The Book of Summers" by Emylia Hall; Harlequin Mira ($14.95)



The shuddering separation of her parents results in young Beth shuttling between two worlds -- the U.S. and Hungary -- and coping with family secrets as she reaches adulthood. (May)

"Robert Ludlum's The Bourne Imperative" by Eric Van Lustbader; Grand Central, $27.99

Jason Bourne's rescue of a drowning man not only reminds him of himself (the man's an amnesiac too), it raises plenty of questions. Why is he being stalked by the Mossad? Could he really be a legendary terrorist assassin, or is this a case of mistaken identity? (June)

"Broken Harbor" by Tana French; Viking ($27.95)

Detective Mick "Scorcher" Kennedy returns, in French's latest, to investigate what appears to be a straightforward attack on a family in an Irish housing development -- but nothing, Kennedy knows, is ever so simple. (July)

"Capital" by John Lanchester; W.W. Norton ($26.95)

In the shadow of terrorism and the 2008 global financial implosion, a cast of English characters are brought together via a strange message delivered on postcards in this latest by the author of "The Debt to Pleasure." (June)

"Creole Belle" by James Lee Burke; Simon (ampersand) Schuster ($27.99)

Dave Robicheaux can't get the song "Creole Belle" out of his mind or the New Orleans girl who disappeared after giving the song to him on an iPod. This leads to a new search against the backdrop of an oil rig disaster in the Gulf -- and the threat posed to life along the coast. (July)

"Criminal" by Karin Slaughter; Delacorte ($27)

The brutal crime that started investigator Amanda Wagner's career entwines with the mysterious, heartbreaking past of her colleague, agent Will Trent, in a tale spanning 40 years. (July)

"Dead Stars" by Bruce Wagner; Blue Rider Press ($35, ages 14 and older)

The latest by the author of "The Chrysanthemum Palace" takes another biting, funny look at our obsessions with celebrity, this time in the young-adult world. (August)

"The Demands" by Mark Billingham; Mulholland Books ($24.99)

A London convenience store is the site of a hostage drama when a grieving father takes customers as his prisoners. Does he want money in return? No, just an answer to the question of what really happened to his son, who died in prison. (June)

"The Family Corleone" by Ed Falco; Grand Central ($27.99)

Mario Puzo's saga of a crime family continues with a look back to the early 1930s and Sonny Corleone's desire to join his father Vito in the family business. (May)

"Growing Up Dead in Texas" by Stephen Graham Jones; MP Publishing ($14.95)

A novel of small-town lives in Texas and a young man's return to find answers to unanswered questions about a disaster that affected the community many years ago. (June)

"Kingdom of Strangers" by Zoe Ferraris; Little, Brown ($25.99)

An inspector in the Saudi Arabian city of Jeddah pursues a serial killer after the discovery of a secret grave containing the bodies of 19 women. (June)

"The Kingmaker's Daughter" by Philippa Gregory; Simon & Schuster ($26.99)

Conspiracy and a fight to the death for love and power at the court of King Edward IV of England. (August)

"The Kings of Cool: A Prequel to Savages" by Don Winslow; Simon & Schuster ($25)

The back story of Ben, Chon and O stretches from 1960s Southern California to the recent past. (June)

"A Lady Cyclist's Guide to Kashgar" by Suzanne Joinson; Bloomsbury ($26)

A tale of two journeys -- two sisters embark on a bicycle trip on the Silk Road in 1923; a present-day Londoner befriends a homeless Yemeni man. (June)

"Last Summer" by Holly Chamberlin; Kensington ($15)

Chamberlin's latest revolves around bullying and friendship in the lives of mothers and their adolescent daughters. (July)

"Little Night" Luanne Rice; Viking ($26.95)

Clare and her niece struggle to build a relationship that requires overcoming old family scars inflicted by Clare's sister years ago. (June)

"Mission to Paris" by Alan Furst; Random House ($27)

In 1938 Europe, Hollywood star Frederic Stahl's not only interesting to his French film crew -- a Paris network of spies considers him a potentially valuable ally. (June)

"Monarch Beach" by Anita Hughes; St. Martin's Griffin ($14.99)

Can a woman create a new life after her husband's infidelity? The answer is yes for Amanda, who ditches that fellow (a French chef). (June)

"The Nightmare" by Lars Kepler; Sarah Crichton Books ($27)

Detective Inspector Joona Linna is good at making connections, and if anyone can figure out the ties between two corpses in Stockholm, Linna can. (July)

"The Orphanmaster" by Jean Zimmerman; Viking ($27.95)

Why are orphan children vanishing in 17th-century New Amsterdam? A young lady and a dashing spy team up to find the answer. (June)

"The Sandcastle Girls" by Chris Bohjalian; Doubleday ($25.95)

A young nurse's arrival in 1915 Aleppo to help refugees of the Armenian genocide forms the background of a modern-day woman's quest for truth about her family's past. (July)

"Serpent's Kiss" by Melissa de la Cruz; Hyperion ($23.99)

Just because they have magical powers doesn't mean that witches have it easier than mortals -- ask Freya, whose fiance has caused mythological trouble for her and her clan. (June)

"Shadow of Night" by Deborah Harkness; Viking ($28.95)

The story of witch Diana Bishop and her vampire love Matthew Clairmont in "A Discovery of Witches" continues as the pair move through the world of Elizabethan England. (July)

"Shadow Show: All-New Stories in Celebration of Ray Bradbury" by Sam Weller and Mort Castle; William Morrow ($15.99)

A collection of 26 stories -- including Neil Gaiman's "The Man Who Forgot Ray Bradbury" -- in honor of the maker of such classics as "Fahrenheit 451" and "The Martian Chronicles." (July)

"The Sins of the Father" by Jeffrey Archer; St. Martins Press ($27.99)

The second installment in Archer's Clifton Chronicles, which started with "Only Time Will Tell," revolves around a fake identity and follows Harry Clifton in the early days of World War II. (May)

"Skinnydipping" by Bethenny Frankel; Simon & Schuster ($25)

The reality TV star offers a tale of -- what else? -- a frank-talking woman whose mouth gets her in trouble on a popular reality TV show. Her journey takes her -- and readers -- from NYC to L.A. to NYC again. (May)

"The Storm" by Clive Cussler and Graham Brown; G.P. Putnam ($27.95)

A spreading black substance in the Indian Ocean -- is it oil or something far more deadly? -- must be investigated by the NUMA Special Assignments Team ... if it doesn't kill them. (June)

"The St. Zita Society" by Ruth Rendell; Scribner ($26)

Tranquillity reigns on an upscale London Street, but secrets lurk behind the elegance, including a disturbed gardener who thinks he hears the voice of God. (August)

"Summerland" by Elin Hilderbrand; Reagan Arthur/Little, Brown ($26.99)

A summer bonfire for the students of Nantucket High ends with a deadly accident and with painful mysteries that their parents will struggle to understand in the months that follow. (June)

"Summer Breeze" by Nancy Thayer; Ballantine ($26)

Summer offers a chance to deepen bonds, which three women discover at Dragonfly Lake in New England. (June)

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