The thermometer tells us it's 100 degrees today, (thank you, Mercury, god of thermometers).
The cat is conked out on her back in the shade, too tired to harass the birds. I'm listening to my heatstroke playlist. That's the one that starts with the Beachboy's Kokomo, ("Aruba, Jamaica ooo I wanna take ya to ...") and shimmies on to the Lovin' Spoonful's Summer in the City, ("Doesn't seem to be a shadow in the City").
Summer is upon us.
So let me ask, "What books would you take to the beach this summer? Old friends? New discoveries?"
There is a temperate zone in the mind, between luxurious indolence and exacting work; and it is to this region, just between laziness and labor, that summer reading belongs.
Henry Ward Beecher
Here in the South we know all about the heat index creeping stealthily up toward the triple digits. We've raised 'doing nothing' to a graceful art form. It's an art practiced by the swimming pool or a big 'ole lake, or at least in company with a hose spraying around the backyard. Bonus points for the lifestyle include barbecued ribs and cold Mountain Dew. And beer.
For me, any day of the simmering summer is incomplete without a book in the bag. Or a couple books, since you never know exactly how the spirit will move you. Summer reading needs the background noise of kids running around barefoot and yelling about nothing at all. It needs a shady porch or umbrella and maybe a dragonfly hovering just off the port side of the hammock.
I'll tuck an old friend in the straw bag -- Kai-Lung's Golden Hours by Ernest Bramah. There's a funny, clever, dreamy, irrationality to it that suits hot weather and lying by the pool. I own it in paperback, but it's free on e-readers, being out of copyright an' all.
(Go ahead and click on any of these book names for more information 'bout the book.)
Jennifer Crusie always picks me up. Funny, funny woman. I haven't had a chance to read, Tell Me Lies yet, and I'm looking forward to it. Susan Elizabeth Phillips has a new book out in July — The Great Escape: A Novel. I might top those two off with rum and coke and Grace Burrowes' most recent book, Lady Maggie's Secret Scandal.
Drop by Word Wenches for the rest of the 24 recommendations for summer reads. Here.