The beach is one of our favorite places to read. The calm, quiet atmosphere allows you to fully submersive yourself in a book and enjoy it for all it’s worth. We like to read different types of books depending on our mood for the day while we’re at the beach – sometimes you have to give the romance novels a break! Sometimes we feel like a novel, other times like poetry, and sometimes even something more academic. The following are a few of our favorite non-traditional beach reads.
CS Lewis – Till We Have Faces
CS Lewis is most known for his Narnia books, but he wrote more than 20 books in total, and Till We Have Faces is a secret treasure of his. Lewis retells the ancient Greek myth of Cupid and Psyche and adds his own twist on the story. Even if you are unfamiliar with the original story from ancient times, the book grips readers from start to finish. The tale is whimsical and fun, while exploring more serious topics of pride, forgiveness, and how they affect our character over the course of our lives.
Jhumpa Lahiri – Interpreter of Maladies
Jhumpa Lahiri’s debut book won “debut of the year” from The New Yorker as well as the prestigious Pulitzer Prize. The book is a collection of short stories that tells the struggles facing Indian American immigrants as they try to make a life in the United States while holding on to the values and cultural heritage of their homeland. Lahiri’s words evoke strong emotions and cause us to deeply empathize with those we may be unfamiliar with. Lahiri’s characters search for love beyond national and generational barriers, and her stories help us to do the same.
Nathalie Handal – The Poetry of Arab Women
This anthology of poetry from Arabic women spans from every corner of the Arab world, and gives voice to many different perspectives many of us have never been exposed to. The collection comprises more than 50 different authors that write on subjects like war, politics, religion, and love. Some subjects are universal in nature, speaking about lovers and the importance of family. Some poems are eye-opening. If you’re looking for some fun light-hearted poems or tear jerkers, this anthology has plenty of both.
Michael Sandel – What Money Can’t Buy
Michael Sandel sits as dean of the Philosophy department at Harvard University. He has written an impressive collection of philosophy books that are extremely relevant to modern times in the United States. We particularly loved What Money Can’t Buy. The work poses the questions, “have we drifted from a market economy to a market society? Is this where we want to be?” Sandel then goes on to describe how money and economic theory have come to dominate our culture and way of thinking in America. Sandel writes with clarity, making complex situations easy to grasp. As an author, he admits his biases, and helps us to form our own thoughts and opinions on matters that are important for us today.