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Take Back the Book: My Summer Reading "Bucket-List"

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I have to hide my laptop from my one-year-old daughter… Goodness forbid she spots the shiny silver MacBook across the room, and it’s all over. “Elmo! Elmo! Elmo! Bah-ney! Elmo!,” she’ll demand-scream in a half panicked frenzy… YouTube, what have you done to my sweet child?!

Of course, hiding my laptop means that I’m unable to squeeze in a few minutes of work here and there while she’s playing independently. But this seemingly inconvenient consequence has actually turned out to be a blessing in disguise—for multiple reasons. First and foremost, I’m not really able to accomplish much in three minute snippets of time. And, even more rewarding, I’ve had to resort to going tech-free while my children are around during the day—not to say that I don’t occasionally sneak a peek at my cell phone (another highly coveted baby toy).

So, besides engaging more with my kids—which, yes, I’m doing—I've decided to utilize these precious spare seconds of quiet in a productive (and enjoyable!) way. I've decided to seize the moment(s) and "take back the book!" Ah, yes reading. As in adult literature… The kind that I used to devour.

Five minutes here, 10 minutes there, 30 minutes on the floor in the bathroom while my son takes an extended bath—it all adds up. In fact, I’ve been averaging a book every week or so.

With summer approaching, I’ve decided to challenge myself to up the ante. There are lots of juicy books to be read—by the pool, at the beach (hey, a mom can dream!), and in between toddler tantrums! I’m excited to get my BOOK on this summer… and I hope you’ll join me! I’m sharing my top four new-ish lit picks for sizzling summer reads. Here are four faves--one for each month of the summer!

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Moms, let’s reclaim the me time (or the moments in-between!) and "take back the book" this summer!

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Eligible, by Curtis Sittenfeld (currently out): I've never met a Darcy I didn't like. Then again, in my mind all Darcys lead back to Colin Firth. This modern retelling of Jane Austen's classic is juicy, fun, and full of humor. Basically, it's the The Bachelor meets Pride & Prejudice. What's not to like?!?

Modern Lovers, by Emma Straub (available May 31): I thoroughly enjoyed The Vacationers, Straub’s former bestselling beachy-keen book, so I’m excited for her upcoming release. It’s about a group of close university friends and former bandmates, who are ready (and not so ready) to pass the torch of adulthood to the next generation, as they watch their own children go off to college.

The Girls, by Emma Cline (available June 14): This debut novel is getting alot of buzz. It takes place in Northern California at the end of the 1960s. A teenage girl is drawn to a group of fascinating older women—a dangerous cult and a deadly group: the Manson Girls.

Rich and Pretty, by Rumaan Alam (available June 7): Set in New York City, Rich and Pretty delves into the evolving relationship between two lifelong best friends, as they grow together and apart in their adult lives—one working her way up the corporate ladder, the other enjoying a life of leisure.

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