With the summer holidays approaching, you may soon find yourself at a beach. If you’ve been to one of these places before, you might have seen one or two people reading books. This year, why not take a look around at your fellow sunbathers and see which beach reads they have on the go. Chances are it’ll be one of these.
Inferno – Dan Brown
It’s very fashionable to make fun of Dan Brown these days. His name has become synonymous with nonsensical thrills and a devil-may-care attitude to the English language. It’s not literary fiction, I’ll grant you that – but you don’t necessarily want to think very hard when you’re on holiday.
Inferno, his latest offering, is an unrelenting slideshow of constant peril with the obligatory Brownian scavenger hunt. Robert Langdon comes to the party armed with an encyclopaedic knowledge of symbols – which would be really dull if everyone wasn’t trying to kill him.
You can’t really go wrong with a bit of Lee Child. Jack Reacher is the Stranger in Town – a man with a dark past and a flair for violence. I like to call him a One-Man A-Team.
In A Wanted Man we find Jack hitch-hiking, of course. Nobody wants to pick him up because he’s still bearing the scars from the end of Worth Dying For. Eventually he gets a lift to a nearby Premier Inn and relaxes for the rest of the book.
Only joking, he gets picked up by a stranger who leads him into another implausible adventure filled with verbal threats and bleeding knuckles.
Even though this book has been enjoying success for several months, I believe that many people have been saving it for the deckchair.
With its riveting plot and deceptive twists, Gone Girl makes a perfect beach read.
Don’t however open the book expecting to make a whole bunch of new friends – this book is filled with nasty people whose selfishness acts like a poison infecting all around them.
Check out my full review of Gone Girl here.
Looking instead for a good mystery without all of the broken teeth and f-words, Kate Morton is the way to go.
Morton has found a formula that works for her and by god she’ll stick to it.
Her use of multiple time-lines makes it feel like you’re reading two or three stories at the same time.
But you’re not.
You’re reading one 600 page tome about some persisting family secret which demands closure.
Martina Cole markets herself as “the person who tells it like it really is” which only makes me wonder why on earth she has such an intimate knowledge of organised crime.
The Life tells the story of the Bailey brothers’ rise to power and their struggle to maintain it. This book, like much of Cole’s backlist, is peopled with straight-talking no-nonsense Eastenders. Nobody is beyond breaking a few rules (and noses) to satisfy their own agenda.
If you like your books tense and gritty with an element of street-justice then buy this…or nick it off the back of a lorry.
There you have it, the five books you’re most likely to see at the beach this year. Why not let us know what you’re taking on holiday?
‘My Kindle’ is not a valid answer.