Our Favorite Literal Beach Reads

Sometimes, it’s hard to agree on what makes a good beach read. Some people like fun, light chick lit about summer romance. Some people like gritty thrillers about a zombie apocalypse. So when your friend is like, “Hey, can you recommend a good beach read?” it can be hard to know exactly what they’re looking for. But you know what books are foolproof beach reads? These books. About beaches. Not only will you feel like you’re there, you actually WILL be there! What could be better?

If you like books based on a true story . . .

Scott O'DellIsland of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell

This one’s a definite page-turner. Karana gets stranded on an island for 18 years. She has to contend with crazy wild dogs, evil hunters, starvation, and an octopus. Yeah, she fights an octopus. Warning: May cause you to feel guilty about your ample supply of sunscreen and the cooler of snacks you brought with you.



If you like YA romance . . .

Jenny HanThe Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han

Belly loves spending the summer at her beach house. It means hanging out with her best friends, getting away from her old life, and generally taking a well-deserved break. Somehow, though, everything feels different this summer. Added bonus: If you love this book, never fear! There are two more in the series!



If you like highbrow books . . . 

Virginia WoolfTo the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf

So what if school’s out? You like your books as literary as they come. In that case, To the Lighthouse is the perfect pick. The beaches of Scotland set the backdrop for this classic about a family’s summer home. If the sun doesn’t make you feel lightheaded, Virginia Woolf’s insane writing skills certainly will!



If you like thrillers . . .

Peter BenchleyJaws by Peter Benchley

We should add a disclaimer here. If you like thrillers AND being scared out of your wits on vacation, give this book a read. This shark tail—er, tale—is totally thrilling, even if it might keep you out of the water (and clinging to your beach chair in terror) for a few days.



If you like a good old classic . . .

Robert Louis StevensonTreasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson

There’s nothing like a reliable adventure story. This swashbuckling tale has it all: peg-legged pirates, treasure maps, and loud-mouthed parrots. If you’re looking to sail the high seas to a tropical island this summer, this book’s for you. Figment cannot claim any responsibility if you start talking like a pirate after you finish it.



If you like fantasy . . .

Anna BanksOf Poseidon by Anna Banks

Galen, a dreamy Mer-boy, seeks a girl who can communicate with fish. Emma’s just vacationing at the beach, but after a scary encounter with a shark, Galen realizes she might just be the one he’s looking for. It’s got all the ingredients of a great fantasy romance—plus, its coastal setting will get you in the beach-read mindset.



If you like your books hot off the press . . .

Sarah DessenThe Moon and More by Sarah Dessen

When it comes to reading, do you like to stay current (pun intended)? If so, you’re in luck! This book, which centers on a group of teens in a seaside town, was just released last month. It’s got love triangles, mysterious out-of-towners, and, of course, beachy fun times. Pick up a brand-new copy and get reading!



Did we leave out your favorite literal beach read? Post your favorite books about the beach in the comments!

Ocean GIF via wasifio

8 thoughts on “Our Favorite Literal Beach Reads

  1. The Moon and More is an amazing book, I actually was able to get it a day before it was released, because Sarah Dessen lives in my hometown so I was able to go to her book signing, it was amazing. And the book is wonderful. A must read!

  2. Yes Treasure Island is a great summer read and YES you will start talking like a buccaneer after you finish it…Ahoy Mateys!

  3. Murder in Mexico is also a series of eleven mysteries set in and around the expat colony of San Miguel de Allende. Artist Paul Zacher is drawn into crime investigation because ‘he might see things differently.’ Maybe it’s time for the humanity of Mexico to show through all the narco headlines! Take a look at this suspenseful and often funny series, available in Print, Kindle, Nook, & Kobo. Start with ‘Twenty Centavos’ by trying a sample on my website.


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