Summer Reading: A List of My Favorite Re-Reads

It’s Summer Reading Time! On the Beauty of Rereading

Yes, that’s right, it’s summer, and if it all goes as planned you will get a lot more reading done, right? But several times a year (usually in the summer) I find myself saturated with words, burned out on sentences. It’s like my reading engine gets flooded and I just can’t take in anything else. And just like with an actual engine, the only thing you can do when you’ve flooded your reading engine is wait.

So what do you read while you are waiting? This is when I start rereading. The beauty of rereading is there is no risk–you aren’t trying to figure out the plot, you aren’t even trying to decide if you like the book or not. With all that out of the way rereading becomes a comfortable reunion with an old friend, words and stories that have moved you (at least once) already. You don’t have to pay such close attention–you can just enjoy the scenery a little more and watch how the whole mechanism gets put together.

So for your summer (re) reading pleasure, I’ve put together a list of 40 of my favorite recent rereads, books I’ve read at least twice including some old friends I’ve read dozens of times and never get tired of:

vintage girls reading

40 Books to Reread this Summer (or discover for the first time!)

The Virgin Suicides: Jeffrey Eugenides
1984: George Orwell
Lolita: Vladimir Nabokov
For Whom the Bell Tolls: Ernest Hemingway
100 Years of Solitude: Gabriel Garcia Marquez
The Road: Cormac McCarthy
The Handmaid’s Tale: Margaret Atwood
The Old Man and the Sea: Ernest Hemingway
The Woman in the Dunes: Kobo Abe
The Lover: Marguerite Duras
On Writing: Stephen King
Flash Fiction Forward: James Thomas and Robert Shapard
Blindness: Jose Saramago
Never Let Me Go: Kazuo Ishiguro
The Alchemist: Paulo Coelho
The Pink Institution: Selah Saterstrom
Europeana: Patrik Ourednik
Tropic of Cancer: Henry Miller
The Aftermath, etc. Rob Geisen
The Thirteenth Woman: Lydia Davis
Rift: Kathy Fish and Robert Vaughan
On the Road: Jack Kerouac
Romeo and Juliet: William Shakespeare
The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test: Tom Wolfe
Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail: Hunter S. Thompson
Frankenstein: Mary Shelley
Beloved: Toni Morrison
A Wrinkle in Time: Madeleine L’Engle
Juice: Renee Gladman
On Writing: Annie Dillard
Evening Would Find Me: Katie Estill
Henry and June: Anais Nin
Potted Meat: Stephen Dunn
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? Philip K. Dick
Bird by Bird: Anne Lamott
Pizzas and Mermaid: Jonathan Montgomery
The Trial: Franz Kafka
Writing Down the Bones: Natalie Goldberg
Breakfast at Tiffany’s: Truman Capote
The House on Mango Street: Sandra Cisneros