Summer Reading Ideas

Summer can be busy but there are those times where you find yourself with some time to read. Stop, grab that book and spend a few hours with your feet up, sunglasses on and in the beautiful outdoors with your book.

It’s time for me to work on the pile of books I have stacked by my bed or on my bookshelf. Some need to work on that pile checked out from the public library or the books purchased at garage sales. For others it’s find that new book that just came out.  Buy that book and read it.

For kids you may need to motivate them to read this summer if it’s not something they already love to do.  Here are some ideas.  Have a family read aloud three to five times a week in the evening.  We loved to do this at home or when we were camping. Take turns reading out loud and discussing the book. Check out books once a week at the library or have a kid friendly summer book club with snacks and discussions.

One year I decided to read the Narnia book series to my kids since I had never read the series and wanted to read them myself.   So try reading a book series with your kids that you would like to read too.Narnia series

Help your kids set a goal for reading.  For one, it may be 20 books during the summer and for another 10 books.  You know your kids so tailor to their interests and abilities. Help them by bringing them to the library to select books or discover a series to read. Our public library has a contest set up for number of books read with prizes or some chain book stores will give you a free book if you read five books. The stack of books will never go down if you don’t read.  Plan reading days on rainy or sweaty summer days.

Book Ideas:

 For Kids

I loved the books by Andrew Clements, Especially The Report Card and Things Not Seen. These books are creative and full of school adventure. Ramona the Pest, by Beverly Cleary is another kid favorite. Ramona books affected me for life. Whenever I am sitting behind someone and they have curly hair, I have this deep desire to Boing their hair. Don’t worry I won’t.   Ramona had this desire and she often got in trouble as a kid. I just smile.

Don’t forget the Narnia Books by C.S. Lewis and Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket, which we also watched on Netflix after reading. I also like author, Wendy Lawton and her historical fiction books. My favorites were Hallelujah Lass, a story based on Salvation Army Pioneer Eliza Shirley, and Shadow of His Hand, a story based on Holocaust Survivor Anita Dittman. This is based on the true story of her life and she lives in central Minnesota.

If I didn’t read these books as a kid, I read them to my kids or just read them to myself in the past few years.   Why not?  These books make a quick and entertaining few hours of reading. In fact after substitute teaching fourth graders for a few days, I got into a series of books they were reading together, so I checked them out of the library to read.  I needed to know what happened.

My sister is an elementary media specialist and does a blog at She regularly reads kids middle level books so check out her site to see what books are new and what they are about.

For Adults

The Rock, the Road, and the Rabbi, by Kathy Lee Gifford is a book I got as a gift.  This book is about the land of Israel relating to its biblical roots. Learn about a new place in a three page section from her journey as well as Rabbi insights.  I am currently reading this book at night.

Books to read
My Goal stack!

Give a Girl a Knife, by Amy Thielen is on my read list.  I grew up in the same area of Minnesota where she lives and this book is a memoir about her cooking experiences. She is a chef, had a cooking show on HGTV, and has written a cookbook.

Why Her? Nicki Koziarz is the author of this new nonfiction book about confronting the comparison question and can also be used as a bible study with the Lifeway study guide and DVDs. I read this book and did the on line bible study this spring through Proverbs 31 Woman.

In past I have checked out from the library, Karen Kingsbury’s books like the Redemption Series about the Baxter family.  This might be a good series to read, since they are working on a future television series about these books. Once you start one book you can’t quit.

Another author whose books I like to check out of the library is Lynne Austin.  She writes about historical fiction in many time periods and from the Bible. My favorites are:  Refiner’s Fire book series  and Chronicles of the Kings book series. My aunt got me started on these books.

Whether your favorite genre is fiction, historical fiction, nonfiction, biographies, mystery or adventure, I challenge you to try a new genre this summer and set some reading goals. Your kids teachers will thank you when school starts and it’s a good excuse to relax and hang out in the sun.

Kingsbury books
Kingsbury books


2 thoughts on “Summer Reading Ideas”

    1. Thanks Mary. I like to think of it as a lifestyle magazine blog. Variety of Topics and interests in daily life. That’s how we learn and grow. If you like it share it.

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