"Whether it's to escape, to inform, to inspire, or to just turn off the world while you sit by a pool, I love getting lost in a good book." Those were the words Duchess Meghan Markle wrote four years ago on her now-defunct lifestyle blog, The Tig.
And we can't help but agree with the Duchess – is there anything better than curling up on the couch during the summer holidays with a good book, iced tea and clean house?
On vacation we actually have time to slow down and enjoy some leisurely reading – in between chasing the kids down and dips in the pool – but with such a limited time to read, it's imperative that the book we commit to will tickle our fancy.
Luckily, Meghan outlined three book recommendations she thought her readers (us!) might like to consume - but she didn't stop there.
At the time of writing the blog post Meghan was working on Suits with Gina Torres (who played Pearson Hardman managing partner, Jessica Pearson) and Sarah Rafferty (as executive assistant turned chief operating officer Donna Paulsen), and asked her co-stars to share their summer reading recommendations too.
We've compiled their suggestions into a handy guide - so you can link this story to your Kris Kringle!
Meghan's three picks range from light summer reading to a collection of hope-filled essays.
The Opposite of Loneliness by Marina Keegan
Of this book Meghan said: "I am undone by this book. It's a collection of essays written by Marina Keegan, who graduated Magna Cum Laude from Yale in 2012, had a job lined up at the New Yorker, and tragically died in a car accident just five days after graduation. Her stories are raw and real, funny and relatable. And she writes with a fluid conversational tone that makes you feel like you know her. I truly wish I had been able to. Get this book – I couldn't put it down."
The Dud Avocado by Elaine Dundy
"I always go back to this book for summer reading because it's light and fun, and exactly what I want when I'm laying on a beach," Meghan wrote. "I love opening the pages and finding little flecks of sand from vacations past. It's set in the 1950s and about an American girl in Paris who lives wildly and fully, and runs amok. The main character Sally Jay Gorce is everything – a little Carrie Bradshaw, a little Holly Golightly, a lot of likeable. One of my favs."
Where'd You Go Bernadette by Maria Semple
Meghan explained that her good friend Benita recommended this book to her. "My friend, Benita, is an avid reader, and knows that during the summer it's nice to escape with a book that just makes you laugh. Guffaw, even. This is that book."
We can't wait to get our hands on these books!
Some of Gina's book recommendations have darker subject matters than Meghan's - and no one was more surprised than the Duchess.
"When I asked my Suits sisterwives, Gina Torres and Sarah Rafferty, what literary finds they would be delving into between the scripts we read every week, I was tickled by some of their answers," Meghan wrote.
"As a matter of fact, when I told Gina I was surprised by one of her rather unexpected picks, her response was classic: 'Lotta layers under all this hair.' Well played, Mama G, well played."
Keen to dig into a meaty book this summer à la Gina Torres? Check out Gina's recommendations below.
Rita Moreno, A Memoir by Rita Moreno
Gina expressed her love for Rita Moreno saying, "Because she's a true flesh and blood goddess at whose altar I have worshipped, my entire life."
Doctor Sleep by Stephen King
We wonder if this was the book that surprised Duchess Meghan? Of the selection, Gina said, "I loved The Shining and love that Mr. King felt compelled to tell Danny Torrance's story after all these years."
The Hotel on Place Vendome: Life, Death and Betrayal at the Hotel Ritz in Paris by Tilar J. Mazzeo
"I love this hotel, and have had fantasies of going back in time, and being there when it was all new and exciting. I'm hoping this book will do that."
Sarah's recommendations were varied, and included a thriller, a very long Pulitzer prize-winning novel and an exciting story set in Mexico.
The Goldfinch by Donna Tarrt
Sarah explains this choice, "So I am reading The Goldfinch and likely will be reading it all summer since it's almost 800 pages and I am a slowwwwww reader. It's amazing, today's Great Expectations."
Bittersweet by Miranda Beverly-Whittemore
If you're after an addictive, mystery novel, this is it: "I recently finished this book. A summer page turner. Kinda Gone Girl-esque. I mentioned it to you Megs – my friend Molly told me about it, and I happened to not be able to put it down."
Prayers for the Stolen by Jennifer Clement
This book is about a heroine who ends up in the world of drug cartels in Guerrero, Mexico. Sarah says, "I have [this book] bedside, waiting for me."
And if you're after a story you can read with the kids?
"Oona and I do summer reading together — we did the abridged versions of Anne of Green Gables and The Secret Garden and she loved them. We started The Tale of Despereaux last week and I am in love with that little romantic mouse. Last summer Wonder was amazing and I would recommend it to kids and adults alike."
Well, there are our Chrissy presents sorted!
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