Want to read for fun this summer? Not sure where to start? Check out these prompts to kick-start your summer reading journey.
Reread a book you loved when you were younger
Here’s a secret: reading below your ‘grade level’ can be a lot of fun! Summer is a great time to give your brain a break, so choose a book that you loved when you were younger and give it another try.
My childhood favorites:
Read a nonfiction book
If you are not used to nonfiction, don’t assume it has to be boring. Start with a funny memoir or a book related to a topic that you’re interested in.
My favorite nonfiction:
- Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain
- Mortified: Real Words. Real People. Real Pathetic. by David Nadelberg
Read a graphic novel
I only recently started getting into graphic novels and I love them! Not only are they quick reads, but you can find a graphic novel in just about any genre, topic, or reading level that you can imagine.
My favorite graphic novels:
Read a classic
You might think that you hate classics, but you may find that it’s different when you’re reading one for fun instead of reading one for an assignment. Plus, if you pick out one that bores you, you can leave it unfinished and start a different one!
My favorite classics:
- Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes
- Emma by Jane Austen
- The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
- The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
Read a book based on a movie or TV show that you like
Do you have a movie or TV show that you’re obsessed with? Check and see if it’s based on a book, then read it to see if the book really IS always better.
My favorite book to screen adaptations:
- The Lord of the Rings trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien
- Coraline by Neil Gaiman
- The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
Read a book set in a place where you want to travel
Big summer vacation plans? Try finding a book set in the place that you are traveling to. No vacation plans? Find a book set in a place where you want to travel someday. Books can even give you good ideas for tour stops to visit. I first learned about the Shakespeare and Company bookstore in Paris from a book, and I got to visit it in real life last summer!
My favorite travel reads:
Read about an interesting period of history
History is far from boring if it’s presented in the right way, and historical fiction is a great way to learn about those worlds. Another historical reading option would be a biography or memoir written by someone who lived through that event. Pick a time period or a historical event that you want to learn more about, and find a book about it!
My favorite historical books:
- The Book Thief by Markus Zuzak (WWII/Holocaust)
- Tell the Wolves I’m Home by Carol Rifka Brunt (1980s/AIDS Crisis)
Read a banned/challenged book
Summer is a great time to prepare for Banned Book Week (September 22-28, 2019)! The American Library Association keeps records of books that have been banned or challenged, and it can be fun to check them out for yourself. Just a disclaimer: be sure to check out the description of a banned book before you read it. If you’re reading content that you or your parents are uncomfortable with, that ruins the fun!
My favorite banned/challenged books:
Need more summer reading ideas? Check out a website like Goodreads that can give you book recommendations based on books you already like. Happy reading!