Favorite Summer Book Club Picks

(Please note this is a sponsored post in support of Little Mercies but all opinions are my own.)

Summer has arrived, and for me summer means a lot of reading. Beach reading. Poolside reading. Lying in the hammock reading. Time to read new books like Little Mercies by Heather Gudenkauf.

After I had my first child, I joined a book club through a local group for town newcomers. That was nearly eleven years ago and my group is still together.   While we’ve evolved over the years – some people have left, new people have come in – many of us have been in the group since the start.

We’re a group of book lovers who happen to really like each other and we’ve gone through a lot of changes over time. There have been a few divorces and illnesses. We talk about our lives, pop culture, politics but we never neglect to spend sufficient time talking about our chosen books. Some of us are in a few book clubs and some stay loyal to only one.

Enough Said

This past year we actually named our group “Enough Said” to signify our group’s intense desire to share our opinions. We have many former lawyers who never hesitate to take a stand on the books we read and never run out of things to say. We choose books of all kinds – fiction, non-fiction, memoirs, classics. We’ve read everything from To Kill a Mockingbird to Reading Lolita in Tehran to Glass Castle to Loving Frank tLet the Northern Lights Erase Your Name. 

The group has opened my mind and heart to titles I would never read otherwise and I’ve fallen in love with so many of these titles. Our group doesn’t take a summer break, and I’m really looking forward to delving into some really good reads.

Here are a few on our list:

little mercies
In her latest book LITTLE MERCIES, Heather Gudenkauf shows how one small mistake can have life-altering consequences. Veteran social worker Ellen Moore has seen the worst side of humanity—the vilest acts one person can commit against another. She is a fiercely dedicated children’s advocate and a devoted mother and wife. But one blistering summer day, a simple moment of distraction will have  repercussions that Ellen could never have imagined, threatening to shatter everything she holds dear, and trapping her between the  gears of the system she works for. This is a powerful and emotionally charged tale about motherhood and justice and you can win a copy today! Details below.
i am mulala
I AM MALALA is the remarkable tale of a family uprooted by global terrorism, of the fight for girls’ education, of a father who, himself a school owner, championed and encouraged his daughter to write and attend school, and of brave parents who have a fierce love for their daughter in a society that prizes sons. When the Taliban took control of the Swat Valley in Pakistan, one girl spoke out. Malala Yousafzai refused to be silenced and fought for her right to an education. On Tuesday, October 9, 2012, when she was fifteen, she almost paid the ultimate price. She was shot in the head at point-blank range while riding the bus home from school, and few expected her to survive. Instead, Malala’s miraculous recovery has taken her on an extraordinary journey from a remote valley in northern Pakistan to the halls of the United Nations in New York. This book captures her past, present and future and I can’t wait to read it.
the goldfinch
I have to admit I’ve had THE GOLDFINCH on my night table for some time, and this summer will be my time to finally read it. I’m a huge fan of Donna Tartt and expect no less than perfection with this one. It’s about a young boy, Theo Decker, who miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Bewildered by his strange new home on Park Avenue, disturbed by schoolmates who don’t know how to talk to him, and tormented above all by his longing for his mother, he clings to the one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.
I know why the caged bird sings

Poetic and powerful, I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS  by the recently passed Maya Angelou is a modern American classic that will touch hearts and change minds for as long as people read. Sent by their mother to live with their devout, self-sufficient grandmother in a small Southern town, Maya and her brother, Bailey, endure the ache of abandonment and the prejudice of the local “powhitetrash.” At eight years old and back at her mother’s side in St. Louis, Maya is attacked by a man many times her age–and has to live with the consequences for a lifetime. Years later, in San Francisco, Maya learns about love for herself and the kindness of others, her own strong spirit, and the ideas of great authors (“I met and fell in love with William Shakespeare”) will allow her to be free instead of imprisoned.

If you’re interested in reading LITTLE MERCIES with your next book club, here are some additional links, including a book club kit:

  – Watch the Book Trailer:

  – Visit Heather Gudenkauf’s Official Site

  – Follow Heather Gudenkauf on Twitter, Facebookand Pinterest

  – Visit Little Mercies page on Goodreads

 –  Read an excerpt

  – Book club kit

I’m giving away 10 copies of Little Mercies!

To win, just comment below and let me know if you are in a book club and what’s on your summer reading list. Also, you must follow the Culture Tripper Facebook page (no need to tell me, I can check).

Winners will be selected randomly. Each winner will receive a copy of the book. This giveaway will end on Monday, June 30th at 9am EST and is open to U.S. residents only.

Winner will be posted here, on the Culture Tripper Facebook page and via email and will have 24 hours to accept their prize.

Disclosure: This post and giveaway are sponsored by Harlequin.

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  1. The winners of the Little Mercies book giveaway are:

    Heather Harjehausen
    Ellen R. Margulies
    Shelby Neuzil
    Shelley Martins
    Jessica Johnson
    Elaine Masterson
    Jan Sigwarth
    Kathy Beneke
    Elena Sonnino
    Julie Mackey

    Thanks to all for entering and stay tuned for more giveaways!

  2. I have been in a book club for 13 years. I am so lucky as we have only lost one member during that time. We spend a lot of time talking about the books we have read. What I find most interesting is sometimes I might not love a book but after we discuss it in such detail I realize what a great book it was. We do not meet in the summer because many of the members head to the beach so it is hard to find time so we always do a summer reading list with categories. Below is our list. I would love to read little mercies as well.

    Invention of wings by sue monk kids
    The beginning of everything by Robyn Schneider
    The silver star by walls
    Orphan masters son
    All fall down by wiener
    I know why cages bird sings

  3. I am not in a book club….but these sound like great choices. I have already read I am Malala- (with my daughter actually). I am reading the Light in the Ruins right now and have Wild to read next.

  4. I loved The Goldfinch. Loved it up! Little Mercies sounds so up my alley. Thanks for alerting me to it.

    I’m currently reading the short stories collection, Magic for Beginners by Kelly Link. Totally drawn in by the cover and title and enjoying the freedom reading short stories gives me.

  5. Jessica Johnson says

    I am in a small book club with 3 other ladies. We all read what we want and talk about it with the other ladies! A great way to learn about other books!

    Some books on my summer TBR list are:
    Defending Jacob by William Landay
    Fault in Our Starts (Its been ony TBR list for 2 years)
    Amanda Knox, Elizabeth Smart’s books and I am Malala

    I could go on and on!

  6. Julie Mackey says

    I am in a book club!

    On my summer reading list is Little Mercies, #scandal, All Fall Down, and so many others! I’d love to win!

  7. I have been in a book club in the past but not currently in one. I am reading the Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty right now and I also have the Secret Keeper by Kate Morton in line… I also enjoy reading chapter books with my 11 year old daughter…. we try to read together. I have read all of Heather’s books and I can’t wait for this one. Would love to win one!

  8. Jan Sigwarth says

    Love Heather Gudenkauf, have read every book she has published and would love a copy of her new book.

  9. I’m not in a book club, but I want to be! I have lots on my summer reading list:

    Little Mercies 🙂
    Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
    The Promise of Stardust by Priscille Sibley
    Beautiful Day by Elin Hilderbrand
    A Hundred Pieces of Me by Lucy Dillon…

    The list goes on and on!

  10. Lisa Michalec says

    Not in a book club as of now.
    Summer reading list
    Beautiful Creatures Series.
    The Fault in Our Stars
    Little Mercies

  11. Shelley Martins says

    PS on my summer reading list…. The invention of wings by Sue Monk Kid, Little Mercies by Heather Gudenkauf, orange is the new black by Piper Kerwin.

  12. Shelley Martins says

    Yes! I am in a book club at my local library. I love to read and also love to hear what other people take away from a particular book.

  13. Heather Harjehausen says

    I love Heather Gudenkauf!! Such a talented writer!! I am dying to read her newest!

  14. Shelley Martins says

    Oh I would love a copy!

  15. Can’t wait to read your book! Have been waiting a long time!

  16. Ellen M. says

    I belonged to a book club in my old neighborhood in L.A. We decided to read classics for several selections. I loved it because some of the books I kind of glossed over or used Cliff Notes. As an adult, it was wonderful to actually sit down and read these books and have a different perspective. My neighbor just told me there’s a book club in my local library and I look forward to joining that soon.
    BTW, was that an error about tickets in your post?
    Thanks for having this giveaway!

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