The weather may be getting cooler as we enter late summer, but your summer reading doesn’t have to end just yet. If you’re looking for inspiration on what to read before the hot, balmy days and late nights draw to a close, then look no further: our agents and team have assembled their recommendations of must-reads for late summer.
Hayley Steed, Senior Literary Agent: I just read Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin which was wonderful – I never thought I’d be so interested in a book about (among other things) video games, but the way it talked about art, and life, and love, was beautiful and really original.
Hannah Ladds, Dramatic Rights Agent: I’ve been reading William Boyd’s new ‘whole-life’ book The Romantic. Mixing historical fact with fiction, this novel follows the life of the unlikely hero Cashel Greville Ross from his humble beginnings in County Cork in 1799 through his multifarious cross-continental adventures. This is a brilliantly immersive rollicking romp across 19th Century history.
Emma Dawson, Literary Assistant and Operational Coordinator: I’m currently reading The House of Fortune by Jessie Burton. It definitely will not disappoint fans of The Miniaturist, as the novel has the same luxurious, romantic quality that hooked me in 2014. I can’t wait to see how this one ends.
Valentina Paulmichl, Rights Agent: My summer read is Imaginary Friend by Stephen Chbosky – a dark and haunting horror-thriller full of heart, soul and empathy.
Emma Bal, Literary Agent: Tokyo Express by Seicho Matsumoto (translated by Jesse Kirkwood) – I have started a Japanese cosy crime classic by a writer who has been called ‘the Simenon of Japan’ and it’s brilliant. A young couple is thought to have committed suicide, but two men – a senior detective and a young gun – are not convinced. The fact it involves trains makes it even better.
Georgina Simmonds, Rights Agent: This summer I have read Sorrow and Bliss by Meg Mason and Love in Colour by Bolu Babalola. I have heard so much about Sorrow and Bliss, and it didn’t disappoint. It was so well observed and brilliantly funny – I also love a wonderfully imperfect female lead. Love in Colour is beautifully written, rich and sumptuous. As it’s a series of short stories, it was perfect to dip into around work reading and on my commute.
Elinor Davies, Assistant to Hayley Steed: My summer read is Godmersham Park by Gill Hornby – I love anything regency and after falling in love with Miss Austen, I was so excited to see this publish earlier in the summer!
Chloe Seager, Literary Agent: I’m reading Double Booked by Lily Lindon!
Hannah Todd, Literary Agent: I’m very late to the game, but have just finished Book Lovers by Emily Henry, which has easily become one of my favourite books. I love the zippy chemistry between the characters… And of course it helps that it’s set so firmly in a world that I know and love. If you’ve not given it a go, it’s a must!
Georgia McVeigh, In-House Editor: I’ll be reading The It Girl by Ruth Ware, a gripping thriller about a woman investigating the death of her best friend ten years later.
Esmé Carter, Assistant to Madeleine Milburn: I’ve just finished Zadie Smith’s White Teeth, and my only regret is that I didn’t get to it sooner! I loved the complicated web of characters with their endlessly comical idiosyncrasies, and the sharply observant portrait of multicultural London it paints – I can’t believe she wrote it while at university.
Rachel Yeoh, Associate Agent: I cannot wait to start reading The Last White Man by Mohsin Hamid!
Mina Yakina, New Draft Intern: A recent read of mine has been Must I Go by Yiyun Li. It’s an epistolary novel about 81-year-old Lilia Liska as she reminisces about her life and that of a former lover through diary entries written by the now deceased man. What I loved most was the book’s exploration of memory, loss and connections, but also how Lilia shifts her obscure appearances in the entries by inserting her own version of events.
Liv Maidment, Literary Agent : I’ve just started reading The Rabbit Hutch by Tess Gunty, which has been shortlisted for the Waterstones debut fiction prize. Given the heatwave we’ve all been through recently, the sweltering setting of the novel feels very real, and what I’ve read so far is incredibly arresting and sharp. I’m so looking forward to reading on.
Saskia Arthur, Office Assistant: I just read Again, Rachel by Marian Keyes, the long-awaited sequel to her bestseller, Rachel’s Holiday. Nobody does it like Keyes – her writing is funny, honest, and heart-breaking in equal measure, and she tackles gritty and difficult topics so seamlessly. This is a book which is totally full of heart.
We hope you enjoy the rest of your summer and get the opportunity to pick up a good book too!