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One of my greatest summer pleasures is spending time outside with a good book. Whether it’s on my deck, by the pool, or in a sidewalk cafe, there’s just something about reading outdoors that makes one of my favorite pastimes even more special.

For the past couple of years, there has been a notable absence of quality cat books. I typically get dozens of pitches to review new books throughout the year. I’ve gotten far fewer of them this year, and of the ones I got, not many sounded like quality titles. The books I did review so far this year have been wonderful, but none of them a pure “entertainment,” which is what I look for when it comes to summer reading.

I’ve been catching up on my “beach reads,” but none of them have cats as even minor characters. I’m looking forward to reading the advance reader copy of A Dish to Die For, the latest in Lucy Burdette’s Key West Food Critic Mystery series, which always features cats, and of course, I’ll review it closer to its publication date of August 9.

I’m currently reading Elin Hilderbrand’s The Hotel Nantucket, and as usual, the queen of beach reads does not disappoint, but there’s not a single cat in the book.

Of course, if you need recommendations for cat books, you can always check out my thirteen years worth of book reviews here.

What are you reading? Do you have a favorite summer book?

*FTC Disclosure: The Conscious Cat is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to products on Amazon and affiliated sites. This means that if you decide to purchase through any of our links, we get a small commission. We only spread the word about products and services we’ve either used or would use ourselves. 

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14 Comments on What Are You Reading This Summer?

  1. I thought of a few more:
    The Dalai Lama’s Cat and its sequels are very entertaining.

    Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. Very entertaining. Set in Savannah. Based on a real crime mystery but reads like fiction. Quirky in all the best and most surprising ways. Really entertaining summer read. You’ll want to visit Savannah and roam the Bonaventure Cemetery–abeautiful riverside park cemetery where families visit their departed and picnic.

  2. Since I am Swedish, I have read some novels and crime/fiction by Swedish authors so far this Summer – I need “easy reading” meaning both as in books that weigh less (pocket books) and what they are about, no 700 pages biographies this time of year.
    But, I found a book last December, at a flea market in Phoenix, AZ, while visiting my cousin.
    The title is “the Cat who knew a Cardinal” by Lilian Jackson Braun, have read about a third by know and I really enjoy it.
    Why I bought it? I love flea markets. I love cats. My cousins wife love Cardinal birds.

  3. I am missing the Joe Grey mystery series, but Shirley Rousseau Murphy is in her 90s now and decided to retire. I have the whole series, and I do re-read them.

    I also miss the Cat Sitter series after Blaize Clement passed away. Her son wrote 3 more books, but he received some bad reviews from fans that I did not feel was entirely valid. He has not written another book for the series since 2015 unfortunately.

    • I agree! The cats in all her books are delightful .
      Light summer reading, intelligent cat sleuths: Entertaining.

  4. For those of you who like mysteries, I have been reading M.C, Beaton’s Hamish Macbeth stories for years…..so delightful , takes place in Scotland
    A new has just come out:
    Beaton, the grand dame of the cozy mystery genre, passed away in late 2019. Beaton chose her friend and fellow writer Green to continue her Hamish Macbeth and Agatha Raisin mystery series . . . and he delivers the charge most admirably. This Hamish Macbeth novel maintains Beaton’s distinctive voice and includes the usual village eccentrics, loads of Scottish lore, and the light humor that Beaton fans have loved through the years. Most important, the book ends with a teaser that seems to promise more and even wilder adventures for Hamish.”―

    • And in quite quite a few of the books, he did have this amazing cat, which people thought was a wild cat.

  5. I already read One Italian Summer by Rebecca Serle, really enjoyed it very much. Now I’m reading When Women were Dragons by Kelly Barnhill. I do have a Cozy mystery to read that does have a cat in it, but I don’t remember the name of it right now. I have a variety on my to read list this summer.

  6. I’m reading all kinds of genres as I’m an ARC reader for a few authors ranging from cozy mysteries, post apocalyptic, murder mysteries, young adult, paranormal, sci fi… If you want to read a fun series of stories about witches learning to become witches with their familiars, Amorette Anderson’s Hillcrest Witch Mysteries are fun! The main character Penny and her calico cat Turkey solve many mysteries (she couldn’t do it without his help!)… There’s a lot of heart in this series…

  7. I am reading tons of books this summer. I average 200+ books read and reviewed each year. I’m not a TV fan so I prefer sitting in my comfy chair with my Kindle and a Kitty. Life is good. “The Hotel Nantucket” is really good and I enjoyed it. I tend to lean toward thrillers these days with a few historical romances thrown in here and there. Biographies are also a favorite. So glad you leave reviews too because our hard-working authors certainly deserve them.

  8. “Sailing South Til The Butter Melts”
    Non fiction as told to author LeCain W.Smith
    By the sea cat Chowder

    I came across an interview with him on a local Maine radio station and was so inspired to get the book, the first in a three part series.
    Of a 6 year journey around the world.

    In this first of three books based on her true life sea adventure, Chowder reveals how she left her home on land and got her sea legs onboard a forty-three foot sailboat that Lee built. While they sail down the west coast of the Americas to the enchanted islands of the Galapagos, she shares how she handles each experience and adapts to the variety of situations that occur during her first two years at sea.

  9. John Gray’s
    Feline Philosophy: Cats and the Meaning of Life

    Available through Amazon and others, new and used, including Kindle, & public library

    Gray is a noted philosopher who writes very well and clearly knows cats and what humans can learn from them.

    Also, William Faulkner’s Mosquitoes (his 2nd novel), now available in paperback (hasn’t been available in any form for decades). Not about cats.

    Jorge Luis Borges Collected Fiction . I’m rereading Borges and this collection includes his short work “Blue Tigers.” This is included in other books of his works. His writing is lyrical, often mystical, metaphysical, even magical. Yes, the tigers are blue.

  10. I heard Elin Hilderbrand’s The Hotel Nantucket is really good. I have it on my list to read too. I get a lot of ARCs, so I am usually reading something prior to it coming out. Right now I am reading Hot Texas Trouble by Eve Gaddy. It’s part of a series that I have already read the previous books.

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