Top 12 Summery Beach Read Recs for 2024

I think the term “beach reach” is defined differently by everyone — to some, it’s any book that can be read quickly (while sitting on the beach/poolside), to others, it’s more about the light tone of the book. The specific beach reads we’re talking about today are those books with summer settings, vacation themes, and happy endings (primarily contemporary romance and ‘women’s’ fiction). I actually do have another summer reading recommendation list of dramas/thrillers coming soon, but I ultimately decided to focus on one genre at a time 😉 Most of the summer beach reads on this list are new/recent, but a few are a couple years old. The thing they all have in common — they satisfyingly satiated my summertime book appetite.

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Top Beach Reads for Summer 2024

Books that have been included that are not yet released have been noted with an expected release date. I was able to read advanced copies of these books, thanks to NetGalley and book publishers, in exchange for my honest feedback.

For all the books I’m reading and loving, and giving 4+ stars, check out my list here…

For all the books I’m reading in real time, along with ratings and reviews, check out my GoodReads account here…

Top Beach Reads for 2024

Top Summery Beach Reads for 2024

NO. 1
Summer Romance by Annabel Monaghan
*Coming June 4, 2024

Every one of Annabel Monaghan’s books have been a hit for me and this story — divorced mom/professional organizer who’s grown accustomed to living life in stretch pants (relatable!) — and through a (not-so) meet-cute, a second act in life via summer romance begins with the brother of a friend.

I love that the MCs are always rich in life experience/more mature than a lot of my typical contemporary romances and this one is such a sweet winner!

Best Books for Summer Vacation 2024

NO. 2
Just for the Summer by Abby Jimenez

I don’t know how she does it but I’ve read every single one of Abby’s books and have adored each of them. Just for the Summer is crafted with the similar formula you find in all of Abby’s books — well developed, likable, and relatable characters you’re rooting for, with coziness, wit, and charm weaved through overcoming some real life obstacles messiness. The tough familial situations and backstories she created in this book are extreme but plausible, and I appreciated having a front seat to the coping mechanisms they’d developed over the years as trauma responses… and their independent journeys to healing.

Beach Reads

NO. 3
Same Time Next Summer by Annabel Monaghan

A second chance romance with her childhood summer boy, this story is split between two timelines and is filled with nostalgia. An unexpected reconnection after our FMC heads to her family’s summer beach home to plan her wedding with her fiancé rekindles all the good stuff we love to see in those meant-to-be relationships.

Best 2024 Summer Beach Reads

NO. 4
The Summer of Yes by Courtney Walsh
*Coming July 2, 2024

A beautiful stroll of a book about re-evaluating life and approaching it as a journey of open doors. I went in assuming this would be a book of bucket list errands, with two women in different stages of life exchanging pearls of wisdom, but this was So. Much. Better! These characters had so much heart and while their relationships built slowly, the last quarter of the book was especially rewarding. I absolutely adored it.

Summery Beach Reads

NO. 5
Love & Other Words by Christina Lauren

FYI, this is actually incredibly reminiscent of  Every Summer After, but IMO, written first and better. I cried actual tears reading this one and there are plenty of heavy topics, but the visits to the summer lake house ooze visceral summertime memories. There are dual timelines, spanning 10 years, between two friends-turned-loves who lost touch and are reconnecting and learning about the root of heartbreak from years earlier. This one is beautiful, emotional, and so so good.

Best Summer Beach Reads for 2024

NO. 6
The Paradise Problem by Christina Lauren
*Coming May 14, 2024

Another Christina Lauren (there are actually three on this list)! Fake marriage, set in paradise, opposite social classes, strong FMC with next level wit and chemistry. I totally picture the epilogue playing out in a move style “where are they now” with text captions and some poignant song as a send off… the whole, beautifully developed story would make a fantastic rom com in film format. This will absolutely be one of the top hits of the summer.

2024 Summery Beach Reads

NO. 7
Mixed Signals by B.K. Borison

The Lovelight Farms series takes place throughout four seasons and as Book 3/4, Mixed Signals is the series’ summer setting. Think — MMC who has unknowingly (by her, not the rest of the town) had feelings for the FMC for years agrees to a month-long fake dating situation-ship so that she can rank and coach his relationship skills. The entire series is a great read and if you haven’t already read the first two — Lovelight Farms, followed by In the Weeds, I’d start there. By the way, I’ve read Book 4 (Business Casual), releasing this summer, and it may be my favorite of the series!

Favorite Summery Beach Reads

NO. 8
Book Lovers by Emily Henry

I have actually already read EH’s latest book — Funny Story — and while people are going wild for it, and I was counting the days until the anticipated release, it wasn’t my personal favorite. (By all means, still give it a try as it seems I’m far and away in the minority). That said, my favorite Emily Henry book is Book Lovers — a summer-set sisters-getaway to small town NC, with serendipitous run-ins with a nemesis.

Top Summery Beach Reads

NO. 9
You with a View by Jessica Joyce

Summarized perfectly in this excerpt from Amazon’s book listing:
Two high school enemies must reunite for a road trip inspired by their grandparents’ broken engagement in this electric debut romance.

Noelle Shepard is unemployed, living with her parents, and grieving the loss of her beloved grandmother when she discovers decades-old photos of Gram and a smitten man, tucked alongside a love letter. She creates a TikTok to search for the mystery man, which goes viral, and she’s shocked when his grandson responds—a man who happens to be her high school nemesis, Theo Spencer.

All three head out on a literal life-changing adventure, filled with romantic tension, self discovery, and heart.

Best Summer Beach Reads for 2024

NO. 10
Savor It by Tarah DeWitt
*Coming May 21, 2024

What an enjoyable slow-paced slow burn! There were truly some special moments in this one, and while it was set on the coast in the NW, my mind kept placing me around the coastal Carolinas. Think big city chef temporarily moves to a small town with his teenaged orphaned niece, to help open a new restaurant, where he has to win the town over and with the help of a quirky local (our FMC), he just may.

Top Summer Beach Reads

NO. 11
The Five-Star Weekend by Elin Hilderbrand

Nantucket-based food blogger and recent widow decides to host a weekend, extending an invitation to four women who were important to her throughout different stages of her life. Drama ensues, secrets are unveiled, and the coastal descriptions are viscerally transportive.

Top Summery Beach Reads

NO. 12
The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren

One of my favorite, fun beach reads, a bride’s twin sister and groom’s brother find themselves on a dream honeymoon together, after a series of unfortunate wedding circumstances. The problem — they despise each other. But, they have to play the role of a newly married and totally in love couple or they will have to face professional consequences and reimburse the value of the trip. The Unhoneymooners is such a fun, light, bingeable ride!

Not-Yet Released Books On My Summer TBR

Below are the highly anticipated books I’m looking forward to diving into, as soon as they’re released this summer.

Summer 2024 Books

The Summer Pact by Emily Giffin
*Coming July 9, 2024

I’m a longtime Emily Giffin fan and will read anything she puts out! Looking forward to her latest release.

Summer 2024 Beach Reads

NO. 10
This Summer Will Be Different by Carley Fortune
*Released May 7, 2024

I really enjoyed Carley’s first book, Every Summer After, but didn’t care for her sophomore book Meet Me at the Lake. I’m hopeful that her latest release will be more reminiscent to the first.

Summer 2024 Books on My TBR

Swan Song by Elin Hilderbrand
*Coming June 11, 2024

I’m a newer Elin Hilderbrand reader (I’ve read her releases the past two years) and while it’s more general fiction with drama than contemporary romance, I really enjoy her style. This one will close out her Nantucket-based books.

Summer 2024 Books on My TBR

The Ex Vows by Jessica Joyce
*Coming July 16, 2024

I really enjoyed her first book (included in the list above!) and am not sure if this will give total summer vibes, but I think a destination wedding in Napa sounds like it will be serving exactly what I crave during summer!

Summer 2024 Books

A Happier Life by Kristy Woodson Harvey
*Coming June 25, 2024

This will be my first book by this author, but the summary of this summer in a small town is giving all the summer book vibes I usually chase after!

Have a new favorite beach read? Or maybe a favorite, long-time standby? Share it with us in the comment section!

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  1. 5.13.24
    Jennibell said:

    Great recommendations! I’ve read a couple, one was available at my library so I’ve already downloaded it, and I’m looking for to Elin Hildebrand’s last release this summer. i think one of my favorites of hers is/was Beautiful Day with Summer of ‘69 a recent favorite (there’s a novelette follow-up to that one).
    I don’t think that you have the right text in your last recommendation.

    • 5.15.24

      Hi Jennibell, There are so many great reads out there now and summer is a wonderful time to get to it! I appreciate your note and your alert of the post error. It has been corrected!