Cool, Blue, Pool Reads

Beat the summer heat and dive right into these cool, blue pool reads this season!

The First Rule of Swimming by Courtney Angela Brkic

From the Publisher:  Awoman must leave her island home to search for her missing sister — and confront the haunted history of her family.

Magdalena does not panic when she learns that her younger sister has disappeared. A free-spirit, Jadranka has always been prone to mysterious absences. But when weeks pass with no word, Magdalena leaves the isolated Croatian island where their family has always lived and sets off to New York to find her sister. Her search begins to unspool the dark history of their family, reaching back three generations to a country torn by war.

A haunting and sure-footed debut by an award-winning writer, The First Rule of Swimming explores the legacy of betrayal and loss in a place where beauty is fused inextricably with hardship, and where individuals are forced to make wrenching choices as they are swept up in the tides of history.

Swimming at Night Lucy Clark 

From the Publisher: Katie’s world is shattered by the news that her headstrong and bohemian younger sister, Mia, has been found dead at the bottom of a cliff in Bali. The authorities say that Mia jumped–that her death was a suicide. Although they’d hardly spoken to each other since Mia suddenly left on an around-the-world trip six months earlier, Katie refuses to accept that her sister would have taken her own life. Distraught that they never made peace, Katie leaves her orderly, sheltered life in London behind and embarks on a journey to find out the truth. With only the entries in Mia’s travel journal as her guide, Katie retraces the last few months of her sister’s life and–page by page, country by country–begins to uncover the mystery surrounding her death.

Swimming Lessons by Claire Fuller 

From the Publisher: Ingrid Coleman writes letters to her husband, Gil, about the truth of their marriage, but instead of giving them to him, she hides them in the thousands of books he has collected over the years. When Ingrid has written her final letter she disappears from a Dorset beach, leaving behind her beautiful but dilapidated house by the sea, her husband, and her two daughters, Flora and Nan.  Twelve years later, Gil thinks he sees Ingrid from a bookshop window, but he’s getting older and this unlikely sighting is chalked up to senility. Flora, who has never believed her mother drowned, returns home to care for her father and to try to finally discover what happened to Ingrid. But what Flora doesn’t realize is that the answers to her questions are hidden in the books that surround her. Scandalous and whip-smart, Swimming Lessons holds the Coleman family up to the light, exposing the mysterious truths of a passionate and troubled marriage.

Swimming in the Dark by Tomasz Jedrowski

From the Publisher: When university student Ludwik meets Janusz at a summer agricultural camp, he is fascinated yet wary of this handsome, carefree stranger. But a chance meeting by the river soon becomes an intense, exhilarating, and all-consuming affair. After their camp duties are fulfilled, the pair spend a dreamlike few weeks camping in the countryside, removed from society and its constraints, Ludwik and Janusz fall deeply in love. But in their repressive communist and Catholic society, the passion they share is utterly unthinkable. Once they return to Warsaw, the charismatic Janusz quickly rises in the political ranks of the party and is rewarded with a highly-coveted position in the ministry. Ludwik is drawn toward impulsive acts of protest, unable to ignore rising food prices and the stark economic disparity around them. Their secret love and personal and political differences slowly begin to tear them apart as both men struggle to survive in a regime on the brink of collapse.

The Girl Who Stopped Swimming by Joshilyn Jackson 

From the Publisher: Laurel Gray Hawthorne needs to make things pretty, whether she’s helping her mother make sure the literal family skeleton stays in the closet or turning scraps of fabric into nationally acclaimed art quilts. Her estranged sister Thalia, an impoverished Actress with a capital A, is her polar opposite, priding herself on exposing the lurid truth lurking behind middle class niceties. While Laurel’s life seems neatly on track–a passionate marriage, a treasured daughter, and a lovely home in suburban Victorianna–everything she holds dear is suddenly thrown into question the night she is visited by the ghost of a her 13-year old neighbor Molly Dufresne. The ghost leads Laurel to the real Molly floating lifelessly in the Hawthorne’s backyard pool. Molly’s death is inexplicable–an unseemly mystery Laurel knows no one in her whitewashed neighborhood is up to solving. Only her wayward, unpredictable sister is right for the task, but calling in a favor from Thalia is like walking straight into a frying pan protected only by Crisco. Enlisting Thalia’s help, Laurel sets out on a life-altering journey that triggers startling revelations about her family’s guarded past, the true state of her marriage, and the girl who stopped swimming. Richer and more rewarding than any story Joshilyn Jackson has yet written, yet still packed with Jackson’s trademarked outrageous characters, sparkling dialogue, and defiantly twisting plotting, THE GIRL WHO STOPPED SWIMMING is destined both to delight Jackson’s loyal fans and capture a whole new audience. 

Summer House With Swimming Pool by Herman Koch

From the Publisher: Concealing the medical mistake that caused the death of a famous actor, Dr. Marc Schlosser gradually reveals the personal reasons why he sought the victim’s death, including an assault on the doctor’s daughter.

The Swimming Pool by Holly LeCraw

From the Publisher: Seven summers ago, Marcella Atkinson fell in love with Cecil McClatchey, a married father of two. But on the same night their romance abruptly ended, Cecil’s wife was found murdered–and their lives changed forever, in this powerful debut.

Wild Swims by Dorthe Nors 

From the Publisher: In fourteen effervescent stories, Dorthe Nors plumbs the depths of the human heart, from desire to melancholy and everything in between. Just as she did in her English-language debut, Karate Chop, Nors slices straight to the core of the conflict in only a few pages. But Wild Swims expands the borders of her gaze, following people as they travel through Copenhagen, London, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, and elsewhere. Here are portraits of men and women full of restless longing, people who are often seeking a home but rarely finding it. A lie told during a fraught ferry ride on the North Sea becomes a wound that festers between school friends. A writer at a remote cabin befriends the mother of an ex-lover. Two friends knock doors to solicit fraudulent donations for the cancer society. A woman taken with the idea of wild swims ventures as far as the local swimming pool.

Swimming Between Worlds by Elaine Neil Orr

From the Publisher: Tacker Hart left his home in North Carolina as a local high school football hero, but returns in disgrace after being fired from a prestigious architectural assignment in West Africa. Yet the culture and people he grew to admire have left their mark on him. Adrift, he manages his father’s grocery store and becomes reacquainted with a girl he barely knew growing up. Kate Monroe’s parents have died, leaving her the family home and the right connections in her Southern town. But a trove of disturbing letters sends her searching for the truth behind the comfortable life she’s been bequeathed. On the same morning but at different moments, Tacker and Kate encounter a young African-American, Gaines Townson, and their stories converge with his. As Winston-Salem is pulled into the tumultuous 1960s, these three Americans find themselves at the center of the civil rights struggle, coming to terms with the legacies of their pasts as they search for an ennobling future.

The Lido by Libby Paige

From the Publisher: A tender, joyous debut novel about a cub reporter and her eighty-six-year-old subject–and the unlikely and life-changing friendship that develops between them. Kate is a twenty-six-year-old riddled with anxiety and panic attacks who works for a local paper in Brixton, London, covering forgettably small stories. When she’s assigned to write about the closing of the local lido (an outdoor pool and recreation center), she meets Rosemary, an eighty-six-year-old widow who has swum at the lido daily since it opened its doors when she was a child. It was here Rosemary fell in love with her husband, George; here that she’s found communion during her marriage and since George’s death. The lido has been a cornerstone in nearly every part of Rosemary’s life. But when a local developer attempts to buy the lido for a posh new apartment complex, Rosemary’s fond memories and sense of community are under threat. As Kate dives deeper into the lido’s history–with the help of a charming photographer–she pieces together a portrait of the pool, and a portrait of a singular woman, Rosemary. What begins as a simple local interest story for Kate soon blossoms into a beautiful friendship that provides sustenance to both women as they galvanize the community to fight the lido’s closure. Meanwhile, Rosemary slowly, finally, begins to open up to Kate, transforming them both in ways they never knew possible. In the tradition of Frederick Backman, The Lido is a charming, feel-good novel that captures the heart and spirit of a community across generations–an irresistible tale of love, loss, aging, and friendship.

Swimming Pool Sunday by Madeleine Wickham 

From the Publisher: On a shimmeringly hot Sunday in May, Louise is at a neighbour’s pool with her daughters – and glaring at her resentfully is her estranged husband Barnaby. While the children splash and shriek in the cool blue waters, she lies blissfully back in the sun and dreams of Cassian, the charismatic new lawyer in her life.

I Need a Lifeguard Everywhere But The Pool by Lisa Scottoline & Francesca Serritella 

From the Publisher: Lisa and Francesca are back with another collection of warm and witty stories that will strike a chord with every woman. This seven book series is among the best reviewed humor books published today and has been compared to the late greats, Erma Bombeck and Nora Ephron.

-Jessica, Adult Services & Acquisitions Librarian 

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