Today’s Top Ten Tuesday is all about the perfect beach reads since summer is finally upon us! When I think beach reads, I think lighthearted stories that are less suspenseful, and less likely to make you emotional, than some of your regular reads. However, because those make-you-cry, touch-your-heart books are my favorite I’ve had a bit of a difficult time making this list. I’ve tried my best to keep them light, but some of them might fall a little bit more into the other category. Such as the Denise Hildreth book, but that couldn’t be helped because they’re actually at the beach and I couldn’t not add it to this list. Anyway, these are some books I would highly recommend reading as you lay out on the beach! And if you want to see my full reviews of any of them, just click on the coral titles!
Petticoat Detective by Margaret Brownley
The first book in Margaret’s Undercover Ladies series, Petticoat Detective is a mystery, so that makes it somewhat suspenseful, but other than that I do feel it is a good addition to this list.
Pinkerton detective Jennifer Layne has a past full of identities…
But posing as a lady companion named Amy at Miss Lillian’s Parlor House and Boots in Goodman, Kansas, is a first for her. Amy’s current assignment has her on the trail of the notorious Gunnysack Bandit, when one of Miss Lillian’s girls—Amy’s best hope for a lead—meets an untimely demise.
Former Texas Ranger Tom Colton has every reason to distrust the green-eyed beauty at Miss Lillian’s who calls herself Amy. Determined to clear his brother’s name, he’s convinced she knows more than she lets on, and he means to find out what it is.
As Amy’s investigation continues, her biggest problem is Tom and his stolen kiss. The closer she gets to tracking down the outlaw, the harder it is to keep Tom from finding out the awful truth about his brother. The Gunnysack Bandit she can handle, but it’ll take a whole lot of faith and a little help from Miss Lillian and her girls to snag the man who stole her heart.
Someone Like You by Victoria Bylin
Someone Like You is a wonderful stand-alone that has the perfect amount of funny situations that will keep you laughing as you get some sun.
Single mom Julia Dare has a lot on her plate. A brand new Christian, she’s busy trying to run her own business, spend time with her widowed mother, and raise her young son, Max, despite his father’s less-than-ideal influence on him. When a big account from her event-planning business sends her to the Caliente Springs resort, she’s shocked to come face-to-face with Zeke Monroe, the resort’s general manager and her college sweetheart.
With his faith in tatters, Zeke Monroe is determined to keep the historic Caliente Springs resort running despite financial difficulties. But when Julia walks back into his life, he can’t ignore the feelings she stirs up. As they work together on an important client’s dream wedding, the fate of the resort soon depends on their success. When Zeke and Julia are pushed to their limits both personally and professionally, will their history put up walls between them or bring them together?
At Bluebonnet Lake by Amanda Cabot
At Bluebonnet Lake is the first book in Amanda’s Texas Crossroads series, and is lighthearted enough to make it perfect for this list.
Her life is set to warp speed. His is slowing to a crawl. But love has its own timing.
Marketing maven Kate Sherwood’s world is fast-paced, challenging, and always changing. The last thing she wants to do is grind to a halt at Rainbow’s End, a dilapidated resort in the Texas Hill Country. Still, she cannot deny her ailing grandmother’s request to visit the place where she and her deceased husband spent one glorious week fifty years ago. There, Kate meets Greg, who appears to be the resort’s unassuming handyman. But there’s more to Greg than meets the eye—billions more, in fact.
Kate isn’t looking for romance, but she can’t deny the sparks of attraction that fly every time she and Greg are together. Could there be a future there? Or will Kate’s long-sought promotion take her back to the big city?
Kissed by a Cowboy by Debra Clopton
Kissed by a Cowboy is the third book in Debra’s Four of Hearts Ranch Romance series, coming after Betting on Hope and Counting on a Cowboy.
Cassidy was looking for a home and a place to belong…not for a cowboy to steal her heart.
Having lived through her parents’ endless string of “matrimonial bliss gone wrong,” Cassidy Starr knows when the odds are not in her favor. Divorced and humiliated, her faith on rocky ground, Cassidy is through with love. She’s been bucked off that horse far too many times. Instead, she returns to Wishing Springs, Texas, and the rundown farm she’s inherited from her great aunt Roxie. She’ll reopen the strawberry farm and a bed & breakfast and follow in her aunt’s footsteps, remaining forever-independent, happy…and single.
Rancher Jarrod Monahan’s hands are full running the ranch, looking after his ailing grandfather, and chasing down a group of rustlers on the loose. He’s pushed his longing for a family to the bottom of his list of priorities. Besides, he was in love once but ran scared and lost his shot at happiness. But suddenly, the biggest regret of his life has moved in next door with a wounded heart, determined to become a spinster…and that’s a challenge that Jarrod can’t pass up.
Jarrod sets his mind to breaking down the walls around Cassidy’s stubborn heart. How can he show her that a cowboy’s kiss lasts forever? For the good folks of Wishing Springs, falling in love has never been so much fun to witness.
The Proposal at Siesta Key by Shelley Shepard Gray
The Proposal at Siesta Key is the second book in Shelley’s Amish Brides of Pinecraft series, coming after The Promise of Palm Grove.
Penny Troyer never disobeys her parents. But tonight she’s bending the rules because Michael Knoxx—the most famous member of the Knoxx Family, a traveling Mennonite evangelical family—is scheduled to speak. Penny has heard of Michael—how he lost part of his leg in a terrible accident and uses the experience to inspire others—and knows she must meet him…even if it means challenging her parents’ strict rules and taking the first step toward her own independence.
Though he speaks about living life to the fullest, Michael knows he needs to take his own advice. Life on the road is grueling and Michael wants to slow down, to rest…to perhaps meet someone who sees him as a man, not just a celebrity. So when a twist of fate allows him the chance to stay a little longer in Pinecraft, Michael knows God is showing him a new path, especially when he discovers that Penny has also survived a terrible ordeal.
But as Michael’s time in Pinecraft comes to an end, Michael and Penny are left to wonder what kind of future they could possibly have together. Are they brave enough to take the chance given to them? Or will they choose to cling to what is familiar, even if it pushes away their dream of happiness?
A Noble Masquerade by Kristi Ann Hunter
A Noble Masquerade is the first book in Kristi Ann’s Hawthorne House series.
Lady Miranda Hawthorne acts every inch the lady, but inside she longs to be bold and carefree. Entering her fourth Season and approaching spinsterhood in the eyes of society, she ours her innermost feelings not in a diary but in letters to her brother’s old school friend, a duke—with no intention of ever sending these private thoughts to a man she’s heard stories about but never met. Meanwhile, she also finds herself intrigued by Marlow, her brother’s new valet, and although she may wish to break free of the strictures that bind her, falling in love with a servant is more of a rebellion than she planned.
When Marlow accidentally discovers and mails one of the letters to her unwitting confidant, Miranda is beyond mortified. And even more shocked when the duke returns her note with one of his own that initiates a courtship-by-mail. Insecurity about her lack of suitors shifts into confusion at her growing feelings for two men—one she’s never met but whose words deeply resonate with her heart, and one she has come to depend on but whose behavior is more and more suspicious. When it becomes apparent state secrets are at risk and Marlow is right in the thick of the conflict, one thing is certain: Miranda’s heart is far from all that’s at risk for the Hawthornes and those they love.
A Most Inconvenient Marriage by Regina Jennings
A Most Inconvenient Marriage is another lighthearted, funny, and entertaining tale that is a perfect read for the beach.
Abigail Stuart thought she was Jeremiah Calhoun’s widow. But Jeremiah Calhoun is very handsome, very alive, and very perplexed. Most inconvenient indeed.
With few options of her own, nurse Abigail Stuart agrees to marry her patient, a gravely wounded soldier calling himself Jeremiah Calhoun. They arrange a quick ceremony before he dies, giving Abigail the rights to his Ozark farm and giving Jeremiah the peace of knowing someone will care for his ailing sister after he’s gone—a practical solution for both of them.
After the war, Abigail fulfills her side of the bargain—until the real Jeremiah Calhoun shows up, injured but definitely alive, and wastes no time in challenging Abigail’s story. Abigail is flummoxed. After months of claiming to be his widow, how can she explain that she’s never seen this Jeremiah Calhoun before? How can she convince him that she isn’t trying to steal his farm? And will she find a way to stay, even though this practical arrangement has turned into a most inconvenient marriage?
Hurricanes in Paradise by Denise Hildreth Jones
Hurricanes in Paradise isn’t as lighthearted as the other reads, but it is set on a beach and I really love it, so I added it to the list anyway.
From the moment Riley Sinclair stepped onto Paradise Island, Bahamas, and into her new job as director of guest relations at a five-star resort, she felt the pieces of her once-broken life finally coming together. But the waters become choppy when Riley discovers that some who come to the Atlantis hotel arrive with more than just suitcases and suntan lotion in tow—they’re accompanied by their lurking demons, paralyzing secrets, and overwhelming fears.
Riley and three woman guests are in desperate but unknowing need of each other, eventually forging unlikely yet powerful friendships. With a hurricane headed straight for the island, together they embark on a journey of laughter and lunacy, heartache and healing.
Playing the Part by Jen Turano
Playing the Part is the third book in Jen’s A Class of Their Own series, coming behind After a Fashion and In Good Company.
Lucetta Plum is an actress on the rise in New York City, but must abandon her starring role when a fan’s interest turns threatening. Lucetta’s widowed friend, Abigail Hart, seizes the opportunity to meddle in Lucetta’s life and promptly whisks her away to safety at her eligible grandson’s estate.
At first glance, Bram Haverstein appears to be a gentleman of means—albeit an eccentric one—but a mysterious career and a secret fascination with a certain actress mean there’s much more to him than society knows.
While Lucetta has no interest in Abigail’s matchmaking machinations, she can’t ignore the strange things going on in Bram’s house and the secrets he hides. As the hijinks and hilarity that Bram, Lucetta, and their friends are swept into take a more dangerous turn, can they accept who they are behind the parts they play in time to save the day?
Crazy Little Thing Called Love by Beth K. Vogt
Crazy Little Thing Called Love is the first book in Beth’s Destination Wedding series.
Paramedic Vanessa Hollister has put her adolescence behind her, including the unwanted label of being the new kid in town over and over again, thanks to her father’s military career. She’s overcome what her mother called “the biggest mistake of her life” and is planning an elegant destination wedding in Destin, Florida with her new fiancé. But will the reappearance of her first husband from her what-were-you-thinking teenage elopement disrupt her dream of an idyllic beach wedding?
As a professional storm chaser, Logan Hollister is used to taking risks. However, a reckless decision during the last tornado season has him questioning the future of his team, the Stormmeisters. Coming face to face with his ex-wife eight years after their divorce compels him to confront his greatest regret: losing Vanessa. Does their past give him the right to interfere with her future?
A fast-moving, powerful hurricane throws Vanessa and Logan together as they evacuate to a storm shelter along with other residents of the Florida Gulf Coast. Forced to spend time together, the pair battles unexpected renewed feelings for each other.
Vanessa and Logan are faced with a choice: Should they accept, once and for all, their teenage marital mistake? Or is God offering them a second chance at happily ever after?
Those are my top ten beach reads for this summer! What about you? What are some books you think make perfect beach reads?
Happy Tuesday and happy reading!
Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly linkup hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.
To see where I’m linking up, check out my Where I Party page.
All credit for the italicized synopses goes to each author and their respective publishers.