Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Sweet Summertime Reads Roadtrip with Andi!

Hello, and welcome to the first edition of SWEET SUMMERTIME READS ROADTRIP!  Each Wednesday this summer I'll be taking you on a virtual roadtrip to various places on the map and hopefully introduce you to some new reads along the way as well.  This week I am so happy to be kicking off this reading roadtrip with Andi from Andi's ABCs.  Grab some comfy walking shoes and a cool beverage as Andi takes you around the beautiful city of Boston!

A few weeks ago Ginger asked me if I wanted to take part in her summer feature: Sweet Summertime Reads Roadtrip. Because she’s Ginger and she’s awesome I immediately said yes of course. And now I get to be the first stop on the roadtrip. Welcome to my city. WELCOME TO BOSTON!

photo credit: Andi

What I decided to do was pick a few of my favorite spots around downtown that I like to read at in the summer time with the perfect summer read and a few places that actually are locations used in some books.

The first stop on my tour: The John Adams Courthouse

photo credit: Andi

This is a prime reading place for me as it is the area I work in. Most days in the summer you will find me sitting in the exact spot I took this picture from reading one of my many many books. It’s a great spot to people watch, read uninterrupted and to get some nice sun. Plus I don’t have to worry about being late as work is a hope skip and a jump away.

Summer Book: Sixteenth Summer by Michelle Dalton
Description: Anna is dreading another tourist-filled summer on Dune Island that follows the same routine: beach, ice cream, friends, repeat. That is, until she locks eyes with Will, the gorgeous and sweet guy visiting from New York. Soon, her summer is filled with flirtatious fun as Anna falls head over heels in love.

But with every perfect afternoon, sweet kiss, and walk on the beach, Anna can’t ignore that the days are quickly growing shorter, and Will has to leave at the end of August. Anna’s never felt anything like this before, but when forever isn’t even a possibility, one summer doesn’t feel worth the promise of her heart breaking….

The second stop on my tour: The Boston Common

photo credit: Andi

This park is a short walk from my work and is a prime place to be at during lunch time. Most days the lush green lawn is load with people soaking in the sun, eating their lunch or reading a book. Throughout the common you can find benches in a variety of places that are pretty perfect if you are trying to stay in the shade but enjoy the summer warmth. Not as big as Central Park in New York, but still pretty beautiful if you ask me.

Summer Book: Open Road Summer by Emery Lord
Description: After breaking up with her bad-news boyfriend, Reagan O’Neill is ready to leave her rebellious ways behind. . . and her best friend, country superstar Lilah Montgomery, is nursing a broken heart of her own. Fortunately, Lilah’s 24-city tour is about to kick off, offering a perfect opportunity for a girls-only summer of break-up ballads and healing hearts. But when Matt Finch joins the tour as its opening act, his boy-next-door charm proves difficult for Reagan to resist, despite her vow to live a drama-free existence. This summer, Reagan and Lilah will navigate the ups and downs of fame and friendship as they come to see that giving your heart to the right person is always a risk worth taking. A fresh new voice in contemporary romance, Emery Lord’s gorgeous writing hits all the right notes.

The third stop on my tour: The Public Garden

photo credit: Andi

The Public Gardens is easily one of the prettiest spots in Boston come spring and summer. With the Swan Boats starting, the tulips being planted and the weeping willows creating a fantastical ambiance. Truthfully I don’t enjoy the park as much as I should and I think I may try and change that this summer. Even if I just take a walk around it.

Summer Book: Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler
Description:  "Don’t worry, Anna. I’ll tell her, okay? Just let me think about the best way to do it."
"Promise me? Promise you won’t say anything?"
"Don’t worry.” I laughed. “It’s our secret, right?"

According to Anna’s best friend, Frankie, twenty days in Zanzibar Bay is the perfect opportunity to have a summer fling, and if they meet one boy every day, there’s a pretty good chance Anna will find her first summer romance. Anna lightheartedly agrees to the game, but there’s something she hasn’t told Frankie–she’s already had her romance, and it was with Frankie’s older brother, Matt, just before his tragic death one year ago.

TWENTY BOY SUMMER explores what it truly means to love someone, what it means to grieve, and ultimately, how to make the most of every beautiful moment life has to offer.


That concludes my reading spot tour of Boston. And now on to the books with Boston connections.

I have taken pictures of 3 different places that have connections to Boston. Although not typical summer books I thought it would be interesting to show some of the places that have been part of literary history, pop culture, or even a book new on the scene.

First up: The Boston Public Library – Copley Square

photo credit: Andi

Book: Free to Fall by Lauren Miller
Description: What if there was an app that told you what song to listen to, what coffee to order, who to date, even what to do with your life—an app that could ensure your complete and utter happiness? What if you never had to fail or make a wrong choice?

What if you never had to fall?

Fast-forward to a time when Apple and Google have been replaced by Gnosis, a monolith corporation that has developed the most life-changing technology to ever hit the market: Lux, an app that flawlessly optimizes decision making for the best personal results. Just like everyone else, sixteen-year-old Rory Vaughn knows the key to a happy, healthy life is following what Lux recommends. When she’s accepted to the elite boarding school Theden Academy, her future happiness seems all the more assured. But once on campus, something feels wrong beneath the polished surface of her prestigious dream school. Then she meets North, a handsome townie who doesn’t use Lux, and begins to fall for him and his outsider way of life. Soon, Rory is going against Lux’s recommendations, listening instead to the inner voice that everyone has been taught to ignore — a choice that leads her to uncover a truth neither she nor the world ever saw coming.

Next up: Make Way for Ducklings Statue – The Public Gardens

photo credit: Andi

Book: Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey
Description: Mrs. Mallard was sure that the pond in the Boston Public Gardens would be a perfect place for her and her eight ducklings to live. The problem was how to get them there through the busy streets of Boston. But with a little help from the Boston police, Mrs. Mallard and Jack, Kack, Lack, Nack, Ouack, Pack, and Quack arive safely at their new home.

Last up: Fenway Park – Home to my beloved Boston Red Sox

photo credit: Andi

Book: The Town (aka Prince of Thieves) by Chuck Hogan
Description: The men wear masks. Their guns are drawn on the bank manager. She nervously recites the alarm code, and the tumblers within the huge vault fall. The timing and execution are brilliant. It could be the perfect heist. But as the huge sum of cash is stolen, so too is one man's heart -- and that man is the Prince of Thieves...
Charlestown, a blue-collar Boston neighborhood, produces more bank robbers and armored car thieves than any square mile in the world. In this gripping, intricately plotted thriller, Claire Keesey, the branch manager for a Boston bank and one of an influx of young professionals chipping away at the neighborhood's insularity, is taken hostage during a robbery. She is released, but Doug MacRay, the brains behind the tough, tight-knit crew of thieves, can't get her out of his mind. Tracking her down without his mask and gun, Doug introduces himself, and as soon as he and Claire meet, their mutual attraction is undeniable -- as are the risks of a relationship.

Meanwhile, Doug's crew pulls off another audacious, meticulously planned job. Frustrated by their ingenuity and brazen ambition, FBI Agent Adam Frawley begins to zero in on Doug and his pals -- and against his own better judgment, he, too, develops more than a professional interest in Claire.

Under pressure from Frawley's ever-closer investigation, Doug imagines a life for himself away from bank robberies and Charlestown. But before that can happen, the crew learns that there may be a way to rob Boston's venerable baseball stadium, Fenway Park. It's a magnificently dangerous and utterly irresistible opportunity -- yet for Doug, pursuing his former hostage may be the most dangerous act of all...

And there you have it, my tour of Boston and some summer reads and books with connections to my city. I want to thank Ginger for having me. It was a blast and I look forward to roadtripping with everyone else as this feature continues for the summer.


HUGE thanks to Andi for showing us around Boston!  This city has been on my travel bucket list for quite some time.  When I do make the trip up there, I know exactly who to ask to show me around the city!  And oh hey, don't forget to enter my SWEET SUMMERTIME READS ROADTRIP giveaway.  Just click the image below :)


  1. Love the first of this series - great tour! Looking forward to more virtual road trips this summer

  2. Summer is my favorite reading time--I need to read all of these!

  3. It's been years since I've been there. Loved the post. Also GO RED SOX!!!

  4. Thanks for sharing! I've never been to Boston but would love to some day!

  5. Andi's selections DEFINITELY get my seal of approval! As a former Bostonian I can vouch for the fact that these are all amazing places to visit! PS - they filmed some scenes from The Town about 2 blocks from my old office and whenever I walked by I tried to sneak a peek for Ben Affleck. Never had any success though!

  6. I loved seeing such beautiful spots in Boston, Andi! (And it totally helps that I love a lot of your book suggestions too). I want to visit at some point this summer, since I've never been before. Maybe we can make it a bookish day trip?

  7. Boston!! So good seeing the city that stole my heart and literary connections put together! Thank you for this!

  8. I've never been to US but Boston is so interesting, I hope I can go there someday. Free to Fall seems great. Thanks for your recommendation!

  9. Andi, I'm absolutely drooling over that picture of the Boston Public Library. You should see how small the public library is in my hometown in Mississippi. I'd be in heaven if I got to walk around the BPL!

    It was so much fun to see the places where you do a lot of your reading! They all look like great spots for relaxing, people watching, and reading some amazing books :)

  10. So much fun!! I've only ever passed through Boston, just to the airport and then driving through MA to CT. I would love to actually visit for real some day!


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