(Updated January 2007)
In summer our thoughts turn to beaches, lakes, the seashore and other resort areas as we plan our vacations. The books in this list, compiled by Reader Advisor Ginny Ryan, are set in these areas. Most of them are mysteries and the first book in the list may make you change your plans and head for the mountains!
To order any of these titles, contact the library by email, mail or phone. You may also request these titles online through our OPAC. Happy Reading!
Beach House by James Patterson.
Jack Mullen, a Columbia University law student from Montauk, Long Island, investigates the death of his younger brother, Peter, who supposedly drowned. Jack knows that Peter was murdered and enlists his friends to help prove it. Rich and powerful people oppose them. Violence and strong language. RC 54158.
Beach Music by Pat Conroy.
Jack McCall and his daughter, Leah, are living in Rome, having moved there following the suicide of his wife, Shyla, several years ago. Theirs is a peaceful life, but everything changes when his sister-in-law and several old school friends arrive asking for his help with serious personal matters. Soon Jack must face the demons of his past. Some strong language and some explicit descriptions of sex. RC 40753.
The Body in the Lighthouse by Katherine Hall Page.
Faith Fairchild and her family are vacationing at their seaside Maine cabin when they become embroiled in a feud between developers and islanders. After a real estate agent is poisoned and a builder is murdered, Faith risks her own life to find the culprit. Faith Fairchild series, Book 13. RC 57193.
The Cat Who Saw Stars by Lilian Jackson Braun.
Qwilleran and his cats Koko and Yum Yum always retreat to his lake cottage in July. Just before they go this year, Qwilleran learns a young hiker has disappeared in that area. Then shortly after their arrival, Koko makes a discovery on the beach that keeps Qwilleran busy. The Cat Who series, Book 21. RC 47906, BR 12111.
The Cat Who Went Up the Creek by Lilian Jackson Braun.
Columnist James Qwilleran and his two Siamese cats, Koko and Yum Yum, take a vacation at the nearby Nutcracker Inn in Moose County. Soon two murders, a heart attack, and a suicide occur. With his pets' help Quill breaks the case while gathering news for the paper. The Cat Who series, Book 24. RC 53663, BR 13879.
Change of Heart by Laura Chapman.
Romantic summer tale about demure Tina Mallard who spends a few months on an exclusive island retreat chaperoning her precocious cousins. Amidst a whirl of dances, days on the beach, and two beaus, Tina blossoms. BR 4029.
Death in Holy Orders by P. D. James.
Young seminarian Ronald Treeves is found dead on the beach near his school. Although an inquest rules the death accidental, his adoptive father, wealthy arms manufacturer Sir Alred, receives an anonymous note and insists on a murder investigation by Adam Dalgliesh. Adam Dalgliesh Mystery, Book 13. RC 51889, BR 13402.
Early from the Dance by David Payne.
Adam Jenrette and Cary Kinlaw have been best friends for a long time. Then Jane McCrae comes into their lives. She is Cary's girlfriend and the three have planned a summer together at the beach. But Cary has to stay behind. When Adam and Jane fall in love, they are not prepared for the price they will have to pay with Cary paying the highest price of all. Strong language and explicit descriptions of sex.RC 30986.
The Gold Coast by Nelson DeMille.
Lawyer John Sutter and his wife Susan are members of the very, very rich Long Island community known as the Gold Coast. Into the community comes Mafia don Frank Bellarosa, who is looking for some peace and quiet. The Sutter's lives soon become entwined with Bellarosa's when John is caught by the IRS and Bellarosa is charged with a drug related murder. Strong language and descriptions of sex. RC 31171.
House of Sand and Fog by Andre Dubus III.
Because of a tax office error, recovering addict Kathy Lazaro is evicted from the bungalow she inherited from her father. The house is bought by an Iranian looking for the American dream. Correcting this mistake leads to a legal tussle with dire results. Some descriptions of sex, some violence, and some strong language. RC 50033.
Jaws by Peter Benchley.
A Long Island resort town tries to cover up a young woman's death when pieces of her shark-ridden body are found along the beach. But the shark strikes again. Some strong language and some explicit descriptions of sex. RC 7150, BR 2585.
Magic Hour by Susan Isaacs.
It is a gorgeous August day as Sy Spencer stands on the deck of his Southampton beachfront estate. Then two shots ring out and Sy is dead before he hits the deck. Steve Brady, hometown farm boy turned cop, is assigned to investigate. Steve finds himself falling for the main suspect, Sy's ex-wife, Bonnie. Then he finds two other suspects. Strong language and descriptions of sex. RC 32008.
Message in a Bottle by Nicholas Sparks.
Beautiful, single mother Theresa Osborne, a syndicated columnist, is vacationing at Cape Cod. Finishing an early morning jog on the beach, she finds a corked bottle with a love letter to an elusive Catherine from Garrett. Believing that Garrett is a sensitive and caring man, Theresa decides to find him. Some descriptions of sex. RC 46179.
Orchid Beach by Stuart Woods.
Holly Barker, newly discharged from the army, becomes assistant police chief in a small Florida town. On arrival, she assumes the chief's duties because he has been shot. She investigates his assault. The trail leads to a gated community that is guarded by some very shady characters. Holly Barker series, Book 1. Some strong language, some violence, and some descriptions of sex. RC 47651.
Outer Banks by Anne Rivers Siddons.
Cecie, Fig, Ginger, and Kate reunite at Ginger's cottage on North Carolina's Outer Banks for the first time in 28 years. Kate has withdrawn from friends and family as she faces cancer, but she attends the reunion at her husband's insistence. As the women reminisce, and Paul, Kate's old love, shows up, Kate comes to grips with her past. Strong language and some descriptions of sex. RC 33919.
Plum Island by Nelson Demille.
While New York Police Department detective John Corey is recuperating from wounds on Long Island, two research biologists are found shot on nearby Plum Island. Corey joins the case and finds himself in a perilous world of germ warfare, buried treasure, avarice, and murder. John Corey Thrillers, Book 1. Strong language, violence, and descriptions of sex. RC 44551, BR 15599.
The Prince of Tides by Pat Conroy.
Tom Wingo, a former high school teacher and coach, recalls his growing up years on isolated Melrose Island off the South Carolina coast, and then switches to the present in Manhattan. There his twin sister Savannah, a renowned poet, is recovering from a suicide attempt. Tom tells the Wingo family saga with its destructive relationships and terrible secrets to Savannah's psychiatrist, Susan, and a torrid affair follows. Some strong language and some descriptions of sex. RC 25248.
Remember Me by Mary Higgins Clark.
Adam and Menley Nichols are planning a long vacation at the Cape with their new baby. Menley, suffering from the aftereffects of their first child's accidental death, needs the rest. Instead, she is confused by spooky happenings in their old rented house including hearing her dead son's voice. Meanwhile Adam, an attorney, has agreed to defend a local man accused of drowning his wealthy wife. Some strong language. RC 38860.
A Shoot on Martha’s Vineyard by Philip Craig.
In a battle between environmentalists and natives, state bureaucrat Lawrence Ingalls is found murdered on the beach. Since retired Boston policeman J.W. Jackson is the prime suspect after a public fight with the man, he investigates on his own. Meanwhile his beautiful wife, Zee, is hired as an extra by a film company making a movie on the island. J.W. Jackson series. Some violence and some strong language. RC 48010.
Up Island by Anne Rivers Siddons.
Molly Redwine of Atlanta, Georgia, has never really gotten to know herself. Her mother dominated Molly's childhood, and since then her life has been devoted to her family. Now, more than twenty years later, and alone, Molly begins to find herself when she has the chance to spend the summer at Martha's Vineyard. Some strong language. RC 45160.