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Summer Reading – The New York Times

The books are piling up again. The physical ones on the bedside table; the library queue; the e-bookshelves on which reside the novels impulse-purchased from bed, begun and then forgotten in one insomniac night. My eyes, always, bigger than my attention span.

I’m contemplating the year’s midway point, my book-a-week commitment, the number of pages between here and 26. Reading, I tell myself, shouldn’t be a chore but a joy. And so, when The Times Book Review arrives with its summer previews for fiction and nonfiction, suggesting even more enticing titles, I’m determined again to brand this a reading summer. A reading books summer, in contrast with my “long magazine article” spring, which was preceded by a “Dateline” winter and a “mostly podcasts” fall.

I’m optimistic about my prospects. Andrew Lipstein, the author of 2022’s delightful “Last Resort,” has a new novel, “The Vegan.” It’s about a Brooklyn hedge funder who, after a fateful dinner party, decides to go vegan. That’s not out until July, so in the meantime I’ll busy myself with nonfiction.

Aisha Harris, late of The Times and currently a co-host of NPR’s “Pop Culture Happy Hour” podcast, has an essay collection coming next week called “Wannabe: Reckonings With the Pop Culture That Shapes Me.” Later in June, a book I’ve been waiting for someone to write: “The Sullivanians: Sex, Psychotherapy and the Wild Life of an American Commune,” by Alexander Stille. For years I’ve read everything I could find online about this Upper West Side community, founded by a veteran of the Spanish Civil War, that sought to redefine the nuclear family. I’m excited for Stille’s book to fill in the blanks in my internet self-schooling.

Also in June, Lorrie Moore has a new novel, “I Am Homeless if This Is Not My Home,” her first since 2009. One of the plotlines concerns a man who makes a cross-country trip with the reanimated body of his ex-girlfriend. I’m not normally one for anything “reanimated,” but it’s Lorrie Moore. I’d read her grocery lists if she’d permit me.

The sequel to Colson Whitehead’s “Harlem Shuffle,” “Crook Manifesto,” is out in July, and Ann Patchett’s latest, “Tom Lake,” arrives in August. Will I finish the many books I’m partway through before I move on to this bounty of summer picks? Honestly, as much as it pains me to leave things undone, I’m giving myself a fresh slate. I want to read enthusiastically, athletically, this summer. I’m determined to be a closer. My itinerary is set, my reading list planned. Now, I leave it up to the season to bring on the sunny days and shady patches of grass.

  • If you prefer more genre-based summer reading, we have you covered.

  • How well do you know popular summer novels? Take our quiz.

  • Want more summer reading suggestions? The Times’s archive is full of them. Here’s a list from 1978. Here’s one from 1988. Here’s last year’s.

The Sunday question: Was the Supreme Court’s decision on Alabama’s election map a victory for voting rights?

“We’ll take it. Democracy needed a win,” AL.com’s J.D. Crowe writes, likening the Voting Rights Act to a phoenix rising from the ashes. But the court doesn’t strengthen voting rights, only maintains the status quo, Melissa Murray writes for The Washington Post: “And the status quo is that this court, over the past 10 years, has severely hobbled the law and its protections for minority voters.”

Back from the dead: In the novel “My Murder,” the victim of a serial killer comes back to life — but life isn’t the same.

Our editors’ picks: “The Half Moon,” about a faltering marriage and a failing bar in a small town, and eight other books.

Times best sellers: David Sedaris jokes about tough times in “Happy-Go-Lucky,” which is on the paperback nonfiction best-seller list.

Ethicist: Should you support a spouse’s career with unpaid work?

Read the full issue.

  • The men’s French Open final is this morning. Novak Djokovic is playing for his 23rd Grand Slam singles title.

  • President Biden will host Jens Stoltenberg, NATO’s secretary general, at the White House tomorrow.

  • Nima Momeni, who has been charged in the death of Cash App founder Bill Lee, is scheduled to appear in court Tuesday.

  • King Charles III’s first birthday celebration as sovereign will be held Saturday.

  • Sunday is Father’s Day in the U.S.

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Mohammad SHiblu

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