AoPS Recommended Reads: Summer Edition

June 12, 2019

Summer is here! And you know what that means: it’s time to get your read on. Whether you’re jetting off an exotic vacation or just chilling at home with your friends, AoPS has you covered with this list of summer-themed books carefully selected for your preferred reading level.

Recommended reads include books perfect for reading on the beach


Move over, picture books! As an elementary reader, you’re ready for the next level. That means exciting chapter books with interesting characters you can relate to. You love adventure, and of course you want something that tickles your funny bone—the more laughs, the better!

1: Hello, Universe by Erin Entrada Kelly

Perfect For: an afternoon by the pool

What It’s About: Virgil, Valencia, and Kaori have never really felt like they fit in. But when a mean prank puts an innocent guinea pig in danger, it’s up to this group of outsiders to band together and save the day!

Read This if You . . .

  • enjoy reading about diverse characters
  • think you might be psychic

2: Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days by Jeff Kinney

Perfect For: a family road trip

What It’s About: Greg’s mom keeps saying this is going to be the best summer ever. But after their beach trip gets cancelled, Greg’s not so sure. Join Greg and his buddy Rowley on their zany summer adventures!

Read This if You . . .

  • love comic strips
  • want a fun new book series you can read all summer long

Middle Grade

As a middle grade reader, you understand that the world can be complicated. That’s why you’re ready for books that tackle important issues like family, friendship, and fitting in. Maybe you like realistic stories, or maybe fantasy is more your thing. But what’s most important is that the characters have their own unique voices—just like you do!

1: One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams-Garcia

Perfect For: a long plane ride

What It’s About: It’s 1968, and the Garcia sisters are headed to California to see their mother for the first time since she abandoned them. Eleven-year-old Delphine is determined to protect her sisters. But what will she do when tensions start to rise between the police and a group of political activists called the Black Panthers?  

Read This if You . . .

  • enjoy emotional stories that are also funny
  • are interested in the Civil Rights Movement

2: Lumberjanes, Vol 1: Beware the Kitten Holy by Noelle Stevenson, Grace Ellis, Shannon Watters, and Brooke Allen

Perfect For: a late-night s’mores sesh by the campfire

What It’s About: Gear up for summer camp with the “hardcore lady types” of Roanoke cabin! When a three-eyed fox appears to deliver a strange message, best friends Ripley, Mal, April, Molly, and Jo must work together to investigate the supernatural forces haunting their campground.  

Read This if You . . .  

  • have fun solving puzzles and mysteries
  • love graphic novels that are jam-packed with action and humor

Young Adult

As a young adult reader, you’re looking for books that reflect your own experience. Whether it’s contemporary romance, epic fantasy, or dystopian sci-fi, you want relatable characters who face the same kinds of issues you encounter every day. Sometimes things get messy, but you’re mature enough to handle complex themes like love, violence, and identity.

1: Bone Gap by Laura Ruby

Perfect For: an overnight hiking trip

What It’s About: Everyone in Bone Gap loved Roza, especially seventeen-year-old Finn and his brother Sean. But now Roza’s gone, and no one will believe Finn’s story about the man who took her—a man whose face he can’t seem to remember. Meanwhile, Roza finds herself trapped with a sinister stranger who always asks the same question: “Are you in love with me yet?”  

Read This if You . . .

  • want the perfect blend of suspense, romance, and magical realism
  • are thinking of becoming a bee-keeper

2: Stay Sweet by Siobhan Vivian

Perfect For: a lazy day at the beach

What It’s About: It’s Amelia’s last summer working at Sand Lake’s most iconic ice cream stand, and she couldn’t be more excited. But when owner Molly passes away suddenly, it looks like the girls of Meade Creamery have scooped their last cones . . . until Molly’s nineteen-year-old grand-nephew shows up.

Read This if You . . .

  • enjoy romantic stories with strong messages of female empowerment
  • have a great idea for a new ice cream flavor

What are you reading this summer? Share your favorite book with us on our social media accounts. Tweet @AoPSNews on Twitter, post on our Facebook page, or even tag us on Instagram (@theartofproblemsolving)!

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