July: Now we’re really into summer. Vacations. Lounging by the water (ocean, lake, pool: your choice). Good book at the ready. What book? Your choice again. Our friend Sara Nelson, the editorial director of Amazon, supplied our four choices (for more summer reading selections, check out these recommendations from Amazon’s book editors). You’ll notice a theme to our picks: Three of them are historical fiction (the fourth, Sara included at my request; it just seemed like a great July read). The last time our July leader, Real Simple Beauty Director Didi Gluck, moderated, The Paris Wife was our book and we had a really fun discussion. Historical fiction and Didi just seem to go together. Check out your choices, cast your vote: You have until 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, June 22.
Under the Wide and Starry Sky, by Nancy Horan
From the author of the classic historical novel Loving Frank comes this surprisingly irresistible love story about—who knew?—the extremely adorable Robert Louis Stevenson.
A Dual Inheritance, by Joanna Hershon
A big, old-fashioned, juicy novel about an Ivy League–born friendship that transcends class, time, and distance.
Euphoria, by Lily King
Brainy and steamy. Would you think that a book loosely based on the experiences of the anthropologist Margaret Mead could be so much fun?
The Master’s Muse, by Varley O’Connor
Less well known than the others, The Master’s Muse is particularly good at introducing readers to the ballet world, as inhabited by New York City ballet impresario George Balanchine and his last wife, Tanaquil Le Clercq, a onetime dancer felled by polio.