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Summer reading roundup -- books to enjoy in the heat of summer

Summertime is here and there are lots of good light reads that are perfect for the pool, at the beach, or anywhere there's a light breeze and a reading light.

All these stories take place by the water so get out your summer attitude and your beach chair.
All these stories take place by the water so get out your summer attitude and your beach chair.courtesy of William Morrow
Three summer stories you'll love
Three summer stories you'll lovecourtesy of William Morrow publisher

The following books are about women and different problems they face, from single women and newlyweds to widows. What do they all have in common? The settings are all by the water. So get your iced tea and a beach towel, and head for the nearest water -- even if it's just the sprinkler in your backyard. And get ready for some enjoyable reading.

"On the Rocks" by Erin Duffy is the story of Abby Wilkes. The reader meets her trying on wedding dresses at a Vera Wang salon. It's there that she finds out that her fiancee has changed his Facebook status to single. She confronts him, and she finds out that the wedding is off, and the groom, her boyfriend of ten years, is moving to Arizona. Six months and many ice cream cartons later, Abby's best friend convinces her to take a vacation in Newport. The publisher says, "Together with the help of Grace and some new found friends she meets along the way, Abbie will have to navigate this weird new world of dating to help determine what she wants from a relationship, but most importantly for herself."

Debut author C. J. Hauser wrote "The From-Aways," a story about friendship, love, lobsters and Maine. It's the story of two women, Leah and Quinn. They are very different and have different lives and issues, but they both end up in Menamon, Maine, working for the local newspaper. Their friendship solidifies when they stumble on a story that could rock their world and the small-town world of Menamon, Maine. Anyone who has spent time in New England will love this story with its small-town setting inhabited by small-town people.

"Up at Butternut Lake" is the first story in a series of novels that are set at Butternut Lake, a fictitious lake in the town of Butternut. The townspeople are friendly, and the protagonist, Allie Beckett, has spent tranquil time in her family's cabin there. When she returns to the cabin with her five-year-old son, she hopes they will be happy there. Both are trying to recover from the death of her husband (and her son's father) in Afghanistan. Allie has reunions with old friends and meets some new ones. The publisher says "Moving forward is never easy, but Allie must learn to unlock the hidden longings of her heart, and to accept that in order to face the future we must also confront -- and understand -- what has come before." Look for the next in the series, "Butternut Summer" to be out later this summer. Same great setting, different characters.

All three books would make a great bundle to include in a beach-basket as a gift for a friend. Or, treat yourself to some loving by the water.

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