With beach season quickly approaching, some of us just aren’t into the quick and fluffy beach reads we typically see strewn about social media. This is for you, those who strongly identify with Portlandia’s ‘Weirdo Beach’ episode, a list of the perfect anti-beach reads
1. The Cheerleaders – Kara Thomas
Image Via Penguin Random House
This ominous novel follows the cheerleaders of Sunnybrook. In a series of car accidents, murders, and suicides, there are no more cheerleaders in Sunnybrook. Five years after these events, the faculty and students of Sunnybrook High want to remember those they lost. After discovering a seemingly-ancient cell phone, Monica quickly finds the mystery of what actually happened to the cheerleaders unravels right before her eyes. A female-driven murder mystery involving high school cheerleaders makes for a highly anticipated anti-beach read for this summer.
2. Choose Your Own Diaster – Dana Schwartz
Image Via Powerhouse Arena
Released yesterday, this unflinchingly honest memoir about one young woman’s terrible and life-changing decisions make up the perfect anti-beach read. A manifesto of the millennial experience and modern feminism, Dana Schwartz details her early 20’s through cringe-worthy stories of funeral home dates and endless personality quizzes. It’s basically the book form of those Buzzfeed quizzes that just seem overabundant and totally relevant to your life right now.
3. Helter Skelter – Vincent Bugliosi
Image Via Amazon
The haunting story of the Manson murders that everyone and their mother has heard about comes to readers in a perfectly compact book of 689 pages. Written by the prosecuting attorney in the Manson trial, Vincent Bugliosi details everything to do with the murders, Manson, his followers, and the trial alongside 50 black and white photos. San Francisco in the 1960’s, murder, and weird cult happenings. Who could ask for anything more?
4. A Little Life – Hanya Yanagihara
Image Via Wikipedia
Just by looking at the cover alone, you already know you’re setting yourself up for a very painful and heartbreaking reading experience. The 720 page book follows four classmates who move to New York City to make their mark on the world. Basically, it’s Friends but everything is sad. Definitely a defining book to those who have read it, this anti-beach read will be just the thing to bring you down and contemplate your life choices.
5. Homegoing – Yaa Gyasi
Image Via Amazon
Featured on Stanford’s Three Books program last year, Homegoing follows two half-sisters and a narrative spanning eight generations from the Gold Coast to Mississippi, from the American Civil War to Jazz Age Harlem. Not a light and beachy read in the slightest, Yaa Gyasi’s novel puts a spotlight on slavery’s legacy and shows how America’s history of captivity has been permanently engraved in the nation’s soul.
Featured Image Via Vox.