If you’re looking to hang on to those summer vibes, ‘Beach Read’ by Emily Henry is a heartwarming story that sets anyone in a beach mindset.
The book is set in the fictional town North Bear Shores on Lake Michigan, and our protagonist is January Andrews, a writer staying in her deceased father’s old home.
As you read further, you will quickly put together that January is not too happy to be staying in the house. It was her father’s second home with his secret girlfriend, who she did not find out existed until his funeral.
With that precedent, you follow January’s perspective as she discovers this small town and embarks on the journey of trying to write her next novel.
Enter the attractive love interest January knew in college: Augustus Everett.
The great thing about ‘Beach Read’, which makes the book so light-hearted, is the easy connection between the two characters. January and Gus both have straightforward personalities, yet find a way to click together.
A highlight of the book is how the well-written dialogue between the characters tells the story. Henry herself said that was her favorite component of the writing process.
There are many quotable moments in ‘Beach Read’ that are bound to get a reaction out of the reader. Henry does her job of enticing you into reading the entire book in one sitting, just to capture every moment all at once.
What many romance novels struggle with is the ability to make both characters in a romantic couple likable, which ‘Beach Read’ manages to accomplish. Gus is an example of a perfect book boyfriend– who wouldn’t want a man that reads? January does not fall under the main female character curse of being “too annoying” or a “pick-me” girl.
Another aspect done well in this book is the tropes used. ‘Beach Read’ gives some academic rivals, turned next-door neighbors, turned friends, turned lovers, and it keeps the reader on their toes as they embark on the journey.
The pacing throughout ‘Beach Read’ is also notable in that none of the romantic moments between Gus and January seem rushed or thrown together.
Though there are some tear-jerking moments sprinkled here and there in ‘Beach Read’, the book serves as a feel-good read that lets those who finish the book leave with an overall nice feeling inside.
An interesting aspect of the novel is the different endings in each published version. In the ‘Beach Read’ released in the United States, Gus ends up proposing to January after they read one another’s novels. In the United Kingdom’s edition, the book ends after the characters read one another’s books with no proposal.