Inspired by Lauren at Bookmark Lit’s latest Book Blog Ideas post, I decided to channel her fabulous Read-Bait feature into a post where I feature a theme in a book that I’m obsessed with, and offer my own recommendations along with collecting recommendations of other readers who might have similar suggestions!
As many of you who read my blog probably already know, I am currently in the process of re-watching all of the seasons of Gilmore Girls before I watch the special Netflix revival (no spoilers, please!). I’m currently nearing the end of Season 3, and I’ve been reminded throughout my watching that one of the main reasons I love the show is the setting of Stars Hollow, a quaint, somewhat eccentric New England town where all of the residents know each other and the adorable traditions abound. Being a lifelong West Coast Girl myself, these New England small towns are a charming anomaly to me (West Coast small towns just really don’t seem to have the same vibe). This trend continues in my reading habits, as I love encountering these small town settings in book too, although I don’t happen upon them as much as I’d like, probably because I don’t read a ton of contemporary.
This is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith | I LOVED the small, seaside Maine town this book takes place in. It was the perfect soothing atmosphere for the adorable yet improbable moviestar-falls-in-love-with-normal-girl setting.
Nantucket Blue/Nantucket Red Duology by Leila Howland | This duology, set in Nantucket (which I’ve never been to so I don’t know if it ACTUALLY qualifies as a small town IRL, but it definitely feels like it in this novel) totally has that small town that comes to life in the summer and quietly shuts down in the winter feeling. I love that it’s so defined by one season and that the characters return each year very different versions of themselves.
Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson | So obviously I am in need of recommendations because this book takes place in yet ANOTHER vacation town, this time in a lakeside setting that families visit every year. I loved seeing how the characters developed these special “summer friendships,” and how it explored the ethereal feeling of a small town getaway that, while only being visited by the main character a few weeks per year, left such a distinct impact on her.
As you can see, I’m pretty much in dire need of recommendations involving books with small, quaint, (preferably New England) towns, as all of mine recs feature only vacation towns! Does anyone have any recommendations for books with a Gilmore Girl/Stars Hollow-esque vibe? Would it perhaps be easier if I was looking outside of YA fiction? Let me know your suggestions in the comments!