Summer lovin’ Shelfie Picks from McLean and Eakin Booksellers

They say spring is the time when a young man’s fancy turns to love. If that’s the case, what happens in summer?

Oh, we’re not talking about the standard trashy romance. We’re talking about great stories that just so happen to feature a compelling romance, which makes for perfect summer reading. To satisfy our desire for such fun, captivating books, we went to McLean and Eakin Booksellers in Petoskey, Michigan.

The store opened in 1992 and it was the setting for a future romance: That’s where two employees met and eventually became husband and wife. In a further twist of fate, they ended up owning the store. Now, Matthew Norcross and his wife Jessilynn cater to book lovers on the shores of Lake Michigan, and they were good enough to give us three great Shelfie picks for this week.

1. The Precious One by Marisa de los Santos (William Morrow & Company, 2015)

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It’s a slice of small-town Americana seen through the eyes of a young woman who wishes to become reacquainted with her father. That father divorced his first wife and left the original family and now, as an increasingly ill adult, he has requested the presence of his son and daughter from that previous family. The love twist? The young woman’s high school boyfriend has returned to the same town and now, they’re both single. Is something going to happen?

Said Jessilynn:

“The writing is knock-your-socks-off fabulous; de los Santos has incredible writing chops. Her two previous books were big sellers here at the store and this one is no exception.”

2. Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari and Eric Klinenberg (Penguin Press, June 16, 2015)

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Single people today have romantic options never seen before in human history. Thanks to technology, we can connect to just about anyone anywhere. So, how come the land of Internet dating is just so darn crazy? Well, as authors Aziz Ansari and Eric Klinenberg say in their new book, the entire culture of finding love has changed so dramatically that the result is just pure comedy gold. Said Matthew:

“It’s a really hysterical book and it’s worth its weight in gold for its detailed critique of modern dating. It’s great, they’ll take dating website profiles and pretty much skewer them. I think couples might like it as well as single people, too, because they’re no longer in the dating scene and this book is a reminder of why you should love your spouse. You don’t want to be put back in that pool!”

3. The Love Song Of Miss Queenie Hennessy by Rachel Joyce (Random House, 2015)

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If you’re unfamiliar, this is the sequel to The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry. In the first book, Harold Fry, a retired, routine-oriented, white-bread man receives a letter from a woman he used to work with. This woman, named Queenie, asks to see him because she’s dying of cancer. Harold sets out to mail her back a card but instead, he ends up going on a journey toward her deathbed. The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy is the story through that woman’s eyes, and how things progress. Said Matthew:

“With Harold Fry, I thought it would be a 250-page Hallmark card. But it was so much more than that and I loved it. Now, with Queenie’s story, we get an incredibly touching picture of her relationship with Harold.”

We’d like to thank Matthew and Jessilynn Norcross and McLean and Eakin Booksellers for participating this week. And check back next week for our latest Shelfie Picks from those in the know.

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figured it all out too late. He got his degree in Psychology and realized years later that he wanted to write for a living. He now has 16+ years of digital and print journalism experience and currently entertains an ongoing love affair with the greatest literary classics (he savored every page of “War and Peace” and thought it could’ve been longer, and he will finish Proust’s “In Search of Lost Time”). He also loves crossword puzzles, tennis, the outdoors, and working on numerous novels. One of these days, one will get picked up…and when it does, the world will make a little more sense.