Summer Books 2012: The Complete List

Use the list below to browse NPR's 2012 Summer Books recommendations. Each critic's list is presented separately. Click on the article names to read our critics' comments about the books.


A World On The Page: Five Great Travel Memoirs
Recommended by Parul Sehgal

Dreaming in French, by Alice Yaeger Kaplan, hardcover, 289 pages, Univ of Chicago Press, list price $26

People Who Eat Darkness, by Richard Lloyd Parry, paperback, 454 pages, FSG Originals, list price $16

Beautiful Thing, by Sonia Faleiro, paperback, 225 pages, Black Cat, list price $15

Wild, by Cheryl Strayed, hardcover, 315 pages, Random House Inc, list price $25.95

Agua Viva, by Clarice Lispector, paperback, 88 pages, New Directions, list price $14.95

Laughing Matters: Five Funny Books With Substance
Recommended by Heller McAlpin

The Uninvited Guests, by Sadie Jones, hardcover, 262 pages, HarperCollins, list price $24.99

The Sleepy Hollow Family Almanac, by Kris D'Agostino, paperback, 340 pages, Algonquin Books, list price $13.95

Wife 22, by Melanie Gideon, hardcover, 380 pages, Ballantine Books, list price $26

How To Be a Woman, by Caitlin Moran, paperback, 320 pages, HarperCollins, list price $15.99

Hope: A Tragedy, by Shalom Auslander, hardcover, 292 pages, Penguin Group USA, list price $26.95

What's The Big Idea? 5 Books To Inspire Innovation
Recommended by Jonah Lehrer

The Age of Insight, by Eric R. Kandel, hardcover, 636 pages, Random House Inc, list price $40

The Storytelling Animal: How Stories Make Us Human, by Jonathan Gottschall, hardcover, 248 pages, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, list price $24

The Idea Factory: Bell Laps and the Great Age of American Innovation, by Jon Gertner, hardcover, 422 pages, Penguin Group USA, list price $29.95

Thinking, Fast and Slow, by Daniel Kahneman, hardcover, 499 pages, Farrar Straus & Giroux, list price $30

Tubes: A Journey to the Center of the Internet, by Andrew Blum, hardcover, 294 pages, Ecco, list price $26.99

Lesser-Known Lit: Seeking Summer's Hidden Gems
Recommended by Barrie Hardymon

The Spoiler, by Annalena McAfee, hardcover, 287 pages, Knopf, list price $25.95

Overseas, by Beatriz Williams, hardcover, 456 pages, Putnam Adult, list price $25.95

A Land More Kind Than Home, by Wiley Cash, hardcover, 309 pages, William Morrow, list price $24.99

The Uninivited Guests, by Sadie Jones, hardcover, 262 pages, HarperCollins, list price $24.99

A Farewell to Arms: The Hemingway Library Edition, by Ernest Hemingway, hardcover, 330 pages, Scribner, list price $27

Reading Romance Between (And Under) The Covers
Recommended by Mary Bly

Two Rings: A Story of Love and War, by Millie Werber and Eve Keller, hardcover, 234 pages, PublicAffairs, list price $24

The Garden Intrigue, by Lauren Willig, hardcover, 388 pages, Dutton Adult, list price $25.95

A Night Like This, by Julia Quinn, paperback, 373 pages, Avon, list price $7.99

Somebody to Love, by Kristan Higgins, paperback, 425 pages, HQN Books, list price $7.99

Paris, I Love You but You're Bringing Me Down, by Rosecrans Baldwin, hardcover, 288 pages, Farrar Straus & Giroux, list price $26

Rich Reads: Historical Fiction Fit For A Queen
Recommended by Madeline Miller

History of a Pleasure Seeker, by Richard Mason, hardcover, 277 pages, Knopf, list price $25.95

Enchantments, by Kathryn Harrison, hardcover, 314 pages, Random House Inc, list price $27

Pure, by Andrew Miller, paperback, 331 pages, Europa Editions, list price $17

HHhH, by Laurent Binet, hardcover, 327 pages, Farrar Straus & Giroux, list price $26

Bring Up the Bodies, by Hilary Mantel, hardcover, 410 pages, Henry Holt & Co, list price $28

Summer's Best Sci-Fi: Planets, Politics, Apocalypse
Recommended by Annalee Newitz

After the Apocalypse: Stories, by Maureen F. McHugh, paperback, 264 pages, Small Beer Press, list price $16

Throne of the Crescent Moon, by Saladin Ahmed, hardcover, 274 pages, DAW Hardcover, list price $24.95

Arctic Rising, by Tobias S. Buckell, hardcover, 303 pages, Tor Books, list price $24.99

2312, by Kim Stanley Robinson, hardcover, 561 pages, Orbit, list price $25.99

Blackout, by Mira Grant, paperback, 659 pages, Orbit, list price $9.99

Want A Winner? These Books Made The Critics' Cut
Recommended by Laura Miller, Salon.com

Broken Harbor, by Tana French, hardcover, 464 pages, Viking Adult, list price $27.95

Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn, hardcover, 416 pages, Random House Inc, list price $25

Mrs. Robinson's Disgrace: The Private Diary of a Victorian Lady, by Kate Summerscale, hardcover, 303 pages, Bloomsbury, list price $26

Recommended by David Ulin, The L.A. Times

Diaries, by George Orwell and Peter Davison, hardcover, 608 pages, Liveright, list price $39.95

Journalism, by Joe Sacco, hardcover, 191 pages, Metropolitan Books, list price $29

The Twenty-Year Death, by Ariel S. Winter, hardcover, 700 pages, Hard Case Crime, list price $25.99

Recommended by Ron Charles, The Washington Post

Canada, by Richard Ford, hardcover, 420 pages, HarperCollins, list price $27.99

Arcadia, by Lauren Groff, hardcover, 291 pages, Hyperion Books, list price $25.99

Sail Into Summer With Novel Picks From Alan Cheuse
Recommended by Alan Cheuse

Home, by Toni Morrison, hardcover, 144 pages, Random House Inc, list price $24

Canada, by Richard Ford, hardcover, 420 pages, HarperCollins, list price $27.99

Arcadia, by Lauren Groff, hardcover, 291 pages, Hyperion Books, list price $25.99

The Queen's Lover, by Francine du Plessix Gray, hardcover, 288 pages, Penguin Press, list price $25.95

Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn, hardcover, 416 pages, Random House Inc, list price $25

Book Party For One: A Loner's Summer Survival Guide
Recommended by Maureen Corrigan

Birdseye: Adventures Of A Curious Man, by Mark Kurlansky, hardcover, 251 pages, Random House, list price $25.95

My Dear Governess: The Letters of Edith Wharton to Anna Bahlmann, by Edith Wharton and Irene C. Goldman-Price, hardcover, 296 pages, Yale University Press, list price $30

Crusoe's Daughter, by Jane Garden, paperback, 265 pages, Penguin Group USA, list price $16

The Red House, by Mark Haddon, hardcover, 272 pages, Random House Inc, list price $25.95

Teen Reads: Summer Books For You And Your BFF
Recommended by L. Lee Butler

The Drowned Cities, by Paolo Bacigalupi, hardcover, 437 pages, Little Brown & Co, list price $17.99

The Girls of No Return, by Erin Saldin, hardcover, 345 pages, Scholastic, list price $17.99

Freshman Year & Other Unnatural Disasters, by Meredith Zeitlin, hardcover, 282 pages, Penguin Group USA, list price $16.99

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe, by Benjamin Alire Saenz, hardcover, 359 pages, Simon & Schuster, list price $16.99

The Disenchantments, by Nina Lacour, hardcover, 308 pages, Penguin Group USA, list price $16.99

Pack Your Bags for Six Flights Of Fantasy
Recommended by Petra Mayer

The Killing Moon, by N.K. Jemisin, paperback, 440 pages, Little Brown &Co, list price $14.99

Babylon Steel, by Gaie Sebold, paperback, 543 pages, Pocket Books, list price $7.99

The Pattern Scars, by Caitlin Sweet, paperback, 377 pages, Diamond Comic Distributors, list price $16.95

The Best of Kage Baker, by Kage Baker, hardcover, 501 pages, Subterranean, list price $40

Throne of the Crescent Moon, by Saladin Ahmed, hardcover, 274 pages, Penguin Group, list price $24.95

Crucible of Gold, by Naomi Novik, hardcover, 323 pages, Random House Inc, list price $25

5 New Mysteries Return To The Scene Of The Crime
Recommended by Maureen Corrigan

The Confession, by Charles Todd, hardcover, 344 pages, HarperCollins, list price $25.99

The Stonecutter, by Camilla Lackberg and Steven T. Murray, hardcover, 489 pages, WW Norton & Co., list price $25.95

Dorchester Terrace, by Anne Perry, hardcover, 333 pages, Random House, list price $26

Hurt Machine: A Moe Prager Mystery, by Reed Farrel Coleman, paperback, 309 pages, Adams Media Corp, list price $15.95

Cop To Corpse: A Peter Diamond Investigation, by Peter Lovesey, hardcover, 304 pages, Random House, list price: $25

15 Summer Reads Handpicked By Indie Booksellers
Recommended by Lucia Silva, Portrait of a Bookstore

I Saw A Peacock With A Fiery Tail, by Jonathan Yamakami and Ramsingh Urveti, hardcover, 56 pages, Tara Books, list price $17.50

The Mark Inside: A Perfect Swindle, A Cunning Revenge, And A Small History Of The Big Con, by Amy Reading, hardcover, 290 pages, Random House, list price $26.95

The Storytelling Animal: How Stories Make Us Human, by Jonathan Gottschall, hardcover, 248 pages, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, list price $24

Hole In My Life, by Jack Gantos, paperback, 199 pages, Feiwel & Friends, list price $9.99

Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?, by Jeanette Winterson, hardcover, 230 pages, Grove Press, list price $25

Recommended by Daniel Goldin, Boswell Book Co.

Absolution, by Patrick Flanery, hardcover, 388 pages, Penguin Group USA, list price $26.95

The Book Of Jonas, by Stephen Dau, hardcover, 258 pages, Penguin Group USA, list price $24.95

A Good American, by Alex George, hardcover, 387 pages, Penguin Group USA, list price $25.95

The Healing, by Jonathan Odell, hardcover, 340 pages, Random House Inc., list price $26

Hit Lit: Cracking The Code Of The Twentieth Century's Biggest Bestsellers, by James W. Hall, paperback, 294 pages, Random House Inc, list price $16

Mr g, A Novel About The Creation, by Alan Lightman, hardcover, 214 pages, Random House Inc, list price $24.95

Recommended by Rona Brinlee, The BookMark

Coral Glynn, by Peter Cameron, hardcover, 210 pages, Farrar Straus & Giroux, list price $24

Boleto, by Alyson Hagy, hardcover, 251 pages, Farrar Straus & Giroux, list price $24

Glaciers, by Alexis M. Smith, paperback, 174 pages, Tin House Books, list price $10.95

The Cheerleaders Of Doom, by Michael Buckley and Ethen Beavers, hardcover, 245 pages, Harry N Abrams Inc, list price $14.95

The Collective, by Don Lee, hardcover, 352 pages, W W Norton & Co Inc, list price $25.95

Literary Look Ahead: 13 Great Books On The Horizon
Recommended by Michael Schaub

Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn, hardcover, 416 pages, Random House Inc, list price $25

Hotels, Hospitals, And Jails: A Memoir, by Anthony Swofford, hardcover, 276 pages, Grand Central Pub, list price $26.99

The Red House, by Mark Haddon, hardcover, 272 pages, Random House Inc, list price $25.95

The Neruda Case, by Roberto Ampuero, hardcover, 352 pages, Penguin Group USA, list price $26.95

Barack Obama: The Story, by David Maraniss, hardcover, 448 pages, Simon & Schuster, list price $32.50

The Age Of Miracles, by Karen Thompson Walker, hardcover, 320 pages, Random House Inc, list price $26

Not The Israel My Parents Promised Me, by Harvey Pekar and J. T. Waldman, hardcover, 176 pages, Farrar Straus & Giroux, list price $24.95

Shadow Of Night, by Deborah Harkness, hardcover, 592 pages, Penguin Group USA, list price $28.95

The Violinist's Thumb And Other Lost Tales Of Love, War, And Genius, As Written By Our Genetic Code, by Sam Kean, hardcover, 400 pages, Little Brown & Co, list price $25.99

The Impeachment Of Abraham Lincoln, by Stephen L. Carter, hardcover, 400 pages, Random House Inc, list price: $26.95

You & Me, by Padgett Powell, hardcover, 192 pages, HarperCollins, list price $23.99

Where'd You Go, Bernadette, by Maria Semple, hardcover, 304 pages, Little Brown & Co, list price $25.99

A Wilderness Of Error: The Trials Of Jeffrey MacDonald, by Errol Morris, hardcover, 352 pages, Penguin Group USA, list price $29.95

Nancy Pearl Unearths Great Summer Reads
Recommended by Nancy Pearl

The Map of My Dead Pilots: The Dangerous Game of Flying in Alaska, by Colleen Catherine Mondor, hardcover, 242 pages, Globe Pequot Pr, list price $22.95

A Gay and Melancholy Sound, by Merle Miller, paperback, 567 pages, AmazonEncore, list price $14.95

Treasure Island!!!, by Sara Levine, paperback, 172 pages, , Penguin Group USA, list price: $15

A Partial History of Lost Causes, by Jennifer Dubois, hardcover, 372 pages, Random House Inc, list price $26

Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk, by Ben Fountain, hardcover, 307 pages, HarperCollins, list price $25.99

Dissolution, by C. J. Sansom, paperback, 389 pages, Penguin Group USA, list price $15

Lost, by Michael Robotham, paperback, 368 pages, Random House Inc, list price $13.95

Plant Eater's Paradise: 2012's Best Summer Cookbooks
Recommended by T. Susan Chang

The Fresh & Green Table: Delicious Ideas for Bringing Fresh & Green Into Your Day, by Susie Middleton, paperback, 224 pages, Chronicle Books Llc, list price $24.95

Asian Tofu: Discover the Best, Make Your Own, and Cook It at Home, by Andrea Nguyen and Maren Caruso, hardcover, 231 pages, Random House Inc, list price $30

Sunset Edible Garden Cookbook: Fresh, Healthy Cooking from the Garden, by Sunset, paperback, 288 pages, Little Brown & Co, list price $24.95

Ripe: A Cook in the Orchard, by Nigel Slater and Jonathan Lovekin, hardcover, 591 pages, Random House Inc, list price: $40

Ripe: A Fresh, Colorful Approach to Fruits and Vegetables, by Cheryl Sternman Rule and Paulette Phlipot, hardcover, 312 pages, Perseus Books Group, list price: $25

The Fresh Egg Cookbook: From Chicken to Kitchen, Recipes for Using Eggs from Farmers' Markets, Local Farms, and Your Own Backyard, by Jennifer Trainer Thompson, paperback, 182 pages, Workman Pub Co, list price: $14.95

Herbivoracious, A Flavor Revolution, with 150 Vibrant and Original Vegetarian Recipes, by Michael Natkin, hardcover, 367 pages, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, list price $24.95

United States of Pie, Regional Favorites from East to West and North to South, by Adrienne Kane, paperback, 288 pages, HarperCollins, list price $24.99

Humphry Slocombe Ice Cream Book, by Jake Godby, Sean Vahey, Paolo Lucchesi and Frankie Frankeny, paperback, 143 pages, Chronicle Books, list price: $19.95

Pasta Italiana: 100 Recipes from Fettuccine to Conchiglie, by Gino D'acampo and Kate Whitaker, hardcover, 208 pages, Natl Book Network, list price $24.95

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