Great books for the summer season.
Great books for the summer season. Photo: Supplied

Five great books for the summer season

As the summer season heats up and you’re relaxing at the beach, poolside or the park, a great book is as essential as sunglasses, a cold drink, sunscreen (SPF 50+ please!) and a hat. Queensland Synod staff recommend their top reads.

1My Grandmother Sends Her Regards and Apologies by Fredrik Backman

Heartbreaking and hilarious in equal measure, the best-selling author of A Man Called Ove now focuses on the story of Elsa and her eccentric, chaotic granny. The titular granny has a very vivid imagination and creates wondrous lands with colourful stories for Elsa and herself, and you sense at some point that fantasy and reality will collide. Although my grannies weren’t like the one in the story it does evoke memories, smells and stories we shared when I too was young.

Kellie Broderick
Executive officer corporate
Synod Support Services

2The Anchoress by Robyn Cadwallader 

The story of 17-year-old Sarah’s choice to become an anchoress, a holy woman, for the 12th century village in which she was raised, is a compelling read. Keen to find God and flee grief and the temptations of the world, Sarah is locked in a cell, forcing her to face issues of faith, desire, and the need for human connection. Cadwallader’s vivid descriptions draw the reader into Sarah’s journey and confronts us to consider the patriarchal role of the church in that time.

Lyndelle Gunton
Trinity Theological Library manager
Trinity College Queensland

3The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman 

Just another self-help book? No, in my opinion this is quite a thought-provoking read that has you evaluating not just how your relationship with your spouse works but how you could utilise this information to enhance the relationships of your family, friends and work colleagues. It also opens your eyes to yourself and helps you to understand why you are like you are and need what you need to enjoy the life you lead.

Sharon Knol
Reception/admin assistant
Synod Support Services

4Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult 

This exciting and riveting novel is also very challenging, forcing us to confront our own prejudices and attitudes toward race, privilege and justice. The author is brave in her exploration of these universal and important themes. The characters are very real as they are forced to face up to their own biases and assumptions. These are issues we need to have open and honest conversations about in our homes and communities.

Sue Hutchinson
Research officer
Uniting Communications

5Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed

When 26-year-old Cheryl Strayed woke up one morning trying to make sense of her seemingly broken life, she decided to hike over a thousand miles on the Pacific Crest Trail through California, Oregon and Washington State. Wild is her story of adrenaline, danger, rookie mistakes, and ultimately of self-discovery. It’s an enjoyable and lightly provocative summer read.

Scott Guyatt
Mission engagement project officer
Synod Support Services

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