RYE, N.Y. — Although reading is sometimes deemed an academic endeavor, this hobby is also a great way to relax during the summer, while simultaneously challenging one's mind. The employees at Arcade Books in Rye offer great choices for a relaxing book to read on the beach or while traveling.
They all agree that the most popular book this season is Harper Lee's "Go Set a Watchman." The novel was originally written in the mid-1950s, according to harpercollins.com. The manuscript was lost for over half a century, until it was rediscovered in 2014 and published on July 14.
Lee's new novel proves that even 55 years after the publication of her last book, "To Kill a Mockingbird," her voice, themes, and message remain timelessly inspiring.
According to The Wall Street Journal, it sold 761,000 copies in only six days and continues to fly off shelves.
"'Watchman's' popularity is mostly because of its connection to 'To Kill a Mockingbird' and the overwhelming amount of excitement the publication sparked among the literary community," Arcade Books manager Alyson Powers said.
"Although 'Watchman' has been marketed as the "new Harper Lee novel", I think readers are better off approaching it as an early draft of a beloved American classic rather than a sequel."
Another popular summer read is "All the Light We Cannot See" by Anthony Doerr. The tale of survival during wartime has also attracted a lot of press after winning the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for fiction and the 2015 Carnegie Medal for Excellence. The novel provides insight into a time of war and trauma through the eyes of fictional characters in France and Germany during World War II.
Following the theme of mystery, another bestseller this summer is the psychological thriller "Girl on the Train" by Paula Hawkins. It tells the story of Rachel, who takes the same train and follows the same routine every day. One day, however, everything changes, and her world is turned upside down.
After its publication Feb. 1, the novel has sold over 2 million copies and is now referred to by fans as the next "Gone Girl."
"There are many parallels between the two books — they are both fast-paced psychological thrillers with unreliable narrators. Since the publication of 'Gone Girl,' this has become an incredibly popular genre," Powers said.
Other popular reads this summer include "Paper Towns" by John Green and "The Martian" by Andy Weir, both of which are also featured on the big screen.