Six For Sunday: Books and the seaside

#SixforSunday is hosted by Steph at A Little But A Lot. Every week there is a bookish-themed prompt to inspire 6 choices.

This month focuses on Summer Reads and this weeks prompt is Books and the seaside

Ok so I’m not really one of those people who likes to read summery romance books about sun, sand and sex.

For one I prefer to read MG, and two if my stories are set at the seaside I want there to be a bit more depth than ice cream and kisses.

The classic holiday seaside, tropical sands and amazing ice cream

Book cover for The Secret Summer

The Secret Summer/August Isle -Ali Standish

For some people, holiday beaches on distant shores are the seasides of their imagination. This story is set on an island just off the coast of Florida connected by a bridge where our young protagonist is sent as a last resort to spend her summer with her mother’s childhood friend’s family .

With evocative description of sunlight glowing through Spanish Moss draped trees, exotic and eccentric flavoured ice creams and the children learning to sail on the tropical waters it’s a feast for the senses where secrets are spilled and stories told that change the world forever.

South East Seaside

Book cover for Famous Five Treasury
Illustrations by Laura Ellen Anderson

The Famous Five- Enid Blyton

Ok in the words of Marty McFly ‘it’s an oldie but a goodie’ but seared into the imaginations of many are the adventures of the 3 siblings, cousin and dog wandering the windswept beaches, sand dunes, moors and even the private island around Kirrin Bay having adventures with no parental supervision.

These coastal experiences are also the landscape of many holiday memories if you ever visited the South West in your summers. Many of my childhood summers were spent in Cornwall, Devon and Somerset- and a good few in Dorset too so this landscape is seared on my memory too.

North-East Coast:

Book cover for The Dog that saved the world
Cover by Tom Clohosy Cole

The Dog that Saved the World- Ross Welford

For a lot of people their seaside isn’t South-West stretches of sand and the seaside is North or Irish Sea not Atlantic Ocean so I had to pop a Northern England seaside experience in there and I found this not too futuristic family adventure set on the windswept North East coast.

This story is set in the near future and using the idea of Virtual Reality Gaming Systems alongside the threat of worldwide epidemics of infectious diseases.

There’s also a lot of heart in the book from family and friendship dramas. Widening, adapting and colouring of your own perspective is a theme throughout the book and brilliantly placed to suit the 8-12 age group.

The Dream of your own Island complete with beautiful secluded beaches

Book cover for We won an island

We Won an Island – Charlotte Lo

When three children from London facing eviction enter a competition to win a secluded Scottish Island they hope but don’t truly believe they might win. When they do win and their shocked mother and grieving father pack up to move, a fresh start inspires the children to want to help raise the funds to rebuild not only the home on the island but their family itself.

A wonderful summery tale of freedom and adventure running in the sand, ice cream vans and hope.

The duality of living on an island, the beauty, the salt-spray and the dangers of the tide.

Book cover for The Lost Tide Warriors

The Stormkeeper’s Island & The Lost Tide Warriors – Catherine Doyle

These two novels are set 6 months apart on the island of Arranmore and both revel in the beauty and the danger of living on an island; how the sea can be beautiful and deadly at a turn of the tides both bringing joy and taking lives.

Alongside a magnificent plot about ancient Irish folklore and mythology these books are beautifully sea swept and a real treat for the senses and imagination.

The Oceanic Oddity

Book cover for mAlamander
Cover illustrations by George Ermos

Malamander– Thomas Taylor (George Ermos)

Malamander was recently bought by Sony Pictures and you can see why it would make an excellent children’s film. It is set in Eerie-on-Sea which is a delightfully odd and eccentric little town where everyone is just a little bit strange too from our foundling protagonist Herbert Lemon who washed up as a young child in a crate of lemons to the owner of The Grand Nautilus with a tremendous spy glass looking over the town.

Although there’s flavours of Unfortunate Series there is something terribly British about the way this seaside town empties into a misty, creepy and eccentric world when the summer tourists go home, like everyone sighs a relief, loosens up, puts their comfy pants on and lets their crazy out after being on best behaviour for the visitors.

What would you pick as seasidey books?

Have you read any of these?


7 thoughts on “Six For Sunday: Books and the seaside

  1. Some fab choices, including some I’ve read and some on my TBR. I always think of ‘seaside’ books as romance books, and I’m not a fan! Think I might go down a different route with my Six for Sunday today!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, glad to know I’m the same regarding ‘seaside books’!! I just had to come to this from a different angle but I like that we can showcase a different side of the seaside setting! Looking forward to seeing yours!!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m hoping to buy a copy of The Stormkeeper’s Island soon as everyone seems to love it. I’m from the North East (although further north than Whitley Bay) so The Dog Who Saved the World sounds perfect for my goddaughter who lives closer to Whitley Bay than me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh The Stormkeeper’s Island is wonderful, earthy and mythy. The dog who saved the world is fantastic with its Great girl role models in STEM too so highly recommended from me!!!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Glad I’m not the only one who can’t do ‘summer romance’ books! And 🤣 I remember when I was a teenager I emailed a newspaper to correct the fact that when making an analogy using the Famous Five had left Anne out of the names, George had male pronouns and made Timmy the dog a human – the journalist was actually very sweet about it!!

      Liked by 1 person

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