What the SUITCASE Team are Reading this Summer

What the SUITCASE Team are Reading this Summer

lure of a lengthy reading
list peaks come June
with the promise of summer rays.

Once that OOO is on and you’ve officially checked-out, to-do
lists filled with emails and brainstorm sessions are replaced by
must-read titles.

We asked members of the SUITCASE team what they’ll be slinging
in their totes.

You’re probably going to want to bookmark this.

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India Dowley

Digital Editor-in-Chief

Book: Pour Me by A. A. Gill

Why it’s a must-read: It’s probably not
surprising that A. A. Gill is one of my heroes. I devoured his
newspaper columns when he was alive and can’t get enough of his
anthologies of travel writing, often reading them when on the road
myself – I don’t think anyone describes things quite like he does.
I’ve been meaning to read this exquisitely painful and laceratingly
witty memoir for a while – memoir being the operative word, as it’s
a tale of alcoholism in which many memories have been lost in the
abyss of addiction. Beginning in a rehabilitation dormitory with
six strangers dying in a last-chance saloon, Gill paints vividly
perceptive pictures of the people, places and things he experienced
en route – via some hell-raising parties – to recovery in an
effervescent portrayal of human strength and fragility.

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Sarah Bentley

Head of Digital

Book: Middlemarch by George Eliot

Why it’s a must-read: I have read most of
George Eliot’s novels and, while I’d classify them all as
essentials, Middlemarch is her most acclaimed title. True to form,
her down-to-earth observations, sharp wit and intelligent scrutiny
award the reader with memories worth more than any
fling. What makes this novel an important read today is
the dominant theme of the role of women and the hopelessness they
can suffer through societal norms. Where Eliot discusses women in
marriage we may consider pay inequality, the glass ceiling and
parenthood as a reflection of those continued hardships.

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Gilly Hopper

Deputy Digital Editor

Book: Show Them a Good Time by Nicole

Why it’s a must-read: Irish native Nicole
Flattery is pegged as “the next Sally Rooney” and her debut
collection of eight short stories, Show Them a Good Time, lives up
to the hype. Ranging in subject matter from online dating to
Ireland’s abortion referendum, Flattery’s writing explores typified
groups (hapless university students and romantically fatigued
school teachers included), injecting each characterisation with wit
and pathos. I defy you not to feel connected to and impacted by
this collection.

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Linda Blank


Book: On Beauty by Zadie Smith

Why it’s a must-read: I love reading books set
in the destinations I’m visiting and, with an upcoming trip to
I’ve been saving this to get in the mood for crossing the Atlantic.
Having only discovered Zadie Smith just a few years ago, I’m slowly
making my way through her work – I’m absolutely obsessed with her
writing style. A Man Booker prize nominee, she has authored a novel
with a beautifully constructed plot about the lives of a mixed-race
family living between the
and US. Examining the clash between liberal and conservative
values, it feels even more relevant in today’s world than ever

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Rae Boocock

Sub Editor

Book: The Old Ways: A Journey on Foot by Robert

Why it’s a must-read: Ahead of walking
Wainwright’s 192-mile Coast to Coast later this year, I’m
dedicating my summertime reading to tales of journeys taken by
foot. I’ll be stepping (literally) into Rebecca Solnit’s
Wanderlust, Of Walking In Ice by Werner Herzog and Nan Shepherd’s
The Living Mountain. I’m looking forward to (re)reading, Robert
Macfarlane’s The Old Ways most of all; it opened my mind to the
imaginative power of ancient pathways that thread across Britain’s
landscape, and made me reconsider walking as not just a physical
act, but an inward journey too. In terms of newly published titles,
I’ll be devouring the Science of Storytelling by Will Storr –
fingers crossed it will help me cobble together a decent article
about my adventure.

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Olivia Morelli

Editorial Assistant

Book: A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara

Why it’s a must-read: I’ve spent the last few
weeks reading (and weeping) over Hanya Yanigihara’s absolutely
brilliant book, A Little Life. Yanigihara intricately weaves
together the lives of Jude, Willem, JB and Malcolm, while
delicately dealing with a whole host of difficult topics including
disability, mental health, grief, sexuality, love and growth. While
700+ pages may seem daunting, I can assure you that the
heart-wrenching plot, surprising twists and beautiful story will
have you immersed in the lives of these four protagonists. My next
summer read will hopefully involve less tears and, after scouring
SUITCASE’s list of brilliant
books to read this summer
, I’m looking forward to starting
Diana Evans’ Ordinary People.

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Olivia Squire

Print Editor-in-Chief

Book: To the River by Olivia Laing

Why it’s a must-read: Started on the tarmacky
heat of my London
rooftop, Olivia Laing’s poetic charting of the River Ouse from
“oozing” source to sea is the literary equivalent of a cider in a
, transporting me from the heart of the city to the haven of
English countryside
in full burst. I loved Laing’s
psychological mapping of New
in her essay collection The Lonely City and devoured her
debut novel Crudo, so it’s a pleasure to be submerged in her tales
of rivers both real and imagined. I’ve unintentionally been
collecting books by female authors all year, so will also be using
the summer months to finally delve into Madeline Miller’s Circe,
Meg Wolitzer’s The Female Persuasion, Michelle Obama’s Becoming and
Spring, the third in the gloriously surreal series by Ali