My Shit Life So Far by Frankie Boyle
I picked this up in Tesco because Frankie Boyle is my weird crush, and it was buy one get one half price. Surprisingly, it turned out to be great poolside reading. It’s definitely one to miss if Frankie’s humour makes you cringe, but you don’t have to be a Frankie Boyle super-fan to appreciate his musings and reflections on his ‘shit life’. This book is laugh out loud funny, and Frankie’s rather depressing portrayal of a gloomy Glasgow will make you appreciate the fact you’re sunning yourself by the poolside that little bit more.
A Gathering Light by Jennifer Donnelly
This was my mum’s poolside read when I was seven, and I managed to sneak my way through half of it behind the plastic waterslide in the kid’s pool before I was discovered and told it was unsuitable. As a defiant and rule breaking thirteen year old, I would go on to finish it, and can confirm it is a beautiful book. It’s a historical novel set in upstate New York with something for everyone: mystery, romance, murder, and forbidden friendship. Though dealing with challenging and topical issues, this book is delicate, elegant, and most importantly for a poolside read, extremely readable.
Be More Chill by Ned Vizzini
It would be wrong to write a ‘top three’ book list of any kind without including a book by my favourite underrated author, Ned Vizzini. Be More Chill is quirky, bizarre, and thought provoking, as well as being a very easy read for those whose brains are exhausted from exams. Set in a high school, it tells the story of Jeremy Heere, considered to be a teenage looser, and the ‘squip’, a super computer he swallows to help him achieve all his high school desires. This ends up taking a more sinister turn. Don’t be put off by the fact it’s teen ction: this is part of its charm. It’s a very funny and original read.