Readers, summer reading is so close you can almost taste it. I’ve been investigating upcoming summer releases for months now, on the lookout for new and notable titles that should be on your summer reading list. Prepping for the Summer Reading Guide brings up an important question — what makes a  book a “summer read”? What’s the perfect balance of frothy to grounded, fun to thought-provoking, or relatable to rich-people-problems?

Today I’ve brought in author Jennifer Weiner, proud author of several quintessential summer reads, to discuss her criteria for a great poolside book, the upside-down and backwards season the publishing world is about to have, and her appropriately-titled new book Big Summer

Let’s get to it! 

photo credit: Andrea Cipriani Mecchi

 You can learn more about Jen’s books at, plus keep up with her on Instagram @jenniferweinerwrites and on Twitter @jenniferweiner.


Books mentioned in this episode:

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Big Summer by Jennifer Weiner
Mrs. Everything by Jennifer Weiner
● Author John McPhee (try The Crofter and the Laird)
● Author Susan Isaacs (try Goldberg Variations)
American Wife by Curtis Sittenfeld
● Author Jonathan Kellerman (try The Wedding Guest)
Rodham by Curtis Sittenfeld
28 Summers by Elin Hilderbrand
My Dark Vanessa by Kate Elizabeth Russell
Beach Read by Emily Henry
About the Author by John Colapinto
Friends and Strangers by J. Courtney Sullivan
The Engagements by J. Courtney Sullivan
The Shell Seekers by Rosamunde Pilcher
Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie 

Thanks to this week’s sponsors:

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What’s YOUR recipe for the perfect summer read?

  1. Leigh-Ann Murphin 2 years ago

    Anne, I absolutely loved this podcast!! So interesting and entertaining! And Rosamund Pilcher is my all time favorite author!! Thank you so much!!!❤

    • Author
      Anne 2 years ago

      I’m so glad you enjoyed it. Thanks for listening!

  2. Linda VB 2 years ago

    Reading Big Summer now, can’t put it down!

    • Camille A Wilson 2 years ago

      This podcast was so informative and fun! I’ve never read any books by Jennifer Weiner but I really want to read her books now! I loved how she talked about the newspaper/journalism life being such a great training ground for fiction writers. Who knew?! One of my favorite parts of the podcasts featuring authors is when the authors themselves talk about some of their favorite reads. My TBR list is so delightfully long! 🤗

  3. Ashley D 2 years ago

    Another fun and thoughtful read of late that was so feel good, but not without depth was, “The Flatshare.” Read it with a book club and we all loved it!

  4. Amanda 2 years ago

    Loved the episode and can’t wait for Big Summer. Jennifer Weiner is one of my favorite authors. Mrs. Everything takes place in my hometown community and alma mater. Funny story about her first novel. I was in graduate school in Boston and would ride public transportation to/from classes. I got quite a lot of questionable looks from other riders when they saw me reading “Good in Bed.” (no, it’s not kama sutra; it’s a novel!)

  5. S 2 years ago

    I will be honest that I haven’t picked up any Jennifer Weiner’s novels in awhile, but I will definitely pick up Big Summer! Great episode.

  6. Sharon 2 years ago

    Loved this episode. Put me in the summer reading mood, along with your guide. Reading the American Wife now!

  7. Dayna 2 years ago

    This was a fantastic podcast episode! For my summer reading, I’m most looking forward to Elin Hilderbrand’s 28 Summers. I was surprised to see it didn’t make your 2020 SRG, especially since it sounded from this interview that it would be included.

  8. Melissa Wiebe 2 years ago

    The show go back to its original premise; really don’t like the guests who are from the publishing world and would like regular readers featured again. Also don’t like the chitchat and would just like what people are reading and recommendations.

  9. Rebecca Merrell 2 years ago

    Loved this episode and can’t wait to chip away at the list! One thing I thought of regarding “All About the Author”- if you like that, you will like te movie “You Will Meet A Tall Dark Stranger” with Josh Brolin and Naomi Watts!

  10. Dee 2 years ago

    I’ve never read anything by Jennifer Weiner. Typically when I saw her books, they didn’t look like they were for me. But about a week or so ago I read an article about her where she talks about an early break up and writing about protagonists who were big girls but lived happily. That appealed.

    Then you had her on the show…and now I really want to read her! She sounds lovely, and I wish she were my neighbor or friend! Thanks for a great episode. Only question is: why didn’t you ask her for three books she loves, one she doesn’t, and what she’s been reading lately? 🙂

    • Author
      Anne 2 years ago

      Jen, I’m so glad you enjoyed the conversation! And as to the format, our tradition is to go off-script when we launch summer reading season. Thanks for listening!

  11. Nancy 2 years ago

    WSIRN is my favorite all time podcast. I don’t miss any episodes. And this episode is perhaps my favorite. I listened twice, already love Jennifer Weiners books and loved all the conversation and wrote down almost every book for my TBR. Thanks!

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