Summer reading guide

From bestselling fiction to must-read autobiographies, one of the RACV Club's book groups share their recommended reading for 2021.

Holidays are back on the agenda and you might be needing a good book to read when you’re at the beach, in a hammock or relaxing poolside.

Although a great summer read comes down to personal preference, we've asked one of the RACV Club’s book groups for some recommendations.

Club Member Monica Hayes and the book group at Healesville Country Club & Resort have put together their reading list for 2021, while successfully maintaining contact throughout lockdown.

“We had Zoom meetings from May until October and then managed to meet in person for our final session in November,” Monica says. “It was a wonderful, picnic-style session at nearby Maroondah Dam.”

Monica says the members of the group have a broad range of backgrounds and life experiences, which makes for animated discussions. Collectively, their favourite book for 2020 was All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr.

In November, they each put book suggestions into a hat and the first 10 drawn out have become their reading list for this year, which you’ll find below for inspiration.

If you’d like to join one of the Club’s book groups, contact our Club Events team on 03 9944 8888 or email

A stack of books


Ten books to read in 2021

The Orchardist's Daughter by Karen Viggers
A story of freedom, forgiveness and finding the strength to break free. International bestselling writer Karen Viggers returns to remote Tasmania, the setting of her most popular novel The Lightkeeper's Wife.

All our Shimmering Skies by Trent Dalton
The bestselling author of Boy Swallows Universe, Trent Dalton, returns with All Our Shimmering Skies — a story set in Darwin in 1942, about gifts that fall from the sky, curses we dig from the earth and the secrets we bury inside ourselves.

The White Girl by Tony Birch
In The White Girl, Miles-Franklin-shortlisted author Tony Birch shines a spotlight on the 1960s and the devastating government policy of taking Indigenous children from their families.

Anywhere But Home by Daniel Speck
Anywhere but Home crosses continents, cultures, and generations to tell a sweeping story of self-discovery, finding your own place in a new world, and the revelatory mysteries of being a family.

Becoming by Michelle Obama
An intimate, powerful, and inspiring memoir by the former First Lady of the United States. In a life filled with meaning and accomplishment, Michelle Obama has emerged as one of the most iconic and compelling women of our era. 

A Room Made of Leaves by Kate Grenville
What if Elizabeth Macarthur—wife of the notorious John Macarthur, wool baron in the earliest days of Sydney—had written a shockingly frank secret memoir? And what if novelist Kate Grenville had miraculously found and published it? That’s the starting point for A Room Made of Leaves, a playful dance of possibilities between the real and the invented.

Black Rabbit Hall by Eve Chase
For fans of Kate Morton and Sarah Waters, this is a magnetic debut novel of wrenching family secrets, forbidden love, and heartbreaking loss housed within the grand gothic manor of Black Rabbit Hall.

The Dutch House by Ann Patchett
Ann Patchett, the New York Times bestselling author of Commonwealth and State of Wonder, returns with her most powerful novel to date: a richly moving story that explores the indelible bond between two siblings, the house of their childhood, and a past that will not let them go.

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah
With courage, grace and powerful insight, bestselling author Kristin Hannah captures the epic panorama of WWII and illuminates an intimate part of history seldom seen: the women’s war, as seen through the eyes of two sisters. 

Your Own Kind of Girl by Clare Bowditch
Australian singer and radio presenter Clare Bowditch reveals a childhood punctuated by grief, anxiety and compulsion, and tells how these forces shaped her life for better and for worse. This is a heartbreaking, wise and at times playful memoir. 

You might also like...