Yesterday afternoon I picked five year old daughter and her friend up from preschool and we headed over to Compo for a few hours. It was too hot for a play date at home and I prayed the beach would bless us with a breeze. At the last minute, I tossed my Kindle into the beach bag hoping the girls would allow me at least a few moments of mommy time.
For the past several summers I’d learned, as most parents of young children do, that beach time no longer means catching rays and a good read but slathering sunscreen over and over on little arms and legs, building sandcastles, standing guard at the playground, and digging for crabs down by the jetty.
But I thought this time, well, maybe…
We planted ourselves in the soft sand across from the side lot and the girls built their own castles and a moat down to the water. I opened my Kindle, its first time on the beach, and pleasantly discovered that it is easy to read in the bright sun. But, alas, I’d just finished a book and needed a new one.
Searching for Wi-Fi….
I looked around. Oh, right, I was in the middle of the beach, untethered from the digital ether. Or was I? Surprise followed my momentary dismay. The Westport Wi Fi Network popped up. How brilliant!
I read the disclaimer, clicked back over to Amazon, and purchased Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand, my next book club selection. Compo Beach was suddenly a hub of literary possibilities. A summer of instant reading pleasure lay before me.
Page One. "All he could see in every direction was water."
“Let’s go swimming!” the girls cried and grabbed their boogie boards.
So much for Zamperini’s plight in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, dodging machine gun fire from Japanese war planes. My escape would have to wait. I stashed my Kindle back in the beach bag and headed for the seaweed, rocks, and stray jellyfish of Westport’s fine shores.
I envy you, my fellow book bums, sitting idly with your Kindle on Compo right now. If you’re looking for a page turner this summer, here’s a short list of my favorite suspense fiction from the past year:
Learning to Swim by Sara J. Henry
The Informationist by Taylor Stevens
Faithful Place by Tanya French
Power Down by Ben Coes
Crashers by Dana Haynes
Moonlight Mile by Dennis Lehane
American Assassin by Vince Flynn
The Scent of Rain and Lightning by Nancy Pickard