Ready to move your reading stack from bedside to poolside? We collected recommendations from SAA’s Book Salon faculty hosts, Stanford’s new-student Three Books program, Stanford Bing Overseas Studies Program and STANFORD magazine’s book editor, and sorted them for your summer reading.

We’re also collecting community (that’s you) recommendations. Tweet or Instagram your favorite books using #CardinalBookClub and find great reads that will keep you happy all season.


Dive into some fiction.

Recommended by Michaela Bronstein, professor of English

An Act of Terror By André Brink

Sometimes a Great Notion By Ken Kesey

The Bone Clocks By David Mitchell

Recommended by Karla Oeler, associate professor of art & art history

Hadji Murad By Leo Tolstoy

Stoner By John Williams

Recommended by STANFORD editors

The Removes By Tatjana Soli, ’87

They Come in All Colors By Malcolm Hansen, ’95


For days when you’re in a non-fiction mood.

Recommended by Gavin Jones, Rehmus Family Professor in the Humanities

Travels with Charley in Search of America By John Steinbeck

Recommended by STANFORD editors

Queer Nuns: Religion, Activism and Serious Parody By Melissa M. Wilcox, ’93

Teacher: Two Years in the Mississippi Delta By Michael Copperman, ’02

Wild Things: The Joy of Reading Children’s Literature as an Adult By Bruce Handy, ’80


These are the 2018 Three Books selections for new students, moderated by José David Saldívar, MA ’79, PhD ’83, professor of comparative literature.

Brother, I’m Dying By Edwidge Danticat

Native Speaker By Chang-rae Lee

Signs Preceding the End of the World By Yuri Herrera *Sign up to read along with Stanford Book Salon in September.


Going somewhere? Try these recommendations by the Bing Overseas Study Program.


In a Sunburned Country By Bill Bryson, Ellen Titlebaum

Santiago, Chile

A Nation of Enemies: Chile Under Pinochet By Pamela Constable and Arturo Valenzuela


Age of Ambitions: Chasing Fortune, Truth and Faith in the New China By Evan Osnos


Memories of a Nation By Neil MacGregor

The Reader By Bernhard Schlink

The Reluctant Meister: How Germany’s Past is Shaping Its European Future By Stephen Green


The Italians By John Hooper


A Geek in Japan: Discovering the Land of Manga, Anime, Zen and the Tea Ceremony By Hector Garcia

Cape Town, South Africa

Keeper of the Kumm By Sylvia Vollenhoven


The New Spaniards By John Hooper

Need more? Here are other Stanford reading lists.

#CardinalBookClub alumni community recommendations

Stanford Law School Faculty 2018 Summer Reading List

Freeman Spogli Institute, Center for International Security and Cooperation faculty summer reading selections

Stanford’s School of Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences 2018 faculty summer reading selections

Center for Comparative Studies in Race & Ethnicity summer reading list

What to read this summer, 2017

SCOPE blog, Stanford Medicine, A medical student’s reading list (published in 2017)

Graduate School of Business, Twelve Business Books to Read (published in 2017)

What to read this summer, 2016

Stanford Alumni

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Stanford Alumni

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Stanford Alumni

A publication of the Stanford Alumni Association.