Summer Movie Reading List for Beachgoers

If you're lucky enough to be lazing under the bright blue sky this summer, you'll probably bring along a book or two to pass the time as your skin sizzles. What will you be reading?

Personally, I'm always in catch-up mode with books, and I tend to spend at least half my reading time checking out books that are due for adaptation. I'd prefer to allow as much time as possible to pass between reading a book and seeing the movie -- that way both can stand on their own merits without endless mental comparisons. Unfortunately, that rarely works out. If you're like me, I've listed three essential reads for upcoming movies after the jump. But just to get in the right mood, let's start with a classic.

Jawsby Peter Benchley
What, you say you're already seen the movie and know its plot by heart? You're probably too young to remember that Benchley's book was a monster bestseller and is the very definition of a summer beach read, not only because it takes place in the summer, but because Benchley writes in short declarative sentences and doesn't waste too much time on extreme character development. And, as I recall, there are pages of stuff where he writes from the point of the view of the shark, which is kinda cool, and the book ends differently than the movie. Shocker! Bonus: if a shark does attack you while you're reading this book on a raft in the ocean, you can use the paperback to beat him senseless.