The Keystone’s Summer Reading: Some Light Reads

Light Reads

(Keystone Graphic/Morgaine Ford-Workman)

By Patrick Abdalla

July 9, 2021

Pennsylvania has produced many of the great authors you know and love. Here are a few great light reads.

Editor’s note: The end of a Dean Koontz novel can shock and thrill you. Laura Wiesberger’s stories can draw you in. The grand scope of a James Michener tome can leave you in awe.

Our state has a rich literary history, from Louisa May Alcott to August Wilson, and it has also produced some of the biggest best-selling authors of fiction and nonfiction works, from Mark Bowden to Jennifer Weiner.

With that in mind, The Keystone has come up with a Summer Reading List of books by Pennsylvania authors or set in the Keystone State. For each of the next eight weeks, we will bring a different genre of books to you.  

If you’re looking for a quick read over the weekend or at the beach, several Pennsylvania authors shine. They’ve published some beloved classics of the genre. Here are five books to enjoy while you take a break.

The Devil Wears Prada

Lauren Weisberger’s 2003 debut novel spent six months on the New York Times’ Bestseller List, and was turned into a feature film starring Anne Hathaway, Meryl Streep, and Emily Blunt. 

Weisberger, who grew up in the Scranton and Allentown areas, based her story about a journalist struggling to make it as an assistant to a high-powered magazine editor on her experiences as the assistant to Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour.

The Man with a Load of Mischief

Pittsburgh native Martha Grimes created the beloved Richard Jury, a Scotland Yard detective who has appeared in 25 books. 

“Load of Mischief” is the 1981 book that started the series. Jury is sent to solve two murders in a remote English village.  

On The Corner of Love and Hate

Northeastern Pennsylvania’s Nina Bocci has reached the USA Today Bestseller list. She’s written several novels, including a series that starts with this book.

Emmanuelle Peroni finds her way into love while helping an old friend on his political campaign.

The Quiet Don

Journalist Matt Birkbeck tells the true story of a powerful mafia family that is based in Pittston, a small town of Northeastern Pennsylvania between Wilkes-Barre and Scranton. 

Readers get to see how a powerful man, hidden in a small town, was a powerbroker in the national mafia scene.


Felicia Mason, of Aliquippa, Allegheny County, has written several romance novels. Rhapsody was turned into a 2000 television movie starring Wood Harris. The book centers on a popular singer’s chance at love.

That Summer

Philadelphia-based author Jennifer Weiner has been cranking out best-sellers for 20 years. She has lived in the city since she took a job at The Philadelphia Inquirer in 1994. 

“That Summer” is more political than her other novels, but is infused with her trademarks: strong female characters and great prose. 

Summer Reading: The Classics

Summer Reading: Biographies


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