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Beach Read by Emily Henry

Beach Read

Repeat author

Emily Henry is back at Book of the Month – other BOTMs include A Million Junes and People We Meet on Vacation and When the Sky Fell on Splendor.

Early Release

This is an early release that's only available to our members—the rest of the world has to wait to read it.

by Emily Henry

Quick take

Nothing like a "friendly" writing competition to set the scene for some quirky, cute, inter-author love.

Good to know

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Emotional


  • Illustrated icon, Icon_FastRead

    Fast read

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_SalaciousPeach


  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Writerlife

    Writer's life


Augustus Everett is an acclaimed author of literary fiction. January Andrews writes bestselling romance. When she pens a happily ever after, he kills off his entire cast.

They're polar opposites.

In fact, the only thing they have in common is that for the next three months, they're living in neighboring beach houses, broke, and bogged down with writer's block.

Until, one hazy evening, one thing leads to another and they strike a deal designed to force them out of their creative ruts: Augustus will spend the summer writing something happy, and January will pen the next Great American Novel. She'll take him on field trips worthy of any rom-com montage, and he'll take her to interview surviving members of a backwoods death cult (obviously). Everyone will finish a book and no one will fall in love. Really.

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Free sample

Get an early look from the first pages of Beach Read.

Why I love it

In this hard and stressful time, I’m all the more appreciative of books that fill me with joy. Right now, I want to read books that make me forget what’s going on in the world, books that take me to another place, books that make me smile, and books that make me believe in the goodness of other people. If you’re also looking for books like this, Beach Read is your exact book for this moment.

January and Augustus are next-door neighbors in beach houses in a tiny vacation town. They’re both writers, and both dealing with writer’s block, so they decide to swap genres—January will teach Gus how to write a fun, swoony rom-com, and Gus will teach her how to write bleak literary fiction. Sounds easy, right?

Beach Read is about two people who are both going through hardship and struggle, who don’t believe in themselves or other people, who are scared and anxious and heartbroken. As they gradually learn to trust one another, they fall in love in such a tender, believable, real way that it’ll make you believe in people and love and happiness and the power of books to heal us. If there’s ever a time to read a book like this, it’s now.

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Member ratings (52,422)

  • Sarah H.

    Warsaw, IN

    ????????????????????????????????????????: I need some more January & Gus in my life ????????????????????: I flew through this. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ????????????????????????: You will see most of the twists coming, but they’re still fun! ⠀⠀

  • Della R.

    Spokane , WA

    I lost my Dad after having this book on my shelf, I put off reading it. Picking it up now I had moments of sadness but that just shows you how well the author is at pulling a reader in. ♥️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

  • Tera S.

    Grosse Pointe Woods, MI

    The perfect ‘beach read!’ The competition and conversation between Gus and January keeps the pages turning. Great reminder to focus on the “Happy Now,” rather than pining away for the “Ever After.” ❤️

  • Kaeli H.

    Agawam, MA

    Tear jerker • witty humor • relatable characters • expertly woven plot themes • emotional mixed bag • book about books • truth & its follies • LOL humor • relationship heavy (parent, friend, romance)

  • Julianne O.

    Tinley Park, IL

    An entertaining blend of authors, the stories they write and the journey the writing process takes them on. I couldn’t put it down. As the title suggests, a great beach/summer read! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️