As August looms with its last-chance summer getaways, so too does the instinct to devour a guilty pleasure. Once paperbacks went mass-market in the middle of the 20th century, consumers found themselves making portable impulse buys snatched off of wire-stand book racks temptingly situated at supermarket checkouts, in airport terminals, and hotel gift shops. The torrid and hyperbolic covers promised escape, and the term “beach read” was popularized as was the front/back copy promising “Soon to Be” or “Now” a “Major Motion Picture.” Producers began to court authors as assiduously as they would performers following the runaway success of Grace Metalious’ 1956 novel Peyton Place, which generated multiple hotly anticipated screen adaptations and put the film and publishing businesses in bed together like never before. With this page-turning series, the Quad invites you to beat the heat and indulge in pulpy fictions of love and lust, boardroom intrigue, and rugged thrills headlined by many a screen icon breaking a sweat—and often eliciting it.
Click here to watch the trailer for our Beach Reads series.