As summer sets in, here at ELLE DECORATION we thought we would see what everyone on the team was reading or planning to read this summer. And what could be better than pairing a read with an appropriate drink? Here are the team’s choices of their summer reads and the drink they saw fit to combine.

Marushka Stipinovich, Art director:

Pocket Atlas of Remote Islands: Fifty islands I have not visited and never will by Judith Schalansky. Born on the wrong side of the Berlin Wall in the 1980s, it was hard to travel for someone like Schalansky. This hard-to-find work of hers is a years-long project which she spent creating her own imaginative atlast of the world’s lonliest places. I think this book would be perfectly matched, in Judith’s honour, with a heavy handed White Russian.


Xandri Redelinghuys, Editorial Assistant:

A Kitchen in France: A Year of Cooking in My Farmhouse by Mimi Thorisson, who is a new voice in French cooking and transports her reader to the countryside of France with sensational yet easily achievable French cooking. This can be brilliantly paired with Avontuur Estate MCC Brut.


Michael Owen, Managing Editor:

We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler. I am currently reading this exceptional novel, which was shortlisted for the Booker this year. It’s surprising and sad and enlightening and I think it would be brilliantly paired with a smooth Merlot, such as Springfield’s Whole Berry Vintage.

Ilana Swanepoel, Decor and Design:

Ham on Rye by Charles Bukowski, somewhat bleak semi-autobiographical coming-of-age story of Henry Chinaski which seems to be perfectly matched with Aperol Champagne Spritzer.


Laureen Rossouw, Editor:

Kamphoer by Francois Smith, it was his first novel which got great reviews and is one of the most extraordinary South African stories about Susan Nell and her journey from victim to survivor. It’s grim but enlightening, beautiful and also a gripping psychological thriller. This read will be perfectly matched with a Gin and Tonic for a taste of English revenge.


Bielle Ross, Deputy Editor:

John Berger’s Ways of Seeing – I’m going to be reading this again. This is one of the most stimulating and the most influential books on art in any language, first published in 1972. This will be perfectly matched with an Aperol Spritz.