If you’re putting together a summer reading list, there’s no shortage of books with c-stores and gas stations in them.

 

Summer’s here. It’s the beginning of many good things, maybe even a little spare time for reading. That’s what makes “summer reading lists” such a big a deal around this time of year, like this one from Barnes & Noble.

Since gas stations and convenience stores are indispensable parts of a typical consumer’s life, and, as a result, serve as a good reflection of popular culture at any given time, we began to wonder what would happen if we tried to put together a summer reading list where gas stations or convenience stores are part of the action, or central to it. Here’s what we came up with, fiction and non-fiction:

Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata. This novel got a lot of attention when it came out in 2018, and when it comes to a detailed fictional look at the convenience store employee life in Japan, there’s probably nothing comparable. Plus who can resist “a love story between a misfit and a store.”

Memoirs of a Gas Station by Sam Clemens. The author of this book finds himself, under less than ideal circumstances, working in a gas station on the outskirts of Denali National Park in the wilderness of Alaska, one summer. A unique recollection of life in the tundra.

Waiting for Normal by Leslie Connor. This volume is for the young adults in your life. Addie has just moved into a trailer with her troubled mother. Once she has gotten over the move, Addie befriends a lady named Soula, and her family who “runs the minimart.” Will these relationships, central to the book, help turn Addie’s life around? You’ll have to read to find out.

Fill ‘er Up: The Great American Gas Station by Tim Russell. A non-fiction selection, an art book, really, full of the unusual and historical architecture that makes the industry’s roots so colorful. One of the best of a handful of photography books covering this territory.

Tales from the Gas Station (series) by Jack Townsend. Like a little comedy and horror mixed into your convenience store fiction? This series of 6 (!) books will satisfy that hunger in more ways than one!

Software Poetry by SSCS. Okay, you may not find this title on Amazon, but we’re pretty fond of it, given we wrote it. Of course, this piece of literature is a continual work in progress, as we continue to refine, not just the rhythm and precision of our technology, but the ways it can help our customers grow profits. It’s our life’s work, and we’ll be more than happy to talk about it if you give us a call at (800) 972-7727. Until then, happy summer and good reading!