Need a mini vacation? So do we. But you don't need to get on a plane to get away! These novels will whisk your mind off to places you may never travel to in real life, but hey, that's fine by us! From the romantic streets of Paris to the tropical shores of Tahiti, cozy up with these books and treat yourself to a vacation!

1. The Bungalow by Sarah Jio

Stop and close your eyes for a moment... smell that? It's tropical flowers from the island of Bora-Bora, straight out of Sarah Jio's most recent novel, The Bungalow. Set in the South Pacific, this tale of war and romance, with just a touch of mystery, is the perfect escape for busy moms. Put on some flip-flops and take yourself to Tahiti — no travel necessary!

2. The Paris Wife by Paula McLain

This book is full of so much "ooh" and "la-la" that it won't be long before you're asking your kids if they want ketchup with their pommes frites (French fries). The Paris Wife by Paula McLain takes you deep into Paris in the 1920s, where a young girl meets and marries Ernest Hemingway. Get ready to swoon and gasp at this story that pulls you in every direction.

3. The Expats by Chris Pavone

Mom by day. Spy by night. The Expats, a recent release by Chris Pavone, will hold your attention because it's completely believable, in the best possible way. An everyday, hard-working mother happens upon a secret while living abroad in Luxembourg, where her husband has been transferred for work. No fluffy chick lit found here — The Expats is a sophisticated, high-suspense story that will have you putting the kids to bed early tonight just to read one more chapter!

4. The Tea Rose by Jennifer Donnelly

The first in a trilogy of novels, The Tea Rose by Jennifer Donnelly instantly transports you — not only by taking you across the pond to London, but also by taking you back in time to the late 1800s, where life was grand for some and dangerous for others. For those who prefer escaping with a book that weighs more than your 10-month-old, The Tea Rose won't disappoint — this novel is thick and delicious, with details that will have your mind lost in complexity and characters with accents so thick that you'll feel like you need a translation app on your iPhone.

5. Summer People by Elin Hilderbrand

This book has it all when it comes to a mini vacation... tragedy, drama, long-lost loves and, of course, summer time at the beach. Elin Hilderbrand paints us the perfect story to escape in Summer People, which takes place during a three-month stay at a vacation home in Nantucket. Summer People will have you longing for warm weather, a tall glass of iced tea and long walks on the beach... well, at least you can have the iced tea!

More about me time

Why "me time" is such a big deal
5 Ways for single moms to carve out me time
Give yourself a time out

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Lisa Steinke May 23, 2012
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Great list. Loved The Bungalow. The Paris Wife is still on my TBR list.
Laura Tremaine May 22, 2012
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I'm in the middle of The Paris Wife right now and I can't believe I didn't pick it up sooner. It's so good! It will be high on my list for recommended reading this summer.
Anonymous May 22, 2012
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I'm in the middle of The Paris Wife right now and I am loving it. It makes me want to know everything about this time, and this marriage.