Novel Destinations

Like most public libraries, mine is trying to motivate summer readers with a plan that includes rewards; besides the obvious benefits of enjoying the books, the library is offering bookmarks, posters, and other paraphanalia as part of the game to get patrons to read more.  This summer the theme is Novel Destinations – a way to vicariously combat island fever and get away – through a book.

A few of their titles look promising:

  • Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter by Tom Franklin (destination – Mississippi)
  • The Calligrapher’s Daugher by Eugenia Kim (destination – Korea)
  • The Broken Shore by Peter Temple (destination – Australia)
  • Shanghai Girls by Lisa See (destination obvious)

I found an amazing link – Fiction of Place – that had more references than I could manage, but bookmarked anyway.  And then thought of books I’d read that had the place as important as the characters: Bill Bryson’s Lost Continent, Under the Tuscan Sun by Frances Mayes, Tepper Isn’t Going Out by Calvin Trillin, and Dave Eggers’ Zeitoun.


If you can’t get there by train, plane, or car – travel by the books will do.

Do you have any fictional itineraries to recommend?

6 thoughts on “Novel Destinations

    • Zeitoun was one of my favorite nonfictions; hurricane season has started again in that area, and the book is a great reminder of how one man can make a difference.

  1. How about Moloka’i by Alan Brennart? Or The Enchanted April for a literary trip to Italy?

    I just bought Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter – looking forward to reading it!

    • Read Brennart’s Moloka’i and Honolulu – both in my neighborhood, but have only seen the movie Enchanted April – will now look for it to read – thanks.

  2. I highly recommend Trillin’s Tepper Isn’t Going out because it is a great New York City story and also because it is a wonderfully cheering read. On a down day, I think of Tepper and smile.

    • I agree -this is one of my favorite books about one of my favorite cities. Whenever I am looking for parking, I think of Tepper.

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