I always love reading a book on a hot summer day, and usually my typical novel is something to do with a great setting. Well, yesterday, I was flipping through this months Travel and Leisure Magazine, and came across this list of great books with a great backdrop.
By Francine Prose
1. Death in Venice by Thomas Mann. Nothing has ever captured so well the beauty and the pulse-racing creepiness of this gorgeous city.
2. Le Divorce by Diane Johnson. Reading this smart, delightful comic novel provides all the fun of a week in Paris without having to leave the house.
3. A Room with a View by E.M. Forster. Read it to find out how little the splendor of Florence has changed – and how much people have.
4. GraceLand by Chris Abani. The sights and sound of Lagos, Nigeria, pulse through this vibrant novel.
5. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami. My favorite of Murakami’s books reveals all sorts of familiar – and hidden – aspects of Tokyo.
6. Swamplandia! by Karen Russell. This imaginative first novel is set in an alligator theme park that could exist only in southwestern Florida.
7. Gryphon by Charles Baxter. The American Midwest reveals itself as a place of great beauty and strangeness in Baxter’s eloquent fictions.
8. Bleak House by Charles Dickens. Granted, London has changed a lot since Dicken’s time, but whenever I go there I feel I’ve reentered one of his novels.
It’s time for me to get down to business and read some of these. They sound great and a few can be read online for free!
Check out some of my favorite travel novels as well.