Sunday, June 12, 2011

Summer Reading on the Road

Onboard of MSC SINFONIA. My second cruise. February © 2009 Jorge Andrade | more info (via: Wylio)

I promise that I'm not writing this post to brag and it will involve reading; however, I must share our summer plans. My son and I are meeting my husband in Europe for a 12 night Mediterranean cruise. (My husband has been in Afghanistan since October.) We'll be visiting cities that I have only dreamed of. In preparation for our trip I've been reading and watching movies set in these cities. I found this wonderful website that lists books by country, region and city. As the homepage explains "travel is enriched by reading great novels set in the places you are visiting." On my reading list are:
The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zaton (Barcelona, Spain)
Monsieur Monde Vanishes by Georges Simenon (Nice France)
The Birth of Venus: A Novel by Sarah Dunant (Florence, Italy)
The Food of Love by Anthony Capella (Rome)
City of the Soul: A Walk in Rome by William Murray (Rome)
The Wedding Officer by Anthony Capella (Naples)
Black Lamb and Grey Falcom: A Journey through Yugoslavia by Rebecca West (Dubrovnik, Croatia)
The Glassblower of Murano by Marina Florato (Venice)
Almost French: Love and a New Life in Paris by Sarah Turnbull (just because it sounded fun)
I could not find one for Kotor, Montenegro.
I know reading these novels will get me in the spirit for the trip and make my travels more meaningful. Even though my students may not be traveling to exotic locations like this I think it would still be fun to recommend books to them set at the beach or mountains in our state. A few that come to mind include The Last Song by Nicholas Sparks set in North Carolina, Virals by Kathy Reichs set in Charleston, SC and The Secret Life of Bess by Sue Monk Kidd, also in South Carolina.
I am having my own European film festival to put me in the traveling mood. On my list are The Tourist, The Italian Job, La Dolce Vita, Three Coins in a Fountain, Vicky Cristina Barcelona, Roman Holiday, Eurotrip, National Lampoon's European Vacation, The American, French Kiss, When In Rome, Letters to Juliet, Under the Tuscan Sun, and any others that I stumble upon.

Do you have any recommendations for me? Books or movies? Am I missing something obvious from my lists?


  1. So thrilled for you and your family. Wishing you safe travels. The only film that comes to mind not on your list is Roman Holiday with Gregory Peck, Audrey Hepburn and Eddie Albert. One of my FAVORITES!

  2. Wow! Sounds like a fabulous trip! And a great line-up of books - I love reading while traveling. Have fun!