Your passport to literary adventure.
Divided into two parts, Novel Destinations offers more than a guidebook could ever dream to. Here's a peek at the both parts, and the sections that lie within.
The best literary experiences at home and abroad
- Read 'Em and See: Authors Houses and Museums
- Novel Dispatches: Writers At Home And Abroad
- Literary Festivals, Tours, and More
- Booked Up: Literary Places to Drink, Dine, and Doze
Each section in part one contains a mash-up of destinations to visit for each topic. For example, one of my favorite sections is Booked Up: Literary Places to Drink, Dine, and Doze (no surprise there, right?), includes introductions/write-ups on lodgings, watering holes, pubs, and eateries where some of our favorite authors spent time. You'll find everything from the Hotel Monteleone in New Orleans where people like Truman Capote, William Faulkner, and Tennessee Williams stayed, to John's Grill in San Francisco the spot Dashiell Hammett frequented while working in a nearby building.
The pages of literature come to life in the following 11 locales, immortalized by famed novelists.
This part of the book features sections that focus on one specific novelist. It starts by listing some of their works, then dives into why this specific locale is chosen to represent them. After the introduction are listings of places to Drink, Dine, and Doze, places to check out Elsewhere In The Area, and Farther Afield. Within each specific section are additions like Don't Miss (obviously, places you shouldn't miss if you plan a trip to this area), and If You Go (other notable, related places/things to do within a reasonable distance).
Included in the 11 locales are Jane Austen's Bath (England), James Joyce's Dublin (Ireland), Nathaniel Hawthorne's Salem (Massachusetts), Harper Lee's Monroeville (Alabama), and Ernest Hemingway's Key West (Florida).
Overall, this is a super fun book to use in helping plan a literary trip, or just to pour over as an armchair adventurer. I know this might sound silly, but one of my favorite things about the way the book is written is the use of the Oxford comma (thank you!). My one tiny complaint is that everything seems a bit crammed. There's a ton of information, and I would love to have a little extra room on the page to focus on one specific section, maybe even add a few notes of my own. It's minor, and personal preference, I know. That said, the more I read the book, the easier it became for me to mentally separate the sections within.
Even if you're not planning on traveling, it's a nifty little background/reference source for some amazing authors.
I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.