There are few feelings as special as getting yourself lost in the world of a book. Below are just a few of my favorites!
Strathclyde – The Lost Queen by Signe Pike
I first traveled to Scotland in June of 2018 and took a lengthy road trip through the country in January 2019 and am now completely and 110% obsessed. To fall in love with a place in January is always rare, but I would live in this beautiful country in a heartbeat. Signe captured the landscape and the feel of the country magnificently in The Lost Queen and it’s so wonderful to have gotten to explore the setting of the book in person, even if it was in a different era.
The Flying Rose – Cinnamon and Gunpowder by Eli Brown
I’ve been fascinated by the age of piracy for most of my life, ever since learning I was distantly related to Sir Francis Drake. When a former coworker recommended Cinnamon and Gunpowder I couldn’t wait to read it – and the ship’s life is so rich and the food, I can practically taste it, I want to (theoretically) live on the Flying Rose. But I could do without the pirate battles and scurvy and such.
Everyone I know who has read A Court of Mist and Fury wants to live in Velaris. Half winter mountain chill, half summer seaside resort, it marries the best of both worlds and is a safe haven for all peoples of Prythian with a flourishing arts and theater district – I’d love to spend my next vacation exploring it’s streets.
New Pacifica – Across a Star-Swept Sea by Diana Peterfreund
I first visited New Zealand in August 2006 (the end of their winter) and the majesty of it all definitely shaped how I pictured Diana’s New Pacifica in the Reduction duology, especially Across a Star-Swept Sea. Another place I would love to go back and explore further, and while not exactly the fantasy/dystopian world she describes, it’s a pretty good stand-in.
Brakebills South – The Magicians by Lev Grossman
But Sarah, why not regular Brakebills or Fillory? you might ask. Because it was Brakebills South where I first abandoned The Magicians and it was the magic of the Antarctica university that drew me back in. I’m a fall/winter person and after going to university in Pittsburgh, I can say I have a great love/hate relationship with the weather patterns that cause the epic snowstorms. But as for the idea of a retreat to delve thoroughly into one’s magical well, sign me up. I’d happily complain about spending a semester there and then look back nostalgically afterwards.