Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme from The Broke and the Bookish.
Oh books… You make me want to go to all the places. If I had a bottomless pit of money, I would be rushing about the globe. If I was some kind of awesome supernatural being, I would be jumping into universes to visit.
The thought of jumping into a book, a la The Eyre Affair or Lost in Austen is amazing. I’d totally do it! Alas, we must content ourselves with visiting where we can.
*Photos are my own.
My god, did books make me want to go to London! When I finally got to go, I got teary over seeing the things I’d become so familiar with through books, ever since I was a child. The Tower of London was the holy grail for me… ever since I was 10 and reading those Princess Diaries (no idea what they were actually called… I don’t mean Mia Thermopolis, but fictional diaries of actual princesses) and My Story diaries, I’ve wanted to visit the Tower. As I grew up, I got more and more into history and the Tower lived on in my imagination. I got to go in March this year and it was the best day of my life so far, not even kidding.
The rest of London was amazing as well… I totally felt the history all around me. Harry Potter, Mrs Dalloway, The Crimson Petal and the White, my goodness I could go on and on.
Anything by Charles Dickens
Mrs Dalloway by Virginia Woolf
The Crimson Petal and the White by Michael Faber
The Victorian City: Everyday Life in Dickens’ London by Judith Flanders
*Photos are my own.
It seems I might be lucky enough to be moving to Aberdeen in the next two years or so, which is the absolute dream. I’ve been walking around in a happy daze of Scottish happiness. I’m going back to the land of my MacGregor and Fraser forebears!
Books made me want to go to Scotland so much! …And no, I don’t mean Outlander. I’ve never even watched Braveheart all the way through (I know, I know!). It’s been mainly history books, followed by Highland romance novels (I have a very sad penchant for these) that started off my love affair with the land of the brave.
Scottish history is so full of larger than life characters and utter craziness, which is why I find myself so attracted to it! Plus, my goodness, is it beautiful.
A History of Scotland by Neil Oliver
Claiming the Highlander by Kinley MacGregor
The Strange Case of Doctor Jekyll and Mr Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson
The Complete Poems and Songs of Robert Burns
Macbeth by William Shakespeare
3. The Outback
My own country! I’ve never been far enough west to be in the true Outback, but I have been in red dirt country. I love the big skies out there, the sense of space and the rugged danger of the environment. I love Australia for “its beauty and its terror”, and the Outback is the ultimate example of that. This wide, brown land will always be my home.
We of the Never Never by Jeannie Gunn
A Town Like Alice by Neville Shute
A Fortunate Life by A.B. Facey
4. The Deep South
Sorry America, I still have little inclination to visit you… except the Deep South. I get the feeling it would either make me very happy or very sad. Maybe both at once. It sounds right up my alley, I’ve always liked a wild thing. So help me God, one day I will visit Savannah.
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Other Voices, Other Rooms by Truman Capote
5. The South Island of New Zealand
I’ve been to the North island, but not the South, and if the North is anything to go by, the South will blow my mind! It’s the closest to Middle Earth I’ll ever get. The LOTR movies are basically New Zealand porn!
The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien (not set in NZ but whatever)
The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton (I haven’t read this, but it’s supposedly very good)
Cross Tides by Lorraine Orman
*Photos are my own.
Ireland is the land of my grandfather, I bear an Irish surname and wear my Claddagh with pride. I was there in March/April and while it is a beautiful, beautiful place, it really strikes you how sad it is. Where there is beauty, there is an element of sadness for things past. I can only imagine how my ancestors felt when they left, escaping the Potato Famine. By the time my great, great grandmother arrived in Sydney, she had lost her husband and her child. She remarried and began a new family, but her life was tinged with sadness as she lost her eldest boy in a mine explosion.
Having never met my grandfather, who died young, the Irish element of my childhood was limited to spontaneous Irish singing and dancing at family events, a hell of a lot of soda bread and an early introduction to the art of drinking Guinness! So books were my way of connecting to the Emerald Isle.
I have to say, I was a bit disappointed in Ireland. At the moment, it’s highly geared toward American tourism and so the Republic sort of felt like one big tourist attraction that I was only sort of invited to. I did fall in love with Northern Ireland and the more remote counties of the Republic, and Belfast was the highlight of my Irish experience.
The Blackwater Lightship by Colm Toibin
P.S. I Love You by Cecelia Ahearn
Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw
*Stonehenge photo my own
I’m going to cheat a little here… I know I already said London, but I also really want to visit England in general. I’ve been a little bit but mainly the major tourist sites, Windsor and Stonehenge (both amazing!) and I briefly visited Hertfordshire and Oxford, which began manic visions of myself attending university there. The proudest moment I had was when the lady in the bookshop asked me what college was studying Witch Hunting, since I was buying a stack of textbooks on the topic for uni at home!
I’d love to visit York, Lancashire and the Lake District. Ooh, and the Cotswalds! I want to go to as many castles as possible and wander about on a moor. (Though, from my experience at Culloden, moor wandering isn’t as fun as it sounds, that wind was intense!)
I also would very much like to see a badger.
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
A Visitor’s Companion to Tudor England by Suzannah Libscombe
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows
You know, the little island at the bottom of Australia? It’s a stunningly beautiful place with amazing history, but alas, I have not been able to visit just yet. If Australia’s convict past was a place, Tasmania would be it. Brutal and beautiful at the same time, what more do you need?
The Fatal Shore by Robert Hughes
Oh, Canada! I want to go there. I hear they make good donuts, and well… I don’t need much more than that, to be honest.
Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery
No Great Mischief by Alistair McLeod (could also fall into the Scottish category, but it’s mainly set in Canada)
I don’t even know if I’d like Russia that much. I’m not a huge fan of extreme cold and tyrannical leaders. But they do have vodka and some very pretty architecture.
Books:The Bronze Horseman by Paulina Simmons (I didn’t even like or finish this book, but Russia sounded interesting here)