October 14, 2014 by Heidi
I love this week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic–Top top places books have made me want to visit. I love nothing more in books than a really well wrought setting. An author’s ability to make me feel as if I’m there is prized more than action in many of my books. Of course, as a fantasy fan, it would be easy to flood with post with the worlds I love–Valdemar, the world of The Kingkiller Chronicles, the world beyond the wall in Stardust, but as much as I love good world building in fantasy, it’s not the number one aspect that makes me fall in love (and let’s face it–a lot of great fantasy worlds I really wouldn’t want to go to). In real-world based books, it is. I decided to focus on real places I’d love to visit because I can, and with every hope someday I will.
Specifically, I’d love to go see Orchard House, though I wouldn’t spit in Walden Pond either. I simply adore charming old east coast towns as someone from the west where nothing man-made is much more than 100 years old at most. I’ve adored Little Women as one of my favorite stories since I was a child, and I’d love to see its home.
The Place: Louisiana | The Inspiration: Bayou Moon by Ilona Andrews, Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys
Let’s be honest–I just want to go to New Orleans and eat for days, but a good part of the reason why is the books I’ve read that take place there. In fact, thanks to Ilona Andrews, I’d love to explore Louisiana beyond the city and into the bayou.
The Place: Finger Lakes, New York | The Inspiration: The Blue Heron series by Kristan Higgins
Higgins has brought the small (fictional) vineyard town of Manningsport, New York alive for me throughout the course of this series, and I’ve fallen in love. Many people want to go to Napa, but me–I want to visit the vineyards of the Finger Lakes. It’s smaller, less crowded, and absolutely stunning.
The Place: Prince Edward Island | The Inspiration: The Avonlea books by L.M. Montgomery
Something about islands makes them particularly appealing to me. I love the small town feel and romance of ocean bound communities. Prince Edward Island was the first for me, and all others remind me a bit of it in my heart (such as Stiefvater’s Thisby).
When I think old school charming English countryside village, I think of The Cotswolds. Sure, I’d be happy to go to many a locale in the English countryside, but it’s always these yellow stone buildings that rise in my mind when I think of them. They were particularly vivid in Sorry-in-the-Vale, and I’d love to walk those cobbled streets in person.
The Place: Slieve Gullion, Ireland | The Inspiration: The Sevenwaters series by Juliet Marillier
Again, I’d love to see any number of places in Ireland, but this hamlet that inspired one of the most beautifully written series I’ve ever read is at the top of the list. Sevenwaters is alive in the hearts of those who live there, and I can’t imagine not falling in love with a place that is so deeply ingrained in who these characters are.
The Place: Alaska | The Inspiration: The Call of the Wild by Jack London, Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer, the Naked Werewolf series by Molly Harper
Basically any and every book I’ve ever read taking place in Alaska has made me want to go there. I’ve always romanticized survival and the frontier along with tight knit small towns–Alaska is the perfect, beautiful representation of all of these elements.
The Place: San Francisco, California | The Inspiration: The October Daye series by Seanan McGuire
Toby running around San Francisco has made me want to explore that city more than any other unvisited city in the United States. She’s introduced me to sights I’d never have heard of otherwise, in particular Golden Gate Park and the Japanese Tea Gardens therein.
Sure, Hogwarts isn’t a real place per se, but it’s a fantasy world brought to life at Universal Studios and damn I wanna go there. I’ve had many friends and family visit, but have yet to make it myself. I want it all.
The Place: Scotland | The Inspiration: The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling, Outlander by Diana Gabaldon…everything set there ever.
Scotland, like Alaska, fairly calls to me. Everything I’ve ever read that’s set there makes me want to visit, even Outlander, which we all know I hated. A country so rich in folklore, legends, and beauty–I would love to visit.