Hello all! So, after my little trip, I’ve been feeling a little Wanderlust… but since I can’t go far at the moment, I thought it might be fun to take a (digital) bookish trip round the UK, stopping off in places that are special to me. I was completely inspired by Book Nook’s brilliant interpretation of Top 5 Tuesday, so I highly recommend you check that out!
Confessions of a Justified Sinner– this is not only one of my favourite gothic books, it’s also strongly evocative of Scotland. To me, this captures the creepy atmosphere better than any other book. One of my favourite parts is a particularly chilling scene set up on Arthur’s Seat in Edinburgh- in fact, I remember reading it when the mist came down over the city and only seeing the peak just rising above it and thinking “this is a little too real”. Soooo moral of the story is beware the devils in Scotland 😉
Peter Rabbit– like Book Nook, I had to pick this one. Beatrix Potter reminds me of the Lake District, possibly the most beautiful part of England. I went there as a child and I have fond memories of the magic of the place, especially as it felt like stepping into Potter’s world 😀 Also, Beatrix Potter understands that the way to a reader’s heart is through their stomachs 😉
The Hobbit– this may seem an odd choice for people (including me) who grew up with New Zealand as Middle Earth- BUT since Tolkien actually based his descriptions on the English countryside, I felt it was very apt for this list. Particularly as I distinctly remember the first time I read the Hobbit, then going for a walk in some woods near where I lived and (bearing in mind I was a child at the time) running delightedly yelling “wow this is Mirkwood!!”
A Darker Shade of Magic– cos I’m a Londoner and all of these Londons are perfection. Yeah, it’s not by a British author, but that doesn’t matter. No one could have captured the city more authentically! (well, aside from the magic 😉)
Peter Pan– I mean, I’ve got to include this, it’s one of my favourite books. Plus, he’s rather a famous resident in Kensington Gardens.
La Belle Sauvage– keeping to the realms of fantasy, I could hardly ignore Lyra’s Oxford. Northern Lights was hugely influential on me as a child and I can tell you Oxford definitely reminds me of Pullman’s novels!! (or, technically speaking, his books remind me of Oxford- but shh I won’t tell if you don’t 😉)
Return of the Native– really, I could’ve chosen any of Hardy’s books to represent his Wessex, but this one felt fitting for its heightened romanticism. If you do fancy going in search of Hardy’s Wessex, then you won’t actually have to look so hard- head down to Dorset and you’ll find many of the spots in his novels (and his life). I was lucky enough to do a tour once with school and highly recommend it!
Frenchman’s Creek– Du Maurier has always been the queen of making her landscapes feel like another character in her books. And I could easily have chosen the moors in Jamaica Inn or the memorably dreamlike Manderley in Rebecca, but none are so special to me as the rugged Cornish coastline depicted in her Frenchman’s Creek. I can easily picture the smugglers and spirit of Cornwall from all the descriptions she snatches in this book. I adore it.
Carry On– I have no idea if Rainbow Rowell has ever been to Watford, but it is the most hilarious thing that she chose it as the place to set her HP parody. Intentional or not, it’s bloody hilarious.
So, have you read any of these? And what are your favourite books about your home country? Let me know in the comments!