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Listen very carefully, I shall say this only once. There are some books you don’t want to read. Especially, if you don’t like traveling or it is impossible for you, because you can’t afford it or you simply don’t have time for that kind of nonsense. Take this as a warning: don’t even think about reading these books if you don’t want to travel.

“Around the World in Eighty Days” – Jules Verne [1872]

around the world in 80 daysLike a popular 90′s romantic comedy for teenagers*, it starts with the bet. But unlike the movie, the book is much more classy. It’s 1872. Phileas Fogg, an English gentleman bets half of his fortune that he can prove it is possible to travel around the world in 80 days. He starts from London and on the way he visits Egypt, India, the British colony of Hong Kong, Japan and USA. While on the journey he has a lot of adventures, but the most exciting thing in the plot is his race with time. It is one of the most popular novels about traveling. In some countries it’s obligatory to discuss it in class in elementary schools. It shows kids a lot of different cultures and may get them interested in traveling. But it is a good read for adults as well. So, if you don’t want to get inspired to travel – this one is definitely a book to omit.

* She’s all that [1999]

“Under the Tuscan Sun: At home in Italy” – Frances Mayes [1996]

Tuscany roadA middle aged university teacher and her boyfriend buy a ruined house in Tuscany in the middle of Italy and they renovate it step by step. This autobiographical novel of sort is a portrait of struggles with renovations as well as everyday life, shopping, cooking and Tuscan traditions and habits. In 2003 there was a movie based on this book, but the plot was actually changed a lot. Anyway, the picturesque descriptions of Italy and it’s steady, calm life will definitely make you want to visit this beautiful and warm place. So if you don’t want to go – leave the book be.

“Eat, Pray Love” – Elizabeth Gilbert [2006]

Koh TapuYou must have heard of this one. Or at least of the movie starring Julia Roberts and Javier Bardem. The main character is this miserable divorcee, who is going on a journey to find happiness and get her own life back. In Italy she heals her body, in India – her spirit and in Indonesia – her heart. Everything in this book is alluring: the food, the activities, the landscapes and the people. The best way to avoid temptation is to never start reading the book in the first place.

“The Shadow of the Wind” – Carlos Ruiz Zafón [2001]

Barcelona Barrio GoticoIf you don’t want to visit Barcelona, this is a book to be beware of. A young boy chooses a book from the secret Cemetery of Forgotten Books to keep it safe and not to let in be forgotten. His copy is the last one existing – the whole edition has been burned. The boy treasures the book. Trying to find out more about the author, he gets involved in a mysterious and thrilling adventure that may cost him his life. Action takes place in the 1950′s in Barcelona and the city seems to be one of the characters. And one of the most attractive ones too. It’s almost impossible not to be seduced.

“Memoirs of a Geisha” – Arthur Gold [1997]

memoirs of geishaThis novel is probably the most dangerous one. It’s deceiving. You don’t expect a story about a young girl coming from a small fishing village, who lives a difficult and lonely life becoming a geisha to pay off her debt and finally free herself to make you want to visit the place where a lot of bad things happened to the poor Chiyo. And yet, the colorful descriptions of kimonos, the intriguing, almost mesmerizing culture of 20th century Japan makes the longing for traveling there almost irresistible. It takes a lot of determination not to go to an airline website to book a ticket to this exotic county.

 The not traveling is difficult. There are a lot of things that can give you an idea to go some place new. You have to resist a lot of temptations, one of which is reading certain novels. You have to pay attention, what you choose. The books listed above should be out of reach for you at all time. Because if you start to read even one of them, if you disrespect my warning, you will most definitely get inspired to travel. And we all know, how this story ends.

 

Stay tuned as we’ll be updating this post with some great titles from our travelling friends.

1. GlobalGrasshopper

Our friends listed some of the more contemporary titles. All very inspiring. Including Into The Wild, a great story, later made into a movie. Click for the list here!