Suspend Your Disbelief

Posts Tagged ‘travel lit’

Essays |

Literary Life on the Black Sea: The 2009 Sozopol Fiction Seminar

Each year the Elizabeth Kostova Foundation selects five native English speaking (NES) writers and five Bulgarian writers to participate in the Sozopol Fiction Seminar, which takes places in the tiny, historic town of Sozopol, Bulgaria, on the Black Sea. And this summer I was lucky enough to be chosen as one of the NES fellows.It was, in a word, amazing. And though I’m by no means a photographer, I hope that a few of these snapshots might begin to capture the experience of being in such a unique place with so many generous and talented individuals.

Shop Talk |

summer reading by (and recommended by) Alan Cheuse

NPR’s “Voice of Books” has a new book of his own, a collection of travel essays called A Trance After Breakfast. New Yorkers, come hear him read from it on Monday, June 22, at 7 PM at McNally Jackson (52 Prince St.)–and check out FWR’s interview with the author following the publication of his most recent novel, 2008’s To Catch the Lightning. Via NPR, don’t miss Alan Cheuse’s list of carefully chosen (and enthusiastically recommended) books you should read this summer, complete with compelling reviewlets and links to excerpts. If only all reviewers *loved* books the way Cheuse obviously does!

Shop Talk |

literary travel companions

I’m itching to do some traveling (and the reading that goes with it); in the meantime, let’s talk books. A few months ago I blogged about the wonderful Idlewild Books in Manhattan–a travel bookstore organized by country rather than genre. For more destination-specific recommendations, The Millions‘ Kevin Harnett suggests some fiction (and nonfiction) to take on the road. Last June, Joan Silber also contributed a post about reading abroad. Frommer’s website offers reading recommendations for a huge variety of destinations, among them cities like New Orleans, Buenos Aires, and Toronto, and countries from Japan to Iceland. For inspiration on where […]

Shop Talk |

Idlewild Books

Idlewild Books, a new Manhattan bookstore specializing in international literature and travel, shelves guidebooks and novels together, organized by location. As a fiction devotee, I like this idea for two reasons: First, would-be-explorers can get a taste of their destination’s literary landscape. Second, this is further testament to fiction’s (and, yes, memoir’s) ability to capture a specific, detailed sense of place and experience — to offer a more “true” account, in many respects, than the brief synopses and practical advice you’d get from a guidebook alone. You can read the New York Times review here or visit the store itself […]