Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Bookish Settings I’d Love To Visit

December 5, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week the theme is: Bookish Settings I’d Love to Visit

One of the reasons I love to read fantasy has to do with the settings. There’s nothing more engrossing to me than a setting so escapist I can completely emerge myself in the book’s story. And yet– I really struggled to identify settings I’d actually love to *visit*.

So many of the settings I read seem innately violent, dangerous, or generally scary.  Wonderland? Pass. District 13? HARD Pass. Then, the next collection of settings are all real places! Walden Pond, Paris, London… I’m currently reading Elenor Oliphant is Completely Fine which is set in Glasgow! Yes, please! I definitely want to visit all these places (or in the case of Walden Pond, I have already), but that seems like cheating for the purpose of this list.

What I came up with is a collection of fictional locations I always loved getting lost in. Nothing dangerous (if you’re a smart REGULAR human being). Nothing scary other than getting lost perhaps. Perfect for a vacation.

All titles below are links to the book’s Goodreads page.


 

Top 10 Bookish Settings I’d Love to Visit

 

Pemberley EstatesPride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Pemberley Estates is almost cheating, honestly. It’s basically a real place. Each time I read Elizabeth Bennett visiting for the first time, I am completely enthralled with the place. It’s a beautiful estate– more museum than home, honestly. Gorgeous gardens, ancient paintings, perfect furniture. It’s definitely the sort of place my Mother and I would love to visit!

 

Hogwarts and HogsmeadeHarry Potter series by JK Rowling

I know, I know, I said no place dangerous. Hogwarts does have some dangerous places, but I assume that any normal child who doesn’t have the same penchant for mischief as our faithful trio would not suffer so. Besides, who wouldn’t want to pretend to attend classes and witness magic first hand? Or eat some Fizzing Whizzbees at Honeyduke’s after a long week of classes?

 

Copper Isles, TortallDaughter of the Lioness duology by Tamora Pierce

While a potentially dangerous land, Tortall has always fascinated me. Pierce has woven together many different cultural traits to develop a truly unique fantasy world. My favorite location has always been the Copper Isles. Based on the location of the Philippines, the culture and architecture of the Indonesian islands, and wildlife from Central and South America, this amalgamation has always captured my imagination.

My Review: Trickster’s Choice

 

RivendellThe Fellowship of the Ring by JRR Tolkien

I have always been fascinated by Rivendell. It’s an Elven home without Elven perfection, which is exactly what I love about it (Sorry Lothlórien). They have pronounced seasons, celebrate their histories, and is a refuge for outsiders. For many came seeking the wisdom of Elrond Half-Elven in their cosmopolitan home as Rivendell is a “refuge for the weary and oppressed, and a treasury of good counsel and wise lore”. Plus, beautiful waterfalls. Vacation spot #1. Books, waterfalls, noms, happiness.

 

The NeverlandsPeter and Wendy by J. M. Barrie

Not many know that Peter Pan’s Neverland is one of many. The Neverlands are found in the minds of children and they are not the same from one child to the next. For example, John Darling’s has a lagoon with flamingos flying over it, while little brother Michael has a flamingo with lagoons flying over it. (Obviously.) I want to know what my personal Neverland island is like! It would be magical to return to my childhood mind.

My Review: Peter and Wendy

 

Avonlea, Prince Edward IslandAnne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery

Beautiful, iconic, pastoral Avonlea. I would love the opportunity to join Anne Shirley and her friends as they roam about and have wonderful adventures. I want to visit Echo Lodge, the Haunted Wood, Hester Gray’s Garden, the White Way of Delight, the Dryad’s bubble and more– it sounds like something out of a fairy tale. Only with more adventuring and imagination.

My Review: Anne of Green Gables

 

The Hundred Acre WoodWinnie the Pooh by A.A. Milne

To be precise, the 100 Aker Wood (as denoted by Christopher Robin) is actually the section of the woods where Owl lives. I don’t just want to visit Owl, I want to visit everyone. I want to visit the Bee Tree, Pooh Bear’s House, the Sandy Pit Where Roo Plays, the Nice Place for Picnicks– the whole kaboodle. This was my favorite place to visit as a child, and as an adult, I love it no less:

 

The Emerald CityThe Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum

The Emerald City might seem like an obvious locale, but I want to go visit due to Baum’s inconsistencies between books. In one book the city is not green but only looks green when the eyeglasses are worn. In another book, the city is entirely green and eyeglasses must be worn due to how brilliant the city is. Even later, the eyeglasses are no longer needed. While I want to see all the beautiful gardens and palaces— I really just want to know the truth!

 

Red LondonShades of Magic series by V.E. Schwab

Let me clarify: I want to visit Red London in the reign of king Rhy Maresh.  None of this evil magic stuff. Peace. Happiness. And beautiful. I mean, here is the description:

Flowers and hearth fire, spiced wine and underneath, the scent of home. A place of strength and beauty, laughter and music and the steady hum of magic. Power in balance and balance in power. The palace arcs over the glittering isle, the river like a ribbon of red light beneath.

Yup. Please let me visit.

My Review: A Darker Shade of Magic

 

Le Cirque des RêvesThe Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

I saved the best for last. I would give almost ANYTHING to attend Le Cirque des Rêves at least once in my life. I know that if this circus was a real place, I’d quit my job and become a Rêveur. You’d probably find me in the Ice Garden or lost in the Labyrinth. Proper and engrossing magical realism. I would be there in a heartbeat.

 

It was so much fun remembering all these amazing and literally fantastic settings. They aren’t all safe, but I’m the sort of person who would stick to the sidelines anyway. No matter what, I’d love every second of visiting these locales. 

 


What do you think?

  • Did you participate in Top Ten Tuesday? Share your links below!
  • Which books from this list have you read? What are your favorites?
  • What fictional settings would you like to visit? Why?

33 Comments

  • Ann Marie December 5, 2017 at 9:41 am

    LOVE this list! The Hundred Acre Wood? Yes, yes, yes! And maybe Narnia but only the safe places. 😉

    • Jackie B December 5, 2017 at 12:39 pm

      That’s why I didn’t include Narina! I thought of just picking some select locations… Such as Cair Paravel AFTER the White Witch is defeated and BEFORE Caspian IX. Sometime in the 1300 years in the middle. 😉

  • Annemieke December 5, 2017 at 12:56 pm

    Oh The Hundred Acre Wood is a good one! And The Emerald City would be great to visit as well.

    • Jackie B December 6, 2017 at 8:53 am

      Thanks, Annemieke! As you can tell, I enjoy living in my childhood bookish memories quite a bit. 😀 Children’s book settings seem to be much more attractive for me than adult books. I like happy, peaceful places!

  • Grab the Lapels December 5, 2017 at 1:29 pm

    When I get all worked up about being anxious, I want to visit the setting of Cloud 8 by Grant Bailie. Here’s the brief synopsis:

    James Broadhurst is killed in a car accident and finds himself floating towards the great white light. Instead of finding angels and puffy white clouds, he discovers an afterlife that consists of free beer, an evasive roommate and to his astonishment, a job! As James moves through this “heaven” (or hell?), where half the population bears a bizarre and uncanny resemblance to Abraham Lincoln and where his own funeral is the movie of the week, he begins to yearn for something more than what he had in life, and what he now has in death.

    • Jackie B December 8, 2017 at 5:31 pm

      This is actually really amazing! I love this synopsis. I am certainly intrigued. It sounds like a cooky sort of novel. This setting is just life finally working out, hm? It’s the little things which matter, I guess.

      It’s been added to my TBR! Thanks for pointing out Cloud 8 to me! Where did you find this book? It has so few reviews on Goodreads!

      • Grab the Lapels December 9, 2017 at 8:15 am

        Grant Bailie have a reading at my college when this book came out. We became friends and I visited him. But then a minor kerfuffle has (stupidly) ruined our friendship, so I haven’t heard from him in years.

        • Jackie B December 14, 2017 at 5:06 pm

          UGH. I hate it when minor kerfuffles ruin relationships. I have two of those in my life which have wrenched away important friendships. Honestly, I couldn’t tell you what they were at this point, but we don’t communicate and it makes me sad. People are so fragile.

          • Grab the Lapels December 14, 2017 at 6:43 pm

            I just like…. I’m not even sure what happened.

  • Laila@BigReadingLife December 5, 2017 at 3:11 pm

    Who wouldn’t want to visit Hogwarts and Hogsmeade? 🙂 And I WILL go to Prince Edward Island one day!

    • Jackie B December 14, 2017 at 4:53 pm

      EXACTLY! I would also love to go to PEI. I hear that it’s constantly swarmed by Japanese tourists (Anne is super big in Japan, apparently…) around all the Anne stuff, but I want to see it as it really is too. Not just what Montgomery knows and told, but really understand the island.

  • Jessie @ Dwell in Possibility December 5, 2017 at 4:11 pm

    Great choices! Pemberly and PEI both made my list too. I’d also love to experience Le Cirque des Rêves first-hand.

    • Jackie B December 22, 2017 at 4:16 pm

      Thank you, Jessie! I’m so glad we had some overlap when it came to our settings lists. It was hard to narrow my choices down– but great minds must think alike. 😀 All the Austen books have wonderful settings. I’d adore to visit any of the manor houses.

  • Dani @ Perspective of a Writer December 5, 2017 at 5:04 pm

    Jackie!!! Such a classics list… not what I expected but actually I LOVE each of these… Winnie the Pooh’s Hundred Acre Woods, lol, that is my favorite of all your choices, though I didn’t know that technically it is just where Owl lives… I thought the whole region is called that! And isn’t The Neverlands so fascinating!? I’m not sure I was a very inventive child… probably my mind now would be just as suitable…

    I love top 10 Tuesday… Here’s my post <3 https://perspectiveofawriter.wordpress.com/2017/12/05/top-10-tuesday-bookish-settings-to-visit-as-a-tourist/

    • Jackie B December 22, 2017 at 4:20 pm

      Thank you, Dani!! I surprised myself a bit by choosing so many of these classic locations. There are great places in so many novels… it was hard to choose. But when I put this list together I realized that I just kept coming back to the settings of my childhood mostly.

      I bet we would both have really interesting Neverlands now! I would love to visit yours. Perhaps we can do a time-share in our own Neverlands? 😉

  • sosobooks100 December 5, 2017 at 6:51 pm

    I LOVE Pemberley, it’s honestly the dream place to go visit. Pride and Prejudice is my favorite classic of all time, and I’m really feeling in the mood to read another 1800s classic book by my queen Austen or the Bronte sisters! The Night Circus is one of the best well-written bookish settings I’ve ever read about. I need Erin Morgenstern to write more books ASAP!!

    Beautiful post. Your picks made me feel so nostalgic, like Winnie the Pooh and Anne of the Green Gables!!
    My TTT: https://bookslikewolves.wixsite.com/blog/single-post/2017/12/05/Top-Ten-Bookish-Settings-I%E2%80%99d-Love-To-Visit

    • Jackie B December 12, 2017 at 9:06 pm

      Thank you!! I’m glad I could give you a sense of nostalgia. That’s what I was going for with this post, honestly. I love walking down memory lane with these TTTs.

      I am with you about Erin Morgenstern writing more books! I would love to see more from her. But, The Night Circus is almost perfect in my mind. I think I’ll die happy if that is the only book she releases. I’m glad that you also have The Night Circus on your TTT as well! Great minds think alike. 😀

    • Jackie B December 22, 2017 at 4:24 pm

      Thank you so much for stopping by Sophie! You caught me during a blog hopping/commenting haitus, though. Sorry for the radio silence!

      Yay! I’m glad that you love Pemberly, too! I am with you that Pride and Prejudice is my favorite classic of all time. There is something about Austen’s writing style which completely enchants me. That said, I haven’t read anything by the Bronte sisters… O_o Oops! I think I probably should do that– which book do you recommend I start with?

  • Helen Murdoch December 5, 2017 at 9:13 pm

    Oh, Hogwarts is definitely my choice! Great list

    • Jackie B December 6, 2017 at 8:49 am

      Thank you, Helen! Hogwarts would be a wonderful place to visit– literally fantasic. I mostly want to see the moving staircases and hang out in the library. But if I could observe a class? Transfiguration, for sure!

  • ichabod2014ic December 6, 2017 at 6:10 am

    I want to go where the Wild Things are.

    • Jackie B December 6, 2017 at 8:48 am

      That’s a great option! Would you like to go as a king or as merely a visitor?

      Let the wild rumpus start!!

  • iloveheartlandx December 6, 2017 at 11:29 am

    Hogwarts, Red London and Le Cirque De Reves were all on my list this week too!
    My TTT: https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2017/12/05/top-ten-tuesday-136/

    • Jackie B December 22, 2017 at 4:28 pm

      Great minds think alike, I guess? I’m so glad to see someone else with La Cirque De Reves on their list! With it being Erin Morgenstern’s only book, I sometimes feel like it’s forgotten. The Night Circus is probably my favorite book of all time.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting! Sorry you caught me in the middle of a mini-hiatus and I’m only getting back to your comment now. I’m back into the swing of things now! Hopefully we’ll connect soon.

      • iloveheartlandx December 23, 2017 at 12:35 pm

        Oh definitely! Yes you can definitely see how that would happen, though the book certainly does seem to be quite well loved in the blogosphere. No problem, don’t worry about it! I’m sure we will, I’m around quite lot!

  • Jane @ Greenish Bookshelf December 22, 2017 at 3:39 pm

    Yes, yes yes to all of these!! 🙂

  • theorangutanlibrarian December 27, 2017 at 6:07 pm

    Wonderful list!! I’d love to go to Pemberley!! And yes to Hogwarts (of course)! And the Copper Isles!! Rivendell is amazing!! I’ve always wanted to go to Neverland as well and find out what it would be for me 😉 And Avonlea would be amazing! And Hundred Acre wood, Emerald City, Red London and Night Circus
    (NB I realised about halfway down the list that I was just writing down every single one of these, but that’s just cos this list is absolutely *perfect*!!!)

    • Jackie B January 2, 2018 at 11:18 pm

      Hahaha! Thank you so much! XD I’m glad I’m not the only person who has to review posts while I comment. And I’m 100% all about you writing down all the same locations. That just means we’re meant to be bookish buddies. 😀

  • Evelina @ AvalinahsBooks December 28, 2017 at 9:23 am

    You would have to search hard to find a bookworm who wouldn’t want to go to Hogwarts lol 😀

    And I would absolutely join you on your visit to Prince Edward Island 🙂

    • Jackie B January 5, 2018 at 1:16 pm

      Indeed you will have to search long and hard for someone who doesn’t want to go to Hogwarts– but that doesn’t change the fact that it’s still got some scary thing there. I think I’d prefer to be a student rather than just visit, though. 😉 If I visited, I might struggle to ever leave! Can you imagine me hiding in the Room of Requirement and making that my home?

      Maybe someday we can meet each other at Prince Edward Island?! Or just… well, meet each other in person. That would be the most magical.

  • Amanda @Cover2CoverMom January 4, 2018 at 7:38 pm

    Ahhh this really is the perfect post! I think I’ll join you to visit Le Cirque des Rêves though as I just read this book last month for the first time and discovered what I’ve been missing…. a close second would be Red London.

    • Jackie B January 5, 2018 at 2:52 pm

      Thank you so much, Amanda! I’m glad you were finally able to read The Night Circus. I would certain be a Rêveur if the circus was real. Can you imagine?! It’s so wonderful. I love all the descriptions of the circus.

      Are you as excited as I am for the upcoming TV adaption of Shades of Magic?! I am a bit nervous the Londons won’t be as beautiful as I see them in my head, but I’m super excited to see Schwab’s vision come to life.

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