The best travel books are written by people with a keen eye for a telling detail and a sense of adventure. These are 13 of my favorite nonfiction picks.
Reading excellent fiction is almost a necessity. It helps keep us sane and allows us to travel, if only in our minds. Here are nine of our favorite novels.
Our writer recommends three books about Mezzogiorno, the southern region of Italy, written during the 19th and 20th centuries by travelers to the area.
In preparation for his trip to Los Angeles, our writer delves into a book about the city and later enjoys time in one of L.A.'s most interesting bookstores.
The heart of this book is the epic tale of the Caire family, which at one time owned Santa Cruz Island, about 30 miles off the coast of California.
Reading a book about a place you're going to visit is always enriching, but in the case of Namibia, it's particularly helpful.
Two of the best travelogues ever penned, "A Time of Gifts" and "Between the Woods and the Water," make a perfect read before, during or after a trip to Romania.
Thomas Mann's novel "Buddenbrooks: The Decline of a Family" is a masterpiece. It would be enjoyable for anyone, but especially those traveling to Hamburg.
Key West has long been a refuge and an inspiration for writers. Not all the books on this list constitute high literature, but each is well worth reading.
Author Beebe Bahrami offers an excellent introduction to Dordogne's Neanderthal history in her new book "Cafe Neandertal."
There is no shortage of engaging recent releases. These 11 books represent a range of genres, set in a variety of locations around the world.
Jonathan Weiner enjoyed the benefit of hindsight when he came to write "The Beak of the Finch," for which he won a Pulitzer Prize in 1995.
In this true crime story, Maximillian Potter relates the attempt to extort 1 million euro from Domaine de la Romanée-Conti by poisoning its best vineyards.
If wanderlust has you restless or the comforts of home are feeling ho-hum, a good book can refocus your energy and fuel your imagination.
I especially enjoyed this new work by James Gardner, published in 2015, which examines the history of Buenos Aires through the lens of its architecture.
Recommended reading for a trip to Hawaii from editor-in-chief Andrew Harper.
The books and DVDs I found most useful and enjoyable in preparing for our Antarctic trip, and while there.
The magnetic personality and personal courage of Aung San Suu Kyi are inseparable from the story of modern Myanmar.
Compared with the number about many African countries, there is a shortage of books in English about Namibia.
Rather than produce a dry history of the city, in “The Birth of Sydney,” editor Tim Flannery assembles a fascinating collection of firsthand descriptions.
To fully appreciate the warmth of the Cambodian people, it is valuable to recall the agonies that the country suffered from 1975 to 1979 under Pol Pot.
Two classic volumes from D.H. Lawrence and Grazia Deledda prove to be Mr. Harper's essential volumes for any travelers set to explore the island of Sardinia.
"Before the Storm, Memories of My Youth in Old Prussia" is Countess Marion Dönhoff's memoir, and takes place in East Prussia before it became part of Russia.
Andrew Harper recommends Ian Mount’s highly readable book, “The Vineyard at the End of the World,” for an introduction to the winemaking history of the region.
It is a melancholy fact that independent bookshops are nowadays an endangered species. The mighty Amazon flows remorselessly on.
In preparation for a visit to the Hungarian countryside, pick up the first volume of Count Miklós Bánffy’s sprawling and elegiac “Transylvanian Trilogy.” Now a part of Romania, Transylvania was for centuries an autonomous Hungarian province, with a culture similar to that of regions in Hungary today.
David Broom, author of The World Atlas of Whisky, a book I enjoy perusing for it cogent look at the many global iterations of this noble spirit, has just come out with a new book.
Located at the foot of the Corcovado and part of Tijuca National Park, Rio’s Botanical Garden is among the finest in the world.
My favorite portable bird book has become The Sibley Field Guide to Birds
This month's issue of the Andrew Harper Traveler features Montreux on Lake Geneva, Switzerland (as well as the Dents du Midi mountain range beyond), which happens to be the locale that inspired the classic novel "Frankenstein."