Around the World with Politics & Prose

THE WORLD IN BOOKS

Each day we receive a lot of questions: Who is tonight’s speaker? Where can I find The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo? And, of course -- where are the stairs?

But some of our favorite requests come from the travelers (armchair or otherwise: the questions begin “I am going to...” or “I want to learn more about...” and conclude “I want to read something set there.” We love this type of literary matchmaking, so we have compiled a list of our favorite novels from around the world.

This list is in no way comprehensive or meant to be the final word. It is intended to spark conversation and exploration. But, if you’re journeying to Dublin, Denmark, or Duluth; intrigued by Kyoto or Kuwait; or want to discover Accra or Azerbaijan, browse our list. Visit the store to see our beautiful map display. And most importantly, come talk with us. Keep asking us those questions. We also love hearing your suggestions. We look forward to traveling the globe and sharing literature with you!

-- Lila Stiff, Sarah Baline & Elizabeth Sher

Click the title links to read more about these books and to buy them online.

 

The Bone People: A Novel Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780140089226
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Books - October 7th, 1986

THE PACIFIC

AUSTRALIA
The Lieutenant
, Kate Grenville

The Slap, Christos Tsiolkas

 

MALAYSIA
Evening is the Whole Day
, Preeta Samarasan

 

NEW ZEALAND
The Bone People
, Keri Hulme  


THE PHILIPPINES
Ilustrado
, Miguel Syjuco


TASMANIA
Wanting
, Richard Flanagan


A Golden Age: A Novel Cover Image
$13.99
ISBN: 9780061478758
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Harper Perennial - January 6th, 2009

ASIA

South Asia

AFGHANISTAN
The Wasted Vigil,
Nadeem Aslam

The Swallows of Kabul, Yasmina Khadra

A Thousand Splendid Suns, Khaled Hosseini

 

BANGLADESH
A Golden Age
, Tahmima Anam

INDIA

The Death of Vishnu
, Manil Suri

The White Tiger, Aravind Adiga

Family Matters, Rohinton Mistry

Midnight's Children, Salman Rushdie

Toss of a Lemon, Padma Viswanathan


NEPAL

The Inheritance of Loss,
Kiran Desai


PAKISTAN
The Reluctant Fundamentalist
, Mohsin Hamid

In Other Rooms, Other Wonders, Daniyal Mueenuddin

 

SRI LANKA
Anil’s Ghost
,
Michael Ondaatje


The Surrendered Cover Image
ISBN: 9781594489761
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Riverhead Books - March 9th, 2010

ASIA
East Asia

BURMA
The Piano Tuner
,
Daniel Mason

 

CAMBODIA
The Disappeared
,
Kim Echlin


CHINA

Thread of Sky
, Deanna Fei

Brothers, Yu Hua

Wild Ginger, Anchee Min

Women of the Silk, Gail Tsukiyama


HONG KONG

The Piano Teacher
, Janice Y. K. Lee

 

JAPAN
Memoirs of a Geisha
,
Arthur Golden

The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, Haruki Murakami


KOREA
The Surrendered
,
Chang-Rae Lee


THAILAND

Fieldwork
, Mischa Berlinski


VIETNAM

A Good Scent From a Strange Mountain
, Robert Olen Butler

Matterhorn, Karl Marlantes

The Lotus Eaters, Tatjana Soli


The Master and Margarita (Vintage International) Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780679760801
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Vintage - March 19th, 1996

RUSSIA & CENTRAL ASIA

AZERBAIJAN
Ali & Nino
, Kurban Said

THE CAUCASUS
Hadji Murad
,
Leo Tolstoy


MONGOLIA

Shadow Walker,
Michael Walters

 

RUSSIA
Collected Stories of Ivan Bunin
, Ivan Bunin

Moscow
In the First Circle, Aleksander Solzhenitsyn
The Master and Margarita
, Mikhail Bulgakov

Leningrad (St.Petersburg)
City of Thieves
, David Benioff

Siberia

Life and Fate
, Vasily Grossman
The Russian Dreambook of Color and Flight
, Gina Oschner


TAJIKISTAN

Soul
, Andrei Platonov 


UZBEKISTAN

The Railway
, Hamid Ismailov


Secret Son Cover Image
$13.95
ISBN: 9781565129795
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Algonquin Books - March 9th, 2010

THE MIDDLE EAST & NORTH AFRICA

EGYPT
Taxi
, Khaled Al Khamissi

 

IRAN
Censoring an Iranian Love Story
, Shahriar Mandanipour


IRAQ

I’jaam: An Iraqi Rhapsody
, Sinan Antoon 


ISRAEL
A Tale of Love and Darkness
, Amos Oz

 

KUWAIT
A Map of Home
, Randa Jarrar


LEBANON

The Hakawati,
Rabih Alameddine

 

MOROCCO
Secret Son,
Laila Lalami


PALESTINE
Gate of the Sun
, Elias Khoury


SAUDI ARABIA
Eight Months on Ghazzah Street
,
Hilary Mantel

Girls of Riyadh, Rajaa Alsanea


TUNISIA
Pillar of Salt
, Albert Memmi


TURKEY
The Towers of Trebizond
,
Rose Macaulay

The Museum of Innocence, Orhan Pamuk

The Lovers, Vendela Vida


Half of a Yellow Sun Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9781400095209
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Anchor - September 4th, 2007

AFRICA

BOTSWANA
A Change of Climate
,
Hilary Mantel

 

ETHIOPIA
Beneath the Lion’s Gaze
, Maaza Mengiste

Cutting for Stone, Abraham Verghese


GHANA
Eddie Signwriter
, Adam Schwartzman

 

KENYA
Wizard of the Crow
,
Ngugi wa Thiong’o

The Constant Gardener, John LeCarré

NIGERIA
Purple Hibiscus
, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

I Do Not Come to You By Chance, Daobi Tricia Nwaubani


RWANDA

Baking Cakes in Kigali
, Gaile Parkin  

 

SENEGAL
So Long A Letter
, Mariama Ba 


SOUTH AFRICA

Agaat
, Marlene van Niekerk

The Power of One, Bryce Courtenay

Disgrace, J.M. Coetzee


SUDAN
Season of Migration to the North,
Tayeb Salih

What is the What, Dave Eggers 


ZIMBABWE
The Boy Next Door
,
Irene Sabatini


The Ice Princess Cover Image
$25.95
ISBN: 9781605980928
Availability: Backordered
Published: Pegasus Books - June 15th, 2010

SCANDINAVIA

DENMARK
Smilla’s Sense of Snow
,
 Peter Hoeg


GREENLAND

An African in Greenland
, Tete-Michel Kpomassie


ICELAND
Independent People
, Haldor Laxness

NORWAY
Kristin Lavransdatter
, Sigrid Undset 


SWEDEN
The Ice Princess
,
Camilla Lackberg

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Stieg Larsson


The Colony of Unrequited Dreams: A Novel Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780385495431
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Anchor - May 2nd, 2000

CANADA

MANITOBA
A Complicated Kindness
, Miriam Toews

NEWFOUNDLAND
The Colony of Unrequited Dreams
, Wayne Johnston  

The Shipping News, Annie Proulx


NOVA SCOTIA

What is Left the Daughter
, Howard Norman 

 

ONTARIO
The Deptford Trilogy
,
Robertson Davies

 

TORONTO
The Blind Assassin
,
Margaret Atwood


VANCOUVER
Obasan
,
Joy Kogawa


American Rust: A Novel Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780385527521
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Spiegel & Grau - January 12th, 2010

THE UNITED STATES

EAST COAST
A Meaningful Life, L.J. Davis
Let the Great World Spin, Colum McCann
The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears, Dinaw Mengestu
American Rust, Philipp Meyer
 

NEW ENGLAND
Caucasia
, Danzy Senna
The Namesake, Jhumpa Lahiri
The Beans of Egypt, Maine
, Carolyn Chute 

MIDWEST
Everything, Kevin Canty
Middlesex, Jeffrey Eugenides
The Story of Edgar Sawtelle, David Wroblewski
Stoner, John Williams

WEST COAST & PACIFIC NORTHWEST
Play It As It Lays, Joan Didion
The Living, Annie Dillard
The Girl Who Fell From the Sky, Heidi Durrow
The Cookbook Collector, Allegra Goodman
Snow Falling on Cedars,David Guterson
What We Were Doing and Where We Were Going, Damion Searls

ALASKA
Correcting the Landscape, Marjorie Kowalski Cole
The Yiddish Policemen’s Union, Michael Chabon

THE SOUTH
Bastard Out of Carolina, Dorothy Allison
Citrus County, John Brandon
All the Living, C.E. Morgan
The Moviegoer, Walker Percy

TEXAS & THE SOUTHWEST
Blood Meridian, Cormac McCarthy
The Bean Trees, Barbara Kingsolver
Nothing Happened and Then It Did, Jake Silverstein


The Informers Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781594484674
Availability: Backordered
Published: Riverhead Books - July 6th, 2010

MEXICO, THE CARIBBEAN & SOUTH AMERICA

MEXICO

Into the Beautiful North
, Luis Alberto Urrea

The Lacuna, Barbara Kingsolver

2666, Roberto Bolaño


DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
In the Time of the Butterflies
, Julia Alvarez

The Brief, Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, Junot Díaz


HAITI

Krik? Krak!,
Edwidge Danticat 


CUBA

Telex from Cuba
, Rachel Kushner


PERU

Lima Nights
, Marie Arana


BRAZIL

Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands
, Jorge Amado

The Hour of the Star, Clarice Lispector

 

ARGENTINA
The Ministry of Special Cases
, Nathan Englander

Story of the Night, Colm Toibin

 

COLOMBIA
The Informers
,
Juan Gabriel Vasquez

 

CHILE
Daughter of Fortune
, Isabel Allende

By Night in Chile, Roberto Bolaño


The Shadow of the Wind Cover Image
By Carlos Ruiz Zafon, Lucia Graves (Translated by)
$17.00
ISBN: 9780143034902
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Penguin Books - January 25th, 2005

EUROPE

BARCELONA
The Shadow of the Wind
and The Angel’s Game, Carlos Ruiz Zafón

 

BERLIN
Every Man Dies Alone
, Hans Fallada

Berlin Noir, Philip Kerr


BUDAPEST
The Invisible Bridge,
Julie Orringer

 

CATALONIA
The Spanish Bow,
Andromeda Romano-Lax

 

IRELAND
Christine Falls,
Benjamin Black

The Last September, Elizabeth Bowen


FLORENCE

The Doorbells of Florence
, Andrew Losowsky


LISBON
Night Train To Lisbon
,
Pascal Mercier

 

LONDON
Atonement
,
Ian McEwan

White Teeth, Zadie Smith


MADRID
Sepharad
,
Antonio Muñoz Molina 

 

THE NETHERLANDS
In The Image
,
Dara Horn

The Assault, Harry Mulisch

 

PARIS
Paris Stories
, Mavis Gallant

The Dud Avocado, Elaine Dundy

The Elegance of the Hedgehog, Muriel Barbery

 

POLAND
Market Day
, James Sturm

 

PRAGUE
Vita Nuova
, Bohumil Hrabal

The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Milan Kundera

 

ROMANIA
In the Land of Green Plums
,
Herta Muller

 

ROME
The Imperfectionists
, Tom Rachman


SCOTLAND
The House on Fortune Street
, Margot Livesey

SARAJEVO

The Lazarus Project
, Aleksander Hemon

 

UKRAINE
Everything is Illuminated
, Jonathan Safran Foer

 

VIENNA
The Man Without Qualities
Robert Musil