Every Friday, we celebrate the weekend — and all the reading and relaxing and daydreaming time ahead — with Melissa's favorite book- and travel-related links of the week. Why work when you can read fun stuff?!
This post is part of our Endnotes series.
The stone house above is found on the Isle of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides, just off the northwestern coast of Scotland. There are 600 miles of roiling, cold Atlantic between its rocky self and Iceland. I’d first heard of it when I read the thrilling (and thrillingly dark) murder mystery The Blackhouse by Peter May for the Scotland episode of our podcast. Now I can’t stop daydreaming about a trip there. There are scenic beaches, ancient Norse mill buildings, a ring of standing stones, and the Blackhouse Village. Here are 39 things to do on the island.
Somewhat related: The consistently excellent Crime Reads rounded up 120 (!) of the most anticipated mysteries, thrillers, and crime novels of the summer.
Perhaps less stressful, here are book picks for all 50 US states, chosen by poets laureate, state librarians, bookstore owners, and other literary luminaries.
Wooden cabinets filled with note-covered cards are irresistible, no? Here’s an ode to the card catalog. ‘The major supplier of catalog cards, OCLC, printed the very last one in October 2015… with the invention of the computer, most libraries converted their systems. Still, like true scholars, librarians wax nostalgic over the catalog systems.’ You can still visit the US Library of Congress card catalog!
Plane delayed for hard to understand reasons pic.twitter.com/uoP1J8rAuh— Daniel P. Aldrich (@DanielPAldrich) May 31, 2022
A carefully curated magazine shop is a fantastic way to lose some time, whether at home or on holiday. Here are seven independent magazine stores to visit in the UK.
#canrelate — I’m Dreading Wearing a Swimsuit on a Group Trip. ‘You deserve to enjoy yourself without thinking about the opinions of others because, ultimately, their opinions about your body are irrelevant—and everyone deserves to feel great in the body they’re in.’
If you missed our session at the Newburyport Literary Festival with the delightful Lan Samantha Chang and her novel The Family Chao, you can now watch it online. Also, this Q&A with Sam at Electric Lit is definitely worth a read. (Get all the videos from the Festival here — I’m very excited to watch this panel about the Gothic tradition in literature.)
Elinor Lipman is the queen of sparkly, frothy novels with something To say. Favorites include The Inn at Lake Devine, Isabel’s Bed, and The Way Men Act. Treat yourself to this lovely essay she wrote for The Washington Post and the summer reads that changed her life.
For your viewing pleasure, Jane Eyre and 9 Other Moody Period Dramas.
We were very excited to be included on this Lifehacker list: 10 Podcasts to Help You Find Your Next Favorite Book. So many new-to-me shows are included, and I immediately added a bunch to my podcast feed.
When things on Instagram make me say, ‘Whoa,’ I share them with you.
Ahem. I have gotten lost many times because I must follow stairs and alleys to see where they lead. Here’s a love letter to the magic of alleyways. ‘Halfway down the alley… my attention rested on a faded purple stencil, a sight I’d passed a thousand times but never studied closely. In thick block letters, stamped on a garage beneath an insult to the cops, some fellow alley pilgrim had left a five-word message… THIS IS A SACRED MOMENT.’
The world’s longest suspension bridge recently opened in the Czech Republic!
Personal catnip: 11 Novels That Thwart Traditional Narrative Structure (to Brilliant Effect).
8 Glorious Ocean Pools in Europe — and 5 Historic Swimming Pools in the US.
Summer Reading Bingo is a really fun way to gamify your summer reading — and a membership for our Patreon is one of the prizes.
Does the phrase ‘pocket globe’ intrigue you? Take a look at this beautiful collection.
Last week, we featured How to Be Eaten by Maria Adelmann in The Library of Lost Time. Here’s an excerpt of the novel. Spoiler: It’s awesome.
In each 5-minute show, we share two new book releases at the top of our TBR, then celebrate a fun book- or travel-related distraction. Get all the episodes and books galore here.
In this episode, we get excited about two new book releases: Hide by Kiersten White and Born to Be Hanged by Maria Adelmann. Then we discuss the very soothing, compelling cooking videos from Azerbaijan on the Country Life Vlog.
Watch and subscribe to the Country Life Vlog on YouTube.
Meet Aziza and her family in this interview.
The video for cold Okroshka Soup.
And a complete recipe for the soup, in case you want to make it yourself.
Top image courtesy of Pearse O'Halloran/Unsplash.
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