Château de Chambord, Haluski, Country House Stories, Booker Prize & More: Endnotes 22 March

Château de Chambord, Haluski, Country House Stories, Booker Prize & More: Endnotes 22 March

Friday, 22 March, 2024

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.


That beautiful and imposing castle above is the Château de Chambord in the Loire Valley (almost smack-dab in the middle of France). Construction on the château began in 1519 (!) by François I, King of France from 1515-1547 (and in-your-face rival of King Henry VIII of England and Holy Roman Emperor Charles V). Although it looks quite fancy to our eyes, the château was intended to be a hunting lodge for François; his official royal residences were at the Château de Blois (3 1/2 hours away by foot, 90 minutes on horseback), and Château de Amboise (an 11-hour hike away and a 2-day ride). The Château de Chambord is surrounded by immense formal French gardens, which you can get a glimpse of in this aerial shot and this website. To take a look inside, here’s Rick Steves’ short video tour — and this video that answers the question: Is Chambord the most magnificent and recognisable Renaissance palace in the Loire?

  • Good luck with this quiz about famous literary destinations.

  • These modernist churches in India are pastel-colored and so very Wes Anderson.

  • Enjoy this love letter to haluski, ‘It’s a dish that’s easy to fall in love with, even if you have no cultural context. Haluski sits easily in the category of winter comfort food, alongside stews and soups you might serve in colder months. And while none of the ingredients in haluski inherently sound like something that would get me all that excited (okay, maybe the butter), combined they turn into a humble, filling dish that is more than the sum of its parts.’

  • This is very alluring:


New Episode of The Library of Lost Time

In each mini-podcast episode, we discuss two books at the top of our TBR, then share a fun book- or travel-related distraction. Get all the episodes and books galore here.

yellow rambutan restaurant sign viewed through the black wrought iron arches of borough market
Photo courtesy of Borough Market.

In this episode, we get excited about two books: The Morningside by Téa Obreht and James by Percival Everett. Then Mel tells us about an unforgettable Sri Lankan meal at Rambutan. [transcript]

This episode is brought to you by BetterHelp. Give online therapy a try at and get on your way to being your best self.


Distraction of the Week: Rambutan Restaurant in London


May you revel in your home being your castle.

Top image courtesy of Wilfried Santer/Unsplash.

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Every Friday, we share our favorite book- and travel-related links. This week, we've got the first detectives, a historic hotel on the French Riviera, trying to learn Czech, cozy fiction, Palestinian food, and more.
Every Friday, we share our favorite book- and travel-related links. This week, we've got a literary guide to the Oscars, vintage signs from Madrid, 12 animal-shaped buildings, a musical Wuthering Heights, and more.
Every Friday, we share our favorite book- and travel-related links. This week, we've got breakfasts from around the world, a look at The Remains of the Day, an interview with Tana French, a bookish painting, and more.

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