7 Novels to Whisk You Far Away

Plus 1 tasty fictional vacation closer to home

After you’re out of college, “spring break” may not automatically mean “beach vacation,” but these books will make you feel like you’ve journeyed to an exotic destination, without leaving the comforts of home. And there’s something for everyone: mystery, romance, spiritual awakening, history, even the ghosts of war.


Wedding Night

Sophie Kinsella

The Greek island of Ikonos, where Sophie Kinsella’s heroine finds herself on a luxurious impromptu honeymoon, may be fictional, but the hilarity that follows is all too real. And the descriptions of the beautiful island will make you wish you too could visit the 5-star Amba Hotel.


The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

Deborah Moggach

The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel is on the big screen this month, so what better time to revisit Bangalore and the first best Marigold Hotel, in Deborah Moggach’s charming and funny novel?


The Paradise Guest House

Ellen Sussman

The Paradise Guest House blends the exotic and beautiful setting of Bali with a moving exploration of life after tragedy.

“Two survivors of Bali’s terrorist bombing find love and spiritual rebirth on an island whose inhabitants believe in reincarnation in Sussman’s touching panorama of paradise. . . . Throughout, Sussman celebrates lovers, quiet healing, and the sweetness of the island and its people.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)



Ruth Reichl

The island of Manhattan may not have white sand beaches and tropical foliage, but Ruth Reichl’s Delicious! will still make you want to head straight there for a mouth-watering meal and a wander through the West Village.


For All Time

Jude Deveraux

Romance, royalty, the ghosts of Nantucket past, and the charm of Nantucket present combine in Jude Deveraux’s Nantucket Brides trilogy. If you love For All Time, check out True Love, the series opener, and Ever After, coming this summer.


The Travel Writer

Jeff Soloway

If you like your fictional journeys with a little international intrigue, go for the first book in Jeff Soloway’s Travel Writer Mystery series, set at a South American resort in the jungles of the Andes.


Travel in time and space with The Lost Sisterhood, which mixes ancient Greek pirates, the Trojan War, and the legendary Amazons with a modern woman’s quest for treasure that takes her from England to North Africa to Greece to the ruins of ancient Troy.


The Frangipani Hotel

Violet Kupersmith

Mingling the supernatural and the mundane, and the immigrant experience with the lives of those who stayed behind, The Frangipani Hotel beautifully evokes Vietnam’s history, culture, and its legacy of war.