Books – they inspire you, motivate you, educate you, and most importantly a good book will take you on a journey without ever leaving home.
We are both avid readers, and most definitely book lovers. In our homes, shelves are filled with second hand treasures, hardcovers, and well worn paperbacks.
Since we have started writing this blog, we have been discussing how to introduce ourselves to our new readers and friends. We have wanted to share our individual personalities – the yin and yang pairing that makes up the Wandering Gaels. With today being National Book Lovers Days we thought it was a great day to start introducing ourselves more by offering a glimpse onto our bookshelves to share our favourite travel and heritage books.
The more that you read, the more things you will know.
The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.
~ Dr. Seuss
Written By James Hunter (1995)
A Dance Called America is a captivating tale of Scottish Emigration. Backed by an impressive body of research, James Hunter gives a fascinating account of the thousands of Highlanders that left Scotland to make a new life in the New World. Delving into a myriad of topics such as the Revolutionary War, the Fur Trade and the opening of the West, Hunter takes readers on a journey through the vast expanses of the North American continent. A highly recommended read, this book captures the indomitable spirit of the pioneering Scots while highlighting their enormous impact on the New World.
Written By Bill Bryson (2000)
This book takes readers on a delightful journey through Australia’s diverse and expansive landscape. Covering a variety of topics that include Australia’s renowned visitor attractions and iconic wildlife, Bryson also does not shy away from its painful history of colonialism. Bryson’s self-deprecating brand of humour will make you laugh out loud and though packed with amusing anecdotes, it is an enlightening and educational read.
Peggy is currently reading ‘Walks Through Britain’s Past‘
Written By Neil Hegarty (2011)
After watching, and thoroughly enjoying, the BBC documentary ‘The Story of Ireland‘ Meaghan sought out the companion book. The history of Ireland is a captivating tale, that has been told through many lenses and various perspectives. It is dramatic, engaging and relatable. While Ireland has often been cast as the underdog or the country cousin in the story of Europe and the British Isles, Hegarty seeks to advance the argument that Ireland should be viewed as cultural powerful with “a long-established tradition… of openness to overseas influence — a tradition that sprang from long years of inward migration, travel, and human and economic relationships.”
Is this book the complete Story of Ireland? No, how could it be in 380 pages? There are gaps in the book, and perhaps it does not meet all of its’ stated objectives, but it is an enjoyable read. Hegarty provides a well written introduction to the story of Ireland.
Written By Ernest Hemingway (1964)
This may not be considered a travel book by all, but for Meaghan this is the definitive travel book. She purchased this book during her first trip to Paris from the famous Shakespeare & Company Bookstore. Perhaps a little cliche, reading this book on a solo trip to Paris was the embodiment of travel magic (at least IMO). It is a travel memoir written before they were fashionable, and the original tale of wanderlust. Hemingway shares the weather, the boulevards he walked, the cafes he dined in, and the people he met along the way. On the surface this is a little book that celebrates 1920s Paris, that has inspired many travel itineraries, but it is so much more. At its’ finest A Moveable Feast is an intimate glimpse into the life and soul of a great mind.
If you want to escape to Paris this November, but don’t have any vacation days left, this book will transport you and envelop you in the dreamy magic of the city of lights.
Meaghan is currently reading The Break
We hope that you have enjoyed getting to know our favourite travel and heritage books (and us a little better!), and will consider these books! Or with the holidays approaching, will get them to gift and share with family and friends!!