Silver Travel Book Club

Silver Travel Book ClubWe know you love travelling, and we also know that many Silver Travellers are just as passionate about books. So what could be better than combining both? 

Our Literary Editor Andrew Morris, has introduced us to TripFiction, a wonderful website focusing on books with a strong sense of place, allowing you to see a location through an author's eyes.  

Andrew MorrisImagine reading Ernest Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises as you sip a cold beer in a Pamplona street, just before the running of the bulls for the Festival of San Fermin. Or Agatha Christie's Death on the Nile, as you slowly wend your own way through Egypt, waiting for the dinner gong on board a cruise booked with one of Silver Travel Advisor's trusted partners. Or perhaps you just want to explore exotic Italy from the comfort of your own armchair, following the devious antics of The Talented Mr. Ripley through the pages of Patricia Highsmith's psychological thriller. 

Each month, we'll find out what Andrew is reading .and the location he's visiting. You can join him and - thanks to TripFiction and their publishing contacts - two lucky Silver Travel Book Club readers can even win a free copy of the book.

Andrew's Book of the Month - July

This month Andrew is reading The Talented Mr. Ripley. Written by Patricia Highsmith in 1955, this is a stylish psychological thriller and the author's first outing for Tom Ripley. Four more followed and the series has collectively become known as the Ripliad. But the original remains the best known, partly no doubt because of the hugely successful 1999 film adaptation, starring Matt Damon, Jude Law and Gwyneth Paltrow.

The Talented Mr RipleyTom Ripley is a low-life chancer, languishing in New York, until offered an attractive proposition by wealthy shipping magnate Herbert Greenleaf; go to Italy and retrieve errant son Dickie from his hedonistic lifestyle, and persuade him to return to the US to join the family business.

Tom ingratiates himself into Dickie's entourage and is soon enjoying the luxurious life too. Reluctant to return to his own sad life, how far will Tom go to ensure he lives as self-indulgent an existence as Dickie?

Taking us from 'Mongibello' to San Remo, Rome and Venice, the author effortlessly transports the action around Italy and inside the head of twisted, talented sociopath Tom Ripley.

We’d love to hear about your own adventures in Italy. Join the Forum thread and the best five entries from Silver Travellers will win a copy of The Talented Mr. Ripley.

Andrew's Book of the Month - June

This month Andrew is reading Into the Water by Paula Hawkins, the much anticipated follow up to her 2015 blockbuster debut The Girl on the Train.

Into the Water by Paula HawkinsBased in the imaginary town of Beckford, in rural Northumberland, Paula describes her new novel as “a psychological suspense novel centred on the fractured relationship between two sisters, Nel and Jules. When Nel dies unexpectedly, Jules finds herself trying to figure out not just what has happened to her elder sister, but what has happened between the two of them to leave them so estranged. This is a book of many mysteries. It is about searching for answers, for meaning.”

“Jules is afraid. So afraid. Of her long-buried memories, of the old Mill House, of knowing that Nel would never have jumped. And most of all she’s afraid of the water, and the place they call the Drowning Pool . . .”

Into The Water is a very different read to the Silver Travel Book Club’s first Book of the Month – Rosanna Ley’s The Little Theatre by the Sea – in terms of genre, complexity and location!

The winners of the June Book Club Prize were Sally Hill and Denise Bridge who are both delighted to win a copy of Into the Water.

Andrew's Book of the Month for May

Rosanna Ley - The Little Theatre by the SeaIn May, Andrew was reading Rosanna Ley's latest novel The Little Theatre by the Sea. The author whisks you off to sunny Sardinia, with an enchanting tale of intrigue and romance, whilst immersed in local food, wine and culture. And travelling with Silver Travel Advisor partner Sardatur Holidays, Andrew is planning to visit sunny Sardinia to follow in the footsteps of Rosanna's principal character, interior designer Faye.  

AlgheroHe will visit the real town that becomes fictional Deriu in the novel, the location of the mystery-laden Little Theatre by the Sea. He'll visit the walled Catalan city of Alghero, which Faye explores with her father on a road-trip while they both mark time at important times in their lives. And he'll force himself to try some of the Sardinian food and wine that Faye enjoys whilst working on the historic theatre.

Read all about Andrew’s trip to Sardinia in search of Faye.

The winners of the May Book Club Prize were Sally Dowling and Mags Addison who were each delighted to win a copy of The Little Theatre by the Sea.


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Other Members' Thoughts - 16 Comment(s)

  • AndrewMorris
    about 1 month ago
    @wallers - thanks so much for the enthusiastic comment and welcome to the Silver Travel Book Club!

    Our first book was Rosanna Ley's "The Little Theatre by the Sea", based in Sardinia. I have just got back from there, following in the footsteps of the author, her characters and locations. Read about my adventures #OnLiteraryLocation here: https://www.silvertraveladvisor.com/forums/travel-places/5823-silver-travel-book-club

    Our current book is "Into the Water" by Paula Hawkins, based in rural Northumberland. If you haven't already found it, there is a separate Forum thread here, where the best two entries talking about their own Northumbrian adventures and memories: https://www.silvertraveladvisor.com/forums/travel-places/5903-silver-travel-book-club-book-of-the-month-june-2017

    Good luck and enjoy!

    Andrew
  • wallers
    about 1 month ago
    What a fabulous idea. I have joined immediately!
  • DRSask
    about 1 month ago
    No, we didn't get to Dunstanburgh Castle but there is always next time! We did get to Paxton House though and the Union Chain Bridge and Chain Bridge Honey Farm which are both worth a visit.
  • AndrewMorris
    about 2 months ago
    Thanks @DRSask for your thoughtful comments on Northumberland. Did you find Dunstanburgh Castle too? The walk to its romantic ruins, south of Bamburgh and then on to the beautiful fishing port of Craster for a pub lunch (their famous smoked kippers, or something else fishy), is another magical way to spend a few hours on the Northumberland coast.

    There is now a separate forum thread for the June Book of the Month - Into the Water by Paula Hawkins - here, by the way: https://www.silvertraveladvisor.com/forums/travel-places/5903-silver-travel-book-club-book-of-the-month-june-2017

    And don't forget to check out http://www.tripfiction.com/ for books firmly located in the places you have already visited...or why not before you travel, and during your trip?

    Happy reading, and happy travelling!

    Andrew
  • DRSask
    about 2 months ago
    I just returned from a week in Northumberland with family and we thoroughly enjoyed exploring an area none of us had been to before. We stayed in a cottage not far from Berwick-upon-Tweed - a great rail link for our day trips to Edinburgh and Newcastle. The weather was dry though often windy, especially on the coast. It was too windy the day we went to Seahouses to take a trip to the Farne Islands so we ended up at Bamburgh Castle and it was wonderful. There was an exhibit of Peter Phillips' paintings, many of them of the castle, and we all bought prints - delightful reminders of the stunning scenery. Another day we spent walking on Lindisfarne Island - again amazing scenery of the coast. We walked on average just over 8 miles/day. Everywhere we went the people were friendly and welcoming. It is definitely an area we will return to on future trips. I enjoy reading about places I have visited so I can visualize where the characters are.
  • SilverMarie
    about 2 months ago
    Thank you, Riverside Rouge - I will keep my eyes peeled! Andrew - I will check out TF. What a great way to plan for a trip. It beats packing!! My son will be doing a couple of months with a Chinese owned logistics firm. Can't wait, but has to pass his finals first... :)
  • AndrewMorris
    about 2 months ago
    Hello Silver Travel Book Clubbers

    I’m off to Sardinia in June, to follow in the footsteps of Rosanna Ley’s character Faye from The Little Theatre by the Sea, the first Silver Travel Book club of the month.

    Thanks to Silver Travel partner Sardatur Holidays, I’ll be staying on the west coast of this beautiful island and close to unspoiled Bosa, the town that was the inspiration for Rosanna’s fictional village of Deriu. It’s here where Faye helps with the restoration of the village’s old theatre, and uncovers secrets from the past that nobody could have foreseen.

    I will try to bring some of Faye’s story to life for you, meeting some of the people from this pastel-coloured village on the river Temo, immersing myself in the area’s history culture, food and wine, just as Faye did.

    Join me on this literary journey….the essence of TripFiction http://www.tripfiction.com/

    Andrew
  • AndrewMorris
    2 months ago
    @SilverMarie - TripFiction.com is the place to go for books to transport you to UK & Singapore ahead of your trip. Just sign up and search the TF database for books to help you see those exotic locations through an author's eyes.

    Other Silver Travellers are probably better qualified to give ideas on art & poetry etc., but I'll put my creative thinking cap on too.

    What a great trip to look forward to this summer. What is your son doing in HK?

    Andrew
  • Riversiderouge
    2 months ago
    Well Silvermarie, I have no knowledge of Hong Kong, other than the experiences of my late brother who spent the biggest part of his national service in Hong Kong with the Royal Artillery. History tells us that his job was to repel refugees and asylum seekers from crossing from mainland China. From what he told me though, he seemed to spend most of his time entertaining the native female population!

    I'm not at all sure that this is any use to you in understanding the place better, but if you come across a local with european features, say hello from their Uncle Riversiderouge!!!!
  • SilverMarie
    2 months ago
    Hello all! I am heading to Hong Kong and Singapore this summer to travel a little with my son who will be finishing up an internship in Hong Kong. I have no connections with the area and only a limited knowledge of the history, so would like to get up to speed with the culture but not in a dry way - it would be fantastic to get Silver Traveller recommendations of books, art, poetry or whatever you feel will give me a sense of the place. Thank you in advance!
  • AndrewMorris
    2 months ago
    @Claire_S - where did you spend your disappointing weekend break in Sardinia? What a shame! It's such a beautiful island with a rich history and multiple influences, you really must go back. I've been to Alghero, a really interesting Catalan port on the west coast - with incredible food - but I'm really looking forward to exploring more places in Sardinia, in the footsteps of the book's character, and reporting back to Silver Travellers. Hopefully, I'll have some ideas to help give you a better experience next time...

    @Riversiderouge - I haven't read The Island yet, but I can imagine a trip to Spinalonga Island would be a very moving experience. Victoria Hislop does vast research for her books, and captures places and history really well, doesn't she? I loved learning about Thessaloniki's tumultuous history through her characters in The Thread. I don't think she has strayed far from Greece in her novels yet, but perhaps she might one day...

  • Claire_S
    3 months ago
    The only time I went to Sardinia was for a weekend break which turned out to be extremely disappointing, so it would be great to discover Sardinia through this book - it might inspire us to try again!
  • Riversiderouge
    3 months ago
    I enjoyed reading "The Island" by Victoria Hislop, based on the Leper Colony on Spinalonga Island in Crete.
  • AndrewMorris
    3 months ago
    Thanks for the encouraging feedback @Geoff....we hope plenty of others love the Silver Travel Book Club too!

    Did you enjoy Thessaloniki? A friend lent me The Thread before going there, and it really helped us to understand the city's history better. I even tweeted Victoria Hislop when we were there, to ask where one of the churches in the book were.

    https://www.silvertraveladvisor.com/blog/destination-features-europe-greece/thessaloniki-a-historical-and-modern-greek-city

    The essence of TripFiction and exactly why we set up the Silver Travel Book Club.
  • Geoff
    3 months ago
    Just a brilliant idea. It is great to get a sense of a place when you're preparing for a trip, and even more fun to identify the places once you're there. I've done that with a couple of Victoria Hislop's books, The Thread particularly.
    Looking forward to reading more and getting the recommendations.
    Enjoy Sardinia.
  • AndrewMorris
    3 months ago
    Well...are we right about Silver Travellers loving books as much as travel?

    Welcome to the first adventure for the Silver Travel Book Club.

    Rosanna Ley's The Little Theatre by the Sea takes us to Sardinia, where newly qualified interior designer Faye is hired to restore the beautiful - but sadly now crumbling - old theatre in Deriu. It turns out to hold some rather interesting secrets...

    Where have you been in Sardinia, and what captivated you most? The two best entries on this forum thread will each win a hardback copy of the book, and we can follow in Faye's Sardinian footsteps together.

    Looking forward to loads more adventures with you and the Silver Travel Book Club. Where would you like to go next?

    Andrew