A packing list wouldn’t be complete without a book (or five) to read while you travel to your final destination. Whether you’re going near or far, these 10 books will be the perfect companions for your upcoming travel plans.
1. If you’re traveling to Europe, read The Wonder of Now by Jamie Beck
Peyton Prescott would give anything to forget her traumatic battle with breast cancer but because her brother convinced her to write a memoir about the experience, she’s now having to promote the book widely. Traveling to Europe for her book tour, she’s excited to relax and reconnect with the place where she draws inspiration from. But her publicist has other plans as his firm’s success rides on the tour being a smash hit. The two must find a way to get what they both want out of the trip and when the tour begins to spin out of control, they’ll both be forced to question everything they thought they knew about themselves.
2. If you’re traveling to the Caribbean, read Dominicana by Angie Cruz
Ana Cancion is only 15 when she’s proposed to by Juan Ruiz. As much as she’s not ready to get married, she knows it will help her family eventually emigrate to the United States from the Dominican Republic. Getting married and moving to New York City, she realizes that her new life is nothing like she expected and quickly finds herself miserable. But a new chance for happiness arises when her husband returns to the Dominican Republic to support his family and she’s left to enjoy her life with the help of Juan’s brother, Cesar. By the time Juan returns to Ana, she will be forced to make a difficult decision that will change both of their lives forever.
3. If you’re traveling to the Northwest, read The Nine by Jeanne McWilliams Blasberg
Hannah Webber’s dreams come true when she finally gets pregnant with her son, Sam. Spending his young life constantly doting on him, she finds that her marriage suffers due to the attention she gives her son. Years later, as Sam turns 14, he is excited about his acceptance into a prestigious boarding school in New England because it means independence from his mother. While Sam enjoys his freedom, his world is turned upside down when he witnesses sexual misconduct at the school. While he feels the need to speak up about the incident, his mother thinks otherwise, locking the two in a conflict that will majorly impact their relationship.
4. If you’re traveling across the Atlantic, read Find Me by André Aciman
The follow-up to Call Me By Your Name brings readers back to the lives of Elio and Oliver, 20 years after the first book ends. Living in Paris, Elio is now a well-respected classical pianist, involved in a new love affair, while his father has also found a relationship that has given him a new lease on life. Meanwhile, Oliver has made a life for himself in New England as a professor with his new family but still contemplates traveling across the Atlantic to connect with his lost love.
5. If you’re traveling through the Southwest, read A Song for the Road by Rayne Lacko
When 15-year-old Carter Danforth’s father left his family six years ago, he left his son with a passion for music that he couldn’t shake. Now, Carter’s hometown has just been rocked by a catastrophic tornado, leaving his mother injured and in the hospital. While his mom wants him to fly to Reno to stay with his sister, Carter has other plans and embarks on a trip from Oklahoma to California to find his father. On the way, he meets a slew of unique characters from the Southwest who teach him more about life than he could have ever imagined.
6. If you’re traveling to the West Coast, read The Nobodies by Liza Palmer
Joan Dixon has hit a roadblock in life having just been let go from her role as a journalist at a dying newspaper. While she’s confident in her skills, she’s single without any love or job prospects. Just when she thinks she’s at her lowest, she is offered a junior copywriter position at a Los Angeles start-up, Bloom, completely turning her life on its head and starting anew. With a steady paycheck, a new group of friends and a hopeful love interest, she finds herself thriving once again… until she starts to thoroughly investigate the history of Bloom and realizes the best story of her journalism career could be the one that ends her newly found success.
7. If you’re traveling to the Midwest, read Twine by Monica Duncan
Art school graduate Juniper Kowalski has just found out she’s pregnant, now carrying the child of her married lover. Expecting a child, living in her late grandmother’s trailer and working as a hotel maid, she’s terrified that her future is shaping up to be bleak. Instead of dwelling on her sad existence, she channels that hurt and disappointment into public art installations around the city. As she explores her creative self and comes to terms with her new life as a mother, she tries her best to forgive the men who have wronged her in the past and accept love from a new and deeply-flawed man.
8. If you’re traveling to the Pacific Northwest, read Juliet Takes A Breath by Gabby Rivera
Juliet Milagros Palante has just come out to her parents and while she felt confident that they’d still accept her, she finds that her admission has caused her mother to outcast her completely. Reeling from the traumatic experience, she flys to Portland, Oregon where she plans to intern for one of the greatest feminist writers alive, Harlowe Brisbane. Expecting that Brisbane can help her figure out what it means to be a Puerto Rican lesbian, she is shocked to find that Harlowe is not the woman she imagined. But through this new experience, she learns what it is to be true to herself and accept herself for the woman she has come to be.
9. If you’re taking a cross country road trip, read Unpregnant by Jenni Hendriks and Ted Caplan
At only 17, Veronica Clarke thinks she has her entire future figured out. But her dreams of heading off to college are banished when she finds out she’s pregnant and decides there’s only one way to handle this discovery: an abortion. The only problem facing Veronica now is that the nearest abortion clinic is over 900 miles away and she doesn’t have a car. Determined to make the best of her situation, she and her ex-boyfriend take off on an adventure full of stolen cars, broken friendships and other crazy mishaps.
10. If you’re traveling around the world, read Turbulence by David Szalay
Turbulence documents the life of 12 strangers who navigate the world one flight at a time. Focusing on each of his characters separately, Szalay recounts a life-changing event that not only affects them but also affects the stranger they just met on the plane. No matter where in the world these characters go–Madrid, Sao Paulo, Toronto, Dehli–they find themselves up against new challenges and budding relationships along the way. A book that heavily focuses on plane rides and the people you meet along the way, this novel makes for a perfect travel read.