[Note from Frolic: We are so excited to welcome author Jenna Evans Welch to the site today. She’s recommending some books for those with wanderlust! Take it away, Jenna!]
Your suitcase has a family of mice living in it. Your passport is moonlighting as a coaster for your favorite coffee mug. You haven’t been anywhere in ages and who knows how long it will be until you’re back to trotting around this globe of ours. (But really. Does anyone know how long?) The year is 2020 and along with all manner of other worries and stressors, you are dealing with a serious case of wanderlust. Believe me, I get it.
Under normal circumstances I suffer from chronic, low-level wanderlust. But tell me I can’t travel and suddenly I’m filling up Pinterest boards, and bookmarking travel sites, and making mental lists of beaches and museums and landmarks I must see, and let me tell you, all of this pining away isn’t helping. Not at all. It probably isn’t helping you either. So what do we turn to when times get tough? All together now…
We’ll turn to books of course.
I am a true lover of travel romance novels. I love them so much that I’ve written an entire series of girl abroad stories set in three of my most favorite places on earth (Italy, Ireland and Greece). Here’s the thing: we all know there is nothing better than a really good romance. The meaningful looks, the soft lighting, the witty banter. But take all that and place it in a location that is new and beautiful and exciting? You had me at hello.
So here’s what we’re going to do. We are going to read our way to new and exciting locations. We will vicariously eat baguettes and walk beneath cherry blossoms. We will adventure. This list includes a few of my favorites as well as a few on my to-read list. Snuggle up to that glowing screen of yours, we have a new kind of list to make.
Anna and the French Kiss, by Stephanie Perkins
I’m obviously starting here. Paris, movies, and one alarmingly cute boy. Also, did you know there is a new 10th anniversary edition and it is GORGEOUS?
I Love You So Mochi by Sarah Kuhn
Kyoto, estranged grandparents, and fashion. I have even heard rumors that there is something called a pub café in this one. Must read!
Keep My Heart in San Francisco by Amelia Diane Coombs
The Golden City, underground bowling, and an ex best friend that is annoyingly turning into something more?
I See London, I See France by Sarah Mylnowski
The grand tour of Europe, a tricky situation back home, and a life that needs some redefining. This one reads like the whirlwind trip that it is.
An Abundance of Katherines by John Greene
A road trip, a washed-up child prodigy, and an unusual habit of falling for girls named Katherine. Just checking that you all read this one. I laughed so much.
Up to This Pointe by Jennifer Longo
An ex-ballerina, Antarctica (!!), and a ghostly visitation. I have read exactly one other book set in Antarctica so I am obviously dying to read this.
Now a Major Motion Picture by Cori McCarthy
Ireland, a movie set, and a name that is hard to live up to. Yes, there are cute movie stars.
Dear Haiti, Love Alaine by Maika Moulite and Maritza Moulite
Haiti, a family curse (!), and an obnoxiously charming coworker. There’s nothing like a good, twisty family history. Waiting anxiously for this one to arrive on my doorstep.
With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevado
Spain, a teenaged mother, a very big dream. There are simply not enough good things to say about this one.
Love & Olives by Jenna Evans Welch (yes, this one is mine)
A Greek island, a famous lost city, and a heart that needs some mending. I had an incredibly time writing this, perfect for anyone in need of some sunshine and an adventure.
Bon voyage and enjoy!
About the Author:
Jenna Evans Welch was the kind of insatiable child reader who had no choice but to grow up to become a writer. She is the New York Times bestselling author of Love & Gelato, Love & Luck, and Love & Olives. When she isn’t writing girl abroad stories, Jenna can be found chasing her children or making elaborate messes in the kitchen. She lives in Salt Lake City, Utah, with her husband and two young children. Visit her online at JennaEvansWelch.com.
Love & Olives by Jenna Evans Welch, out November 10!
From the New York Times bestselling author of Love & Gelato comes a Mamma Mia!–inspired tale about a teen girl finding romance while trying to connect with her absent father in beautiful Santorini, Greece.
Liv Varanakis doesn’t have a lot of fond memories of her father, which makes sense—he fled to Greece when she was only eight. What Liv does remember, though, is their shared love for Greek myths and the lost city of Atlantis. So when Liv suddenly receives a postcard from her father explaining that National Geographic is funding a documentary about his theories on Atlantis—and will she fly out to Greece and help?—Liv jumps at the opportunity.
But when she arrives to gorgeous Santorini, things are a little…awkward. There are so many questions, so many emotions that flood to the surface after seeing her father for the first time in years. And yet Liv doesn’t want their past to get in the way of a possible reconciliation. She also definitely doesn’t want Theo—her father’s charismatic so-called “protégé”—to witness her struggle.
And that means diving into all that Santorini has to offer—the beautiful sunsets, the turquoise water, the hidden caves, and the delicious cuisine. But not everything on the Greek island is as perfect as it seems. Because as Liv slowly begins to discover, her father may not have invited her to Greece for Atlantis, but for something much more important.