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Engrossing Fiction To Take You Around the World

Loves the View "Louise"
The list author says: "If you like to travel through fiction, either over the map in the present or back in time, here are some books that you might want to consider. All are engrossing. Most are page turners."
Palace of Dreams
Palace of Dreams
"ALBANIA - Through the metaphor of a bureaucracy devoted to tracking dreams, the haunted environment of an authoritarian state is described."
Ali and Nino: A Love Story
Ali and Nino: A Love Story
"AZERBAJIAN - Shows how the forces of history and culture affect these two young people in love, one Christian and the other Moslem. Set prior to and during the Russian Revolution, the story may be the story of its mysterious author."
Burmese Days
Burmese Days
"BURMA - A classic examining the lives of those sent to manage a remote colonial outpost of the British Empire. Fresh today as it was when it was written."
The Glass Palace: A Novel
The Glass Palace: A Novel
"BURMA - In the Mitchner saga style, tells the story of a couple (and subsequent generations) "united" on the day the Burmese monarchy fled to India."
Empress Orchid
Empress Orchid
"CHINA - This fictional treatment of China's last Empress Tsu Hsi is my favorite Min novel. The novel gives a sympathetic interpretation of this improbable life."
Snow Flower and the Secret Fan: A Novel
Snow Flower and the Secret Fan: A Novel
"CHINA - Tells the story of two friends in rural 19th century China. One, by dint of her "golden lilies" (perfectly bound feet) marries into a well off family, the other marries, not so well. Bound feet do not save either of them from the drudge of everyday life/work."
Shanghai Girls: A Novel
Shanghai Girls: A Novel
"CHINA/USA - Depicts the lives of two sisters, their childhood and youth in Shanghai, their decision to leave, their emigration to the US, and their subsequent life."
One Hundred Years of Solitude (Harper Perennial Modern Classics)
One Hundred Years of Solitude (Harper Perennial Modern Classics)
"COLOMBIA - A must read for its story and its beautiful prose."
Love in the Time of Cholera (Vintage International)
Love in the Time of Cholera (Vintage International)
"COLOMBIA - Marquez through poetic prose describes the sadder side of love."
The Harafish
The Harafish
"EGYPT - Probably the least famous book of Egypt's most famous author. It tells the story of 10 generations of a family in Cairo."
When We Were Gods: A Novel of Cleopatra
When We Were Gods: A Novel of Cleopatra
"EGYPT - The most engrossing rendering Cleopatra I've read."
Elizabeth I: A Novel
Elizabeth I: A Novel
"ENGLAND. Told as dual memoirs of Elizabeth and her cousin who married, Robert Dudley, Elizabeth's favorite and was the mother of the Earl of Essex who led the ill-fated revolt against Elizabeth."
The Autobiography of Henry VIII: With Notes by His Fool, Will Somers
The Autobiography of Henry VIII: With Notes by His Fool, Will Somers
"ENGLAND. Much has been said about poor old Henry... so what could possibly be his side of the story?  Here it is!  A remarkably researched fictional autobiography. If you know the story of the Tudors, this will have you laughing out loud. Margaret George sustains a marvelous voice for Henry and historical detail through 900+ pages... a real masterpiece."
The White Tiger: A Novel
The White Tiger: A Novel
"INDIA - Walk a mile in the shoes of a man who rose from poverty to be a driver and later an entrepreneur. Through his experience, you can see the world as millions of others do."
The Makioka Sisters
The Makioka Sisters
"JAPAN - This is the story of 4 sisters. Two were married before the family's fortunes started to wane. A suitable husband must be found for sister number 3 before sister number 4 can marry. Each encounter and each year diminish the marital prospects for both. It was written as a newspaper serial, so even more than other page turners, it is designed to keep your interest going."
A Pale View of Hills
A Pale View of Hills
"JAPAN - Through the eyes of a Japanese woman living in England, you see everyday life in Japan immediately following WWII."
Naomi
Naomi
"JAPAN - Describes obsession, not just with a young woman, but with "The West" which the obsessor believes she represents."
Memoirs of a Geisha: A Novel
Memoirs of a Geisha: A Novel
"Japan - Written so well you think it's real."
Things Fall Apart
Things Fall Apart
"NIGERIA - A classic."
Moth Smoke: A Novel
Moth Smoke: A Novel
"PAKISTAN - What is life like for the millions of young people in Pakistan? This novel, set as Pakistan becomes nuclear in the late 1990's, provides a clue."
The Reluctant Fundamentalist
The Reluctant Fundamentalist
"PAKISTAN/USA - What is life like for the young students who leave their home county for education in elite schools in the USA? This book provides insight spanning the 9/11 and its aftermath."
I, Claudius From the Autobiography of Tiberius Claudius Born 10 B.C. Murdered and Deified A.D. 54 (Vintage International)
I, Claudius From the Autobiography of Tiberius Claudius Born 10 B.C. Murdered and Deified A.D. 54 (Vintage International)
"ROMAN EMPIRE - Provides a very plausible interpretation of the turbulent history of the early days of the Roman Empire."
The First Man in Rome (Masters of Rome)
The First Man in Rome (Masters of Rome)
"ROMAN REPUBLIC - This book got me hooked on the McCullough series."
Julian: A Novel
Julian: A Novel
"ROMAN EMPIRE (Eastern). Julian tries to hold back the forces of Christianity and maintain traditional worship of many gods. Vidal masterly defines the issues of this turbulent period."
Wave of Terror
Wave of Terror
"UKRAINE - Through compelling characters and everyday events, you can see how Soviet influence grew in satellite counties. This was written by a man who lived it and published due to the efforts of his daughter. It is worthy of attention and rises to the level of literature."
Burr: A Novel
Burr: A Novel
"USA - My all time favorite novel. Had me laughing out loud. Burr is a neglected historical figure."
Loving Frank: A Novel
Loving Frank: A Novel
"USA - Written as a first person narrative of Frank Lloyd Wright's second wife who defied the mores of her time. She left her stable suburban home to marry into the unstable life of FLW."
The Plot Against America
The Plot Against America
"USA - A well developed alternative history - what if FDR were not elected and the US did not enter WWII against Hitler? Roth shows how people and events could be manipulated to get people without malevolent intent to take part in segregating the population Hitler-style."
The Bonfire of the Vanities
The Bonfire of the Vanities
"USA - Story of a Wall Street bond trader will keep you laughing out loud."