Bookish Things

TTT #5: Ten Books Set Outside The US

***TTT is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish***

I haven’t done a Top 10 Tuesday post in 3 months!!! 3 MONTHS! What is wrong with me?! This week’s topic sounded interesting and challenging, especially since I read mostly fantasy books that obviously don’t take place on Earth. I did come up with 10 books that I actually really enjoyed AND they take place in pretty cool countries!

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A THOUSAND SPLENDID SUNS
By: Khaled Hosseini
SynopsisBorn a generation apart and with very different ideas about love and family, Mariam and Laila are two women brought jarringly together by war, by loss and by fate. As they endure the ever escalating dangers around them—in their home as well as in the streets of Kabul—they come to form a bond that makes them both sisters and mother-daughter to each other, and that will ultimately alter the course not just of their own lives but of the next generation (taken from Goodreads).

I’m sure you’ve all heard of The Kite Runner before, but I decided to go with Khaled Hosseini’s second book, which takes place completely in Afghanistan. This book was heart-wrenching, raw, and beautifully written. It’s definitely one of those books you’ll never forget!

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SAFE AS HOUSES
By: Eric Walters
SynopsisOn October 15th, 1954, Lizzie Hardy walks the children she babysits – David McBride and his kid sister, Suzie – home from school through the pouring rain to their new house near the Humber River in Weston, Ontario. Soon the children realize this is no ordinary rainstorm: first Lizzie notices the river rolling over its banks and into the back yard, then the McBrides call to say the roads are flooded and they are having trouble getting home. Soon the lights go out, then the phones go dead. In a few short hours, the freezing water has invaded the house – and it’s rising fast! Based on true accounts of that terrifying night when Hurricane Hazel hit southern Ontario (taken from Eric Walter’s website).

I had to pick a book that takes place in Canada 😉 This book is kind of terrifying, especially since it’s based on something that actually happened close to home.

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 A GREAT AND TERRIBLE BEAUTY
By: Libba Bray
SynopsisSixteen-year-old Gemma has had an unconventional upbringing in India, until the day she foresees her mother’s death in a black, swirling vision that turns out to be true. Sent back to England, she is enrolled at Spence, a girls’ academy with a mysterious burned-out East Wing. There Gemma is snubbed by powerful Felicity, beautiful Pippa, and even her own dumpy roommate Ann, until she blackmails herself and Ann into the treacherous clique. Gemma is distressed to find that she has been followed from India by Kartik, a beautiful young man who warns her to fight off the visions. Nevertheless, they continue, and one night she is led by a child-spirit to find a diary that reveals the secrets of a mystical Order. The clique soon finds a way to accompany Gemma to the other-world realms of her visions “for a bit of fun” and to taste the power they will never have as Victorian wives, but they discover that the delights of the realms are overwhelmed by a menace they cannot control. Gemma is left with the knowledge that her role as the link between worlds leaves her with a mission to seek out the “others” and rebuild the Order (taken from Goodreads).

I’m not sure if this is cheating…I don’t think it is. But this is a fantasy series set in England! I absolutely loved this trilogy and highly recommend it to everyone! Also the covers are just stunning!

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BLOOD AND BEAUTY: THE BORGIAS
By: Sarah Dunant
SynopsisIs there a family in history more dazzling, dangerous and notorious than the Borgias? A powerhouse of the Italian Renaissance, their very name epitomizes the ruthless politics and sexual corruption of the Papacy. The father, Pope Alexander VI, a consummate politician and a man with a voracious appetite both as Cardinal and Pope. The younger Juan, womanizer and thug, and their lovely sister, Lucretia, whose very name has become a byword for poison, incest and intrigue. But how much of the history about this remarkable family is actually true, and how much distorted, filtered through the age old mechanisms of political spin, propaganda and gossip? What if the truth, the real history, is even more challenging? (Taken from Goodreads)

I honestly can’t stop talking about this book. I read it last year and it’s probably the best historical fiction book I’ve ever read – mostly because the author is a historian and actually did a lot of research to make sure this story was as accurate as possible. It’s literally like learning history, but in a fun way! And it takes place in Italy – who doesn’t like Italy?

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DAUGHTER OF SMOKE AND BONE
By: Laini Taylor
SynopsisAround the world, black hand prints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky. In a dark and dusty shop, a devil’s supply of human teeth grows dangerously low.
And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherworldly war. Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real, she’s prone to disappearing on mysterious “errands”, she speaks many languages – not all of them human – and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she’s about to find out. When beautiful, haunted Akiva fixes fiery eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself? (Taken from Goodreads)

Even though I wasn’t a huge fan of the romance in this book (I’m very picky), the writing and world-building just blew me away. It also takes place mostly in Prague, which is so cool!

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HATCHET
By: Gary Paulson
SynopsisThirteen-year-old Brian Robeson is on his way to visit his father when the single-engine plane in which he is flying crashes. Suddenly, Brian finds himself alone in the Canadian wilderness with nothing but a tattered Windbreaker and the hatchet his mother gave him as a present—and the dreadful secret that has been tearing him apart since his parent’s divorce. But now Brian has no time for anger, self pity, or despair—it will take all his know-how and determination, and more courage than he knew he possessed, to survive. (Taken from Amazon)

Another book set in North-Western Canada (I think) that I read when I was younger. I think I had a thing for survival stories or something…

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HARRY POTTER AND THE PHILOSOPHER’S STONE
By: JK Rowling
Synopsis: lol 😂

I had to, sorry.

 

 

 

 

 

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PEAK
By: Roland Smith
SynopsisAfter fourteen-year-old Peak Marcello is arrested for scaling a New York City skyscraper, he’s left with two choices: wither away in Juvenile Detention or go live with his long-lost father, who runs a climbing company in Thailand. But Peak quickly learns that his father’s renewed interest in him has strings attached. Big strings. As owner of Peak Expeditions, he wants his son to be the youngest person to reach the Everest summit–and his motives are selfish at best. Even so, for a climbing addict like Peak, tackling Everest is the challenge of a lifetime. But it’s also one that could cost him his life. (Taken from Goodreads)
Though this book starts off in New York, it’s main setting is Mount Everest, or at least the climb up to Mount Everest.

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LIFE OF PI
By: Yann Martel
SynopsisLife of Pi is a fantasy adventure novel by Yann Martel published in 2001. The protagonist, Piscine Molitor “Pi” Patel, a Tamil boy from Pondicherry, explores issues of spirituality and practicality from an early age. He survives 227 days after a shipwreck while stranded on a boat in the Pacific Ocean with a Bengal tiger named Richard Parker. (Taken from Goodreads)

I might as well call this post Top 10 Survival Stories That Take Place Outside of the US 😂😂😂

 

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THE WALLED CITY
By: Ryan Graudin
Synopsis730. That’s how many days I’ve been trapped. 18. That’s how many days I have left to find a way out. DAI, trying to escape a haunting past, traffics drugs for the most ruthless kingpin in the Walled City. But in order to find the key to his freedom, he needs help from someone with the power to be invisible…. JIN hides under the radar, afraid the wild street gangs will discover her biggest secret: Jin passes as a boy to stay safe. Still, every chance she gets, she searches for her lost sister…. MEI YEE has been trapped in a brothel for the past two years, dreaming of getting out while watching the girls who try fail one by one. She’s about to give up, when one day she sees an unexpected face at her window….. (Taken from Goodreads)

This book is based off of the real Kowloon Walled City, so technically it takes place there.

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