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Seville, Madrid & Barcelona

READING AND TRAVEL GUIDE

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Books for

Enrich your travels with reading! Here's a hand-picked list prepared for your journey in conjunction with the book experts at Longitude.

Essential Reading

Item EXSPN266. Buy these 3 items as a set for $51 including shipping, 20% off the retail price.
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Spain, The Root and the Flower

Spain, The Root and the Flower

by John A. Crow

  • HISTORY
  • 2005
  • PAPER
  • 455 PAGES

Take this book with you to Spain: it's an absorbing, well-written account of Spanish cultural history from prehistory to the Romans, Jews, Moors, Golden Age and on to Franco and his legacy in modern Spain. (SPN13, $29.95)

Homage to Catalonia

Homage to Catalonia

by George Orwell

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 1987
  • PAPER
  • 234 PAGES
  • FAVORITE

Orwell's portrait of the Barcelona uprising and the spirit of a city at war is a classic, an observant and heartfelt report from the streets. (SPN03, $14.95)

Spain & Portugal Adventure Map

Spain & Portugal Adventure Map

by National Geographic

  • 2011
  • MAP

A colorful, shaded relief map. (SPN22, $12.95)

 
Culture Smart! Spain

Culture Smart! Spain


by Marian Meaney

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2006
  • PAPER
  • 168 PAGES

This concise, no-nonsense guide to local customs, etiquette and culture provides a short overview of the land and people along with practical travel advice. (SPN342, $9.95)

Eyewitness Guide Barcelona & Catalonia

Eyewitness Guide Barcelona & Catalonia


by Eyewitness Guides

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2014
  • PAPER
  • 208 PAGES

Handsome, convenient and up-to-date, this superbly illustrated guide features color photography, dozens of local maps and detailed information on the region's attractions. (SPN121, $20.00)

Eyewitness Guide Madrid

Eyewitness Guide Madrid


by Eyewitness Guides

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2014
  • PAPER
  • 232 PAGES

This superb guide features bright color photography, dozens of excellent maps and a synopsis of the attractions in and around Madrid. (SPN122, $23.00)

Eyewitness Guide Seville and Andalusia

Eyewitness Guide Seville and Andalusia


by Eyewitness Guides

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2014
  • PAPER
  • 288 PAGES

This wonderfully organized and visually rich guide features excellent maps and essays on the culture, history and geography of the region. With a pullout city map of Seville. (SPN15, $23.00)

Eyewitness Guide Spain

Eyewitness Guide Spain


by Eyewitness Guides

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2014
  • PAPER
  • 672 PAGES

This superb, colorful guide covering all of Spain features bright photography, dozens of maps and a region-by-region synopsis of the country's attractions. (SPN05, $30.00)

Food and Wines of Spain

Food and Wines of Spain


by Penelope Casas

  • FOOD
  • 1982
  • HARD COVER
  • 457 PAGES

This classic collection of 400 recipes, interwoven with cultural commentary and culinary history, is a pleasure to read, but prepare to become hungry. (SPN100, $37.50)

A Traveller's History of Spain

A Traveller's History of Spain


by Juan Lalaguna

  • HISTORY
  • 2001
  • PAPER
  • 304 PAGES

A swift survey from prehistory through the Romans, Goths and Moors to the present. (SPN06, $14.95)

Barcelona

Barcelona


by Robert Hughes

  • HISTORY
  • 1993
  • PAPER
  • 570 PAGES
  • FAVORITE

A Longitude favorite, this big, thoroughly enjoyable cultural history of the city touches on architecture, art, religion and literature from Roman outpost to today. (SPN01, $21.00)

Ghosts of Spain

Ghosts of Spain


by Giles Tremlett

  • CULTURAL PORTRAIT
  • 2007
  • PAPER
  • 396 PAGES

Tremlett captures the Spanish character, history and modern politics in this masterful portrait, interweaving the story of his love for the country (where he has lived for 20 years) with interviews, anecdotes and observation. (SPN323, $19.00)

The Basque History of the World

The Basque History of the World


by Mark Kurlansky

  • HISTORY
  • 2001
  • PAPER
  • 288 PAGES

Kurlansky's engaging portrait of the seven provinces of Basque lands takes in everything from language to culinary heritage, role in the Spanish Civil War and seafaring traditions. (SPN116, $16.00)

The New Spaniards

The New Spaniards


by John Hooper

  • CULTURAL PORTRAIT
  • 2007
  • PAPER
  • 458 PAGES

This survey of the cultural, political and economic changes in Spain since the death of Franco offers an authoritative and compelling look the everyday life of Spaniards. (SPN08, $17.00)

The Ornament of the World, How Muslims, Jews, and Christians Created a Culture of Tolerance in Medieval Spain

The Ornament of the World, How Muslims, Jews, and Christians Created a Culture of Tolerance in Medieval Spain


by Maria Rosa Menocal | Harold Bloom

  • RELIGION
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 272 PAGES

A lively, illuminating portrait of the Andalucian Kingdom, its cultural achievements and religious tolerance from the eighth century to 1492. (SPN185, $16.00)

The Spanish Inquisition

The Spanish Inquisition


by Cecil Roth

  • HISTORY
  • 1996
  • PAPER
  • 369 PAGES

This documents the events leading up to the Inquisition, the torment that spread from Spain to Portugal and the New World -- a fascinating exploration of the roots of the Inquisition and its effects on the country. (SPN91, $15.95)

The Story of the Moors in Spain

The Story of the Moors in Spain


by Stanley Lane-Poole

  • HISTORY
  • 2010
  • PAPER
  • 285 PAGES

A wonderfully readable, sweeping tale of splendor and tragedy, first published in 1866. (SPN12, $18.95)

Goya, Painter of Terrible Splendor

Goya, Painter of Terrible Splendor


by Jeanine Baticle

  • ART & ARCHITECTURE
  • 1994
  • PAPER
  • 175 PAGES

A pocket-size encyclopedia, this slim book is an illustrated overview of the life and times of Goya. It's an illuminating portrait of 18th-century Madrid. (SPN35, $12.95)

Painting in Spain 1500-1700

Painting in Spain 1500-1700


by Jonathan Brown

  • ART & ARCHITECTURE
  • 1998
  • PAPER
  • 283 PAGES

Velazquez and El Greco are but a few of the Spanish artists discussed in this in-depth study of the art produced during Spain's golden age. (SPN183, $44.00)

The Arts in Spain, From Prehistory to Modernism

The Arts in Spain, From Prehistory to Modernism


by John Moffit

  • ART & ARCHITECTURE
  • 1999
  • PAPER
  • 240 PAGES
  • OUT OF PRINT

From the cave painting at Altimira through the Golden Age, to the works of Picasso and Miro, this book documents the course of art in Spain, with 150 illustrations. (SPN102, $19.95)

Driving over Lemons, An Optimist in Andalucia

Driving over Lemons, An Optimist in Andalucia


by Chris Stewart

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 2000
  • PAPER
  • 256 PAGES

Stewart's memoir about moving with his wife to a farm in Alpujarras is charming and insightful. Unlike many expatriates, Stewart manages to ground himself far enough into the community to make lasting friends -- as well as a home for his young daughter. (SPN135, $14.95)

Grammar Lessons

Grammar Lessons


by Michele Morano

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 2007
  • HARD COVER
  • 184 PAGES

Morano, who lived in Oviedo in the early 1990s, reflects on the humor and trials of living in a new language in these 13 essays on travel in Spain and search for self. (SPN345, $22.50)

Iberia, Spanish Travels & Reflections

Iberia, Spanish Travels & Reflections


by James Michener

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 1989
  • PAPER
  • 960 PAGES

In this best-selling travelogue, Michener presents a compulsively readable and well-observed account of his love affair with Spain and all things Spanish. It has achieved the status of a classic, rich in detail and insightful. (SPN16, $8.99)

Spanish Recognitions, The Roads to the Present

Spanish Recognitions, The Roads to the Present


by Mary Lee Settle

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 2005
  • PAPER
  • 358 PAGES

A magical, meditative account of Spanish history, art, archaeology and travels by the noted writer. Settle (Turkish Reflections) conjures Cervantes, El Cid, the Moors, Visgoths, Romans, Lorca and Balboa as she writes of a road trip from Castile in central Spain to the southern coast. (SPN205, $15.95)

Captain Alatriste

Captain Alatriste


by Arturo Perez-Reverte | Margaret Sayers Peden

  • LITERATURE
  • 2005
  • PAPER
  • 304 PAGES

The first book of the swashbuckling series, memorably set in 17th-century Spain. (SPN280, $16.00)

Don Quixote

Don Quixote


by Miguel de Cervantes | John Rutherford

  • LITERATURE
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 1072 PAGES

The most famous work in Spanish literature, rendered in a lively, modern translation. It is the picaresque tale of a romantic, mad gentleman who imagines himself a knight errant. (SPN23, $16.00)

Everything but the Squeal

Everything but the Squeal


by John Barlow

  • LITERATURE
  • 2008
  • HARD COVER
  • 256 PAGES
  • OUT OF PRINT

Barlow, his wife (from Galicia but a vegetarian) and young son gallavant from roadhouse to fine dining establishments, villages and cities in this endearingly offhand, loving account of travels in honor of pork. A delightful, witty guide to the traditions, culinary and otherwise, of the region. (SPN368, $25.00)

Marks of Identity

Marks of Identity


by Juan Goytisolo | Gregory Rabassa

  • LITERATURE
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 352 PAGES

Banned under Franco, this is the story of a man struggling to get along without love for his country or himself. The author has written a number of novels concerning Spain on the periphery of the Western and Islamic worlds. (SPN25, $15.00)

Spain, A Traveler's Literary Companion

Spain, A Traveler's Literary Companion


by Peter R. Bush

  • ANTHOLOGY
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 242 PAGES

This collection of 30 stories form a who's who of contemporary Spanish literature, including writers from Galicia, Leon, the Basque Country, Madrid and Barcelona. (SPN173, $14.95)

The Flanders Panel


by Arturo Perez-Reverte

  • MYSTERY
  • 2004
  • PAPER

Art and intrigue combine over a Flemish painting "The Game of Chess" in this first Perez-Reverte thriller. When a young restorer discovers a secret inscription hidden within the painting, she employs the help of an antiques dealer, an art professor (and ex-lover) and a chess master to discover the secret -- but not before murder ensues. (SPN276, $14.95)

The Shadow of the Wind

The Shadow of the Wind


by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

  • LITERATURE
  • 2005
  • PAPER
  • 512 PAGES

Set in the brooding atmosphere of post-WW II Barcelona, this gripping story-within-a-story has it all: murder, doomed love and a mysterious book which draws the young hero, Daniel Sempere, into the city's dangerous underworld. (SPN298, $17.00)

The Sun Also Rises

The Sun Also Rises


by Ernest Hemingway

  • LITERATURE
  • 1995
  • PAPER
  • 256 PAGES

Hemingway's great novel, which encapsulates the angst of the post-WWI "Lost Generation," is the story of unmoored American and British expats travelling from Paris to Pamplona. (SPN33, $15.00)

More Recommendations

Here are some other groups of books that might be of interest

Longitude provides recommended reading for travelers in partnership with the leading tour operators and travel programs for hundreds of destinations worldwide. We've got the classic, new and hard-to-find books and maps to help you get the most out of your adventures.