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SMITHSONIAN JOURNEYS

European Coastal Civilizations

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

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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 Oysters of Locmariaquer

The Oysters of Locmariaquer

by Eleanor Clark

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 2006
  • PAPER
  • 203 PAGES

Winner of the 1965 National Book Award, this paper edition of Clark's pleasurable portrait of the hardy oystermen and byways of coastal Brittany is introduced by Mark Kurlansky. (FRN152, $13.99)

Eyewitness Guide Northern Spain

Eyewitness Guide Northern Spain

by Eyewitness Guides

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2013
  • PAPER
  • 264 PAGES

A literate, visually rich guide to Northern Spain from Galicia across Asturbias and the Basque Country to La Rioja to the Pyrenees. (SPN315, $25.00)

Spain & Portugal Adventure Map

Spain & Portugal Adventure Map

by National Geographic

  • 2011
  • MAP

A double-sided full color map of Spain and Portugal at a scale of 1:1,000,000 with good shaded relief, topographic detail, roads and waterways. (SPN22, $12.95)

 
Brittany Map

Brittany Map


by Michelin Travel Publications

  • MAP

A regional map of Brittany by Michelin at the very good scale of 1:200,000. (FRN79, $11.95)

France Map

France Map


by Michelin

  • MAP

A colorful, accurate and up-to-date map of France at a scale of 1:1,000,000. (FRN07, $12.95)

Galicia Map 571

Galicia Map 571


by Michelin Travel Publications

  • MAP

A nicely detailed regional map of Galicia (1,400,000), east to Oviedo and south to Porto and Salamanca. (SPN53, $11.95)

Santiago de Compostela Map

Santiago de Compostela Map


by Freytag & Berndt

  • 2008
  • MAP

A walking map of the city at a scale of 1:10,000. (SPN375, $11.95)

Blue Guide Channel Islands

Blue Guide Channel Islands


by Peter McGregor Eadie

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 1998
  • PAPER
  • 160 PAGES

A compact guide to the Channel Islands with a focus on history, culture and architecture. It includes 8 maps and site plans, and travel information. (GBR148, $19.95)

Eyewitness Guide Brittany

Eyewitness Guide Brittany


by Eyewitness Guides

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2013
  • PAPER
  • 288 PAGES

A thorough, gorgeously illustrated guidebook. (FRN401, $25.00)

Fodor's Paris' 25 Best

Fodor's Paris' 25 Best


by Fodor's

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2014
  • PAPER
  • 96 PAGES

This shirt-pocket map and guide includes essential information on the city's history, highlights and sightseeing, ideal for a short visit to the City of Light. (FRN41, $13.99)

Rick Steves' Portugal Guide

Rick Steves' Portugal Guide


by Rick Steves

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2013
  • PAPER
  • 320 PAGES

A personable, practical guide in the growing series by travel guide Rick Steves. (PGL43, $19.99)

Rough Guide France

Rough Guide France


by Rough Guide

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2013
  • PAPER
  • 1268 PAGES

A comprehensive guide to France, covering history, art, music and culture in detail. With a region-by-region overview of attractions and practical travel information. (FRN183, $27.99)

French Provincial Cooking

French Provincial Cooking


by Elizabeth David | Julia Child

  • FOOD
  • 1999
  • PAPER
  • 524 PAGES

More than just a cookbook, in this influential classic, David includes a long introduction on the origins of food traditions in France, and asides on history, food traditions, literature and the pleasures of rural France. (FRN174, $18.00)

Life and Food in the Basque Country

Life and Food in the Basque Country


by Maria Jose Sevilla

  • FOOD
  • 1992
  • PAPER
  • 170 PAGES

A portrait of Basque life as seen through the people who practice its culinary traditions. Each chapter profiles the traditions and histories of the Basque butcher, fisherman, housewife, kaiku-maker (or society cook), with some traditional recipes. (SPN125, $14.95)

The Food of France

The Food of France


by Waverly Root

  • FOOD
  • 1992
  • PAPER
  • 450 PAGES

An evocative and beautifully written survey of French food. First published in 1958 and revised in the mid-1970s, the book covers the important regions of French cuisine by dividing them into domains of Butter (northern France), Fat (Alsace) and Oil (the south). (FRN17, $18.00)

The Food of Spain

The Food of Spain


by Claudia Roden

  • FOOD
  • 2011
  • HARD COVER
  • 576 PAGES

Claudia Roden brings her authenticity, vision and knowledge to little-known and classic dishes of Spain, a treasure trove of not just hundreds of recipes but also folk tales, proverbs, stories, poetry and local history. Lavishly illustrated with many sumptuous photos -- it will be hard to resist wanting to try your hand at these dishes, both classic and modern. (SPN466, $45.00)

A Traveller's History of France

A Traveller's History of France


by Robert Cole

  • HISTORY
  • 2008
  • PAPER
  • 256 PAGES

This fast-moving survey covers the conquests of ancient Gaul through the heady days of revolution to modern times. (FRN08, $14.95)

A Traveller's History of Portugal

A Traveller's History of Portugal


by Ian Robertson

  • HISTORY
  • 2002
  • PAPER
  • 352 PAGES

A lively, admirably concise survey from prehistory to the present, great for travelers to Portugal who would like an overview of the country's history and culture. (PGL32, $14.95)

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)

D-Day June 6, 1944

D-Day June 6, 1944


by Stephen Ambrose

  • HISTORY
  • 1995
  • PAPER
  • 655 PAGES

Ambrose's riveting popular account of the climactic battle of WWII. (FRN40, $19.99)

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)

The Roads to Santiago, The Medieval Pilgrim Routes Through France and Spain to Santiago de Compostela

The Roads to Santiago, The Medieval Pilgrim Routes Through France and Spain to Santiago de Compostela


by Derry Brabbs

  • CULTURAL PORTRAIT
  • 2008
  • HARD COVER
  • 256 PAGES

This gorgeous book celebrates the shrine Santiago de Compostela and the medieval routes through France and Spain -- each a World Heritage site -- in 220 color photographs. (SPN369, $60.00)

Art of the Middle Ages

Art of the Middle Ages


by Janetta Rebold Benton

  • ART & ARCHITECTURE
  • 2004
  • PAPER
  • 320 PAGES

This informative, well-illustrated survey of the visual arts of the Middle Ages offers a lively explorations of the period's magnificent achievements in both art and architecture. (ART163, $18.95)

The Gothic Enterprise, A Guide to Understanding the Medieval Cathedral

The Gothic Enterprise, A Guide to Understanding the Medieval Cathedral


by Robert A. Scott

  • ART & ARCHITECTURE
  • 2005
  • PAPER
  • 294 PAGES

An enthusiast, Scott delves into the history, design, architecture and wonder of Europe's medieval cathedrals and great Abbey churches. (EUR190, $26.95)

Cork Boat, A True Story of the Unlikeliest Boat Ever Built

Cork Boat, A True Story of the Unlikeliest Boat Ever Built


by John Pollack

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 2005
  • PAPER
  • 291 PAGES

This endearing tale of family, loss and friendship revolves around a deliciously absurd childhood quest to build a boat of cork and sail it 133 miles on Portugal's Douro River. (PGL42, $14.95)

Going Home to Glory: A Memoir of Life with Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1961-1969

Going Home to Glory: A Memoir of Life with Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1961-1969


by David Eisenhower

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 2011
  • PAPER
  • 323 PAGES

The revered general's only grandson penned this intimate memoir about his grandfather's last days, spent leading his political party while imparting a wealth of knowledge and experience to his grandson. (USA564, $20.99)

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)

Journey to Portugal, In Pursuit of Portugal's History and Culture

Journey to Portugal, In Pursuit of Portugal's History and Culture


by Jose Saramago

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 2002
  • PAPER
  • 464 PAGES

Jose Saramago's richly detailed account of his journey across Portugal in 1979. He combines his vivid impressions of the Portuguese landscape and people with a dose of history, fiction and meditation. (PGL23, $17.00)

Pilgrimage to the End of the World, The Road to Santiago de Campostela

Pilgrimage to the End of the World, The Road to Santiago de Campostela


by Conrad Rudolph

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 2004
  • PAPER
  • 144 PAGES

An engaging, literary account of 11 weeks of travels from Le Puy along the way of St. James, 1,000 miles all told. (SPN220, $17.00)

Travels with My Donkey

Travels with My Donkey


by Tim Moore

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 2006
  • PAPER
  • 328 PAGES

In this wickedly comic account of grand adventures on the 500-mile pilgrimage to Santiago de Campostela with a French-speaking donkey, Moore salts his anecdotes of fellow travelers and grand adventures with an account of the history and culture of the medieval Way of St. James. (SPN242, $15.99)

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)

Don Quixote

Don Quixote


by Miguel de Cervantes | Edith Grossman

  • LITERATURE
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 976 PAGES

Any Spaniard will acknowledge his pervasive the influence of Cervantes' masterpiece remains in Spanish culture. And any English reader of Edith Grossman's new translation of this classic will laugh all the way to Iberia! (SPN211, $16.99)

France, A Traveler's Literary Companion

France, A Traveler's Literary Companion


by William Rodarmor

  • ANTHOLOGY
  • 2008
  • PAPER
  • 256 PAGES

This collection contains literary gems from all corners of France--not just Paris--by a select group of 20th-century French writers from Colette to Simenon. (FRN767, $14.95)

Legends and Romances of Brittany

Legends and Romances of Brittany


by Lewis Spence

  • LITERATURE
  • 1997
  • PAPER
  • 448 PAGES

A broad anthology that draws on varying strains of the Breton tradition, including Arthurian legends, the lays of Marie de France and tales of Breton saints as well as more standard fairy stories. (FRN354, $11.95)

Paris in Mind

Paris in Mind


by Jennifer Lee

  • ANTHOLOGY
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 288 PAGES

With selections spanning 300 years, this wonderful anthology reflects America's long connection to Paris and the French. The 30 American writers tapped include Benjamin Franklin, Ernest Hemingway and David Sedaris. (FRN412, $16.00)

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

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society


by Mary Ann Fiery Shaffer

  • LITERATURE
  • 2009
  • PAPER
  • 304 PAGES

A war-time tale of charm and finesse set on the island of Guernsey in 1946. (GBR783, $15.00)

The History of the Siege of Lisbon

The History of the Siege of Lisbon


by Jose Saramago | Giovanni Pontiero

  • LITERATURE
  • 1998
  • PAPER
  • 314 PAGES

In this historical novel by the Nobel Prize-winning author, the past is rewritten when a Portuguese proofreader adds a false word to a history book, resulting in a whole new perception of the Siege of Lisbon. (PGL11, $14.00)

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.