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Guest Post: Bookish Habits Whilst Travelling

travel reading Guest Post: Bookish Habits Whilst Travelling

Is there any better feeling than plotting your reading list for a three-week vacation to the Seychelles? I wouldn't know, never had that pleasure. However, even if it is only for an overnight trip up the road to Los Angeles, I take my reading agenda seriously. That doesn't mean it always goes according to plan.

My last trip was to LA, (or as we in San Diego like to call it, Smell-A). I tagged along on a work trip with my husband because we got to stay at the Regent Beverly Wilshire next to Rodeo Drive. (Reg. Bev. Will. from the Pretty Woman movie, anybody?) Yes, darling, I'm name dropping. This hotel is so nice you don't even have to buckle your seatbelts, because they do it for you!

Though my Kindle was large and in charge, I didn't get a chance to spend any time with her. We ate dinner, went to a TV premier, then neveryoumind what came next. The following morning, I read all the magazines in the room about how cool everything is in LA, with pictures (so bright they're scary) to prove it, and then lathered up with the lovely L'Occitane Verbena shower gel (so at least I smelled like a Beverly Hillbilly). I barely had time to grab the hotel notepad on my way out; something so classy was surely just waiting for my deep thoughts.

I choose books for a trip as carefully as a second-grader with a new library card. I load up my Kindle to savor them on the plane for hours of uninterrupted joy. Until I take a look around and worry that the grass may be greener on the other side of the aisle. What am I missing out on? I plan to start a movement: Holograms on eReaders (HOERs) so we can see what everyone else is reading. (Maybe someone can come up with a better name.)

Before a recent trip to Italy, I read The Botticelli Secret'by Marina Fiorato. Through an intriguing plot, I fell in love with the potty-mouthed, gorgeous Luciana Vetra'part-time model and full-time prostitute in 15th-century Italy. I enjoyed the book so much, it became my mission, whilst in Florence, to see Primavera, the amazing masterpiece by Botticelli which hangs in the Uffizi museum. This painting is the cornerstone of the conspiracy that is central to the story.

It didn't matter how hot and crowded it was standing before that giant, elaborate, magical work of art. (Or how happy I inadvertently made a Danish tourist who stood so close behind me that I was able to identify his gender without even turning around.) The connection I felt, from reading the book, to travelling halfway across the world, to seeing the real deal in person, was humbling.

I wanted to share what kind of books I read on holiday. But, to truly honor the Latin word vacatio, (freedom or exemption from) I like to read tabloids. In bed. Whilst eating a candy bar.

I'm curious'what are your bookish habits whilst travelling?

About the author:

Dee DeTarsio is a TV writer living in southern California and thinks that overusing the word whilst will make her seem cosmopolitan. Visit Dee at her website; follow her on Twitter and on Facebook.


  1. Ahhh as someone who travels very regularly for work, you would think after 5 years of it I would start slacking but no I still take my reading list very seriously. The hardest part of my packing, every week or two, is deciding what books to take. I peruse the shelves and carefully select a few paperbacks, the amount depends on where Ill be, if Ill be alone or with a co-worker, and a few other pieces of information. These then get packed along with the Kindle as a back-up hoard :)

  2. I usually bring at least one book per each day I will be away. I usually dont get to read them all, but at least I know theyre there!

  3. Stephanie /

    Packing for holidays used to be a nightmare for meI like to have a wide range of books so that I can pick whatever I feel like reading at the time. Needless to say, Ive been subjected to a number of excess baggage charges in my time! All I can say is that Im very thankful for my Kindle!

  4. Dear Stephanie,
    Thanks so much for inviting me over (and under!). I hope you are having fabulous and romantic travels! I rarely load up on paper books whilst traveling anymore, but I do make sure to have a variety of genres on my kindledepending upon where the mood (and road) will take me. It is so funny how we seem to have our rituals and habits surrounding our reading selections! Take care!

  5. I like to have at least 1 print book for every day plus my ereader with me but then I never the leave the house without a book or three :)

  6. Stephanie /

    Wow, Shelleyrae, lets hope you never go on a year-long holidayyoud have to bring a whole library with you!

  7. Great post Dee! Im actually heading off to India in June and have been reading plenty of India themed books, i really enjoy getting into the spirit of the country i plan to visit. Its also a great way to learn about their culture and customs so that its not too much of a shock once arriving.