January 22, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday: Settings I'd Like To See More Of

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created and hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Every week they post a Top Ten list that they answer and invite every blogger to share their own answers.

This week's Top Ten Tuesday is about settings we'd like to see more of. I think anybody could guess my favourite settings, it's so obvious, especially if you have read my post about my all-time favourite reads. Nevertheless, here are the Top Ten Settings I'd Like To See More Of.
  1. Set in North America in the Victorian Era
  2. Anne of Green Gables: The Sequel (1987)
    That L.M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables is one of my all-time favourite series I’ve mentioned more than once. Hence, that I love this setting und would love to see more of it should come as no surprise. However, I am also in love with Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women, which is set in the Victorian Era too, even though in another country of North America. I should also mention a third favourite of mine, Daddy-Long-Legs (and its sequel Dear Enemy) by Jean Webster, which takes place at the end of the Victorian Era in New York. Anyway, I love this setting and this era because women had already enjoyed some rights and some kind of independence in those parts of the World. My only problem is, I would love to read more books with a similar setting. Any suggestions?

  3. Set in England in the Regency Era
  4. Pride and Prejudice (1995)
    I’m a confessed Janeite; I wrote a doctoral thesis that touches on her oeuvres, I’m the proud owner of 4 different editions of P&P, which I’ve read umpteenth times, and I know many quotes from her works by heart, which I cite whenever possible (e.g. “I have not the pleasure of understanding you”). In addition, I love Regency fashion; hence, I simply cannot resist buying dresses with Empire waistline and/or made from muslin. And of course, my favourite paintings are from and my favourite painters (e.g. Thomas Gainsborough) worked and lived in this Era. So, I’m in love with this Era in general and with Regency England in particular. I don’t like, however, sequels or prequels to Austen’s novels; hence, when I’m in “Regency mood” (which happens quite often), I can’t do anything but re-read her books and re-watch my favourite film adaptations (P&P with Keira Knightley is absolutely no-go). This year, I am going to read a novel by Georgette Heyer in the hope that it will relieve my withdrawal symptoms.

  5. Set in North America in the Era of Settlement
  6. Love Comes Softly (2003)
    One of the book series that were new to me and that I read in 2012 was Janette Oke’s Love Comes Softly. I read it upon seeing the TV series and, even though I was first somewhat irritated by the strange English the characters do speak, I liked the books better than the movies. I loved the genuine faith of the pioneers and I loved to read about the beauty and the hardships of farm life. I also became interested in the cooking of the pioneers, which is why I’ve been flirting with several pioneer cookbooks (e.g. Miriam Barton’s The Pioneer Cookbook and Jane Watson Hopping’s Pioneer Lady’s Hearty Winter Cookbook) since then. I’m also going to read the Little House series by Laura Ingalls Wilder soon, because I loved that TV series too. Nevertheless, I think there is place for more books with this setting.

  7. Set in England in the Edwardian Era
  8. Downton Abbey (2010–)
    Even though Downton Abbey haven’t had its premiere in Hungary yet, I’m one of those lucky people who lived in England exactly at the time, when the Downton Abbey fever suddenly gripped the whole nation. Of course, I caught the fever too, and have been a fan of the setting since then. Hence, I’m very much looking forward to reading E.M. Forster’s Howards End and John Galsworthy’s Forsyte Saga, both of which are set in this Era and on my Classics Club list. Nevertheless, I wish Downton Abbey were based on a book. . .

  9. Set in England in the 1950s
  10. The Body in the Library (1984)
    If you’re following me on Goodreads, you should already be aware of my being a hard-core Agatha Christie fan. I own almost the complete collection (77 out of ca. 90 books) of her works and read all of her crimes, most of them more than once. Miss Marple is one of my favourite characters and I simply love the way of life, the fashion, and the local customs and traditions of 1950s England as depicted by AC. Regrettably, I only know a few novels (other than AC crimes), which have this setting. A good example would be Natasha Solomons’s Mr Rosenblum’s List, which I truly liked and rated with 4 cherries. Nevertheless, if you know some good books set in England in the 1950s, please do let me know.

  11. Set in Modern London
  12. Bridget Jones's Diary (2001)
    As I mentioned above, I used to live in London. Many people dream of Paris, but not me. I was once in Paris and didn’t fall for it. By contrast, I fell in love with London immediately and am still dreaming of returning there sometime and maybe for ever . . . Until then, however, I must limit myself to reading books set in 21th-century London. Of course, I love Bridget Jones’s Diary by Helen Fielding and one of the reasons why I like Emily Giffin’s Something Blue is that the book is set in London. Currently, I’m reading The Corduroy Mansion series by Alexander McCall Smith, which is set (guess what) in London, and I love it. Some days ago, I discovered another chick-lit set in London—From Notting Hill with Love... Actually by Ali McNamara, and I can’t wait to read it. I also have the Shopaholic series on my TBR list. But, it’s not enough. Please give me more!

  13. Set in Modern English Countryside
  14. The Holiday (2006)
    However, my love for modern England is not limited to London, I am also in love with novels set in 21th-century rural England. In 2012, I had the pleasure of reading Helen Simonson’s Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand as well as Gil McNeil’s The Beach Street Knitting Society and Yarn Club. I don’t know why ;-), but each time I read a novel set in the English countryside, I feel a craving for an English afternoon tea and for knitting a sweater. In sum, I’m in need of more novels set in the English countryside.

  15. Set in Modern New York
  16. Sex and the City (1998–2004)
    I loved the TV series Sex and the City, but Candace Bushnell’s book was truly disappointing. I also fell for the movie The Devil Wears Prada, but after reading some poor reviews that Laura Weisberger’s book received, I refrained from reading it. I truly hope that the Shopaholic series will also satisfy my need for a good chick-lit set in 21th-century New York. Do you know a good book with this setting? Please share with me!

  17. Set at a University in the Victorian Era
  18. Maria Montessori (2007)
    It may seem that I’m cheating with this one, because it’s very similar to my first “setting wish.” However, here I’m thinking specifically of campus novels set at the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century. This setting is dear to my heart because without the women of the Victorian/Edwardian Era, who fought for women’s right to study and who actually went to university despite any difficulties and being ridiculed by men, I would have never had the opportunity to earn two master’s degree and a PhD. As I mentioned in my post about my favourite reads, I love Erzsébet Kertész’s Vilma doktorasszony, which is a biographical fiction based on the life of the first Hungarian medicine woman and narrates also her life at the University of Zurich. Until now, I haven’t found, however, any English books with a similar theme and setting. Therefore, I would be happy to get some recommendations.

  19. Set in Judea/Rome in the Early-Christian Era
  20. Ben-Hur (1959)
    I find the Early-Christian Era charming, because there hasn’t been a hierarchal Church yet, there haven’t been ridiculous rules and regulations (such as the compulsory celibacy), and religious faith was simple and genuine. At least, that’s how I imagine that period. Of course, it wasn’t easy to be a Christ at a time when Christians were being persecuted. I have three favourite fictions from this Era, which I re-read every once in while: Lew Wallace’s Ben Hur, Henryk Sienkiewicz’s Quo Vadis, and Patricia St. John’s Twice Freed. You should definitely check these out, if you haven’t already. And, if you know other good books set in this Era, let me know. . .


  1. Not only some fabulous setting suggestions, but you've also suggested some titles to add to my to-read pile. Thanks!

    1. Dear Jess, Thanks for stopping by and I'm happy I could help you. :-)

  2. Excellent list! Also, I totally agree with many!

    1. Dear Samantha! Thanks for stopping by. Kindred spirits are always welcome here...

  3. I completely love the settings and illustrations you chose! And I've got some great ideas about what to read/watch! Thanks!)

    1. Dear Arenel! Thank you very much indeed for the compliments. I'm happy that liked my post and that you've found some new books through it. Happy reading!

  4. Fun for the Downton Abbey shout out! Try Cinders and Sapphires, its a new YA based in this period. Check out my TTT. :-)

    1. Dear Grad Student, thanks for stopping by and recommending a book to me. I'll definitely check it out as well as your TTT!

  5. My husband bought me the Sex and the City book for my birthday one year, because he knew how much I loved the series. I was astonished to find out that the book was actually *nonfiction*, and that the original Carrie was a drug addicted hanger on instead of what we see in the series. I've enjoyed most of Bushnell's fiction books, except for 4 Blondes--that book was a travesty.

    1. Thanks for stopping by and for telling me about your experiences with Bushnell. Maybe I will give her another try...

  6. Amazing picks! I absolutely would love to read more Modern day London novels. I'm a huge fan of Downton Abbey. :)

    Krystianna @ Downright Dystopian

    1. Thank you, Krystianna! I'm so happy that you liked my choices! Now, we only need some authors/publishers who become inspired... :-D

  7. Sorry I'm just now stopping by to comment but OMG I think this was the perfect post for me to get introduced to you and your blog. Can I just draw a ginormous heart around this post and write YES! a thousand times.

    First of all, "North America in the Victorian Era." The Anne books are some of my all-time favorite books EVER so I completely agree with you on this one and that picture just made me want to rewatch the movies all over again. I love them so much, even though they don't follow the books. I also love Little Women! Have you read anything else by Alcott? I also enjoyed her books An Old Fashioned Girl, Eight Cousins and Rose in Bloom. And I haven't read Daddy-Long-Legs yet but I downloaded it last week on my Kindle so I'm excited you've listed it here.

    I'm also a major Janeite. I think I own at least 15 editions of Pride and Prejudice. Have you seen the Annotated Edition published by Harvard? It's gorgeous and incredible! (I'm posting something about all my copies of P&P on my blog next Thursday so you'll definitely have to stop by!) I loved The Grand Sophy by Georgette Heyer - very reminiscent of Austen!

    About pioneers - I really liked The Doctor's Lady by Jody Hedlund. It's based on the story of one of the first couples to travel on the Oregon Trail. It's not like a super literary work or anything, but it was a really enjoyable read. I've also read a few books by Siri Mitchell that are similar.

    Don't even get me started on Downton Abbey. I'm utterly obsessed and in love with it. Have you read anything by Phillip Rock? There is a trilogy by him that's being republished in the US and it looks really good. I also liked the Spoils of Time trilogy by Penny Vincenzi - it's kind of similar. Not exactly, but has a similar feel.

    Since you love modern London, have you read anything by Hester Browne? She has really lovely books set in London and I've enjoyed everything I've read by her.

    Finally, have you read the Mark of the Lion trilogy by Francine Rivers? Not sure it's quite what you're looking for with the last setting on your list, but it's what first came to mind. I loved those books!

    Okay, that's what I have for now. I'm sure I'll think of more but those are a start haha!

    1. Oh, my dear... Hannah, I really LOVE your comment. I love it because (a) it's the longest I've ever gotten (or read for that matter); (b) it contains so many excellent book recommendations; (c) it makes me want to read more and immediately; (d) and it shows you are a kindred spirit, which fact I am absolutely happy about. So, BIG THANKS! And, see you soon in the blogoshpere!

  8. I love your list! And the pictures! Anne, Downton, Love Comes Softly - all are favorite books/shows/movies. The Silver Chalice by Thomas Costain and The Robe by Lloyd C. Douglas are two good Early Christian Era books.

    I echo Hannah, the Mark of the Lion series is pretty good. So is the Doctor's Lady and the Alcott books she mentioned.

    Doc Susie: The True Story of a Country Physician in the Colorado Rockies by Virginia Cornell might fit the women in Victorian universities setting. It's been a long time since I read it and most of it is more about her medical practice in the Rockies after getting through med school.

    1. Dear Rina! Thanks for stopping by and for your book recommendations! I'll certainly check them out, as they all seem very promising. I also visited your blog and was very impressed! Do you really work in Africa? WOW! I have deep respect for you!


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