Have you ever wondered what life was like for Hemingway in Spain, or what in Rhode Island inspired H.P. Lovecraft? The New York Times: Footsteps is a collection of short essays written by travelers who have followed in the footsteps of iconic writers and written about their experiences. This book collects the travelogues from the Footsteps portion of The New York Times to put them all in one convenient place.
L.M. Montgomery’s Prince Edward Island comes alive for a traveler who went to hunt out the inspiration of Anne of Green Gables. The French villas that inspired F. Scott (and Zelda) Fitzgerald are explored by a writer who goes to a town now usually just used by the locals or the ridiculously wealthy. James Baldwin’s exodus to Europe is explored by a man who feels a kinship to the writers life as a gay man escaping America. The book covers incredibly iconic writers; this does not mean by any stretch of the imagination that you will have read or know all of them. That’s half the fun of this book; be prepared to either want to hop on a plane immediately or go to your local library and load up on works from authors you’ve not yet enjoyed. Heck, take the book with you on the plane!
The New York Times: Footsteps is a highly dangerous book for me to have in my possession as I feel that at any moment in time I could max out my credit cards and go on a literary pilgrimage. This is not necessarily a good idea and I’m sure my day job would not appreciate my sudden departure. Still, this book should be lovingly read before being passed on to your favorite bookworm or world traveler.