Home 2018-03-19T03:04:41-08:00

NEWS

Billy Gogan Sequel Launches Spring Books

We’re getting a jump on spring with the publication of Billy Gogan, Gone fer Soldier, book two in the Billy Gogan series from Solas House Fiction. Follow Billy’s adventures as he flees New York and joins the army and lands in the Mexican-American War where he becomes an aide to the young officer Ulysses S. Grant. Later this spring look for Strange Tales of World Travel by Gina and Scott Gaille (with a foreword by Don George), who recount fifty of the most amazing stories they’ve been told in travels to more than 100 countries. Then get ready for The Girl Who Said No, Natalie Galli’s exploration of Sicily in search of the woman who broke a 1000-year-old Sicilian tradition by refusing to marry her abductor.

Solas Awards Winners Announced

Congratulations to the winners of the Thirteenth Annual Solas Awards for Best Travel Story of the Year. Grand Prize winner David Robinson collected $1000 for “The Mystery of the Sahara,” his poignant evocation of a place and a person both shrouded in mystery. Matthew Félix won the silver award and $750 for “The Citroën and the Pomegranate,” his engaging account of an astonishing set of coincidences on his travels from Istanbul to Barcelona to Hvar. Sivani Babu took the bronze and $500 for “The House on KVR Swamy Road,” her moving reflection on family life and the passage of time on a visit to her grandparents’ house in Rajahmundry, India.

NEW BOOKS

The Best Women’s Travel Writing, Volume 11

The Best Women's Travel Writing, Volume 11 presents stimulating, inspiring, and uplifting adventures from women who have traveled to the ends of the earth to discover new places, peoples, and facets of themselves. The common threads connecting these stories are a female perspective and fresh, compelling storytelling to make the reader laugh, weep, wish she were there, or be glad she wasn't. The 31 true travel stories in this year's collection are, as always, wildly diverse in theme and location. They tell of places like California and Cuba, Switzerland and Singapore, Iran and Iceland, Montana and Mexico and Mongolia and Mali, our own back yards and some of the farthest, most extreme corners of the world. They are the personal stories we can't help but collect when we travel, stories of reaching out to embrace the unfamiliar and creating cross-cultural connections while learning more about ourselves.

100 Places in Italy Every Woman Should Go, 3rd Edition

100italy_s“Makes me want to pack my bag and follow Van Allen’s alluring suggestions...she reveals an intimacy with Italy and a honed sense of adventure. Andiamo!” —Frances Mayes, author of Under the Tuscan Sun.

Imagine creating your Italian dream vacation with a fun-loving savvy traveler girlfriend whispering in your ear. Go along with writer Susan Van Allen on a femme-friendly ride up and down the boot, to explore this extraordinarily enchanting country where Venus (Vixen Goddess of Love and Beauty) and The Madonna (Nurturing Mother of Compassion) reign side-by-side. With humor, passion, and practical details, this uniquely anecdotal guidebook will enrich your Italian days.

100 Places in Spain Every Woman Should Go

100spain_front-cover-highDISCOVER SPAIN'S BEST PLACES FOR WOMEN

Patricia Harris began her love affair with Spain shortly after the death of dictator Francisco Franco, and she has since witnessed the country’s amazing renaissance in art, culture, and cuisine. Drawing on three decades of intimate acquaintance, she leads readers down to the docks of fishing villages, along twisting mountain roads, into the shoe outlets of Elche, out to the muddy saffron fields of La Mancha. She takes you through the streets of Sevilla, Madrid, Barcelona, and San Sebastian to dark flamenco clubs, sybaritic public baths, endlessly inventive tapas bars, design shops full of mantillas and fans, and into a brightly tiled chocolatería for hot chocolate and churros at 3 a.m.

Harris explores art from Velázquez to Picasso, architecture from the phantasmagoria of Gaudí’s Sagrada Familia to the cool suspension spans of Santiago Calatrava. She tells tales of formidable Spanish women, from a fourth-century b.c. goddess to a queen who wrested Spain from the Moors, and to twenty-first-century winemakers who have elevated Spain’s Toro and Rueda onto the world stage. Literary, sexy, whimsical, and spiritual, 100 Places in Spain Every Woman Should Go is for the smart and curious traveler who wants to see Spain, her way.

The Best Travel Writing, Volume 11

besttravel-v11_high2-webCELEBRATING GREAT TRAVEL WRITING

Travelers’ Tales publishes books about the world and life-changing experiences that happen on the road. The Best Travel Writing, Volume 11 is our latest collection of great stories guaranteed to ignite your wanderlust.

Includes Grand Prize Winners, Solas Awards

Introduction by Rolf Potts

Billy Gogan, American

BillyGogan1844 Ireland is on the eve of the Great Hunger The Promised Land of New York is a dangerous place

Billy Gogan’s father has just died in an English prison in Dublin, and 15-year-old Billy has been cast from cousin Séamas’s house and forced to make his way to America. Aboard a ramshackle old ship, Billy befriends a destitute Irish peasant named Máire and her daughter Fíona, and together they endure a harsh and perilous passage to America’s greatest city. When they finally reach New York, they get separated as they debark, and Billy searches tirelessly for them in the brutal Five Points, the city’s greatest slum, ground zero in the collision of Americans, ex-slaves, and Irish refugees. “Higgins is a bare-knuckled storyteller. In this brawny novel, he transports us to the hardscrabble lives of mid-1800s New York Irish immigrants. Though each day brings a new brawl for survival, under Higgins’s deft touch, the heartbeat of tenderness, love, and even racial enlightenment pulses through ‘Gotham’s’ brutal veins.” —Gary Buslik, author of A Rotten Person Travels the Caribbean, and Professor of English, University of Illinois, Chicago

EDITORS’ CHOICE — This Week’s Story

Strangers in the Bush

travelers-talesBy Susan Bloch

Destination Story Gold Winner in the Thirteenth Annual Solas Awards

I’m traveling into unknown territory with a man I just met. His name is Karl, my safari guide here in Namibia, and we’re driving along a coast shaped by death and diamonds. A coast where shifting sand dunes bury secrets, mysteries, and skeletons; where for centuries, Atlantic waves smashed sails, masts, gunwales, and rudders, against treacherous rocks; where secrets drowned and secrets were lost at sea; where secrets skulk in rusted ships’ keels and hulls and lie camouflaged inside the bleached whale ribcages littering the beaches. The secrets of what shipwrecked sailors did to survive the torture of thirst, hunger, and exposure; secrets shared between sailors and prostitutes about buried treasure; and in the late 1930s, how Germany’s secret plan to recapture Southern Africa was smuggled to Nazi sympathizers in the region. These tales had captivated me for decades. But no secret was ever so carefully guarded as that by Karl—his family scandal. The secret I didn’t know when the two of us trekked alone into the bush.