We would not like to fall into the cliché that reading is like travelling, because at Spotahome we know that there is nothing like travelling. Now, there isn't anything like reading either: nothing will let your imagination run wild the same way. And since today we can't really decide, we want to talk to you about both things, so that when you read, you can feel like travelling. So, here you have a few classics of European literature to stimulate your desire to get to know the Old Continent in depth.
1. 'Dubliners’, James Joyce
A few months ago, we told you that you didn't need to be a hero to enjoy the streets of Dublin. But for doing this, it's not necessary to delve into the convoluted and endless Ulysses by James Joyce, a masterpiece of Anglo-Saxon literature. In 1914, the author published Dubliners, a collection of 15 short stories which, with both realism and humor, delves into the day-to-day life of society in the Irish capital. If getting to know a city is getting to know its people, Dubliners, it's the perfect opportunity to start learning about the so-called Emerald Isle of Europe. And if that's not enough, take a look at this apartment we've found for you in Dublin.
2. ’Les Misérables', by Victor Hugo
To speak of masterpieces of literature is to speak inevitably of Les Misérables, by Victor Hugo. It's one of the key pieces of literature not only French, but universal, but above all it is a portrait of a very specific moment in the history of France: the June Rebellion (or Paris Uprising) of 1832. Even if it's located in several places, it is mainly set in post-revolutionary Paris and, with more than a thousand pages of high-quality literature, the work became a universal treaty on values such as justice, equality and forgiveness. As it's not exactly a light reading, if you plan to move to the 'City of Light', we have saved you a little time finding this stunning flat for you. Look at all those shelves for your books!
3. ’Danube', by Claudio Magris
The Danube is one of the largest and most important rivers in Europe. It's born in the German Black Forest and crosses ten different countries until its mouth in the Black Sea. The course of this river has inspired musicians, writers, painters and countless creators throughout the history of Europe. Among them is the Italian Claudio Magris, who in 1986 published 'Danube' and automatically became a contemporary classic of literature. The book, halfway between a travel novel and a diary or essay, is a journey not only through the countries of this river, but also through the lives of all those famous European personalities who, near the Danube, played a significant role in the history of Europe.
4. 'Roman Walks’, by Stendhal
At Spotahome, we always like to make it clear that everything we mention, we do because we think it's important. That is why now, as recently on the blog, we talk again about Rome and Stendhal to remind you why the Europe we all know today began in the Eternal City. While the French author suggests in Walks in Rome how to see it in ten days we think that we will never live enough to discover it entirely. Even so, Stendhal certainly saves you a lot of work on the mandatory stops inside the Italian capital. And we also want to save you some time by finding an apartment like this for you. No need to thank us.
5. 'Journey to Portugal', by José Saramago
Originally published in 1980, we could not say that Journey to Portugal is just a travel novel. For Saramago, one of the most important writers of Portuguese literature, this country's lands are endless. And precisely thanks to the also endless imagination of the Nobel Prize for Literature, Journey to Portugal it's more than a tour of the most important common places in the country, going from Lisbon to Aveiro or the Algarve. The work is a reading about the collective memory of a country that served as inspiration for most of the works of this unprecedented novelist. Portugal has always given much to talk about and, as we cannot help but recommend it, here we leave you one of our favorite apartments in Lisbon, the city of 'miradouros'.