Rad Reads

These books will take you on a European vacay

Do you ever get the urge to grab your besties, jump on a plane and head to Italy for the weekend? DW, we know flying to Europe isn't exactly feasible between writing your English essay, running lines for the school play and working at your part-time babysitting job (not to mention the expenses of international travel).

But you totally deserve some R&R, so why not at least *read* about Europe? These recs will basically transport you to a paradise full of gelato (or macarons if that's more your vibe). Time for the magical vacay you desperately need—sit back, relax and crack open one of these reads.

Love and Olives by Jenna Evans Welch


We've all felt like we belong in Mamma Mia! at one point or another, so your first stop on this European book tour has to involve the sandy beaches of Greece. 

Love and Olives will take you on the adventure of a lifetime as you travel through Santorini with Olive "Liv" Varankis, who is spending time with her dad to help him make a National Geographic documentary on Atlantis. She is picked up at the airport by Theo, a charming teen who works with her dad, and she gets to spend her vacation living in a bookstore (aka the dream!).

If you've ever wanted to take a deep dive into the mystery that is Atlantis, try some authentic Greek food, see the most amaze sunset in Oia and travel in some beautiful weather, this is the book for you.

Love and Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch


After Love and Olives, you might as well keep going with Jenna Evans Welch's Love and Gelato, set in Tuscany's beautiful city.

This read is all about Lina, who travels to Italy to spend the summer with her dad after her mom's passing. While there, Lina reads her mom's old journal from when she studied in Florence and decides to go on an adventure to learn more about her. With the help of her new friend Ren, Lina gets to explore her mom's past and all the beauty that Italy has to offer, including a secret bakery, the beautiful architecture and history of the Duomo and Ponte Vecchio, a sweet love story and, of course, lots of gelato.

Kisses and Croissants by Anne-Sophie Jouhanneau


Your next stop on this European vacay has got to be France, and you'll get *all* the romantic Parisian vibes from Kisses and Croissants.

This book follows Mia, who is spending her summer attending a ballet program in Paris in hopes of joining a professional ballet company. And there's plenty of crushing—the très beau Louis guides Mia throughout the "City of Love," exploring all the best parts of Paris. This read will take you along for the ride, as you join Mia and Louis in trying delicious pastries (you'll def want a croissant!), seeing beautiful art in Musée D'Orsay and walking along Paris' historical streets.

A Cuban Girl's Guide to Tea and Tomorrow by Laura Taylor Namey


Next up, we have England, which is the backdrop of A Cuban Girl's Guide to Tea and Tomorrow.

This novel focuses on Lila Reyes, a Cuban baker from Miami who is sent to England to spend a few months relaxing and working on her mental health. She isn't exactly having the best time until the witty Orion Maxwell walks into her life.

Orion becomes Lila's personal tour guide, showing her all of the coolest pieces of England, including its music, its countryside and (you guessed it!) its tea. This read will def make you hungry for some baked goods, and you'll be saving up for a ticket to England as soon as you put it down.

Wanderlost by Jen Malone


If you want *all* the best European cities mixed into one book, Wanderlost is the one for you. It follows Aubree, who has to take over her older sister's job of leading a senior citizen tour through Europe. There is, of course, a cute teen boy in the mix, too, which makes this European vacay even better.

This swoon-worthy romance brings you right along on Aubree's tour, full of The Sound of Music references in Austria, breathtaking views in the Netherlands and walks along canals in Italy. Needless to say, it's kind of the perf book to live out your European vacay dreams (from afar, ofc).

Follow us @glbestiebookclub for more book recs!

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Top and slider image: @dreamwithabook


by Maggie Salter | 5/11/2024