Lists, Reviews

No suitably summative title could be found: A top seven list

This week’s top ten seven list: settings I would like to see more of in modern literature (as hosted by The Broke and The Bookish). I tend to take each novel as it is, there are few (if any?) I clutch and proclaim I must read this because it is set in “insert place here”. However, there are settings I am notably fond of…

The popularity of minimalist posters is a beautiful thing.

The popularity of minimalist posters is a beautiful thing.

Truly, in no particular order:

7. Deadwood (as it appeared in the HBO series). The excessive violence, foul language fluency, and glorious Shakespearean-Western dialogue all made this a place I would’ve liked to see more of. Perhaps in a novel setting…

6. London, one with Benedict Cumberbatch please.

5. Northern New England – particularly Maine and New Hampshire. Yes, there are already plenty of novels set in New England, but it was my home for a long time (so what’s a few more?). I live in Colorado now where everyone hugs and expresses feelings, it’s all very odd. I need the reticence and the wry sense of humor (and really, it’s a little awkward that I still flinch when people try to hug me). If we’re getting specific: more Stephen King, less Jodi Picoult. And if the book gets released in audio format, please get a native speaker. Bad accents are distracting (and sometimes funny): think Nicolas Cage (Con Air (put the bunny back in the box), Captain Corelli’s Mandolin), Kevin Costner (Robin Hood, 13 Days), or anything with Keanu Reeves speaking something other than American English.

4. A setting so funny it was banned in Norway.

3. Boulder, Colorado. Because this town is a place unto itself… And The Stand was partially set here. Curious to see Boulder? Check out the mediocre Catch & Release. It was filmed near the University of Colorado campus while I was a student.

2. Scottish Highlands. I feel like all I find are smutty romance novels (and I use the term smutty with great affection).

1. Westeros. Not to rush genius or anything, but please shorten the wait between books a bit.

So I made it to seven, which is seven more than I thought I could come up with. Any to add? I know I’m probably missing a few places I wouldn’t mind reading about.

Original source unknown, found here on Pinterest. The rest of the images are via Instagram.

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  • picturemereading

    I love the Highlands in Scotland LOL but totally agree hard to find one that is not about burly but sexy scotsmen ;>

    • Rory O’Connor

      I have nothing against a sexy highlander, but do they all have to be over 6’5″? It makes them seem ridiculously unattainable to those of us in the 5’2″ range (because height is the only preclusion). Of course, they are also incredibly wealthy (naturally abundant in all areas), intelligent, and titled.

      Nevermind, I don’t know what I was complaining about. Bring on the smutty romance set in Scotland. (However, with as often as they feel overcome outdoors in the dead of winter, it’s amazing various parts have not fallen off due to frostbite)

      • picturemereading

        ROFL You are cracking me up but I agree..I love Outlander doesn’t get more smutty than that LOL

        • Rory O’Connor

          Ah, yes, Jamie Fraser. Divine.

  • booksaremyfavouriteandbest

    Think I’ll have to watch Catch & Release (ignore the plot and focus on background?!).

    Your King versus Picoult line made me laugh out loud.

    • Rory O’Connor

      Glad I could provide a laugh – though I do take that subject very seriously. 🙂

      I’d watch Catch & Release just for the visual. The plot is fine, but nothing remarkable. It stars Jennifer Garner, Timothy Olyphant, and Kevin Smith. And if you watch it, yes, Boulder is really like that.

      • booksaremyfavouriteandbest

        Oh, I know you’re serious!

  • tlongford

    Deadwood, yes! London, always! And why not Estes Park? (Didn’t they film Somewhere in Time at the Stanley?)

    • Rory O’Connor

      I don’t particularly care for Estes Park, mostly I find it boring. Though the hiking is nice, I don’t know that it is a particularly great setting for a novel unless it involves mutant attacks by the grossly overpopulated elk and deer. I like Boulder for a few reasons: college nostalgia, environmentally friendly, and politically leftist (I know that last one shocks you). 🙂

      I’ve not seen Somewhere in Time, but apparently it was filmed at The Grand Hotel in MI. Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining was partially filmed at The Stanley (quite the name coincidence) and you know I cannot resist a Stephen King adaptation – even the wretched ones. Some things are so bad they are good.

  • Lianne @

    Great list! It’d be lovely if GRRM would hurry up just a bit with ASoIaF, I would also like to see more of Westeros too (I need to re-read the last 2 books again but I’d love to see where the Martells are from (the name escapes me right now)…and Highgarden…and maybe the places northeast on the continent).

    You know, I always wondered why a lot of the romances were set in the Scottish highlands…is this a result of the Outlander books? *pure curiosity*

    Here’s my 10 places for this week’s TTT =)

    • Rory O’Connor

      Quite possibly. Outlander does set the bar pretty high for Scottish romance. I’ve not read the series, but that first book is most excellent. Every person needs a Jamie Fraser.

  • 1girl2manybooks

    Haha, most Scots men seem rather hardy against the weather, don’t they?! And I think more Deadwood-type settings would definitely be awesome!

    • Rory O’Connor

      They do! Sadly, none of the Scottish men I know remotely live up to the unreasonably high expectations I’ve placed on them.

      And I loved Deadwood the TV series, I think of it nearly every time I watch a show with terrible dialogue.

  • Danica Page @Taking it One Page at a Time

    Great books. I agree with all of your picks.

    Here’s mine

    ~Danica Page

    Taking It One Page at a Time

    • Rory O’Connor

      Thanks, I’ll check it out.

  • marissa

    bwahaha everyone hugs and expresses feelings, awesome! These would all be fun
    Marissa @ Rae Gun Ramblings

    • Rory O’Connor

      It’s true, I feel like a fish out of water and I’ve lived here for 10 years now!

  • joanacbettencourt

    I chose London too. Great list!

    Here’s my Top Ten:

    • Rory O’Connor

      I don’t think London could ever be overdone, there are too many wonderful things there.

  • Care

    I recommend Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout if you want to good Mainer attitudes. And for a Scotland setting, I much preferred Emotional Geology by Linda Gillard over Outlander.

    • Rory O’Connor

      I loved Olive Kittredge and I miss Maine. I try to visit family at least once per year, but didn’t this past year. I’m going through withdrawals. I’ll check out Emotional Geology, I even like the title.

  • rubybastille

    “I live in Colorado now where everyone hugs and expresses feelings, it’s all very odd.” Ha! My husband grew up in rural Northern California and he’s always baffled when strangers don’t greet each other in the streets. Not that Portland is an unfriendly city, just not quite as neighborly as he’s used to.

    Was there a story behind #4?

    • Rory O’Connor

      I am very fond of Sweden and Monty Python. When Life of Brian initially came out, it was banned in Norway for blasphemy. Naturally, Sweden (being antagonistic) marketed Life of Brian as “a film so funny it was banned in Norway”.

      I love Portland, I’ll be there this May!

  • worstedK

    Ha, nice list. You description of Maine accents had me laughing it up over here in small town ME. Glad I found your blog thru The Broke and the Bookish, you are hilarious.

    My TTT

    • Rory O’Connor

      Thanks, glad you enjoyed it. I miss living in Maine (and New England in general) and only have the barest hint of an accent anymore. I almost miss it!

  • tarynwanderer

    This is a stellar list! Boulder is such a fun, beautiful place (and I’ve only visited a few times, but it made an impression). I imagine going to school there must have been a wonderful experience! Westeros is definitely a place I’d like to read more about, too–though I’m always baffled when people say they’d want to visit it. Are they reading the same books I am?!

    • Rory O’Connor

      Thanks, Boulder really is an amazing place. The only thing it lacks is an ocean!

      And really, who’d want to visit Westeros? I don’t know what more appealing: the heads on spikes, the wall, or “insert diabolical family here”. Maybe if you’re really lucky you’d be befriended by Baelish – that turns out well for everyone!

      Fascinating place, but only fictionally.

  • Angela @ AJ Arndt Books Blog

    More fiction set in Boulder would be fantastic.

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