I’m lumping these together because I’m weak on both of them. I’ve read more than I’ve listed here but I haven’t read a lot that has been really great. I need to find more books in these areas.


A Trip to the Beach: Living on Island Time in the CaribbeanA Trip to the Beach: Living on Island Time in the Caribbean by Melinda Blanchard
My rating: 3 of 5 stars


I list this one primarily for the life changing Caribbean Corn Bread recipe in it. I’ve tweaked this over the years to make it vegan and not quite so likely to clog your arteries on sight, but in any incarnation it is amazing!

Turn Right at Machu Picchu: Rediscovering the Lost City One Step at a TimeTurn Right at Machu Picchu: Rediscovering the Lost City One Step at a Time by Mark Adams
My rating: 4 of 5 stars


“July 24, 1911, was a day for the history books. For on that rainy morning, the young Yale professor Hiram Bingham III climbed into the Andes Mountains of Peru and encountered an ancient city in the clouds: the now famous citadel of Machu Picchu. Nearly a century later, news reports have recast the hero explorer as a villain who smuggled out priceless artifacts and stole credit for finding one of the world’s greatest archaeological sites.”

And that’s it. Pathetic, huh. It is especially so since some of my major travel experiences are in this region. I stayed 5 weeks each in Costa Rica and Bolivia.

TBR list

For this read-a-long I decided to specifically look for fiction set in South America. I’m going to read:

Inés of My SoulInés of My Soul by Isabel Allende

“Born into a poor family in Spain, Inés, a seamstress, finds herself condemned to a life of hard work without reward or hope for the future. It is the sixteenth century, the beginning of the Spanish conquest of the Americas, and when her shiftless husband disappears to the New World, Inés uses the opportunity to search for him as an excuse to flee her stifling homeland and seek adventure. After her treacherous journey takes her to Peru, she learns that her husband has died in battle. Soon she begins a fiery love affair with a man who will change the course of her life: Pedro de Valdivia, war hero and field marshal to the famed Francisco Pizarro.”

I recently heard of:

Land of Love and DrowningLand of Love and Drowning by Tiphanie Yanique

“In the early 1900s, the Virgin Islands are transferred from Danish to American rule, and an important ship sinks into the Caribbean Sea. Orphaned by the shipwreck are two sisters and their half brother, now faced with an uncertain identity and future. Each of them is unusually beautiful, and each is in possession of a particular magic that will either sink or save them.”