I recently returned from our Highlights of England, Scotland and Ireland tour where I met incredible people, saw gorgeous architecture and learned about each country’s rich history. The experience was made that much better by our amazing Tour Director, Mansel. He taught me and my group so much about famous authors who’d written incredible works in many of the places we visited. From classics stories to autobiographical accounts, here are a few of my suggested must-reads for anybody thinking about traveling to England, Scotland and Ireland.
Confessions of an English Opium Eater (1821), Thomas De Quincy
This is an autobiographical tale of De Quincy’s addictions to opium and alcohol.
Rob Roy (1817), Sir Walter Scott
Likely one of Sir Walter Scott’s most well-known novels, Rob Roy is based on historical events surrounding the Jacobite uprisings in Scotland in the 1700s.
Holiday House: A Book for the Young (1839), Catherine Sinclair
Sinclair was an important Scottish author who began her writing career by penning children’s novels. Holiday House is perhaps one of her most famous.
Treasure Island (1883), Robert Lewis Stevenson
This is a classic for all ages. Not only was Stevenson a novelist and poet, but he also wrote about travel—what a great way to start dreaming of your next trip!
The Girls of Slender Means (1963), Muriel Spark
Spark is a formidable female author hailing from Edinburgh. In this novel, she imagines the lives and experiences of a group of young women living in a hostel in London near the end of World War II.
The Harry Potter series (1997-2007), J. K. Rowling
This incredible children’s series can be enjoyed by adults of all ages. Rowling started writing these highly acclaimed stories in a café in Edinburgh, Scotland—visit to catch a glimpse of the school Rowling used as the inspiration for the book series’ fictional school, Hogwarts.
Angela’s Ashes (1996), Frank McCourt
In this moving memoir, McCourt details his childhood in Brooklyn, New York and Limerick, Ireland. Heartwarming, tragic and deeply impactful, this stunning true story is not for the faint of heart.
What is your favorite inspiring book about England, Scotland or Ireland? Share your picks in the comments below!