Tuesday, July 5, 2011

4 Top Reads for a Holiday in Crete

If you're taking a holiday walking in Crete you're likely to be in need of some rest and relaxation in the evenings; why not take one of the many books set in Crete with you and immerse yourself even more deeply into the Cretan way of life?

Zorba the Greek, by Nikos Kazantzakis

Perhaps the most famous Crete-based book of all, Zorba the Greek has become a classic of Greek literature. Published in 1946, the novel was adapted into a film in 1964, leading to even greater success. Zorba the Greek is the tale of a young intellectual from mainland Greece who is pushed into action after a friend leaves to help ethnic Greeks who are being persecuted in the Caucasus. The book is the ideal first book choice for those walking in Crete to gain an insight into the fascinating history of the island and its surrounds.

The intellectual narrator plans to set off for Crete with dreams of re-opening a coal mine and involving himself in the world of the working class. Before leaving for the island he meets the mysterious, lascivious and passionate Alexis Zorba, and quickly becomes convinced to employ him as a foreman. On the island they follow different passions - the narrator reading Dante and Zorba indulging in his more animal passions. Once the mine opens their different approaches to life clash and the narrator begins to reassess his philosophies on life.

The Colossus of Maroussi, by Henry Miller

While much of this book is set in mainland Greece, it is still a great addition to the reading list for those walking in Crete. Miller's prose perfectly complements his natural sense of an outsider in a foreign society. The text is a semi-autobiographical account of Miller's travels in Greece with his friend Lawrence Durrell.

The Island, by Victoria Hislop

For those walking in Crete looking for a more contemporary author, Victoria Hislop's 2005 debut The Island should be ideal. The book won numerous awards on its release and has been adapted into the most expensive Greek TV series in history. The tale recounts the story of a teenager who develops in an interest in her family's past - a subject about which she knows very little. She travels to Crete to see where her mother was born and is gradually presented with the sad history of the area.

You are Here, by Steve Horsfall

Described in reviews as the ideal holiday book, You are Here is the perfect romp for those walking in Crete looking for a lighter read full of feel-good scenes. The story follows four thirty-somethings who, fearing the onset of middle-age, set off in pursuit of the opposite sex on the island.

Tony Maniscalco is the Sales and Marketing Manager for Ramblers Worldwide Holidays. Join us walking in Crete to see scenic locations & landscapes at the best value prices. We offer over 250 guided group walking holidays in over 65 different countries.

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