Even if we can’t physically take a trip around the world, reading allows us to learn about a new culture, meet fascinating characters, and immerse ourselves in a new setting. Here are four fiction titles set in Mexico, India, Scotland, and Nigeria that offer a glimpse of life in a different country.
Socialite Noemí is living a glamorous life in 1950s Mexico City, but when she receives a troubling letter from her cousin Catalina, she leaves it all behind to rescue her. Catalina lives at High Place, a secluded estate in the Mexican countryside, complete with a decaying mansion and an ancient graveyard. Noemí quickly realizes that something sinister is happening to Catalina, and she might be the only one who can save her. This work of gothic horror will appeal to fans of de Maurier’s Rebecca and King’s The Shining.
In modern-day Kolkata, a terrorist attack at a train station sets off an unexpected chain of events.
Alternating between three unforgettable characters, this propulsive novel moves at breakneck speed all the way to the shocking ending. With vivid descriptions of Kolkata, from slums to prisons, political rallies to movie sets, A Burning offers insight into modern life in India.
Shuggie is a young boy growing up in public housing in Glasgow, Scotland. Shuggie’s father is mostly absent and his mother, despite her attempts to bring happiness to their lives, struggles with addiction. This moving novel deals with issues of poverty, broken families, identity, and love. Shuggie is a sympathetic character, doing his best to cope with a tragic home life in this powerful and heartbreaking coming- of-age story.
Growing up in a small Nigerian village, Adunni dreams of going to school and becoming a teacher. Forced into an unhappy marriage, she runs away to Lagos and finds herself working as a maid for a wealthy family. Mistreated and underappreciated, Adunni overcomes many obstacles to pursue her goal of education. This hopeful and uplifting story will have you rooting for Adunni all the way through to the end.