The US is a country with a great literary legacy. Not only is it a place from which a number of celebrated writers hail, it is also one where the literary industry significantly thrives. As a matter of fact, while many businesses languished during the pandemic, book publishers saw an 8.9% increase in their sales. This is understandable since books can keep boredom at bay no matter where you are. Reading is a great pastime when you’re resting or even when you’re on the road. If you are an avid reader, one of the best ways to celebrate your love for literature is by going on a literary road trip. Here are some road trip suggestions that will certainly remind you of your favorite books.
Live Like Alcott’s Little Women in Massachusetts
Louisa May Alcott’s quintessential coming-of-age classic “Little Women” has gained popularity in recent years due to a critically acclaimed adaptation by Greta Gerwig. But it’s not only through film adaptation that you can immerse yourself in the lives of sisters Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy. A drive down to New England, Massachusetts will give you a glimpse not only of the setting of the book, but also of the author’s life. You can visit the Orchard House, which features many of the Alcott family’s belongings. A short drive from there should take you to the nearby Sleepy Hollow Cemetery, where the author is buried along with many other prominent writers like Nathaniel Hawthorne and Ralph Waldo Emerson. Overall, this is a relatively easy road trip that will give you a glimpse of the past.
A Spine-Tingling Stephen King-Inspired Trip in Maine
If you’re more into the horror genre, you’re most likely a fan of Stephen King. A drive down to Maine, the author’s hometown, will immerse you in the settings of most of his stories. A self-guided Stephen King-inspired road trip will take you to a lot of stops, so make sure that you keep your ride in good condition. You should also check to see if there’s enough fuel in the tank, and bring some extra cash to pay for car towing fees in case of a vehicle emergency.
Once you’re all set, the spots that you should definitely visit include Bangor, where Pennywise the Clown tormented the lives of the members of the Losers Club in “It.” Just 10 minutes away from downtown Bangor and you’ll reach the Mount Hope Cemetery, the setting for King’s “Pet Sematary.” While there, be on the look out for the gravestone of Carrie M. Hesseltine, which is said to inspire King’s novel “Carrie.” End your trip with a 20-minute drive to Orrington, where King and his family lived.
A Romantic Nicholas Sparks Tour of the North Carolina Coast
Those who enjoy the romance genre most probably have some of Nicholas Sparks’ works in their reading list or their Netflix queues. However, you can better immerse yourself in the author’s emotional heavy-hitters by taking a trip to the North Carolina coast. Visit Edenton, the picture-perfect setting for “The Rescue.” You can also drive along the Roanoke and Neuse Rivers and spend a few days in Bern, an important place for novels such as “A Walk to Remember,” “A Bend in the Road,” and “The Notebook.” Further down south is Ocracoke, the location of Sparks’ “The Wish.” Finally, you can end your trip with a visit to Wilmington and Southport, the setting of the romantic thriller “Safe Haven.”
Going on a literary road trip is an excellent way to unwind. It will also make you feel more connected to your literary idols. Taking these routes will give you a glimpse of the backdrops behind some of your favorite authors’ works.