Who Said You Can’t Travel To Remote Places On Your Next Staycation…

Category : TRAVEL

June 7, 2011

7 best books of June: Amazon editors’ favorite picks

Some of this summer’s most interesting books will take you traveling: from suburban Vermont to 19th-century Paris, from the sweltering Amazon to 1950s communist China, and from psychological thriller to sci-fi apocalypse. Here are seven of the titles that drew the most enthusiastic thumbs-up from the editors at Amazon.com.

1. “Before I Go To Sleep,” by S.J. Watson

A mysterious accident has made her an amnesiac – or so her husband tells her. Each day Christine wakes remembering nothing of the day before. She’s relying on her husband to help her through – but suddenly she begins to wonder if he’s really telling her everything that he knows. This debut novel is a haunting page-turner of the literary sort.

2. “Sister,” by Rosamund Lupton

When her sister Tess is found dead in an abandoned building, police tell Beatrice that they suspect suicide. But Beatrice is sure her sister’s death is a murder and she must investigate. Early readers have called this debut novel – which is much about the relationship between sisters as it is a murder investigation – both “Hitchcockian” and “deeply psychological.”

3. “Ten Thousand Saints,” by Eleanor Henderson

From suburban Vermont to the not-yet-gentrified East VillageEleanor Henderson‘s debut coming-of-age story offers perspectives on both the 1980s and parent-child relationships. When a drug overdose leads to the death of a teen, his friends form a family of their own and move to NYC, hoping, in part, to raise the unborn child he fathered on the night he died. If you ever partied at CBGB – or just wish that you had – this is the perfect novel for you.

4. “Robopocalypse,” by Daniel H. Wilson

A computer/robot on a mission to destroy mankind starts a war, the history of which is pieced together by young photojournalis tCormac Wallace, who managed to escape his home in Boston just in time, leaving him alive and able to thread together survival tales from around the globe. This book has already been optioned by Steven Spielberg for a film, so you would be well advised to read the book now, before the movie buzz starts.

5. “Dreams of Joy,” by Lisa See

This sequel to See’s bestselling novel“Shanghai Girls” continues the story of sisters Pearl and May. When Pearl’s 19-year-old daughter Joy leaves the US for China, determined to find her birth father, Pearl follows her back to her homeland. It’s 1957 and Pearl and Joy are both plunged into the turbulent history of communist China. For the many readers who loved “Shanghai Girls,” this followup is a must-read.

6. “State of Wonder,” by Ann Patchett

Ann Patchett’s latest novel is set in the Amazon, where a young pharmaceutical worker has been sent by her boss (who also happens to be her lover) to investigate the death of a colleague. Patchett’s many fans will be overjoyed to hear that several early readers have proclaimed the novel “better than ‘Bel Canto.’

7. “The Greater Journey: Americans in Paris,” by David McCullough

What could be better than a new book by two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning historian David McCullough – this time set in Paris? Monitor reviewer Michael Taube writes that “The Greater Journey” – the history of famous 19th-century American expats in Paris – “focuses on the personal histories of this first wave of American travelers, including what they saw, experienced, and dreamed about,” their stories all told in “McCullough’s superb writing style – an exquisite combination of crisp academic inclination with a light, whimsical storytelling component.”


Budget Travel RealDeal – Paris, Air/4 Nights, From $1,097

Category : DEALS

Paris, Air/4 Nights, From $1,097

Tour Notre Dame Cathedral, the Eiffel Tower, and other historic sites in the French capital.

Tuesday, Apr 26, 2011, 1:00 PM

The Real Deal Round-trip airfare on Air France, Delta, or a similar airline to Paris; four nights at Le Quartier Bastille, Le Faubourg hotel; breakfast daily; a sightseeing tour of the city’s historic sites, including the Opera Square, Place Vendôme, Champs-Élysées, Eiffel Tower, and Notre Dame Cathedral; hotel taxes and service charges; from $1,097 per personplus airport taxes and fees of $115.

When Through May 15, 2011; add $214 for July 1Aug. 31; $329 for May 16–June 30, Sept. 1–Oct. 31.

Gateways New York City; add $100 for Houston; $172 for Chicago, Miami; $218 for Atlanta; $289 for L.A., Seattle; additional gateways available.

The Fine Print Based on double occupancy; single supplement is not available. Airport taxes and fees are an additional $115. Airport-hotel transfers are $14 per person each way via Roissybus shuttle service or $150 each way for one to three passengers by private car. Read these guidelines before you book any Real Deal.

Book By No deadline; based on availability.

Contact TourCrafters, 800/621-2259, tourcrafters.it.

Why It’s a Deal According to a recent search on Kayak, the lowest round-trip fares between New York City and Paris start from $863 with taxes for travel in early to mid-May (US Airways). Add to that about $374 per person, including hotel taxes, for four nights at Le Quartier Bastille, Le Faubourg hotel, and you’d be paying a total of $1,237 for just airfare and accommodations if you booked this independently. This TourCrafters package not only covers the airfare and four nights’ hotel for $25 less, but it includes daily breakfast, a sightseeing tour to Paris’s historic sites valued at $26, and all hotel taxes and fees.

More Optional activities include a tour of Montmartre and the Louvre ($96 per person), a tour of hidden treasures of Paris ($51 per person), and a guided visit to Versailles ($100 per person). Additional nights in a double room at Le Quartier Bastille, Le Faubourg range between $83 to $91 per person per night, depending on travel dates. Other hotel options are available, starting from an additional $13 per person for four nights at the Kyriad Hotel Paris Bercy Village.