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Naturally, we meet strangers when we travel. But these times have been so life-altering that traveling itself has become a stranger to most of us. While we have done our best to keep ourselves sane over the course of the pandemic, there is no denying that we also crave for a sense of adventure—to feel, taste, and experience the world—or, at least, grasp a bit of normalcy like going to restaurants, traveling to the beach, or attending local festivities.
For readers, we turn to the next big thing: books. These are titles to take us to places: across cities and suburbs, mountains and seas, countries and even continents. While we can’t travel for now, at least we can still explore through the pages of a great read.
If you’re looking for a way to cure your wanderlust or relive the nostalgic adrenaline when you travel, you might want to pick up a book or two from this list, and let it transport you to different destinations all over the world.
1. China Boy by Gus Lee
Destination: U.S. and China
Kai Ting, a young and American-born son of an aristocratic Mandarin family, fled China to escape the perils of World War II. Growing up in a San Francisco ghetto, he is torn violently between two worlds, but accepted in neither, fighting for the peace he longed for so long.
2. Skinship: Stories by Yoon Choi
Destination: South Korea and U.S.
Yoon Choi’s debut book explores eight long stories that are centered on the Korean American experience at its intersections: where first and second generations either clash or find common ground; where meaning falls in the cracks between languages.
3. Man Tiger by Eka Kurniawan
A story about two interlinked and tormented families and Margio, a young man who conceals himself as a supernatural female white tiger, this novel explores the inequities and betrayals of family life.
4. Beautiful World, Where Are You by Sally Rooney
Alice and Eileen are best friends trying to find their way in the world and look for fulfillment through engaging in dating relationships. Breakups, politics, sex, friendships, and everything in between—ultimately, searching for a way to believe in a beautiful world.
5. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
Destination: France and Germany
Anthony Doerr interweaves the lives of Marie Laure and Werner; a story about a French girl and German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II.
6. The Edible Woman by Margaret Atwood
Marian quietly awaits marriage. But she didn’t count on an inner rebellion that would rock her stable routine—she discovers, marriage à la mode, is something she literally can’t stomach. This is a funny novel about emotional cannibalism and the desire to be consumed.
7. BTS: One by Katy Sprinkel
Destination: South Korea
A completely up-to-date volume that celebrates the K-Pop group’s international success as well as their ever-evolving sound, artistic influences and special relationship with ARMY. This includes nearly 100 full-color photographs and an in-depth look at the lives of RM, J-Hope, Suga, Jimin, V, Jin, and Jungkook.
8. The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera
Destination: Czech Republic
Nostalgic and moving, this tells a story about two women, two men, a dog and their lives in the 1968 Prague Spring period featuring geographically distant places, playful reflections, and that everything in the universe recurs and repeats over intimate time and space.
9. Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri
Destination: India and America
A young Indian-American couple faces the heartbreak of a stillborn birth while their Boston neighborhood copes with a nightly blackout. Navigating between the Indian traditions they've inherited and the baffling new world, the characters in these touching stories seek love beyond the barriers of culture and generations.
10. Anxious People by Fredrik Backman
A poignant novel about a crime that never took place, a would-be bank robber who disappears into thin air, and eight extremely anxious strangers: a story of friendship, forgiveness, and hope—the things that save us, even in the most anxious of times.
11. People from My Neighborhood by Hiromi Kawakami
The details of the characters’ local and everyday slip into accounts of duels, prophetic dreams, revolutions, and visitations from ghosts and gods. In twenty-six “palm of the hand” stories, Hiromi Kawakami creates a universe ruled by mystery and transformation.
12. Life for Sale by Yukio Mishima
Hanio Yamada survived a suicide attempt, but instead of killing himself again, he puts an ad in the newspaper saying his life is for sale. What follows is a series of misadventures in a world filled with revenge, mobsters, hidden cameras, and a vampire woman.
13. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
The story is focused on an extramarital affair between Anna and Count Alexei Kirillovich Vronsky that forces them to flee to Italy in search of happiness. One of the greatest novels of all time, this novel deals with themes of betrayal, faith, marriage, family, and Russian society.
14. My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante
A rich, intense, and generous hearted story about two friends, Elena and Lila. Through the lives of these two women, Ferrante tells the story of a neighbourhood, a city and a country as it is transformed in ways that, in turn, also transform the relationship between her two protagonists.
15. Lemongrass And Lime: Southeast Asian Cooking At Home by Leah Cohen and Stephanie Banyas
Destination: Southeast Asia
Half-Filipino Leah Cohen brings exciting flavors of Southeast Asia to the masses in her beloved New York restaurants. In this cookbook, she shows readers how to use pantry staples like fish sauce, coconut milk, and shrimp paste to delicious effect.
16. Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
A horrifying twist on classic gothic horror, this novel features an isolated mansion, a chillingly charismatic aristocrat, and an unlikely and glamorous rescuer named Naomi, who is eager to dig deep and unearth stories of violence and madness, set in 1950s Mexico.
17. Insomniac City by Bill Hayes
Destination: New York, U.S.
Bill Hayes came to New York City in 2009 with a one-way ticket. Grieving over the death of his partner, he quickly discovered the profound consolations of the city's incessantrhythms and kindred souls that Hayes, a lifelongmniac, encountered on late-night strolls with his camera.
Let these awesome titles take you to places around the world. If you’re looking for more recommendations, check out the Fully Booked Books Take You Places collection.
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, a New York Times Book Review Top Ten Book, National Book Award finalist, more than two and a half years on the New York Times bestseller list
From the highly acclaimed, multiple award-winning Anthony Doerr, the stunningly beautiful instant New York Times bestseller about a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II.
Get All the Light We Cannot See (Paperback) by Anthony Doerr and other historical fiction books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.
“The End of Men is a fiercely intelligent page-turner, an eerily prescient novel, at once thoughtful and highly emotive.”—Paula Hawkins, #1 internationally bestselling author of The Girl on the Train
The year is 2025, and a mysterious virus has broken out in Scotland—a lethal illness that seems to affect only men. When Dr. Amanda MacLean reports this phenomenon, she is dismissed as hysterical. By the time her warning is heeded, it is too late. The virus becomes a global pandemic—and a political one. The victims are all men. The world becomes alien—a women’s world.
Get The End of Men (Paperback) by Christina Sweeney-Baird and other contemporary fiction books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
Kai Ting is the only American-born son of an aristocratic Mandarin family that fled China in the wake of Mao’s revolution. Growing up in San Francisco’s ghetto, Kai is caught between two worlds—embracing neither the Chinese nor the American way of life. After his mother’s death, Kai is suddenly plunged into American culture by his new stepmother, a Philadelphia society woman who tries to erase every vestige of China from the household.
Get China Boy (Paperback) by Gus Lee and other contemporary fiction books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
A new novel by Sally Rooney, the bestselling author of Normal People and Conversations with Friends
Alice, a novelist, meets Felix, who works in a warehouse, and asks him if he’d like to travel to Rome with her. In Dublin, her best friend, Eileen, is getting over a break-up, and slips back into flirting with Simon, a man she has known since childhood.
Get Beautiful World, Where Are You: A Novel, Export Edition (Paperback) by Sally Rooney and other contemporary books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
Frankly in Love meets Shark Tank in this feel-good romantic comedy about two entrepreneurial Korean American teens who butt heads—and maybe fall in love—while running competing Korean beauty businesses at their high school.
Enter the new kid in class, Wes Jung, who is determined to pursue music after graduation despite his parents’ major disapproval. When his classmates clamor to buy the K-pop branded beauty products his mom gave him to “make new friends,” he sees an opportunity—one that may be the key to help him pay for the music school tuition he knows his parents won’t cover…
Get Made in Korea (Hardcover) by Sarah Suk and other young adult books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
This South Korean group is at the forefront of the K-Pop wave sweeping the globe
With a phenomenal string of No. 1 albums plus hit singles like Dynamite, ON, Black Swan, and Life Goes On, BTS is on an unstoppable path to greatness!
Get BTS: One (Paperback) by Katy Sprinkel and other young adult books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.
The New York Botanical Garden
This elegant, 1000-piece puzzle portrays a magnificent collection of roses, the flower world’s most iconic bloom. As you piece the puzzle together you will see fabled roses in hues of crimson, peach, lemon, and ivory blossom under your hands.
Get Roses in Bloom Puzzle: A 1000-Piece Jigsaw Puzzle and other lifestyle online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.
THIS TITLE IS MARKED DOWN AND STOCK MAY NOT BE IN BRAND-NEW CONDITION. PLEASE EXPECT MINOR NICKS, SOME DISCOLORATION, OR SIMILAR SLIGHT IMPERFECTIONS.Learn More
Winner of the prestigious André Simon Drink Book Award
The first definitive reference book to describe, region-by-region, how the great wines of Europe should taste. This will be the go-to guide for aspiring sommeliers, wine aficionados who want to improve their blind tasting skills, and amateur enthusiasts looking for a straightforward and visceral way to understand and describe wine.
Get The Sommelier's Atlas of Taste: A Field Guide to the Great Wines of Europe (Hardcover) by Rajat Parr and other wine and drinks books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.
THIS TITLE IS MARKED DOWN AND STOCK MAY NOT BE IN BRAND-NEW CONDITION. PLEASE EXPECT MINOR NICKS, SOME DISCOLORATION, OR SIMILAR SLIGHT IMPERFECTIONS.Learn More
Winner of the 2016 Financial Times Emerging Voices Award, and longlisted for the 2016 Man Booker International Prize
A wry, affecting tale set in a small town on the Indonesian coast, Man Tiger tells the story of two interlinked and tormented families and of Margio, a young man ordinary in all particulars except that he conceals within himself a supernatural female white tiger. The inequities and betrayals of family life coalesce around and torment this magical being. An explosive act of violence follows, and its mysterious cause is unraveled as events progress toward a heartbreaking revelation.
Get Man Tiger: A Novel (Paperback) by Eka Kurniawan and other contemporary fiction books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
Drawing on newly available sources, Jung Chang comprehensively overturns Cixi’s reputation as a conservative despot. Cixi’s extraordinary reign saw the birth of modern China. Under her, the ancient country attained industries, railways, electricity, and a military with up-to-date weaponry. She abolished foot-binding, inaugurated women’s liberation, and embarked on a path to introduce voting rights. Packed with drama, this groundbreaking biography powerfully reforms our view of a crucial period in China’s—and the world’s—history.
Get Empress Dowager Cixi: The Concubine Who Launched Modern China (Paperback) by Jung Chang and other asian history books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
In this final novel she has returned to Naples, drawn back as if responding to the city's obscure magnetism. Lila, on the other hand, could never free herself from the city of her birth. She has become a successful entrepreneur, but her success draws her into closer proximity with the nepotism, chauvinism, and criminal violence that infect the neighborhood.
The four volumes in this series constitute a long remarkable story that readers will return to again and again, and each return will bring with it new revelations.
Get The Story of the Lost Child: Neapolitan Quartet, Book 4 (Paperback) by Elena Ferrante and other contemporary fiction books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
Stephanie Banyas and Leah Cohen
The flavors of Southeast Asia are the star in this collection of recipes from Leah Cohen, the Top Chef alum and restaurateur.
Get Lemongrass And Lime: Southeast Asian Cooking At Home (Hardcover) by Stephanie Banyas and Leah Cohen and other cookery books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
A darkly funny cult classic of a novel from one of Japan's most revered authors, available in English for the very first time. A Vintage Original.
Life for Sale Yukio Mishima stunningly uses satire to explore the same dark themes that preoccupied him throughout his lifetime.
Get Life for Sale, Vintage International (Paperback) by Yukio Mishima and other Contemporary Fiction books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
Reminiscent of Lisa See’s Peony in Love and Amy Tan’s The Bonesetter’s Daughter, The Ghost Bride is a wondrous coming-of-age story and a startlingly original historical fantasy infused with Chinese folklore, romantic intrigue, and unexpected supernatural twists
Li Lan, the daughter of a genteel but bankrupt family, has few prospects. But fate intervenes when she receives an unusual proposal from the wealthy and powerful Lim family. They want her to become a ghost bride for the family’s only son, recently killed under mysterious circumstances, to placate his restless spirit.
Get The Ghost Bride (Paperback) by Yangsze Choo and other contemporary fiction books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
Leo Tolstoy's evocative tale of doomed love—one of the greatest novels of the nineteenth century.
Upon it's publication, Anna Karenina startled the world with its powerful portrayal of the human need for love and happiness weighed against the rigid demands of society. Its heroine, the sensual, rebellious Anna, renounces a respectable yet stifling marriage for an extramarital affair that offers a taste of passion even as it ensnares her in a trap for destruction.
Get Anna Karenina, Signet Classics, Centennial Edition (Mass Market) by Leo Tolstoy and other classic books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
A Little Life follows four college classmates—broke, adrift, and buoyed only by their friendship and ambition—as they move to New York in search of fame and fortune. While their relationships, which are tinged by addiction, success, and pride, deepen over the decades, the men are held together by their devotion to the brilliant, enigmatic Jude, a man scarred by an unspeakable childhood trauma. A hymn to brotherly bonds and a masterful depiction of love in the twenty-first century, Hanya Yanagihara’s stunning novel is about the families we are born into, and those that we make for ourselves.
Get A Little Life (Paperback) by Hanya Yanagihara and other contemporary fiction books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
Los Angeles Times Book Award
In a world in which lives are shaped by irrevocable choices and by fortuitous events, a world in which everything occurs but once, existence seems to lose its substance, its weight. Hence we feel, says the novelist, ‘the unbearable lightness of being’--not only as the consequence of our private acts but also in the public sphere, and the two inevitably intertwine.
Get The Unbearable Lightness of Being (Paperback) by Milan Kundera and other contemporary fiction books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More