Top Ten Tuesday: Favourite Book Settings

Hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl

A cozy stone fireplace in a wooden house. I could talk about this topic for ages! Let’s see if I can keep my list down to a reasonable 10 or so answers.

I will expound on some, but not all, of my responses.

1. Anywhere that has a cozy fireplace.

Yes, I know it isn’t healthy to breathe in the particulates from wood smoke over the long term, but I still find the crackle of a fireplace to be so relaxing. It’s also sometimes the beginning of wonderful adventures in certain stories!

2. Libraries.

3. Cemeteries.

4. Old buildings, haunted or otherwise. 

5. Boarding schools.

I’d never want to attend one or send my (totally hypothetical) children to one, but I do like reading about them.

6. Mostly quiet beaches.

Completely deserted beaches frighten me a little, and loud, crowded beaches aren’t much fun at all. The mostly quiet ones are where it’s at!

7. Museums, especially after hours. 

8. Funerals.

One of the benefits of being a preacher’s kid is that I got to spend a lot of time attending funerals for people who weren’t related to me. There are memorable and even occasionally beautiful moments to be found within all of that grief.

9. Kitchens.

They’re a very underrated setting if you ask me! Not only are kitchens (hopefully) filled with amazing food for everyone to share, they’re often the part of the house where the most intimate and memorable conversations happen.

I can think of a few different relatives of mine who announced exciting news like a new pregnancy in someone’s kitchen. Reading about characters cooking meals or cleaning up after them always makes me hope someone in that scene is about to share thrilling news.

10. Cold, snowy woods.

The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe taught me that all sorts of wonderful things can happen in them.

11. Any forest where the seasons are changing.

The first subtle announcements of an impending spring or autumn are probably the most striking, but there’s something memorable to be found every time we begin to say goodbye to one season and hello to the next.

I think 11 answers is a pretty decent number, so I’ll stop writing here.




Filed under Blog Hops

71 Responses to Top Ten Tuesday: Favourite Book Settings

  1. Kitchens is a great one, but I don’t think it serves as a setting often enough in books.

    I would never have thought of funerals. You are right. Many good conversations take place at funerals.

  2. I love forests and cemeteries. They’re so interesting! Have you read Cemetery Boys? The characters literally live in a cemetery with ghosts.

  3. Great list! Libraries are of course a favourite setting for me too. I don’t think I’ve read many books with a kitchen setting but I have a few on my TBR and I can’t wait to read them cos I love a good cooking/baking related story! 😍

  4. Lori Piper

    I love fireplaces, so much. They are really magical, this idea of bringing something so dangerous, so potentially uncontrollable, but so beautiful and soothing into our spaces.


  5. I agree with all but maybe not funerals or cemeteries–it would depend on the story. Good work.

  6. Great list! I havent seen many fireplaces featured as settings in my books lately, but I love to read in front of one.

    Here’s mine this week:

  7. Interesting list, Lydia. I wasn’t very specific, but as I am reading other lists, I realize I could have been. Funerals is an interesting pick. I don’t think I have read a book set at or around a funeral. I also like kitchens. I have read a few books where the kitchen is central to the story and really enjoyed those books.

  8. Kitchens are a great setting! And you can often get the cozy feel of a fireplace from the kitchen ovens, without all the smoke in the air. (Or, in the case of older kitchens, at least the wood fire is serving the dual purpose of cooking the food.)

    My TTT:

  9. I love your list!!!! Kitchens are definitely one of my fav settings — I spend a lot of time in a kitchen in my everyday life/work. One book that comes to mind with a lot of time around a kitchen is Where Two Hearts Meet by Liz Johnson. The heroine is an amazing baker. 🙂

  10. This is a great list and I learned several things about you. I had no idea you were a preacher’s kid. My father-in-law is a preacher and I have been to my fair share of funerals. I actually love deserted or mostly deserted beaches! I think fireplaces is a great one too!

  11. Ooh museums, I should read more books set in museums now that I think about it! All I can think about off the top of my head is The Goldfinch and I mean, that is a great book. Nice list!

  12. Oh love so many of your answers! Kitchens always do seem to be the place where exciting news gets shared!

  13. Great list! It’s intriguing to think about attending funerals without being being one of the mourners, and seeing it from an outside perspective.

  14. Boarding schools made my list this week too! So much potential.

  15. Ooh, I love all of these, I think! Cemeteries, old buildings, museums, forests–all favorites of mine (although these are all pretty up there!). I totally agree about kitchens!

  16. I never thought about kitchens as a setting for books, but you’re right; they are a great place, especially in historical fiction, where the kitchen was the heart of the home.

    Pam @ Read! Bake! Create!

  17. Great list. I happen to be in a cold snowy forest right now! I love that you included kitchens too. It makes me think of The Golden Girls where they had so many good conversations in the kitchen.

  18. I always enjoy a library setting. 🙂

  19. Ahhh, you’ve chosen settings where you’d love to read books, I chose fav settings IN books. Ha! Ha! But this one’s lots of fun too. Not too sure about reading in a cemetary though!

  20. Fireplaces, libraries and boarding schools- yes! I’d never want to go to a boarding school lol but they are sure are fun to read about!

    Cold snowy woods too. Excellent choices!

  21. Such a wonderful list! I’ve also loved all of the stories I’ve read that are set in cold, snowy woods so I’m excited to see that one made your list. Narnia is a favorite of mine, and I also love The Winternight Trilogy, which takes places in a medieval Russian village surrounded by cold, snowy forests.

  22. This is a wonderfully interesting list of settings! I can picture each one. By the way, I’m a PK (preacher’s kid), too! When you mentioned funerals, I thought of the book As Bright As Heaven and the setting is a funeral home run by a family during the 1918 Flu Pandemic. My mind also wandered off to an article I read once about how important it is to attend funerals because of how meaningful it is to the family….more important than weddings, birthday parties, etc…..the bereaved will never forget that you were there for them. I always make my best effort to attend funerals after reading that sentiment. Really, walking each other home is one of the more important things we can do with our one precious life.

    • It’s very cool that you’re also a PK!

      I just requested As Bright as Heaven from my local library. It sounds awesome, so thanks for the recommendation.

      And I totally agree with your last point.

  23. Great choices. My favourite from those would be the library.

    My TTT took me around the world to thirteen countries.

  24. I’m with you on boarding schools. I’d hate to go to one and never send my (non-existent) children, but they make for such good story settings. Lack of adult supervision, lots of characters about and a big, complicated building to explore, perhaps? Perfect for trouble.

  25. I love kitchens, fireplaces and forests as well. Not cemeteries and haunted houses though, those creep me out!

  26. I also love books set in libraries and boarding schools (or university dorms/residential colleges). Anything with a roaring fireplace sets the mood as well.

  27. I cannot imagine how I forgot libraries on my list, but yours is the second blog I have been to that has them as a favorite setting. I also mentioned boarding schools. Love your list. Thanks for sharing and for visiting my blog.

  28. A set of answers that I hadn’t even thought about! Love the fireplace setting and the kitchen. I had never thought of a cemetery!

  29. Kitchens is definitely one that catches my attention.

  30. Cemeteries! A spooky setting, but seriously wonderful. Great list.

  31. Forest is one of my favorites too, and Boarding schools, they are so fun to read but I will hated went to one

  32. An interesting and eclectic mixture of book settings here, Lydia – Old house, woods and places with crackling fires are favourites of mine too. 😃

  33. I feel like visiting beach-y places would be better when its on a day most people don’t go and in “off season.” Otherwise, yes, there’s just SO many people. Also, Boarding Schools can be a fun setting! 🙂 Thanks so much for visiting Finding Wonderland on this week.

  34. Ooooh yes, forests! Narnia! All the nostalgia! XD
    And the kitchen one makes me think of 10 Blind Dates by Ashley Elston. The grandma’s kitchen is where the whole family hangs out and it’s so cozy and heartwarming, even when it’s chaotic. I really loved that book. 🙂

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