Sunday, June 10, 2012

Armchair Adventures: Arizona’s Novel Destinations

“Novel destinations” have enhanced our travels through north central Arizona. Using the recommendations from so many of you, we’ve started some armchair explorations of Arizona. Today I’ll tell you about a few of them as we head out to north eastern Arizona. . .

Map picture
   . . . land of the Navajo, Hopi, and Hualapai Indian Reservations.


Lieutenant Joe Leaphorn of the Navajo Tribal police – a character created by award-winning writer, Tony Hillerman introduced us to the Reservation.  

With the help of the delightful owner, I selected a couple of used paperbacks from a towering stack of Hillerman’s books on display at Bent River Books and Music, 1010 N. Main Street  in Cottonwood, a small town not far from Sedona


Thankfully, Hillerman’s  got more than 35 years of writing under his belt and a few dozen more adventures waiting for us now that we’ve discovered this New Mexico author.

I am almost embarrassed to admit that in addition to never having read Hillerman, we’d also not experienced  -- until now --the writing of Louis L’Amour, the author of some 89 novels set in America’s frontier – perhaps his best known being the Hopalong Cassidy series. (Photo is from his website which can be accessed by clicking his name above.)


I chose at random, The Haunted Mesa, from a bookstore at the Phoenix airport. The story based on the disappearance of the Anasazi, or 'ancient enemy’ as the Navajo called them – it is so engrossing that I can barely put it down.  And I’ll certainly be reading more of his books – soon.

Product DetailsI must thank a clerk at Barnes and Noble Bookstore in Scottsdale for suggesting Phoenix Noir, a collection of short stories by contemporary authors set in or near Phoenix. It is not a book I would have purchased had it not been recommended – it is dark.  The stories aren’t those that appear in tourist publications, yet it was one of the best books I’ve read this year because it gave me a look at the ‘other side’ of the city. I read them in short doses and let each story percolate before moving on to the next.



Phoenix Noir is part of a series of books published by Akashic Books; all are noir (dark) short stories and the dozens of cities in which they are set stretch across the globe from Seattle to Barcelona.

This post kicks off a new monthly feature at TravelnWrite – our Armchair Adventures. They require you pack nothing more than a book to your favorite chair.  If you have a ‘novel destination’ to be included in future posts, send it our way.

2 comments:

  1. Just got back from Arizona, south of Tucson... Kartcher Caves was awesome and Patton's in Patagonia for bird watching was off the charts amazing.

    ReplyDelete
  2. We hope to head south towards Tucson in December so I will keep these two tips in mind. Thanks!

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So happy to see you took the time to comment. We read them all - and each is much appreciated. We hope you will be a regular here and comment often!

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