Can’t get enough of Spain…Check out my list of favorite books, movies, and music related to Spain. Enjoy!
For Whom the Bell Tolls – By Ernest Hemingway (1940) It is the story of a young American attached to the international brigade during the Spanish Civil War.
The Sun Also Rises – By Ernest Hemingway (1926) A story about a group of American and British expatriates living in Paris that make the trip to Pamplona for the running of the bulls.
The Drifters – By James Michener (1971) While the story does not take place exclusively in Spain a good part of it does. Overall a great travel book.
Winter in Madrid – By C.J. Sansom (2006) This well written spy novel takes place during the Spanish Civil.
The Time In Between – Maria Dueña (2009) A Spy novel that takes place during the Spanish civil war. It has a compelling story line that takes place in Madrid and Spain’s North African city located within Morocco.
Cathedral of the Sea – Ildefonso Falcones (2009) A thrilling story that tells the building of a cathedral in Barcelona in the 14th century. If you like Ken Folliet’s Pillars of the Earth you will like this book too.
Juan Carlos: Steering Spain from Dictatorship to Democracy – Paul Preston (2004) An interesting book about the King of Spain. Unlike many monarchs Juan Carlos truly lived a very interesting life under the dictator Franco.
Iberia – James Michener (1968) Michener gives the reader a real feel for Spain in the 1960’s under the dictator Francisco Franco.
Miracle in Seville – James Michener (1995) a story of bullfighting, gyps, and miracles.
Living Abroad in Spain – Nikki Weinstein (2004) The author give you a realistic idea of what it takes to move to Spain. Even if you are not thinking of moving to Spain this book is well done and still gives one good insight into the Spanish way of life.
Seville, Cordoba, and Granada: A Cultural History – Elizabeth Nash (2005) An intriguing look at the history of these three cities.
Sleeping Arrangements – Madeleine Wickham (2004) A story about two British families that take holiday in Spain. I liked the way the book made me feel as though I was vacationing in Spain.
War of the Witches – Maite Carranza (2005) A great fantasy fiction story that takes place in the Pyrenees Mountains. A great book for getting the feel of small town life in eastern Spain while enjoying a great fictional story.
It's Not About the Tapas - Polly Evans (2003) Polly Evans embarks on a journey with her bike that traverses over 1000 miles of Spain. Witty fun read for those travel adventures or those who want to be.
Homage to Catalonia - George Orwell (1938) A personal account of George Orwell's time serving on the Spanish front lines during their civil war.
Knight and Day – Tom Cruise, Cameron Diaz, Peter Sarsgaard (2010) I have to include this one because the last 30 minutes of the movie takes place in Seville.
Star Wars, Attack of the Clones – Ewan McGregor, Natalie Portman, Hayden Christensen (2002) Really? Indeed…there is a scene that takes place right outside of Plaza de España. A bit of a stretch, I know but it did take place in Seville.
The Devil Backbone – Marisa Paredes, Eduardo Noriega, Federico Lupe (2001) A great ghost story that takes place during the Spanish Civil War. The movie is filmed in Spanish but worth the watch even if you have to read the subtitles.
Pan’s Labyrinth – Ivana Baquero, Sergi López, Maribel Verdú (2006) Another movie filmed during the Spanish Civil war. This movie has more of scary Spanish Fairy Tale feel to it.
The Way – Martin Sheen, Emilio Estevez, Deborah Kara Unger, James Nesbitt, Yorick van Wageningen (2010) The Way is about a father was goes to France to recover his son’s body who died on his pilgrimage to the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. While there he decides to take of the pilgrimage finding peace with his loss along the way. A great movie for anyone who wants to take the pilgrimage or just wants to watch a good movie.
Puzzled Love - Marcel Borras, Saras Gil (2010) A love story about a girl from Chicago and a boy from Mallorca that fall in love during their studies in Barcelona. Cute romance worth the watch.
Americano - Joshua Jackson, Leonor Varela, Timm Sharp, Ruthanna Hopper (2005) Chris McKinley travels through Europe after college before starting his career in the United States. The story tracks his last three days in Spain. This film really captures the feelings one experiences before ending an adventure. I'd watch it again.
My list of favorite music relating to Spain is not that big as I am more likely to listen to Pandora Radio then to take note of a particular artist. I do enjoy Antonio Orozco and Seville’s local radio station 96.5 “noviento seis punto cinco, maxima efe eme”.
Flamenco music is very popular in the south and played on many local radio stations. I am sad to say that I am not a huge fan of traditional flamenco music or dance. I do like a flamenco fusion where a DJ mixes flamenco and electronica…please no hate mail. That is probably sacrilege to some but we all have our own taste.
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