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Edith Wharton The Mount

Looking up the back stairs toward the terrace at The Mount, Edith Wharton’s estate in the Berkshire Mountains. Photo©NovelDestinations

Summer is an exciting time in the literary travel world. Some author houses are only open seasonally during the warm weather, while at others, gardens are in bloom and special events abound. Here are some of the storied happenings taking place in the coming months.

Parlez-vous français?
Enjoy a morning chat with other French speakers at Edith Wharton’s estate, The Mount, in Lenox, Massachusetts. The conversation sessions, which honor her love for France, where she lived for many years, take place on the terrace overlooking the gardens. Attendance is $15, and spots must be reserved at least 24 hours in advance. Thursdays at 9 a.m. from July 4 through August 29.

Tales and Tails
Live readings and guest lectures take place on Sunday afternoons in the Enchanted Garden at the Poe Museum in Richmond, Virginia. Tales on the schedule include “The Masque of the Red Death” (July 14), “The Black Cat” (July 21), and “The Tell-Tale Heart” (August 4). Keep an eye out for resident felines Edgar and Pluto, the latter named after a four-legged character in “The Black Cat.” Included with museum admission; no registration necessary. Sunday Reading events begin at 12:30 p.m. and are live-streamed on the museum’s Facebook page.

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Nighttime browsing before meeting up with my book group. Or, holiday shopping for me. 🎁 #strandbookskiosk #bryantpark #wintervillage #nyc #booksofig #bookstagram #bookstores
“My mother in Princeton got a cable from me, saying simply: ‘Opening bookshop in Paris. Please send money,’ and she sent me all her savings.” 📚 Using the capital from her super-supportive mother, Sylvia Beach opened Shakespeare & Company, a bookshop and lending library, in Paris on November 19, 1919. Located on the Left Bank’s rue Dupuytren and then in larger quarters on the rue de l’Odéon, the shop quickly became a popular gathering place for expatriate writers like Ezra Pound, Sherwood Anderson, Gertrude Stein, and Ernest Hemingway, who declared himself Beach’s “best customer.” Here Beach fostered literary talent, floated the occasional loan, and in 1922 published James Joyce’s controversial novel ULYSSES at her own expense. (Hemingway helped smuggle the book into the United States, where it was banned.) In SHAKESPEARE & COMPANY, one of my favorite memoirs, Beach shares her fascinating and unique story along with a trove of anecdotes about her famous patrons. 📚 Beach closed up shop in 1941, after a confrontation with a Nazi officer, whom she wouldn’t allow to buy a copy of FINNEGAN’S WAKE he spied in the window. She later granted the right to use the name Shakespeare & Company to fellow American George Whitman, whose shop at 37 rue de la Bûcherie still thrives today and is— just as Beach’s once was—a beacon for book lovers. 📚 #sylviabeach #shakespeareandcompany #100thanniversary #memoir #paris #literarylandmarks #noveldestinations #booksofig #igreads #bookstagram #favoritebooks #chocopain #hobokenlove
What a tease. Walking up Broadway in NYC, I passed by Westsider Books but couldn’t stop for more than a couple of minutes because I had to get to an appointment. I’ll definitely be back to take my time perusing the stacks here. In the meantime, my imagination is working overtime at the thought of what I might find. I’m dreaming of adding some vintage Jane Austens to my shelf. #magicplaces #bookstores #possibilities #westsiderbooks #bookstoresofinstagram #literarytravel #noveldestinations #nyc #nycbookstores

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