Recommended Reading from Chris Pavone

Chris Pavone, Author of The Expats, graces RIF with his ultimate reading list of novels set in Europe.

chris pavone

Ten Novels Set in Europe Recommended by Chris Pavone, Author of  The Expats

When I moved to Luxembourg, I adopted a relentless diet of fiction set in Europe as a way of acclimating to my new home while also continuing to read stories. Here are some relatively contemporary favorites plus a few older essentials in which the geographical setting itself plays a crucial, defining, and enjoyable role.

1. The Northern Clemency by Philip Hensher: a family moves to the north of England.

2. The Imperfectionists by Tom Rachman: life at an English-language newspaper in Rome.

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3. Capital by John Lanchester: immigrants to London mix with natives.

4. The Tiger’s Wife by Téa Obreht: war and dying and surviving in Southern Europe.

5. Prague by Arthur Phillips: young expats in Eastern Europe, after the Wall.

6. On Her Majesty’s Secret Service by Ian Fleming: James Bond in France and in Switzerland and in love.

7. Smilla’s Sense of Snow by Peter Høeg: the precursor to the current Scandinavian-thriller craze, published back in ’92, set in Denmark.

8. Restless by William Boyd: World War II spying.

9. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller: World War II fighting.

10. The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway: the ultimate expat novel, of Americans in Paris in the twenties.

Featured Image by Chinnapong/

About Kira Walton

KIRA WALTON has been stalking books all her life as a college English teacher, bookseller, book club consultant, author, and editor.

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