Read Around the World: Australia to Belize

We’re into a new blog series now where we’re going to read around the world, featuring a book from every country in the world. We’ll work alphabetically through all the countries in the world and add in some smaller countries and islands too, from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe!

We’ll work alphabetically so today we’re competing the As and moving into the Bs as we feature books set in all the countries from Australia to Belize. Join us on our literary world trip as we read around the world in more than 200 books.

Australia

Light Between Oceans – M. L. Stedman

After four harrowing years on the Western Front, Tom Sherbourne returns to Australia and takes a job as the lighthouse keeper on Janus Rock, nearly half a day’s journey from the coast. To this isolated island, where the supply boat comes once a season, Tom brings a young, bold, and loving wife, Isabel. Years later, after two miscarriages and one stillbirth, the grieving Isabel hears a baby’s cries on the wind. A boat has washed up onshore carrying a dead man and a living baby.

The Light Between Oceans

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Austria

Waiting for Sunrise – William Boyd

A provocative exploration of the line between consciousness and reality is nested within a tense, rollercoaster plotline following as a young English actor ensnared in a bewildering scandal with an enigmatic woman in early twentieth-century Vienna. Sophisticated, page-turning, and unforgettable, Boyd’s Waiting for Sunrise is a triumph of literary fiction from one of the most powerful, thought-provoking writers working today.

Waiting for Sunrise

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Azerbaijan

Ali and Nino – Kurban Said

Ali and Nino, two lovers from vastly different backgrounds, grow up together in carefree innocence in Baku on the Caspian Sea. Here, where Eastern and Occidental collide, they are inevitably drawn into the events of the First World War and the Russian Revolution. Torn apart by the turmoil, Ali joins the defense of Azerbajan from the onslaught of the Red Army, and Nino flees to the safety of Paris with their child, not knowing whether they will ever see each other again.

Ali and Nino

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Bahamas

Islands in the Stream – Ernest Hemingway

Beginning in the 1930s, Islands in the Stream follows the fortunes of Thomas Hudson, from his experiences as a painter on the Gulf Stream island of Bimini in the Bahamas through his antisubmarine activities off the coast of Cuba during World War II. Hemingway is at his mature best in this beguiling tale.

Islands in the Stream

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Bahrain

The Meeting Point – Lucy Caldwell

When Euan and Ruth set off with their young daughter to live in Bahrain, it is meant to be an experience and adventure they will cherish. But on the night they arrive, Ruth discovers the truth behind the missionary work Euan has planned and feels her world start to crumble. Far from home, and with events spiralling towards war in nearby Iraq, she starts to question her faith – in Euan, in their marriage and in all she has held dear.

The Meeting Point

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Bangladesh

A Golden Age – Tahmima Anam

Rehana Haque, a young widow, blissfully prepares for the party she will host for her son and daughter. But this is 1971 in East Pakistan, and change is in the air.

Set against the backdrop of the Bangladesh War of Independence, A Golden Age is a story of passion and revolution; of hope, faith, and unexpected heroism in the midst of chaos—and of one woman’s heartbreaking struggle to keep her family safe.

A Golden Age

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Barbados

Sugar in the Blood – Andrea Stuart

In the late 1630s, lured by the promise of the New World, Andrea Stuart’s earliest known maternal ancestor, George Ashby, set sail from England to settle in Barbados. He fell into the life of a sugar plantation owner by mere chance, but by the time he harvested his first crop, a revolution was fully under way: the farming of sugar cane, and the swiftly increasing demands for sugar worldwide, would not only lift George Ashby from abject poverty and shape the lives of his descendants, but it would also bind together ambitious white entrepreneurs and enslaved black workers in a strangling embrace.

Sugar in the Blood

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Belarus

The Long Walk – Slavomir Rawicz

In 1941, the author and six other fellow prisoners escaped a Soviet labor camp in Yakutsk, Belarus — a camp where enduring hunger, cold, untended wounds, untreated illnesses, and avoiding daily executions were everyday feats. Their march over thousands of miles by foot—out of Siberia and through China, the Gobi Desert, Tibet, and over the Himalayas to British India—was a remarkable journey through some of the most inhospitable conditions on the face of the earth.

The Long Walk

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Belgium

The Square of Revenge – Pieter Aspe

The beautiful medieval architecture of Bruges belies the dark longings of her residents. When the wealthy and powerful Ludovic Degroof’s jewelry store is robbed, nothing is stolen, but the jewels have been dissolved in jars of aqua regia, an acid so strong that it can melt even gold. In the empty safe is a scrap of paper on which a strange square has been drawn.

The Square of Revenge

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Belize

Time and the River – Zee Edgell

Time and the River is about freedom and slavery, hope and betrayal. It tells the story of people who don’t own their own land or time, or even their own bodies. Leah Lawson is the daughter of a slave owner and a slave woman in Belize (the former British Honduras). In dreaming of a better future Leah must make some difficult choices. Her life takes drastic turns, changing her from slave into mistress, and forcing her to take the lives of her family and best friend into her own hands.

Time and the River

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We hope you enjoyed the first list in this new blog series, we’ll be back with the next journey through literature in a few days, starting with Australia

As the series continues, you can try this search to find the rest of the blogs in this series. Alternatively if you’re looking for a specific country so far we have covered:

Afghanistan to Aruba



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