Nestled at the crossroads of Europe, Asia, and Africa, Cyprus stands as a melting pot of cultural narratives and historical tides—an inspiration for scribes worldwide. Within this literary tapestry, Cypriot works and tales set on this island reflect an eclectic mix that captivates and educates. Eager to immerse yourself in the island's storied heritage? We've curated a must-read list of ten books for the traveler bound for Cyprus.
What Books Should I Read Before Visiting Cyprus?
#1 Journey into Cyprus by Colin Thubron
Throughout history's annals of illustrious explorers, Thubron stands as a beacon for his willingness to embrace the rigor of an extensive journey on foot. His trek in the spring of 1972 spanned a remarkable 600 miles through Cyprus, from its northernmost point to its southern tip, sampling a wealth of experiences along the way. Though he occasionally questioned his decision to eschew the comforts of taxis and hotels, the tenacious young adventurer pressed on. The richness of this travel account springs not just from Thubron's remarkable stamina and bold spirit but also from a deep well of knowledge, meticulous research, and linguistic prowess. These underpinnings are the hallmarks of a writer who has earned his place among the pantheon of all-time great travel raconteurs.
Many more books are not included in this selection. You can read novels about Cyprus or set in Cyprus in the app. To read a novel online, you need a suitable application. While there are many novel apps, a prominent candidate for your app is Fiction Me. Here you can not only read novels but also narrate books.
#2 Ledra Street by Nora Nadjarian
The bustling Ledra Street in Nicosia captivates with its array of shops and cafés—a stark contrast to its role as a checkpoint dividing the island's north and south. Nadjarian's anthology delves into this dichotomy through short stories that paint everyday experiences with a poetic touch. Revealing and accessible, her work offers a window into the island's daily realities.
#3 The Evolution of Fear by Paul E Hardisty
Claymore Straker is on the run, with his name topping the CIA's most-wanted list for terror charges he didn't commit. In the wake of his friend's death and the vanishing of Rania, his love, Clay is forced from his Cornwall retreat to find her. Betrayed by allies, his journey takes him from Istanbul to Cyprus, where he's thrust into a fierce battle amid Russian mobsters, Cypriot militants, and corrupt developers exploiting the tourist surge. As Cyprus spirals into turmoil, Clay is caught in the crossfire, unearthing a shocking conspiracy fueled by greed. "The Evolution of Fear" is a tense, high-stakes tale that blurs the lines between reality and fiction, raising questions about the truths we accept. Prepare for a penetrating and tumultuous thriller that insists on asking: What is real, and what is fabricated?
#4 Bitter Lemons of Cyprus by Lawrence Durrell
In the early 1950s, seeking a budget-friendly yet charming spot within the Mediterranean to pen his next novel, Lawrence Durrell acquired and refurbished a residence in Bellapais village (presently under Northern Cyprus). While Durrell's works may not have remained timeless, at times reflecting the era and culture of his time, his writings offer a blend of scholarly insight and wit that capture an important epoch in the chronicles of the island. Like Colin Thubron, Durrell was present in Cyprus during the rising tensions that reached a climax. Necessitated to leave the island in 1956, he, too, was a Greek speaker and shared a critical perspective on both the British administration and the Greek Cypriot insurgents. Nevertheless, his narrative aimed not for political scrutiny but as a literary contribution.
#5 Refugee in My Homeland by Rina Catselli
Rina Catselli's narrative provides a deeply personal account of life as a refugee within the borders of one's own homeland, set against the backdrop of Cyprus's enduring partition. Her poignant reflections offer readers a profound understanding of the emotional and nostalgic experiences tied to this reality.
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#6 The Island of Missing Trees by Elif Shafak
Elif Shafak's novel stands as an ode to the stunning yet isolated expanses of the Mediterranean’s furthest reaches, capturing the essence of Cyprus with striking detail. Her narrative prowess is undeniable, skillfully weaving a tapestry of empathy throughout her tales. The novel’s most unconventional narrator, a fig tree, stands as an arboreal chronicler of a century filled with both harmony and discord, providing a narrative angle far removed from our human experience.
If you are looking for books from Cyprus or those books that give a better idea of life on this amazing island, you have found them. Cyprus is unique, but it is impossible to experience it even in 1-2 weeks of travel. You can prepare yourself in advance and feel this atmosphere better.