Escape to Switzerland with a good book

We all love a good read that takes us out of the mundane and into the wonderful. Sometimes the wonderful comes in the form of a country…

There’s something rather fabulous about escaping the drear of everyday life by submersing yourself in a good book. But for those of us who live in Switzerland, sometimes the beautiful mountains, vast open lakes and seasonal seasons can make you … well, not really want to escape. 

What if you want to be reminded  of reality whilst reading, instead of running away from it?

You may have heard it said that

“Any writer who mattered seems to have passed through Switzerland at one time or another”; it’s clear that the country we’ve chosen to live in has not just inspired us to stay here but has inspired Creatives to put their experience into words. 

So maybe you still want to escape with a good read, but you just love the country you live in. Or you want to be inspired by a book to explore more of Switzerland. Or you just love a good book, no matter where it’s based. Either way, we’ve complied a list of the best Good Reads based in Switzerland, much of which are based right here in Geneva. 

Hotel Du Lac – Anita Brookner

Along the shores of Lake Geneva, the Man Booker prizewinner, Hotel Du Lac is set. A beautifully written, charming novel describing the life of a young Englishwoman visiting a hotel in its off-season. With rich descriptions of the region, it’ll make you fall in love with Lake Geneva all over again. 


Tender Is The Night – F. Scott Fitzgerald

Fitzgerald can’t seem to choose just one place in Switzerland to write about – his works, including the very famous The Great Gatsby, feature Geneva, Bern, Zurich, Neuchâtel and more. Scott Fitzgerald had a love affair with Switzerland, writing in protagonists who adventured through the country in almost all his books. A personal favourite, Tender Is The Night is a beautiful tragedy in which part of Dick Diver’s life is based in Switzerland. 


The Visit – Friedrick Dürrenmatt

If you’re bored of Swiss cities and want to mentally escape from Geneva, The Visit is set in the fictional Swiss town of Güllen. The novel is about a local woman who returns to her town after becoming rich and thus throws the whole community into moral chaos, which sounds… well, rather Swiss in fact.


Angels & Demons – Dan Brown

If you’re a fan of mystery thrillers, celebrated author Dan Brown’s book Angels and Demons is set at CERN, so will be a very familiar location to many Geneva expats. Not sick of CERN yet or unfamiliar with the LHC at all? Grab a copy of the book and hang out in the imaginary dark goings on at CERN. 


Obsession – Emily Lemon

And if you’re looking for a brand new novel, in late 2018 local author, Emily Lemon, released Obsessionwhich is partly based just outside of Geneva. It’s a dark romance novel about three young adults who move to the area to start a new life which does not quite go to plan…

If you’re all too familiar with the catastrophes of being a new expat in Geneva, attempting to date a french-speaking Swiss, or struggling to keep up with a totally new culture, this book will definitely commiserate with you in a hilarious way. 


It’s always the perfect season to curl up with a book, but more so now than ever. After a long day skiing, when the darkness is closing in and you’re tired of watching films, grab one of these books and love the place you live in.

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