To me, one of the main strengths of a story is a great location. Whether it be the full setting of a book or one or two places within the story, if it stands-out and is memorable, it means a lot to me. I love vivid descriptions and when a location is so well described by an author that you have no trouble imagining it. When you're fully absorbed and transported to a great location in a story, I think you're onto a winner. For me, these are some of the best locations in stories for 2015 - a very varied and perhaps surprising list!
The Little Village Series by Gervase Phinn
This is a series that I really enjoy, mainly because of the fantastic location it's set in. I'm all for books that are set in small villages - I love the community feel and the way everyone knows everyone as it creates great drama, as well as feeling comfortable and warming. Barton-in-the-Dale, the village this series is based around, is one of my favourites. There is a great mix of personalities living there and it has a real country-vibe to it, which I absolutely love.
Pleasure Island by Anna-Lou Weatherley
I was completely surprised and taken aback by this story. I'll admit, I'd pre-judged somewhat and thought it was going to be a story that centred around sex, but it is SO much more than that. It is a clever and twisty psychological thriller that I raced through as it is so, so good. The story follows a select group of individuals who are invited by a billionaire to a luxury island. They think they are just there for an indulgent, relaxing time but what they don't know is a different, select group have paid the billionaire to watch them... think Big Brother but with less viewers and them not knowing they are being watched. Not only was it a great plot and well written, but the island itself sounded amazing... (short of the secret cameras, of course) which is why I chose it as best location. The island sounded beautiful and a real luxurious place that I could easily picture and would love to visit - once the cameras were gone! Read my full review here
Mile High by Rebecca Chance
This story is set in a slightly unusual location, in that it is entirely set onboard a new luxury airliner. Only the most prestigious celebrities have been invited on board for it's first flight and so, as you'd expect, major drama ensues. This was a really enjoyable story and I loved that it was set on a plane, which was the driving force of the brilliant plot. The setting really heightened the drama and was also really well described - it sounds like a blumming amazing plane! Read my full review here