Map Monday #5

Hello and welcome to ‘Map Monday’. This was inspired by the current pandemic and lockdowns and the inability to travel. I will share one book each week with you that is set somewhere different to where I live. I’ll chat a bit about the book and throw some interesting facts out there about the place. I hope you enjoy travelling through books with me…

This week I’ve picked ‘The Long, Long Afternoon’ by Inga Vesper which is based in California, USA.

Book Synopsis:

It’s the summer of 1959, and the well-trimmed lawns of Sunnylakes wilt under the California sun.

At some point during the long, long afternoon Joyce Haney, a seemingly happy housewife and mother, vanishes from her home, leaving behind only two terrified young children and a bloodstain on the kitchen floor.

With the stifling heat of Tangerine and the gripping pace of Little Deaths, The Long, Long Afternoon is at once a page-turning mystery and an intoxicating vision of the ways in which women everywhere are diminished, silenced and, ultimately, underestimated. 

Interesting Facts about California:

  • California is bounded by the U.S. state of Oregon to the north, by the states of Nevada and Arizona to the east, by the Mexican state of Baja California to the south, and by the Pacific Ocean to the west. 
  • California is home to the “Avocado Capital of the World.” Every year, Fallbrook holds an avocado festival to celebrate.
  • If California was its own country, it would have the 6th largest economy in the world.
  • Due to its Mediterranean climate, California is able to produce over 17 million gallons of wine each year.
  • The state animal of California is the Grizzly Bear, which is also featured on the Californian flag. However, the grizzly bear population in California has since gone extinct – the last sighting of a grizzly was in 1924.
  • California is the third-largest state, following Alaska and Texas. It is 1,040 miles long, and 560 miles wide.
  • Movie makers originally relocated to Hollywood because they were trying to get away from Thomas Edison who was based in New Jersey. His patents made it difficult to make movies, but in California, the courts were known to rule against patent claims.
  • The world’s largest tree  ‘General Sherman’, lives in Sequoia National Park – It’s nearly 275 feet tall!
  • In southeast California lies the Mojave Desert, which is more than 25,000 square miles and occupies 1/6 of the land area of California.
  • In Sunol a dog was elected honorary mayor and “served” from 1981 to 1994.
  • They have some funky laws – In Blythe, it is illegal to wear cowboy boots unless you own a minimum of 2 cows.
  • Death Valley is the hottest and driest place in the US with summer temperatures often reaching over 115 degrees
  • The Hollywood Bowl is the largest outdoor amphitheater in the US (opened in 1922!)


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