Miscellenea

Books about Belgium

A few books to help you discover more about Belgium

As Discovering Belgium is all about Belgium, I thought I would mention some books on Belgium that you might like to consider reading or gifting. I’ll add to this list over time.

The Bright Side of Belgium

by Sigrid Vandensavel and Hadewijch Ceulemans (ISBN 978-9460581137)

A lovely photo book that will make you fall in love (if you haven’t already) with some of Belgium’s most beautiful cities and regions, as well as areas of natural beauty. Updated for 2017, it covers architecture, art, cuisine, fashion and design, plus tips on where to eat and stay.


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500 Hidden Secrets of Antwerp

Derek Blyth turns his attention and literary skills on Antwerp, discovering and sharing useful, informative, strange or simply bizarre best-kept (until now) secrets of Antwerp. Essential if you want to avoid the usual tourist sights of this fascinating city.


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Belgium Et Cetera

by The Cartoonist and Gilles Dal (ISBN 978-9461315014)

Subtitled “1830-2030 in press cartoons”, it’s an irreverent look at a multitude of aspects of Belgian life through cartoons on politics, royalty, art, culture, sport etc., but also contains a wealth of more serious information on Belgium’s history.


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King Leopold’s Ghost

by Adam Hochshild (978-1447211358)

An eye-opening account of the atrocities committed in the Congo in search of rubber: what Joseph Conrad described as “the vilest scramble for loot that ever disfigured the history of human conscience.” Essential reading for anyone interested in the history of Belgium. Here’s a brief review of King Leopold’s Ghost.


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Silent Fields

by Bart Heirweg (978-9401409582)

Beautiful, evocative and moving photographs of the landscape of the part of Flanders that was most affected by the First World War. I especially love his early morning and late evening shots.


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Ardennes 1944: Hitler’s Last Gamble

by Antony Beevor (978-0241975152)

I haven’t read this, but I thought the author’s “Stalingrad” and “Berlin” were excellent so it’s about time I did! It covers Hitler’s Ardennes offensive, which involved more than a million men, and turned into one of the key battles of the Second World War. (P.S. Beevor’s books don’t work well as eBooks as the many maps are not clearly visible).


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If you have suggestions yourself, please add them to the comments below.

About Denzil

Discovering Belgium is my personal blog describing places to visit in Belgium. It mainly focuses on walking and cycling in nature, but also covers cities and events.

10 comments on “Books about Belgium

  1. Thanks for the list. I’ve bookmarked it for reading.

  2. Great list, Denzil. The first one would be great for visitors.

  3. I read “Stalingrad” by Antony Beevor and loved it. Great call on this recommendation. Thanks!

  4. What an interesting collection of books about Belgium, from those that praise its beauty to those that remind of its past brutality. Leopold’s at least.

    • Thanks Sharon, yes there is something for everyone there, I believe

      • They should put you on the payroll, noting all the good you do to promote Belgium. Before I started following your blog, I had no idea how incredibly beautiful your country is. But bureaucrats – meh!

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