Compulsory Reading

Compulsory Reading? Well perhaps not “compulsory” but here I have gathered a collection of useful or recommended blogs or articles in English about Spain, the Spanish and/or expat life. Grab a coffee and get an overview by reading these articles. All the writers are expats themselves and all are members of the Facebook WABAS group (Writers and Bloggers about Spain). All are all personally known to me. If you are an enthusiastic writer or blogger – whether a Spanish native or a foreigner and whether amateur or professional – you are invited to apply for membership.

The coffee image is courtesy of Alex Bramwell who is a photographer and writer living in Gran Canaria.
He blogs Sunshine Gran Canaria and is on a mission to make sure that everyone knows that there is more to Gran Canaria than its famous beaches and resorts.

Steve Hall – owner of ThisIsSpain and occasional writer about his travels, football and expat life. He is known for going on 5,000 km cycle tours and his passion for football. This tongue-in-cheek overview of expat life has been revised regularly over many years. The more I read it, the more I wished I had understood this 20 years ago!

Graham Hunt was the person who actually inspired this entire blog. I read this in November 2012 and decided that it deserved much greater attention. My thoughts developed to publish a list of posts that I thought would/should be considered “Compulsory Reading”. Graham helps people move to Spain and has for many years been active in property sales in Valencia and a seemingly endless chain of expat activities and entrepreneurial projects. He was the co-writer of Laptop Entrepreneur and owner of EntrepreneurSolo

Pierre-Alban Waters is a French national living in Madrid. He has become Mr Madrid for many French and English-speaking expats as a natural entrepreneur and networker. His Madrid blog is well worth reading even if you have decided upon Barcelona, Valencia or any of the other Spanish cities. It is intended more for those looking to live and work in the conurbations rather than those looking to retire to the golf-courses of the Costas.

Simon “Mr Catalonia” Harris has a huge knowledge of Spain but an intimate knowledge of Catalonia. He has written the best-seller “Going Native in Catalonia” and has an impressive Barcelona Travel Guide. Quite simply, don’t attempt to live in Catalonia without reading his works.

Nick Snelling is another published author and the owner of the superb site. He writes about a huge number of Spanish-related subjects from brothels to border controls (!) and taxes to tourism. He has written extensively on property matters. Here is The amazing story of Spain from dictatorship to democracy.

Fiona Flores Watson has a very strong post about Nine Things she has learned whilst living in Spain. Yes, Spain IS different!

Lisa Sadleir If it is cold, hard FACTS you are looking for then Lisa should be a first port of call. She has lived here for many years, has brought up her family here and understands the abortion that is Spanish bureaucracy intimately. If I have the blood-stained T-Shirt, she has a wardrobe of them. Always worth reading. Here for example is her “Should I live in Spain?“. Classic!

Molly Sears-Piccavey is “Ms Granada” in the same way as Simon is “Mr Catalonia”. One of my favourite posts from her is this one where she sums up her move from the city of Barcelona to an Andalucian village

Alex Bramwell is a man you should listen to about Spain in general and the Canaries in particular. If this were a film, would it get him an Oscar for best screenplay? Another Ex-pat Opinion About The Pain in Spain Well-worth a read if you are serious about understanding Spain.

Maxine Raynor will help you save money in Spain. The eternal deal-searcher. This article about how to enjoy a budget city break is definitely deserving of a greater audience. Register for her money-saving tips and your euros will go further. Punto, pelota. (As a fluent Spanish speaker she will tell you what that means too)

Matthew Hirtes is another stalwart of WABAS and Matthew has written profusely about the Canaries and the Spanish Peninsular. He is at his best when writing about Gran Canaria and I would struggle to chose one blog. will keep you informed, amused and fascinated!

Jennifer Riggins is a true guiri from New Jersey, writing both about technology and business in Spain and the life of ex-pats.