Favourite winter reads
It’s that time of year when all I want to do is curl up on the couch with a hot cup of tea and a really good book. I’ve been able to read quite a bit lately and noticed that I totally have a thing for cold and snowy books. In this post I want to share my favourite winter reads with you. They are in no particular order. The linked book titles take you to my more extensive reviews on goodreads.
Burial Rites by Hannah Kent
This debut novel of the Australian author Hannah Kent won all sorts of awards, one of them being the Australian Book Industry Award for Literary Fiction. Kent’s historical fiction novel is set in Iceland and it is about the last execution there in 1829. That this is one of the most random historical events to choose from to write a novel about is exactly why I love Burial Rites. It is also incredibly atmospheric. I read Burial Rites in the middle of summer and somehow I was still uncomfortable and cold while reading this, so get some cosy blankets before you get started with this winter read.
The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey
The Snow Child is set in the Alaskan wilderness in the nineteen-twenties. It is one of the most gorgeously written books: Ivey brings the Alaskan winter to life I could almost feel the snowflakes and freezing wind on my skin. The Snow Child is about an elderly childless couple who finds a little girl in the forest behind the tiny hut in the wilderness they live at. This Pulitzer nominee is a heart-warming book about love, parenthood and friendship.
Life After Life by Kate Atkinson
Life after Life is a historical fiction novel with a twist:
“What if we had a chance to do it again and again, until we finally did get it right? Wouldn’t that be wonderful?”
This question is what Life after Life is essentially about. We get to follow around the main character Ursula through WWI and WWII from her births to deaths. Births to deaths? That’s right: She dies and dies and gets reborn again and over again on a cold snowy winter night…
This is one of my favourite books of all time. The atmosphere of the Life after Life reminds me a lot of the TV show Downton Abbey. It is incredibly rich and well written and beautifully philosophical. If you like WWII fiction that does things a bit different, Life after Life is for you.
Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire
Every Heart a Doorway was published only recently in April this year. It is about teens who accidentally stumble through doors into other worlds and then come back into the “real” world and are unable to adjust again. Eleanor, the head mistress of a boarding school, takes in these “lost” teens and tries to help them to move on and teaches them how to live again in the “real” world. When Nancy, the new student arrives, gruesome murders start to happen… Unlike the other listed books “Every Heart a Doorway” doesn’t have the winter setting. In fact it is very colourful. But make no mistake: It is also a very dark tale. This little novella is a quirky mix of fantasy, twisted horror, suspenseful crime and mystery, as well as a coming of age story. Its magic and darkness makes Every Heart a Doorway a perfectly suitable winter read.
*I get dry hands during winter that’s why I included the hand scrub in the photo. And because it looks pretty.