Alright, alright, alright (why must I always say this in in Matthew McConaughey’s voice??) I’m gonna be real. Winter is long and winter is dark. Genius statement, I know. Cut me some slack, though. I grew up in the eastern part of Washington State, where even when it was cold as all get out during the winter, you still saw the sunshine. I crave that sunshine. We see the sun during Seattle winters…sometimes. But there are a lot of grey days in between.
This winter was and is no exception, and, despite my wishes winter is still here (hey, spring, I’m sorry we fought last year. Please forgive me and come back, it’s time). I recently returned from a trip in sunny San Diego, only to land in Seattle with the reality that it is indeed still the coldest and wettest season of all in the PNW.
Cue the nest fest. Nesting is likely one of my favorite winter hobbies, there is nothing better to me than snuggling so hard (attempting and failing to make Kitty cuddle with me too) and curling up with a delicious book. Throw a glass of #WaWine in there and it’s quite the ideal winter nesting situation. All of these novels passed the 100 page test in my book, meaning I couldn’t put them down. So curl up, relax (maybe draw yourself a nice bubble bath) and enjoy these irresistible winter reads.
Why it’s worth the read: I love books about WWI and WWII. This time period fascinates me for reasons I can’t quite put my finger on. I also can’t stay away from a novel with a strong female protagonist, and The Nightingale has both. It’s set in Paris at the onset of WWII and follows the lives of two sisters, one is a rebellious youth, Isabelle, who exhibits insurmountable displays of courage in the Resistance. I devoured this book very quickly, if you haven’t read it, put it at the top of your list.
Why it’s good for winter: There are scenes in The Nightingale that will chill you to the bone, make sure you have your coziest blanket on hand for this one.
Why it’s worth the read: Fun fact: Robert Galbraith, the author of this novel, is actually J.K. Rowling. Mic drop. If you haven’t caught on, I’m a bit obsessed with Rowling and the stories she creates. You may have heard of a slightly successful series of hers called Harry Potter? Well, you won’t find any wizards in her debut novel as Robert Galbraith, but you will find a crime novel you won’t be able to put down. You’ll meet our protagonist, Detective Cormoran Strike, and he’ll lead you down a path of twists and turns that will leave your head spinning. The best part? This is just the first book in a series. You’re welcome.
Why it’s good for winter: The Cuckoo’s Calling takes place in London and, much like Seattle, London gets a pretty bad rap for crummy weather. The plus part of this? It makes for a fantastic cold weather read, as you follow Strike through the rainy London streets, you’ll be grateful for your cozy reading nook.
Why it’s worth the read: “The book was better” -me, after every movie I see that is a novel-turned-blockbuster. A Man Called Ove is no exception. I read this at the recommendation of my husband, and what a great suggestion it was. You’ll follow Ove, a curmudgeon you can’t help but fall in love with. Ove recently made his way to the big screen, so try to get your hands on the paper version of this sweet story before you catch it on the big-screen.
Why it’s good for winter: The main character of this book seemingly starts out with an icey heart, but the more you learn about his deep character, your heart can’t help but melt.
Why it’s worth the read: This one is another WWII era novel, and this one admittedly took me a bit to adjust to in terms of the writing style of the author. The chapters are divided into very short, succinct sections. You get adjusted very quickly, and it’s worth giving it the effort. This book follows the tale of a blind young girl and a German boy who’s stories collide in the wake of the war and despite everything pointing them against this–try to be good to one another.
Why it’s good for winter: Reading this historical novel in the cold of winter will make you feel extremely grateful that you’re able to recount this period in time from the warmth and safety of your nest.
Why it’s worth the read: This one was one my “to-read” list for ages, and I’m so glad I finally checked it off. The story begins with the opening line, “The snow in the mountains was melting and Bunny had been dead for several weeks before we came to understand the gravity of our situation.” If that isn’t going to draw you in, I don’t know what will. The story follows a group of intellectuals from an elite New England school. What starts out as seemingly innocent, takes a dark turn.
Why it’s good for winter: With an opening line like the one above, how could you not read this on a cold winter’s night?
Why it’s worth the read: Mystery, charm, intrigue, and a magical circus that appears nightly, though no one’s sure why. This whimsical read combines a duel neither lead character knew they had been preparing for their whole lives. You won’t be able to put this one down, and you’ll sail away to the magic that is The Night Circus.
Why it’s good for winter: The charm of this novel and the mystery and intrigue that surround the magical pop-up circus that appears nightly, is just the ticket to help you settle in for a long and cozy winter night in.
What are your favorite winter reads? Anything I need to add to the list? Let me know, and be sure to join me over on Instagram (@thelyonbadger) by using #CurateThatMoment!
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