Hey all, welcome back to my blog! Though winter will be ending soon, lately it’s been freezing cold where I live, and I feel like it’s the perfect time for me to mention some cold and frosty books I absolutely loved to read in the winter. I would highly recommend these books to be read all throughout the year, but I know the cold and atmospheric feel in these books will be much more lovely to be appreciated in the colder months. So, let’s get with the books!
The Year of Living Danishly by Helen Russell
I’m starting off the list with a book that started out in the heart of winter. Our writer, a British woman moved suddenly with her husband to Denmark in January, with the cold and dark conditions of winter in that country. Her description of the coldness of her first months there was very vivid and while I was listening to the audiobook for this memoir I was very lucky to not live in a Scandinavian country, despite the fact that it is one of the happiest countries in the world!
The Good People by Hannah Kent
An oldie but a goodie, I bought and read this book not too long after it was first published in 2016. I adored Kent’s first book Burial Rites, which is also a book that is set in the colder months. However The Good People is set in a small village in Ireland and tells about a woman who thinks her grandson is a changeling and finds help from a young girl to aid her in taking care of this child she believed has been taken by fairies and switched for a fairy child. It’s dark, twisted, slow, beautifully written and has amazing characters. The setting is very very cold, very old and very rural, and it will leave you breathless.
Aquarium by David Vann
A little different from my other books in this list is a contemporary novel about coming of age and a set towards a younger audience. Our main character is a little girl who befriends an old friend in her favourite place in the world, the city aquarium. It explores mother-daughter relationships, single parenting, coming of age, and many other themes. It’s quite dark at times but so readable, it’s set in the colder months around Christmas and filled with snow.
Our Homesick Songs by Emma Hooper
One of my favourite reads of last year, and one of the most atmospheric and heartbreakingly well-written books I’ve ever read. It’s gorgeously set in a remote island filled with not many people. It focuses on a family of four, who loves their island and each other, and the plot is slow and quiet but touched my heart in a way that really made the book stay with me. It has a lot of references on how cold the weather is, with the characters wearing layers of clothes, or fishing in the cold weather while feeling the cold salty water splash. It’s amazingly beautiful and has fantastic characters, and I cannot recommend it enough.
Under the Pendulum Sun by Jeannette Ng
I feel like a lot of fantasy books involve winter, snow and cold months. However in this unique fantasy novel, the world we are in are stuck in winter, similarly as in Narnia. We get to know our main character, a woman who enters this world where the sun is in a pendulum, casting a unique setting with a sophisticated daylight concept, cold locations and breathless magical creatures. The writing is fantastic and Gothic and dark and one of a kind, and it’s definitely a one of a kind book.
Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
This is probably a book most of you have read, but when I think of winter and train rides I remember Hogwarts express or this book. This classic locked-room mystery is a staple in all mystery-lovers’ bookshelves, and one of the few Agatha Christie books I’ve read. It’s captivating, unique, exciting, and definitely cold, and if you haven’t read it until now, this winter is the perfect time to read it! Or, if you don’t want to, just watch the amazing movie adaptation that really encapsulates the cold, wintry season the few days of the book is set in!
So these are the books that are cold, atmospheric and beautifully written that I’d recommend you read this winter! All of them are perfect to be read indoors with a hot chocolate or tea, under the blankets while it’s snowing outside. Hope you had a nice day, and let me know in the comments the first books you think of when you think of winter reads!