Hello everyone! Its Haley again! We are so excited to be participating in the month long Bookending Winter meme hosted by Clo @ Cuppa Clo and Sam @ Fictionally Sam. We plan to do at least three posts throughout the month incorporating the themes provided by the hosts. Today, it looks like there’s a cold front moving in and I could not imagine a more perfect theme than books that remind me of the biting cold of winter- those books that make me want to curl up under my weighted blanket with a cup full of iced coffee (yes I’m one of those people— I never drink hot coffee, we can talk about that later).
Below I have provided a handful of books I have read adored. Don’t forget to tell us about your favorite winter reads in the comments and what you think of my selection. So, without further preamble, let’s dive in!
Wintry Books I’ve Read and Loved
I love this duology! When I tell people about it I describe it as mountain climbing with magic. Kamzin is our ambitious and talented protagonist who has dreamed of becoming one of the elite climbers for the Empire, tasked with mapping the wintry mountainous regions of the land. She has a chance to take a step closer to this dream when River Shara, the greatest explore the Empire has ever seen arrives in her villages and hires Kamzin to help him retrieve a rare talisman located on the summit of Raksha, the tallest, deadliest mountain in the Empire. A sense of urgency seizes the expedition when Kamzin sister Lusha teams up with River’s rival and tries to scale the mountain first. The world Fawcett weaves is enchanting and evocative, her characters complex, and her plot twists surprising. It is a perfect winter read.
There are very few books I have read that made me feel physically cold. Maybe its because I have traveled the exact same road and passed similar rest stops as the one Darby ends up stranded at. The driving point of the plot hinges on Darby’s discovery that one of the people stranded with her at the rest stop has a child in a dog crate inside their van. Once this book gets going it does not stop and there are moments when the reader is reminded of just how unforgiving the elements are- there is a particular scene where Darby is running through the snow and you can just feel the cold seeping into your skin as you read it. Its so good and a thriller that is perfect for this time of year.
First of all, look at that cover! It is so beautiful and whimsical but don’t let that fool you! White Stag is a brutal novel about a girl living among goblins. Janneke’s family was murdered and she was taken into the kingdom of monsters by the goblin Soren. When the death of the Goblin King sparks the hunt for the next king- symbolized by a beautiful white stag- Soren tries to use it as an opportunity for Janneke to embrace the world of monster and abandon her humanity. This book tackles, dark themes ranging from sexual assault, violence harm to children, allusions to suicidal idealization and so on. The list of trigger warnings is really endless. Say what you will about the heaviness of the book, it pulled me from a reading slump so fast and I cannot wait for Book 2 to eventually be out in the world.
Something followed them home from Russia. Talk about a claustrophobic, slow burn horror that is part mystery, part psychological thriller. Holly is our protagonist and the book is basically her stream of consciousness as she spends the snowed in Christmas day with her daughter Tatty, who they adopted from an orphanage in Russia. Throughout the course of the book, and the storm raging outside, Holly becomes more and more disturbed by her daughter’s mood swings and strange behavior. I can’ say much more without giving away spoilers but it is a perfect, slow burn thriller for the snowy weather.
I cannot think of a better trilogy to round out this list of wintry books with. This trilogy is one of my all time favorites! The world is so rich and lush, Vasya is strong-willed and independent but incredibly flawed character who makes plenty of mistakes. This trilogy, loosely inspired by the Slavic legend of Father Frost (among others) feels like reading a modern day fairytale- in my opinion, it is utter perfection and I have been chasing the reading high after finishing Winter of the Witch this past January all year long.
What About You?
What are you favorite wintry reads? Did I miss any good ones I should add to my TBR? Let us know in the comments and don’t forget to subscribe!