I thought I’d compile a list of my favourite books to read in winter. Living in a relatively sheltered area of England, I don’t get to see much snow, but I see a lot of rain and glaring white-ish grey skies that, while also giving me headaches, makes the old seasonal blues a frequent thing. So, I turn to novels containing winters as they SHOULD be.
1) Northern Lights by Philip Pullman.
Talking polar bears, witches, a journey to the Arctic. An alethiometer-wielding child in a place where every human has an animal familiar. Love it.
2) North Child by Edith Pattou
And another sentient polar bear. I seem to have a thing for polar bears. This is a really strange retelling of an old fairy tale, with weird troll people and amnesia-inducing hot chocolate thrown in, which would be great if it existed in real life because then nobody would have to get drunk.
3) The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper.
I got into the entire series this book is part of after reading my mother’s copy of “Silver on the Tree” when I had glandular fever. The way the evil forces are equated with the twelve nights of Christmas gives one a warm fuzzy feeling.
4) The Weirdstone of Brisingamen.
OK, so it’s not very wintry, but it contains ravens and tunnels and goblins, all part of an atmosphere that you equate with autumn at least. (No, we do not get goblins in winter where I live. But hey, the weirdstone was once owned by Freya of the Norse gods, which I equate with all things snowy.)
5) Odd and the Frost Giants by Neil Gaiman.
Talking of Norse gods, here they are again in the service of a boy with a lame leg and an unusually persistent smile. One for the kids, but I’ve never let stuff like age limits get in my way.
part 2 coming up soon. All of you stay warm.