Are you looking for something to beat the typical winter blues? There is something about the cold weather and the daylight being shorter that makes people more down during the months of January-March. So it’s hard to find something that brings people out of that winter funk. Well, I am here to recommend great comfort reads that will help you beat you those winter blues. From uplifting historical fiction to inspirational memoirs, get lost in these reads that will make you quickly forget the cold, dreary weather outside:
Away with The Penguins by Hazel Prior
US Title: How The Penguins Saved Veronica
Eighty-five-year-old Veronica McCreedy is estranged from her family and wants to find a worthwhile cause to leave her fortune to. When she sees a documentary about penguins being studied in Antarctica, she tells the scientists she’s coming to visit–and won’t take no for an answer. Shortly after arriving, she convinces the reluctant team to rescue an orphaned baby penguin. He becomes part of life at the base, and Veronica’s closed heart starts to open.
Her grandson, Patrick, comes to Antarctica to make one last attempt to get to know his grandmother. Together, Veronica, Patrick, and even the scientists learn what family, love, and connection are all about.(Credit: Berkley Books)
I was recommended this title by Cosy Wee Reads so I’m sure this one is a perfect pick!
The Jane Austen Society by Natalie Jenner
Just after the Second World War, in the small English village of Chawton, an unusual but like-minded group of people band together to attempt something remarkable.
One hundred and fifty years ago, Chawton was the final home of Jane Austen, one of England’s finest novelists. Now it’s home to a few distant relatives and their diminishing estate. With the last bit of Austen’s legacy threatened, a group of disparate individuals come together to preserve both Jane Austen’s home and her legacy. These people–a laborer, a young widow, the local doctor, and a movie star, among others–could not be more different and yet they are united in their love for the works and words of Austen. As each of them endures their own quiet struggle with loss and trauma, some from the recent war, others from more distant tragedies, they rally together to create the Jane Austen Society. (Credit: St. Martin Press)
Wintering: The Power of Rest and Retreat in Difficult Times by Katherine May
A moving personal narrative shot through with lessons from literature, mythology, and the natural world, May’s story offers instruction on the transformative power of rest and retreat. Illumination emerges from many sources: solstice celebrations and dormice hibernation, C.S. Lewis and Sylvia Plath, swimming in icy waters and sailing arctic seas.
Ultimately Wintering invites us to change how we relate to our own fallow times. May models an active acceptance of sadness and finds nourishment in deep retreat, joy in the hushed beauty of winter, and encouragement in understanding life as cyclical, not linear. A secular mystic, May forms a guiding philosophy for transforming the hardships that arise before the ushering in of a new season. (Credit: Riverhead Books)
The Comfort Book by Matt Haig
If you are looking for the perfect comfort read to beat those winter blues, you definitely can’t go wrong with this one! Matt Haig has the gift to write inspirational and poignant words that will stay with you always and The Comfort Book is no different. In this quick read, you will find the perfect sentences and soothing mantras to get through not only the day but most importantly through life.
Dear Reader: The Comfort and Joy of Books by Cathy Rentsenbrink
A memoir of a life spent immersed in the comfort and joy of books.
For as long as she can remember, Cathy Rentzenbrink has lost and found herself in stories. Growing up, she was rarely seen without her nose in a book and read in secret long after lights out. When tragedy struck, books kept her afloat. Eventually they lit the way to a new path, first as a bookseller and then as a writer. No matter what the future holds, reading will always help.
Dear Reader is a moving, funny and joyous exploration of how books can change the course of your life, packed with recommendations from one reader to another. (Credit: Picador USA)
The Reading List by Sara Nisha Adams
Widower Mukesh lives a quiet life in Wembley, in West London after losing his beloved wife. He shops every Wednesday, goes to Temple, and worries about his granddaughter, Priya, who hides in her room reading while he spends his evenings watching nature documentaries.
Aleisha is a bright but anxious teenager working at the local library for the summer when she discovers a crumpled-up piece of paper in the back of To Kill a Mockingbird. It’s a list of novels that she’s never heard of before. Intrigued, and a little bored with her slow job at the checkout desk, she impulsively decides to read every book on the list, one after the other. As each story gives up its magic, the books transport Aleisha from the painful realities she’s facing at home.
When Mukesh arrives at the library, desperate to forge a connection with his bookworm granddaughter, Aleisha passes along the reading list…hoping that it will be a lifeline for him too. Slowly, the shared books create a connection between two lonely souls, as fiction helps them escape their grief and everyday troubles and find joy again. (Credit: HarperLuxe)
The Lost Lights of St. Kilda by Elisabeth Gifford
This was a novel that I considered to be a love story to the Highlands. It really captured the heart, the community, the togetherness of St. Kilda so beautifully and and with an engaging tone. The writing that was used to describe the environment and the scenery was just so lyrical and atmospheric that I felt that I was actually there. Although fictional, I discover so much this little island that I barely knew anything about. The love and hope between Fred and Chrissie was also amazing to read about. After all that waiting and time spent apart, they’re love for each other carried them through the trials and struggles that were thrown at them each way. This was perfect escapism literature that gave me time to breath and experience another world and time that I knew nothing about.
A Quiet Kind of Thunder by Sara Barnard
Steffi doesn’t talk, but she has so much to say.
Rhys can’t hear, but he can listen.
Steffi has been a selective mute for most of her life. The condition’s name has always felt ironic to her, because she certainly does not “select” not to speak. In fact, she would give anything to be able to speak as easily and often as everyone around her can. She suffers from crippling anxiety, and uncontrollably, in most situations simply can’t open her mouth to get out the words.
Steffi’s been silent for so long that she feels completely invisible. But Rhys, the new boy at school, sees her. He’s deaf, and her knowledge of basic sign language means that she’s assigned to help him acclimate. To Rhys, it doesn’t matter that Steffi doesn’t talk. As they find ways to communicate, Steffi discovers that she does have a voice, and that she’s falling in love with the one person who makes her feel brave enough to use it. But as she starts to overcome a lifelong challenge, she’ll soon confront questions about the nature of her own identity and the very essence of what it is to know another person. (Credit” Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers)
All The Lonely People by Mike Gayle
In weekly phone calls to his daughter in Australia, widower Hubert Birdpaints a picture of the perfect retirement, packed with fun, friendship, and fulfillment. But it’s a lie. In reality, Hubert’s days are all the same, dragging on without him seeing a single soul.
Until he receives some good news–good news that in one way turns out to be the worst news ever, news that will force him out again, into a world he has long since turned his back on. The news that his daughter is coming for a visit.
Now Hubert faces a seemingly impossible task: to make his real life resemble his fake life before the truth comes out.
Along the way Hubert stumbles across a second chance at love, renews a cherished friendship, and finds himself roped into an audacious community scheme that seeks to end loneliness once and for all . . .Life is certainly beginning to happen to Hubert Bird. But with the origin of his earlier isolation always lurking in the shadows, will he ever get to live the life he’s pretended to have for so long? (Credit: Grand Central Publishing)
A Kind of Spark by Elle McNicoll
Ever since Ms. Murphy told us about the witch trials that happened centuries ago right here in Juniper, I can’t stop thinking about them. Those people weren’t magic. They were like me. Different like me.
I’m autistic. I see things that others do not. I hear sounds that they can ignore. And sometimes I feel things all at once. I think about the witches, with no one to speak for them. Not everyone in our small town understands. But if I keep trying, maybe someone will. I won’t let the witches be forgotten. Because there is more to their story. Just like there is more to mine. (Credit: Crown Books for Young Readers)