That magical feeling of family
Lucy Boston’s The Children of Green Knowe. It centres on the experience of Toseland, a boy who spends most of his Christmas holidays at a house called Green Knowe. The house has a long history that dates all the way back to the Norman Conquest in 1066. As the story develops, Toseland learns more about his family history, which gives him a strong sense of belonging. I love the descriptions of the setting, such as the house, the snow and the animals. But what I like most is Toseland’s relationship with his grandmother, as it reminds me of how much I love to spend holidays with my own grandparents.
This is a hot read
The best book you can have on a cold winter day is a book of matches, because you can use them to start a cosy fire. If you are curled up in front of the fireplace with a mug of hot cocoa, then any book will be wonderful. You could probably read Minutes of the Legislative Council Sessions Nov-Dec 1998 and it would still be a wonderful way to spend the day.
The spirit(s) of Christmas
I’d go with the book that invented Christmas as we know it, Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol – which is so slim you could probably read it all in two days. Also, after reading it you’ll be very glad that you didn’t live in Dickensian Britain – no matter how much homework you might have over the holidays. Dickens isn’t hard to read and it’s very short.
Even Father Christmas makes an appearance
I love The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and The Wardrobe by CS Lewis. Eternal winter? Check. Evil snow queen? Check. Sleigh rides? Check. Cosy fur coats? Check. This book is everything great about winter, and about books. You can curl up in a cosy corner, or in your warm winter jacket on your commute to school, and be transported to the winter wonderland of Narnia, with all the magical creatures and adventures that it is home to.
One book to rule them all
JRR Tolkien’s classic fantasy The Lord of the Rings is on practically everyone’s “must-read” list. And it might be super long, but when it’s cold and dark outside you don’t want to be going anywhere, anyway. Elves (not the kind you find at the North Pole), hobbits, an epic, magical quest towards a volcano in order to save the world ... sure, it’s not winter-themed, but it’s still a great book to read when you’re snuggled up at home.
A date with Ms Mystery
Almost all of Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple novels make for perfect winter reading, because so many of them are set in her tiny village, St Mary Mead, and involve copious cups of tea and lots of knitting. But while her Poirot stories are generally more glam (and less cosy) than the Marple ones, the Belgian detective’s adventures in The Adventure of the Christmas Pudding are festive, seasonally appropriate, and less murderous than most of Christie’s tales!