February is a cold month normally, although oddly enough Kansas seems to be going through some sort of random heat wave right now. But normally, when the weather outside is frightful, I like nothing more than to cuddle up with a hot cup of tea and a fuzzy blanket and read. So I thought I’d share my favorite cold weather reads.
Something light and funny
If I want something that makes me laugh and isn’t too hard to keep track of, I usually turn to Janet Evanovich. Even though it can get naughty in spots (and steamy in others), I have yet to find a series of books that makes me laugh harder than the Stephanie Plum books.
And, hey, there are 23 of them now!
Something deep and challenging
Of course, some days the deep, contemplative side of my personality needs to be fed. It doesn’t happen very often. I’m not that deep. But every now and then I need something with more substance than a fun read. I need a challenge. I need something that makes me think.
Recently, I finished reading Waiting on God by Andrew Murray and Life Together by Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Currently, I’m reading The Normal Christian Life by Watchman Nee. All three are excellent examples of engaging religious non-fiction written 100+ years ago but is still relevant.
I recommend all three of them.
Sometimes I want a complicated read, something that will engage all the gears in my busy brain, but I don’t want to have to chew over every sentence I read for some level of spiritual truth. When I’m in that kind of mood, I turn to Robert Jordan.
I’m working through the Wheel of Time series right now, and the writing of these amazing high fantasy books manages to be both epic but character-focused.
If Wheel of Time isn’t for you, I’d also recommend the Sword of Truth series by Terry Goodkind, though some of the later books wandered a bit too much for me. And I’ve seen some new ones in that series, and I’m not entirely sure I like the direction they’ve gone. But the first six are pretty awesome.
Then, of course, I have to get my nerd on every so often. Sometimes I just want a space adventure. And my go-to novel set in space is Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card.
And I may be a terrible person for admitting this, but I love Star Trek and Star Wars novels. Always have. They always scratched that sci-fi itch in my weird brain. So if I’m not up to the emotional roller coaster of Ender’s Game, I’ll often turn to Ishmael by Barbara Hambly or Heir to the Empire by Timothy Zahn.
Trixie Belden was the first series of books I remember reading that really ignited my imagination. The first one I read was in a free library we visited when I was in elementary school, Trixie Belden and the Castaway Children.
She’s so much better than Nancy Drew. Granted, I may be biased. But just give her a try and find out.
There are so many other books out there that are beautiful and wonderful, exciting adventures and engaging action stories. But this little list is what comes to mind when I think about what to read on a chilly day.
So grab some fuzzy socks and a warm blanket. Heat up your mug of tea and coffee and go get lost in a book. I think I will too.