There is admittedly, never a time of year I don’t love a good book. But I feel especially book-worm-ish during the fall and winter months.
When it’s cold outside, I love to whip myself up a hot chai tea latte and sit down with an old favorite “cozy” read. What I categorize as cozy, are books that feel nostalgic, with stories I grew up enjoying around this time of year.
Today I’m sharing with you a few of those classic fall reads.
Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
Over the past year, I have been working my way through Jane Austen’s books. And so far-while I absolutely love each of her novels, for different reasons- I find I’m quite partial to this book in particular.
Northanger Abbey is a gothic parody novel about Catherine Morland, a caring but naive girl, whose view of the world and motives of those around her has been mis-shaped by the dramatic romance novels she reads by the bucketful.
So when a trip to Bath brings her into an unwise friendship with siblings, John and Isabella Thorpe, Catherine’s exaggerated fantasies only escalate under their negative influence.
Thankfully, she soon meets another brother and sister pair- Henry and Eleanor Tilney, who are much better influences on her. Through Catherine’s friendship with the Tilney’s, she grows into a much wiser person- leaving the naïveté of her childhood behind.
If you haven’t read Austen before and aren’t sure where to start, I’d recommend this one as an introduction into her novels. Northanger Abbey is a funny, lightweight read that’s easy to digest; with its witty dialogue and engaging plot.
Quotable: “If adventures will not befall a young lady in her own village, she must seek them abroad.”
Anne of The Island by L.M. Montgomery
Anne Shirley’s story is set in the late 1800’s in Prince Edward Island, Canada. This book is about Anne and her college years. She’s now finding her bearings as an independent woman pursuing a career as a writer- apart from the comforts of home.
Anne’s four years at Redmond College prove to be a time of growth and personal reflection for her. She must decide if she is ready to open up her heart to her beloved childhood friend, Gilbert Blythe, who has loved her since the first day when she broke her slate over his head. Anne must finally face the question in her heart: is Gilbert starting to mean more to her as well? Maybe he has for a long time…
L.M. Montgomery’s writing style is so descriptively beautiful. I’m enamored by Anne’s whole way of seeing the world.
I think her character is such a great example for women. She’s spunky, brave, intelligent, kind, and full of heart. She was one of my literary heroes growing up; I was so inspired by the whole of who she is, and the way she lives life.
But I know for a fact, that guys will enjoy the series as well! I wholeheartedly recommend the whole series to anyone. This one in particular, is perfect for fall.
Quotable: “Well, we all make mistakes my dear, so just leave it behind you. We should regret our mistakes and learn from them, but we should never carry them forward into the future with us.”
The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
Written during World War II, The Hobbit contains a fair amount of symbolism of a world at war. If you pay close attention as you read through it, and its continuing story in the Lord of The Rings trilogy, you’ll notice it was written through the eyes of a soldier.
The prequel to LOTR, tells the story of Bilbo Baggins, a hobbit. Bilbo is accustomed to safe and comfortable living that doesn’t require any sort of courage or heroics.
But that all changes when he gets an unexpected visit from a wizard and thirteen dwarves, inviting him to join their company as they set out on a quest to steal back gold that belonged to their ancestors, but is now being hoarded by the dragon, Smaug.
Through the story, Bilbo finds a new courage inside himself that he never knew he had. But it had always been there. Deep down, seeded within his Took-ish blood, it called for him to crack open his door and step into the adventure of a lifetime.
The Hobbit is one of my favorite books because it illustrates the divine call on every believer’s life to step into brave living- walking in our destiny as heroes.
Quotable: “Then something Tookish woke up inside him, and he wished to go and see the great mountains, and hear the pine-trees and the waterfalls, and explore the caves, and wear a sword instead of a walking-stick.”
The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame
This story came about when Kenneth Grahame, a successful banker, started writing fictional bedtime tales for his young son, about forest animals.
When his son went away for seaside holiday, Kenneth sent him letters daily, updating him on further installments of the animals’ adventures. The story grew and it was later published into a book, Wind in the Willows, in 1908!
I consider this a fun story for children and adults, alike! (Although, I do want to note that there are one or two minor profanities in this book. And because it is British, it’s not considered to be strong language there.) So keep that in mind, if you’re reading this out-loud to kids.)
Quotable: “Some of the most important conversations occur at my family’s dinner table.”
Have you ever read any of these? What are your favorite books to read during fall?