Fall is by far my favorite season – I love the scents and the foods and the pleasure of snuggling up in a warm blanket with a cup of tea and a favorite book. Until recently I was reading Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn, and though an interesting read without a doubt, I just couldn’t handle the chilling plot and twisty characters with the leaves turning such warm colors and the season demanding some joy and coziness. So I took to my massive book collection and started picking out some books that better suit the season. Fall reads deserve to be as warm and comforting as all that come with this season, so I’ve compiled a list for you in case you’re in a reading bind this autumn.
Here are some perfect books to read when the weather gets chillier:
1. The Chronicles of Narnia by CS Lewis (or The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe if you’re not willing to take on the whole series). This is what I’m currently reading. Every page is filled with magic – a good magic – and that makes it a happy read. There’s nothing quite like disappearing into Narnia for a couple of hours, to have tea with a faun or adventures with talking beavers.
2. The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde. Oscar Wilde’s witty dialogue is what makes this play shine. Try getting through one scene without busting out laughing – I dare you. This hilarious comedy, which is set in the Victorian age, is themed around the triviality of certain social constructs such as marriage. The characters are everything.
3. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. At times a suspense-filled, tear-rending, and tense read, Jane Eyre is the perfect choice for fall because it’s full of fireside conversations and intrigue. Not to mention a juicy forbidden love story between governess and master of the house. And let’s not forget the madwoman in the attic.
4. The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne. You probably read this in high school but maybe it’s time to pull it out again. The ultimate tale of Puritan scandal, The Scarlet Letter follows Hester Prynne – marked with the letter A and ostracized in her town for adultery – and her disguised husband who is seeking revenge upon the man who fathered Hester’s child. Not necessarily a happy story, but a great one nonetheless!
5. Candy Freak by Steve Almond. The holidays always get me thinking about candy, so what better way to feed this mania by reading a book about it too?? Candy Freak is about some of the most popular family-owned candy factories still in existence today in the United States. Almond brilliantly describes the candy he samples at each of these factories – which just makes you want to cry for candy and go trick-or-treating!
6. A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf. This is not a novel but rather a long essay, but don’t snuff your nose at it so fast – it is in no way dry. Virginia Woolf knows her way around the written word and in this monologue brilliantly vies for woman’s place in both the literal and fictional world. If you’re looking for a thought-provoking, smart work of non-fiction, read this.
7. Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen. I love Northanger Abbey for fall for some of the same reasons as Jane Eyre – the setting is simply perfect. In this lesser known of Jane Austen’s novels, the main character, Catherine Morland, goes to stay with some friends who live in an old Gothic house. Catherine’s active imagination and pliable personality cause her to start suspecting everything and everyone in the house of mystery, intrigue, and deceit. A comedy of manners, this novel does not disappoint in regard to conversation and relationships between characters. And like all Jane Austen novels, it does have a happy ending.
8. If all else fails, grab a book of poetry. Some of my favorite poets for fall? Robert Frost, Emily Bronte (yes, she was a poet as well as a novelist!), and Pablo Neruda. There is something very serene about sitting down with a book of poetry, especially when it’s a poem about walking through the forest at dawn or watching the leaves drift down from the trees.
What are your favorite books to read in the fall? Have you read all the ones on my list? Happy reading!