Have you noticed that winter is here? I decided to write each month an article containing at least five books that have their plot happening during winter. I will probably hate this decision in February when I will be sick of snow and wish for spring, but I will do it anyway. Without any more introduction, let me tell you some things about the first five picks.
1. Smilla’s Sense of Snow
Smilla’s Sense of Snow is a book by the Danish author Peter Hoeg. The main character is Smilla Qaaviqaaq Jaspersen. She is half Danish and half Inuit. Spending her childhood in her mother’s territory, Greenland, Smilla developed a deep understanding of snow, that made her become a scientist specialized in ice and snow as an adult.
I’ve had the privilege of learning foreign languages. Instead of merely speaking a watered-down form of my mother tongue, like most people, I’m also helpless in two or three other languages.
When one of her neighbor’s kid dies after falling from a rooftop, she doesn’t agree with the police report that closes the case considering it an accident. Her own investigations, that starts from the footsteps left in the snow, make her unravel old conspiracies without country borders.
This story is a good thriller set in the cold of Copenhagen that will make you feel the chill of winter in your bones.
2. The Ice Dragon
We all know George RR Martin as the fabulous creator of “A Song of Ice and Fire” series. But how many of you know that he has a volume of short stories called “Portraits of His Children”? One of the tales you can read from it this winter, is called “The Ice Dragon” and is a story full of love and true friendship…well in Martin’s way of thinking (so don’t think about it as being for small children or cheesy).
The main characters are the young and lonely Adara, who doesn’t feel the cold because she is a “winter child” and the very also lonesome Ice Dragon. When the fiery dragons destroy Adara’s house and plan to bring more destruction to the world, it is up to the two of our heroes to save it.
…she was never quite sure whether it was the cold that brought the ice dragon or the ice dragon that brought the cold
Warner Animation Group bought this year the rights to make an animation after this story, so you should read it before it will hit the big screen.
Fredrik Backman is one of our favorite writers, here at the Reading Badger magazine. However, this is not the only reason his book is in this article. “Beartown” is the perfect read to make you feel the winter vibes. It has an ice rink, a junior ice hockey team and a small community which is falling apart
When the boys from the hockey team have the chance to play in the national semifinals, all the town puts their hopes on their possible success. Unfortunately, on the game night, a violent act takes place and a young girl is left traumatized.
Everyone has a thousand wishes before a tragedy, but just one afterward.
“Beartown” has all the success ingredients that “A Man Called Ove” and, “My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She’s Sorry” had: it has love, kindness, and secrets that only a small town can share. All of this, along with the very good writing style, make it a perfect book for a cold winter day spent at home.
4. The Snow Child
“The Snow Child” is the debut novel of Eowyn Ivey and because of it, she was among the Pulitzer prize finalists in 2013. The book is set in 1920 in Alaska and focuses on a childless couple that falls apart for many reasons, but mostly because they don’t have an offspring. When the first snow falls that year, they make a child out of snow. The next morning they discover, that their creation disappeared and a blond girl was running through the trees.
All her life she had believed in something more, in the mystery that shape-shifted at the edge of her senses.
Ivey was raised in Alaska and she still lives there. Because of this, the descriptions in her tale are amazingly vivid. They will transpose you in that winter picture and make you feel the wilderness atmosphere. So, even if you are not interested in the book’s subject, I think the way it is written makes it one of the best picks for this cold season.
5. Child 44
“Child 44” is the first novel from the thriller trilogy written by the British author Tom Rob Smith. In this book, Agent Leo Demidov is the protagonist and he investigates a series of children murders in the Soviet Union. Leo is the perfect soldier, who always believes that the Party is the best thing that ever happened to his country. However, he begins to lose his blind faith after he is told to disregard the murder of a boy simply because “there can’t be any criminals or murders in the perfect Communist Russia”. When writing his novel, the author took his inspiration from the crimes of Andrei Chikatilo, aka the Rostov Ripper, who sexually assaulted, murdered and mutilated 52 woman and children in the Soviet Union.
For decades no one had taken action according to what they believed was right or wrong but by what they thought would please their Leader.
The story is very well written and captivates the reader from the first pages. And if this small description didn’t convince you to buy the book and add it to you winter read (yes, it has snow and low temperatures), then you should also take in consideration that in 2015 Riddley Scott brought it in the movie world with the Tom Hardy and Gary Oldman in the leading roles.
These are the “snowy” recommendations for this month. I have so many more amazing titles that I want to present to you all, but I don’t want to take too much of your time when reading our articles, so until next time…have a great winter read!