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Books to Read in Time for the Holidays

27/12/2012

     A good holiday read isn't just about the setting or the timeframe. It should evoke that sense of merriment: warm glittery lights, frosted air and really good friends & food. So here are my top three picks to read for the holidays:

 

Dash & Lily's Book of Dares Dash & Lily's Book of Dares , David Levithan, Rachel Cohn

This is probably my ultimate contemporary winter read. Written from two perspectives, Dash and Lily set off on a scavenger hunt (of sorts) across New York City, from bookstores to Macy's to coffee shops, until they've built each other up to such heights that when they encounter each other, it's inevitably under the worst of circumstances. This book not only has excellent depth regarding characters, both main and side, but it seriously gets into the Christmas spirit with its descriptions of settings. The mood of the story reflects the holiday times as well: cheery but wistful, introspective but optimistic. And fun. Definitely fun.

 

Between Shades of Gray Between Shades of Gray , Ruta Sepetys

This story of Lithuanian refugees forced into Siberia by the Stalin rule is steeped in snow, terror, courage and desperation. Lina's tale is at once dense and a page-turner, lushly descriptive and an edge-of-your-seat read. Don't ask me how Sepetys fills this book with minute historical detail that objectively should slow the pace while still managing to keep the reader intimately engaged. Between Shades of Gray is filled with truth. Full disclosure: I cried.

 

Icefall Icefall , Matthew J. Kirby

This title is for middle-grades, but absolutely do not let that deter you. Icefall features a fabulous cast of characters, a wonderfully entwined Nordic history and a lot of ice. Solveig and her brother and sister are hidden away in a fjord while their father the king fights a war. But as the winter freezes them in, it's clear that betrayal is seeping in through the cracks. Political intrigue, vivid story-telling and spine-tingling danger will keep you flipping frantically. I absolutely loved this book.

 

What are your favourite winter-time reads?