Omg, Christmas has crept up on me and I’m totally unprepared for it. But, as I scramble around to buy presents, I’ll try to get in the holiday mood by doing Christmas-themed book tags on here, starting with this one which was created by Richard Media Geek. I enjoy watching his videos sometimes.
Do you have a favorite winter read?
I don’t, but I think the following are perfect reads for the winter:
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
A YA fantasy novel set at a circus that only opens at night where two magicians battle to see who’s best. This is one of my favorite novels. I love the writing and descriptions and the circus itself. It’s so atmospheric and when reading, you get totally immersed in the setting the author creates. I think it’s the Night Circus itself that makes this a perfect read for winter. For some reason, whenever I imagine the circus, I imagine it in winter with snow.
The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden
A fantasy novel set in the Russian wilderness about a girl who tries to protect her village by holding firm to her belief in fairy tales despite the efforts of a monk to convert her people to religion. The setting alone makes this one perfect for winter. The majority of the novel is set in winter, which lasts most of the year. Because of this, temperature and setting, the fey creatures mentioned either emphasize or combat the cold. A winter demon is mentioned and there are domovois, house spirits who protect the home from the invading cold.
Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
A dystopian novel set in a U.S. that has been ravaged by a flu epidemic. The story follows a traveling troupe of actors who perform plays wherever they go. Though not set in winter, the story gives off a sense of isolation in some parts, which I associate with winter, like when one is trapped inside because of a snow storm. I actually read parts of the book during a snow storm, which was both a bad and great decision because the news updates I heard almost matched the tone of the parts where we see the flu sweeping across the world.
Find a book with blue on the cover.
Above the Timberline by Gregory Manchess (illus.)
Described as a painted novel, Above the Timberline is “about the son of a famed polar explorer searching for his stranded father, and a lost city buried under snow in an alternate future.” I started the story a couple days ago and am enjoying it. I also like the artwork, though I’m not a fan of the style. The format of a painted novel isn’t totally new because it’s similar to graphic novels that do not use the frames seen in comic books, but I hope there will be more of such novels that rely on both illustrations and words to tell the story.
Find a book you’d use as the star on a Christmas tree.
The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon
A YA contemporary novel about a Jamaican girl who is about to be deported but falls in love with a boy…that’s about all I know about it. I haven’t yet read it and have forgotten the reviews I’ve seen/read. I would use it as a star because the word “star” is in the title and the cover is designed to resemble the light shining out from a star.
Pick a fictional place that would be perfect for a winter vacation.
Wolf Children: Ame & Yuki by Mamoru Hosoda, illus. by Yu
A manga about a single mother caring for her half-wolf children. I’d like to visit the country-side house where Ame and Yuki grew up. They look like they had some fun winters there.
Pick a fictional character you’d take with you on your winter vacation.
I’d take Kippa with me. Kippa is the cute fox character from the Monstress comic book series by Marjorie Liu, illus. by Sana Takeda. It’s a fantasy story about a girl who has a monster trapped inside her.
Name a book on your wishlist this year.
Assassin’s Creed: The Complete Visual History by Matthew Miller
I was going to answer “nothing” because I’ve bought myself a bunch of books this year, but, BUT! I saw this book in Barnes & Noble the other day and I. Want. It! I know nothing about Assassin’s Creed, except that there are assassins in it (duh!). I’ve never played the game and I don’t partake of the franchise in any way except seeing the movie when it came out and buying myself a calendar with some of the characters in it. I always plan to watch people play the game on YouTube, but have yet to really do that. But I want to know more about it. I’m intrigued by it and I want to know the story and what influenced it and most of all, see the artwork. If any of you play the game and have looked at/read this book, let me know if you recommend it.
Favorite Holiday drink, treat, & movie:
I’m just going to copy Rachel’s answer for this because it’s perfect:
“Peppermint Mocha. Hershey’s Peppermint Chocolate Jingle Bells. Favorite movie is Home Alone.”