Winter has definitely arrived, and along with it, the desire to hibernate with a good book. We’ve put together a book list that will encourage you to take time to snuggle on the lounge and read. We find ourselves in some icy places in the pages of these books, which will make our own Aussie winter seem tame. So grab a hot drink, turn the heater up, and enjoy this list of great winter reads.
Valentina Yershova’s position in the Romanovs’ Imperial Russian Ballet is the only thing that keeps her from the clutches of poverty. With implacable determination, she has clawed her way through the ranks, relying not only on her talent but her alliances with influential men that grant them her body, but never her heart. Then Luka Zhirkov – the gifted son of a factory worker – joins the company, and suddenly everything she has built is put at risk.
A powerful novel of revolution, passion and just how much two people will sacrifice…
She is a celebrated writer stranded in Paris after her French lover is killed fighting the German invasion. He is an enigmatic foreigner with a dangerous secret, fleeing Nazi-controlled Austria. Only the war could bring them together.
Armed with a precious first edition of Finnegans Wake and an even more precious stash of Chesterfield cigarettes to barter with, Eleanor Gorton Clarke joins the sea of refugees escaping the city for the Spanish frontier. But when a stranger kills two German soldiers to save her life, Eleanor is forced on the run with her mysterious rescuer, pursued by a vengeful detective from the Wehrmacht.
As their relentless German pursuer begins to close the net, a heartbreaking discovery forces the great romantic novelist to experience something she was supposed to know all about – the true nature of love.
Leningrad 1941: the white nights of summer when the sun hardly sets on the beautiful palaces and stately avenues that still speak of a different age, when the city was known as St. Petersburg. The Metanov family live a hard life, but one with room enough for love.
However, when Tatiana first sets eyes on Daria’s boyfriend, Alexander, she knows immediately that for her, the path of love will never be easy, but rather, one of sacrifice and denial. Hitler’s invasion of Russia spells war and, for Leningrad, siege, and their earlier existence seems luxurious in comparison with the terrible deprivations that the family suffers. As the grip of winter closes as relentlessly as the advancing German army, so Tatiana is forced into ever more desperate measures in order to survive – both physically and emotionally.
A spellbinding epic tale of ambition, anarchy, and absolute power set against the sprawling medieval canvas of twelfth-century England, this is Ken Follett’s classic historical masterpiece.
The Pillars of the Earth tells the story of Philip, prior of Kingsbridge, a devout and resourceful monk driven to build the greatest Gothic cathedral the world has known . . . of Tom, the mason who becomes his architect – a man divided in hissoul . . . of the beautiful, elusive Lady Aliena, haunted by a secret shame . . . and of a struggle between good and evil that will turn church against state, and brother against brother.
In Stasiland, winner of the 2004 Samuel Johnson Prize, Anna Funder tells extraordinary tales from the underbelly of the former East Germany, a country where the headquarters of the secret police can become a museum literally overnight, and one in fifty East Germans were informing on their countrymen and women.
When an injured teenager goes missing at a remote bushland campground, local journalist Abby Bardot is determined to expose the area’s dark history. The girl bears a striking resemblance to the victims of three brutal murders that occurred twenty years ago and Abby fears the killer is still on the loose.
But her quest has drawn out a killer, someone with a shocking secret who will stop at nothing to keep the truth buried.
Have we missed any of your winter favourites? Let us know in the comments!