My cardigan’s on, the asthma’s out to play, and the leaves are dropping off the trees; it must be autumn! It might be the petrichor in the air, or the big comfy jumper speaking, but autumn is my favourite season. As the nights get longer, the air gets colder, and my mugs of hot chocolate get bigger, I find myself sitting down to read a lot more often. There are just some books that shout “READ ME, IT’S AUTUMN!!!” and year on year, I happily oblige. Knowing I’m not the only autumn enthusiast out there (come on, all book lovers are), I thought I would share my top books that I can’t help but reach for once we hit the equinox.
Lord of the Rings Trilogy (and The Hobbit!) – J R R Tolkien
Misty mountains, green forests, swooshy cloaks – the LOTR series personifies autumn for me. Sure, the original trilogy is a bit long-winded, but if you keep pushing through (and skipping the pages on family genealogy, like I do) they are a joy to read. If you don’t fancy reading a series of over 1200 pages, The Hobbit is the one for you. You don’t have to have read or watched the LOTR series to understand it at all, but it still gives you stories of dragons, songs over campfires, and sword-wielding adventures.
The Shining – Stephen King
Ahh it wouldn’t be an autumnal list if there wasn’t a horror on there. I enjoy a casual Halloween party as much as the next introvert, but I know I’ll be spending this Halloween curled up with a glass of wine and The Shining. In all honesty, this book freaks me out. So much so, I was checking the bathtub of any bathroom I went in for weeks after my first read. But I don’t care. It’s a good, spooky read, that will get you jumping at the creaking noises of your house, and peering over your duvet at night. Isn’t that what you want from a book on Halloween?
The Dutch House – Ann Patchett
A brand new book to be added to the autumn vibes list! This landed on my lap with the turning of the leaves, and I devoured it. There’s nothing overly ‘autumnal’ about it at first glance; the story takes place over years, not months. But the writing really focuses on the house. A big, beautiful building, with intricate papered walls and antique paintings. It just seems like the sort of place I’d like to be in autumn! There’s also a little bit ~spooky~ about the story, which I can always appreciate, especially in October.
Frankenstein – Mary Shelley
Once we hit autumn, I must celebrate the sci-fi queen herself; I’m sorry, I can’t control it, it just happens. Without our literary queen, Mary Shelly, you can guarantee the lay of the literary land would not be the same. Like The Shining, I know a lot of people associate Frankenstein with autumn because of the Halloween association. But for me, it’s all about the gothic-meets-sci-fi theme. The howling nighttime, mysterious circumstances, and gloomy landscapes. And, I believe autumn is a great time for change and rebirth so good on Frankenstein for chasing his dreams and creating that monster.
So, those are my top autumnal books! Whether they make this list because they fill me with hygge and joy, or because they scare the living daylights out of me, I don’t know. All I do know is that I can’t help but reach for them at the change of the seasons.
Let me know what your favourite autumnal books are in the comments! I’d love for this list to grow and grow like a monster pumpkin.