I am trying really hard not to talk about how much I love Autumn but I can’t help it! There are so many reasons to love autumn (read: pumpkin spiced lattes) but one of the best things is having cosy nights in, curled up with a book and a hot mug of something (see before). That’s why I’ve put together this list of 9 cosy autumn reads for you to pick from. So light your candles, get your blankets ready and get ready to get cosy.
The First Woman by Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi
A coming-of-age tale set in Uganda, where Kirabo has grown up surrounded by strong, powerful women. Now as a teenager Kirabo feels the absence of her mother amongst her family and she must find her own place in the world as a young woman.
According to the blurb, this book promises to be “a sweeping tale of longing and rebellion, at once epic and deeply personal, steeped in an intoxicating mix of ancient Ugandan folklore and modern feminism, that will linger in the memory long after the final page.” Sounds like a perfect read!
The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton
A famous detective duo, Samuel Pipps and Arent Hayes, are on board a ship bound to Amsterdam, where Samuel is due to be executed for a crime that he may or may not have committed. Their journey takes a sinister turn when signs of the devil are found on the ship and passengers are marked for death. It’s down to Arent to solve the mystery that connects all the passengers before their ship sinks with them all aboard…
The new book from the author of The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle is a chilling period thriller that is perfect for the creepier nights!
Just Like You by Nick Hornby
Lucy and Joseph couldn’t be any more different. She is a teacher and a mother of two, he is an aspiring DJ working multiple jobs with a wide-open future ahead of him. You’d never put them together, until one day they meet either side of the butcher counter. After a life of wanting someone the same as you, maybe it’s the unexpected that will make all the difference.
Nick Hornby is a master of capturing the nuances of human nature and turning it into an amazing story. I can’t wait to read this for a comforting antidote to the scary season.
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
The beloved story of Meg, Jo, Amy and Beth – four sisters on their journey from childhood to womanhood. A tale of family, love, adventures and hardships set to the backdrop of the American Civil War, this classic is perfect autumn reading.
You will cry, laugh and cheer on the sisters in their attempts to follow their dreams, find love and support one another.
(Ps if the new version of the film could drop on Netflix soon too that would be greaaaat!)
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
One of the greatest romances and a brooding Gothic mystery, if you’ve not picked up Jane Eyre before, there’s no better time than now. After a cruel childhood, Jane becomes a governess at Thornfield Hall where she meets and falls in love with Mr Rochester. Then tragedy strikes when she discovers the secrets of Mr Rochester’s past which impede their plans to marry. Jane is a literary inspiration for many due to her intelligence, spirit and defiance in the face of societal pressure.
I had to include this, it’s one of my absolute favourites and I am studying it this year so maybe you should read it too, keep me company.
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
Victor Frankenstein is a man of science who is intrigued and obsessed with creating life. For his greatest experiment, he has gathered material from graveyards to create his new being and shocked it into life using electricity. Instantly, Frankenstein is repulsed and fearful of his creation. Rejected and longing for companionship, the creature seeks revenge by destroying all that Frankenstein holds dear.
The classic Gothic horror story that was borne from a night of telling ghost stories by candlelight and is perfect for the run-up to Halloween!
Oldies but Goodies
The Familiars by Stacey Halls
Fleetwood Shuttleworth is 17, childless and pregnant for the fourth time. She is the mistress of Gawthorpe Hall and whilst her husband is anxious for her to produce an heir, Fleetwood is determined to survive against the odds. By chance, she meets a midwife Alice Gray who promises to help her deliver her baby. But Alice is caught up in the accusations of witchcraft that are sweeping the country. Fleetwood risks everything to help Alice and the two women are bound together in the race for survival and freedom.
This book is an incredibly atmospheric and gripping read about these two women and their fight against suspicion and expectation.
A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness
Welcome to a world which is similar to ours but where witches, vampires and demons exist. Diana Bishop is a witch who has resolved against using magic. One day she discovers a manuscript which draws her back into the world she has fought to stay out of, including being introduced to vampire Matthew Clairmont. Drawn to one another, they being to learn the secrets of the manuscript whilst growing closer and crossing the forbidden lines of their universe.
A big old juicy love story with magic and vampires and chateaus in France. What’s not to love?
Chocolat by Joanne Harris
Vianne Rocher, an exotic stranger, arrives in the French village of Lansquenet opens a chocolate shop across from the church. The people of the village can’t stay away. But it is the start of Lent, and Father Reynaud sees her as a threat to the stability of his flock and casts aspersions about her morality. Perhaps she is even a witch?
Don’t denounce this as chick-lit – this is a story with a great heart. It’s about kindness, acceptance, magic and of course, some chocolate.
I hope you enjoyed this list of 9 Cosy Autumn Reads and that it gives you some reading inspiration for the coming months. You can get any of these books via the links (as always to Hive, to support indie bookshops). Now, I’ve got to go, I’ve got pumpkins to pick!