Lounging on the couch with a hot cup of tea (or coffee, if you are so inclined) and a good, comforting read is a great stress buster. In winter, because there’s a nip in the air, this can feel even more relaxing and it can really help the endorphins to kick in as well. There are some books that I reread whenever I want that feel-good winter vibe. So, grab a soft blanket, make yourself a cup of your favorite hot beverage, and curl up with one of these five amazing and uplifting books this weekend.
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
About a circus that appears and disappears suddenly in different parts of the world—New York, Boston, London, and so on—and operates only during the nighttime, The Night Circus is an intensely visual and imaginative story. Two gifted illusionists Marco and Celia are pitted against each other in an intricate, lifelong game they don’t really understand but for which they were being trained since grade school.
Before the Coffee Gets Cold by Toshikazu Kawaguchi
At a café in Tokyo, visitors are served great coffee along with the chance to travel back in time, as long as they return before the coffee gets cold. There’s a woman who goes back in her past to confront the lover who left her, and a wife who wants to get a letter her husband wrote to her before his memory started to fade, among others. Though the writing is a tad bit repetitive, this book is a gentle reminder about the need to value what we have, thus far, taken for granted in life.
The House in the Cerulean Sea by T. J. Klune
This is just great fun. It will make you happy. You will wish you lived in this world where magical creatures (with ministries governing them) are real. The characters are fascinating and the writing is really good too. The narrator Linus is rigid in his ways but at the same time acutely aware of his flaws. Getting to know him brings you a little bit closer to understanding people and how they think in general.
Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata
Convenience Store Woman is a short book about a 36-year-old who works at a convenience store and has no ambitions whatsoever to ‘move up in life’ as society expects her to. This unusual psyche of the protagonist forces us to take a closer look at our work culture and the pressures to conform. I’ll be honest, reading it could kindle an existential crisis but it can also lessen your fears about life and where you’re headed, depending on your mindset actually.
Roar by Cecelia Ahern
A collection of short stories about fearless women, Roar is a delight. Every story will warm your heart and make you smile. The 30 stories in this anthology deal with discrimination, abandonment, and loneliness among other things. These are cautionary tales as well as stories that fill you with hope. Some are funny and sarcastic, while others make your heart ache (in a good way). It will make you think about all the different things a woman can be and how powerful and empowering that is.