The Ultimate Winter 2015 Reading List

  • Copy by: Daryl Lindsey

It’s getting cold outside, which limits most of your activities to the great indoors. Why not take advantage of the inclement weather and curl up with a stellar book or two?

Here are the books we’re most excited to read as the world slows down for the winter season.

Hot Off the Press

Boys in Trees by Carly Simon

Carly Simon was the first artist – ever – to win a Grammy, Golden Globe, and Academy Award, but this singer/songwriter is so much more than a performer: She is a writer and a feminist who has a lot to say.

The now 70-year-old “You’re So Vain” singer released her memoir in late November, and it is gorgeously written with a refreshing descriptiveness that defies cliches. When discussing the beauty of Martha’s Vineyard, she described the individual plots of land as being “casually separated by stone walls, like a sentence that doesn’t take the turn you think it will take.” Sentences take plenty of unexpected turns in Simon’s book, which details her rise to fame and the dissolution of her seemingly storybook marriage to famous singer James Taylor.

Fiction

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

This is for all of you who loved All the Light We Can Not See—and like Anthony Doerr’s bestselling novel, The Nightingale also takes place in Germany occupied France at the onset of World War II. A perfect read for a quiet night by the fire, it highlights the unshakable bond of sisterhood and the rarely told female experience of war and survival. Spoiler: tear-jerker.

Non-Fiction

The Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes

Shonda Rhimes, the wildly successful powerhouse who created TV shows like Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal, knows a thing or two about professional success. In The Year of Yes, she opens up about fears and insecurities that almost crippled her and recounts the moment she committed to cast them aside to live freely and fearlessly.

Some Holiday Spirit

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens 

We’ve all heard of The Christmas Carol, but how many of us have taken the time to read it? Regardless of the holiday you’re celebrating this winter, this Dickens novel is a great way to get into the winter spirit.

Classic

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou is the author of my all-time favorite poem, and was one of the key inspirations that drew me to writing as a teen. Her debut memoir tells the story of Angelou as a child, sent to live with her grandmother in rural Alabama during the segregated south. Angelou offers cutting descriptions of the racial tensions of the time, coupled with her poignant and poetic observations of what it means to come of age while poor and black in 20th Century America. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings is joyous, painful, memorable, and a classic every socially-conscious woman (or person, period) should have on their shelves.

Work & Creativity

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo

Just in time for your New Year’s resolutions! Marie Kondo’s book is more than just a how-to for de-cluttering—it’s a look into what an organized life can do for you. As an added bonus, you can pre-order Kondo’s next book Spark Joy, which will be released Jan. 6.

We want to hear from you! What books will you be reading this winter?

  • Becca Culotta

    I love I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings! Such a beautiful work. I included The Nightingale on my winter reading list, as well. Just purchased it last night!

  • I just finished reading the magical art of tidying up. It’s great!!!

  • Maegan Forbush

    I’d also suggest Brooklyn by Colm Toibin. The movie recently came out but I think everyone can relate in some way to this book – moving, creating your own life, relationships, etc. I read it months ago and I still think about it.

  • Brittany Hyland

    I stumbled onto The Nightingale at my grandma’s house over Thanksgiving & unexpectedly devoured the book over the weekend. Great read! I think I’ll jump in with The Year of Yes next!

  • She.

    A Splendid list! I currently reading The Heart of a Woman by Maya Angelou…Plan to finish it before the new year…

  • Chantel Felicien

    Currently snuggling up with J.R.R. Tolkien’s ‘Lord of the Rings’ series, nice long for the long cold winter.

  • Dina

    Please stop spamming the everygirl with your own blog promotions.

  • I just picked up Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert. I haven’t read it yet but it’s been suggested to me numerous times because I’m a makeup artist and painter. The entire book is about creative living beyond fear.

    • I really want to read Big Magic too! I’ve heard her do a few podcast interviews about the book and it sounds amazing, I love her ideas! I’ll also definitely be reading Shonda’s book, I love the shows she’s created and I love those kinds of books.

      Sam xx
      http://www.smart-twenties.com – how to make the most of your twenties

  • Briana Clara

    “Tidying Up” presents a really interesting concept. Thank you for sharing. I’m looking forward to digging into this this holiday season.

  • Marquisha Lawrence

    Currently, I’m reading “Bad Feminist” by Roxane Gay! On my holiday travel list is “I am Malala” and “The Shadow of the Sun.”

    I listened to “Year of Yes” twice over the month and just got the hardcopy as a birthday gift and can’t wait to read the words that Shonda Rhimes writes so brilliantly!

    This graduate student is ready to take this holiday by a reading storm!

  • Marquisha Lawrence

    Currently, I’m reading “Bad Feminist” by Roxane Gay! On my holiday travel list is “I am Malala” and “The Shadow of the Sun.”

    I listened to “Year of Yes” twice over the month and just got the hardcopy as a birthday gift and can’t wait to read the words that Shonda Rhimes writes so brilliantly!

    This graduate student is ready to take this holiday by a reading storm!

  • Frederike

    I just finished reading The Lady of the Camellias, such beautiful book set in Paris in the 1850s!