Sorry that I’ve been MIA for the past week. I guess one could say I took an impromptu break from blogging since I’ve been busy in my personal life working on my novel, reading my list of books for the month, Christmas shopping, working at my day job, and helping my parents out. Since we’re expecting snow in the Northeast of the United States where I live I thought it would be fun to compile a list of books I’d recommend reading if you’re snowed in. I don’t think it’s going to snow terribly, but the last time I said that snowmageddon happened.
The following list are books that go along with an entire series. All of the books I have listed are of the Young Adult fiction genre. YA is so much fun for me to read whenever I want to wind down and relax with a book. I’m sure you’ve probably read some of these series at one point or another and honestly what’s a better time to read a well loved series than when you’re snowed-in with nowhere to go?
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
If you haven’t read Harry Potter before what are you waiting for? Everyone likes to pick on the millennials because we are the generation that’s obsessed with this series, and I don’t care. Despite how you may feel about J.K. Rowling, there’s no denying this book is a classic. I have the entire Harry Potter series saved for my children to enjoy one day.
If you’ve watched the movies, the books are filled with scenes that were not on the big screen you may be missing out on. The name of the first in the series “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” is not the name originally given to the book; in other countries the title is “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone”. In America, we have to change everything if it comes from Britain since the beginning of time. No, honestly– Scholastic thought it would be easier to market the book to children if the name was changed.
I have “The Giver” and it’s companion novel “Gathering Blue” listed as separate on this list, although they are technically the same series set in the same dystopian world with two other books in the series. Although these are children’s books, I believe they have a good message in them that we even as adults need to be reminded of sometimes — embrace differences! Embrace who you are as a unique individual.
You could probably read these books either together or on their own. I distinctly remembering my younger self reading “Gathering Blue” before “The Giver” and I did not feel lost. Each book has separate main characters with separate goals.
“Gathering Blue” is my favorite book between the two. I would say this book is arguably darker than “The Giver”. “The Giver” played more on the reader’s imagination whereas “Gathering Blue” comes outright about the darker undertones within this survival of the fittest dystopian world. This book still follows the theme of embracing your unique self, so if you are looking for encouragement in a society that longs to break your spirit, this may be your next read.
The Handmaid’s Tale
I was fortunate to have read the book before watching the Hulu series. The book version and the television series is very different from each other, and I still prefer the book over the television hand over fist. Although they share the same premise, a lot of key events have been changed for the streaming drama. I really dislike it when producers gut out a solid novel and do that, but that’s a speech saved for another day. This book originally came out in 1985 and had a resurgence in the 21st century thanks to the television show so good did come out of such a popular series.
“The Handmaid’s Tale” is the first book with “The Testaments” being its sequel. I had a hard time finding “The Testaments” when I completed “The Handmaid’s Tale” earlier this year, so I have currently not finished this series.
Okay, so this guilty pleasure of mine isn’t a series I’ve finished to date but I’m still going to recommend. I’m still really sad Vampire Academy’s movie underperformed at the box office because I burned through the book in less than a week. If you already loved Edward and Bella’s love story, I believe most of the character’s romances no matter how short could blow their relationship out of the water. Vampire Academy brings kicking butt vampires back onto the scene of Young Adult fiction.
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Magician’s Nephew
“The Chronicles of Narnia” is a complicated series to read and controversial among fans on the order of which to read the book. I started reading the series with “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe” but that book is actually #2 in the series. If you want to read it in chronological order then you would start with “The Magician’s Nephew”. C.S. Lewis published the books out of chronological order because he didn’t plan on there to be a series, which makes it a bit confusing at first.
I really enjoyed Narnia when I was younger. These books are technically children’s books, but they’re good for all ages.
The Amulet of Samarkand
This series is probably the least known out of every other series on my list, and it is a hidden gem. I remember reading this series over summer break when I was still in school and being emotional when I finished the trilogy. If you’ve read Harry Potter and all other series on my list, you really need to check this one out. The main character Nathaniel has such a unique character arch I cannot begin to describe it without giving away too much. The main characters belong to a race of djinni and magicians, which I found to be a unique premise for a YA book.
Another series I’m sad had a horrible adaptation into a movie series. If you’ve watched the movies but haven’t read the book I’d advise you to forget everything you’ve watched and start over with a clean slate in your memories. The movies do not do this series justice and they had gutted out some of the books for the big screen. Some scenes were completely different.
For those of you who may not know, “Divergent” is a dystopian series that takes place in the remains of post-apocalyptic Chicago, Illinois. Survivors are divided into five factions, each faction serving a specific duty for the society. People are born into their faction, but they get to choose which faction they want to live to serve in for the rest of their lives during their Choosing Ceremony. It’s a great premise, one which hasn’t been delved into much in recent years. I definitely think this could be your next read if you find yourself snowed indoors.
Tell me what you think in the comments below or follow me on social media! What do you look for when choosing a series to read?