Winter Blues & Romance Comfort Reads

Winter Fairy Lights Hygge Comfort Mood
Why yes… I do carry fairy lights around as a routine.

I don’t know about you, but I have a bad case of the winter blues. 

Not that this will help my case: I live in Southern California where the temperatures rarely dip below 50℉, so you can imagine what a wimp I am.

I read a tower of books during Jan. & Feb., partially because I want to escape the cold but mostly because I need comfort. The winter makes me raw, vulnerable, battered by the struggles of adulting and the only cure is to experience happily ever afters on repeat. 

I read romances. I write romances. I watch rom-coms. Everything I do during these winter months involve chasing the blues away. 

Over the past three Jan & Febs, I plunge into these predictable habits: 

  • Re-read The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare. Okay, if you’ve stuck around this blog long enough, you’ll soon discover that not a sentence goes by without a mention of this book. This horse is officially beaten to death, but you know what?  I need it! I need blueberry cake and a kitten. I need to know that Kit, Judith, and Mercy will end up with their perfect match in the end. Oh ho ho, this year, I have not touched WOBP. It is very much an October type book and I always miss the massive autumn re-read so this year I will hold myself back and aim to read this in Oct. Can I do it? I don’t know! This book is like crack to me. I’ll turn tricks on the corner to sniff it up. Bad metaphor? Um…moving on!
  • Two years ago in Feb. I discovered Sophie Kinsella when My Not-So Perfect Life was available at my elibrary and I’ve never looked back. My dudes… when it comes to comedy, Sophie K is on point. Her books are hilarious and leave me with a warm and bubbly feeling. Her worlds are a sip of effervescent champagne, a warm hug. To date, I have binged all her titles including ALL of her Shopaholic series and her stand alones with I’ve Got Your Number being a personal favorite. Having burned through her entire list, I think it’s time for a re-read. New bookish crack to shove up my nose (okay, I’ve GOT to stop using this metaphor).
  • Lisa Kleypas is, hands down, my favorite romance author and every Jan-Feb, I revisit 2 books in her Wallflower series: It Happened One Autumn and Devil in Winter. This year, I went wild (bookish crack binge!) and re-read the entire 4 book Wallflower series plus Again the Magic and now I’m re-entering her 5 book Hathaway series in anticipation of her new release, Chasing Cassandra (book 6 in her Ravenel series). You should know that I spouted all of these series names off the top of my head because I am a devoted FAN. I know I should try other romance authors, but they are just not Lisa Kleypas, know what I mean? I tried Julia Quinn. Le sigh, not Lisa K. I’ve revisited retro Jude Deveraux (my favorite romance author during my teens) but I’ve outgrown Jude and frankly, Lisa K. does it better. So why read someone who reminds me of Lisa Kleypas when I can just read Lisa Kleypas.  The thing is, my history sweet spot is Victorian + Industrial revolution and my romance fantasies involve titled lords + self-made Industrialist. In Lisa Kleypas’ world, all the titled lords are friends with self-made Industrialists and they all have such ambition, diverse investment portfolios, and expansive profit margins… excuse me while I fan myself. While I like Regency, the era is too starchy for me. I need to hear about steam engines, coal smoke, gambling dens, and disrupting the status quo to get excited (and by excited, I mean excited to read… & sundry).
  • I snack on an absurd amount of Milanos during winter. My husband Eric calls Milanos ‘women cookies.’ Are they women cookies? Do men like Milanos? Have you seen a man binge raspberry chocolate milanos? While we’re on the topic, what is considered a manly snack? 

It’s no secret that my romance man of choice is a titled lord but now you know I also have a thing for Victorian Industrialists (so long as they pay their workers a fair & liveable wage, which, in Lisa Kleypas’ world, they do. That’s very important!)

Now you, what are the authors you reach for when the weather outside is frightful? 

*There are Amazon affiliate links in this post. If you click and buy something you don’t need, I earn a few cents to spend in the candy store.

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