As much as we’d like spring to arrive, it looks like winter may still be in full swing. Chilly nights, howling winds, and showers of snow cause us to stay indoors, seeking warmth. For those of us snowed in, instead of focusing on what we can’t do, we need to focus on what we can. If travel is impeded, then we must look at this as an opportunity to appreciate how spectacularly beautiful snow is and how it transforms a landscape – making it look like a different world than before. We also can view this as an opportunity to curl up in our homes, sipping a piping cup of hot cocoa, watching the flecks of snow fall outside, with a book in hand. Reading on a snowy day is the perfect backdrop for discovery. Some of our favorite books to read on a snowy day are rich with meaning, heavy with importance, and beautiful with intention. So get cozy as we list off our favorite books for a snow day.
By Charlotte Bronte
This book has been a favorite of ours for some time. It’s definitely one of those books that’s a mandatory read in high school, but we’re so glad because now we’ve been introduced to the powerful writings of Miss Bronte. Jane Eyre is the perfect book for a snow day, with its cold and moody U.K. setting. Our protagonist is raised in a loveless home where she is terribly mistreated. After numerous trials at both home and school, Jane reaches adulthood. She accepts a position as a governess at a tremendous manor, which is owned by her employer, the terribly brooding Mr. Rochester. They fall in love and face crippling trials from their pasts that challenge that love. It is a story of pain, recovery, and healing.
Til We Have Faces
By C.S. Lewis
This beautiful tale revolves around two sisters, Orual and Psyche, in the backdrop of a dark mythological world. Psyche is stunningly beautiful, good-natured and faithful, while her older sister Orual is unattractive and cynical. In the entire world, the only thing Orual truly cares about his her pure sister’s protection. The story unfolds into a beautiful Christian allegory, as the sisters are separated – one trusting in their faith, the other growing in doubt and cynicism towards the divine. Just as the name implies, the heartbeat of Lewis’ work is that we must have faith, and that we won’t be able to see beyond ourselves – to God – until with ‘have faces’ (until we have a pure heart like Psyche). We must trust God with our future and our present, falling to our knees in humility before him, and acknowledging that His way is good, beautiful, perfect, even when we cannot comprehend them.
“I saw well why the gods do not speak to us openly, nor let us answer. Till that word can be dug out of us, why should they hear the babble that we think we mean? How can they meet us face to face till we have faces?”
The New York Times
This book is an anthology of articles released by The New York Times over the years, concerning literary giants both alive and dead. The writers of these articles take trips to the birthplace or place of inspiration for literary greats like Lewis Carroll, Mark Twain, and F. Scott Fitzgerald. These literary pilgrimages are fascinating looks into the lives of such talented and imaginative individuals, and how their location inspired their works. This is such a fun read that takes us readers around the globe searching for Wonderland in the beautiful green hedge rows in Oxford, or the high-flying, glitzy life of Jay Gatsby reflected in the beauty and riches of the French Riviera.
The Complete Stories
Miss O’Connor is one of those individuals that is blessed with the art of storytelling. Her stories, centered in the American South during the 1930’s and 40’s, are poignant tales concerning hypocrisy and faith. This collection of her short stories is the perfect introduction to her works. O’Connor conveys the power of the Gospel contrasted with the fall of man in such a vivid, gut-wrenching way. The characters in her stories appear like real people to us. Flesh and blood. Some self-assured. Some riddled with guilt and pain. Her stories serve as commentary of the times against the background of the tumultuous American South as the masses struggle for equality, while some desire, even beg, for things to stay exactly the same. Although this is definitely a heavy read, we are never disappointed. She always keeps us on our toes, hanging off of every word she feeds us. If you have a free moment on your next snow day, be sure to read one of her short stories. Good Country People and A Good Man is Hard to Find are our favorites.
“All human nature vigorously resists grace because grace changes us and the change is painful.”