What to read when it’s cold outside?

Part of the fun of reading is imagining yourself inside the story. Sometimes books we read make us feel a certain way, or give us new dreams and ideas. Books about space aliens might inspire us to become astronauts so we can explore the universe! Books about puppies may make us want one of our own. Books about deep sea adventures could make us want to go swimming (or not!). We have a lot of books about summer, which always make me want to go somewhere warm. It works the same way in winter– some books compel me to curl up on the couch with something hot to drink, or to go outside to have an adventure in the snow!

Now that it is getting colder and we’re starting to see snow in the weather forecast, I am very excited to take out my favorite winter reads– and to share a few of them with you.

Juvenile Fiction

The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, by C.S. Lewis

If you’ve never read C.S. Lewis’s classic series, winter is a great time to start with the first installment. Join the Pevensie siblings as they discover a different world, where it is always winter (but never Christmas), and where a frightening villain threatens to keep it that way forever.


Bloomability, by Sharon Creech

Sometimes it takes a long journey to find a place you feel you belong. That’s what Dinnie discovers when she moves to Switzerland to attend a boarding school up in the mountains.



Stones in Water, by Donna Jo Napoli

In Italy during World War II, Roberto is taken from his home and made to work for the military in Germany. This story offers a close-up view of war, friendship, survival, and longing to go home.




Mid-Grade Fiction

Molly’s Surprise, by Valerie Tripp

If you love American Girl books like I do, you would probably have a hard time choosing a favorite. But I can easily say this is mine! As winter sets in and Molly looks forward to her favorite holiday, she begins to worry that Christmas won’t be the same this year. Money is tight, and her family is scattered across the globe. But Molly decides to make this season as special as ever, even in the face of so many obstacles.



Picture Books

Winter Poems, selected by Barbara Rogasky

Poems are easy to memorize and fun to read out loud. Poetry also has a way of putting sense and feeling into words– think of those senses special to winter, like the way the air smells before it snows. This collection of winter-themed poems is accompanied by beautiful illustrations, and would be fun for anybody, any age, to read.


The Mitten Tree, by Candice Christiansen

There is a bus stop outside Sarah’s house, and one morning she sees a little boy with no mittens. Having some leftover yarn and no one else to knit for, Sarah makes a pair of mittens for the boy and leaves them for him on a tree nearby. The children start to look for knitted gifts in the tree every morning, and Sarah gladly provides, forming a unique friendship with the children and reconnecting with the world outside.


WaitingForWinterWaiting for Winter, by Sebastian Meschenmoser

I might have to declare this the Best Picture Book Ever. Squirrel, Hedgehog, and Bear delay their hibernation period in order to see snow for the first time, and sleep deprivation has never been so beautifully or hilariously depicted.


One comment on “What to read when it’s cold outside?

  1. […] been a few years since I wrote about wintry reads for kids– this time I’m focusing on kids’ chapter books! Check out […]

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