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February ends in less than a week, and spring comes soon. As I start to ease out of the winter blues, I have some books lined up for those days spent indoors. They range from atmospheric, character driven novels to classics.

 

Beartown by Fredrik Backman: This weekend I finally have this book beloved in book club circles on my docket. A couple chapters in I already feel immersed in the small forest town that revolves around its hockey team. Backman goes deep into the minds of his characters, and I sense a foreboding event. I anticipate reading how the characters respond to the situation and how they interact with each other. This community offers insight on relationship and organization dynamics.

Persuasion by Jane Austen: Though the novel doesn’t have a wintery setting, it transports you to Victorian England. The story explores social class and mores as well as its expectations for love. Anne has a failed love story in the background, so I look forward to seeing how encountering her lover again shapes her marriage prospects and how Austen’s trademark wit plays into it. I already find myself daydreaming about the cottages and the names as well as my Pride and Prejudice reread for my Great American Reader project.

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling: The second installment in the Harry Potter series continues my Great American Reader project as well as my book club community read as we read the series this year. In England again, this time in the beloved Hogwarts castle, the school walls protect the students against the cold and darkness as Voldemort fights to gain power. Hogwarts offers respite from the winter as well as a fantasy adventure rooted in good vs evil. Harry and his friends continue to grow up and face moral dilemmas that make you root for them while wishing you attended Hogwarts too.