Autumn (or, fall for our American readers) officially begins tomorrow so cue the weather turning, leaves falling and pumpkin-spice flavoured drinks to fill coffee shop menus. If you’ve been longing for the cosy days to come, orange leaves, Halloween decorations and roaring fires, then you’ll be wholly excited.
For the fall loving bookworms out there who relish in all of the above, we’ve got you covered with our guide to the 11 best books perfect for cozying up with during the seasonal change. From literary classics to moody dark academia, read on to find our top picks.
Fall time always feels like it’s a seasonal refresh, a chance to restart and take on new challenges. The beginning of the academic year probably has something to do with it, it certainly does for Galaxy ‘Alex’ Stern in Bardugo’s Ninth House.
Bardugo’s first leap into adult fantasy, the novel follows ‘Alex’ as he joins Yale’s freshman class. Having undergone some terrible traumas, he’s perhaps the least likely candidate for the prestigious college but hopes to take this new challenge in his stride. That is until a fellow classmate is murdered and Alex takes it under his wing to figure out what the secret societies at his school has to do with it all.
Sure, you might think of cider as a summer drink while you bask in the sun, but apple season is actually well and truly in autumn. For the apple cider drinkers out there, John Irving’s tome is perfect now that the cooler weather has set in, as it follows a young man as he embarks on his adult life running a cider-making factory.
Following Homer Wells, the novel sees him take on life as an apprentice in an orphanage surgery through to his adult cider-making life and the strange companionships he encounters along the way.
Enjoy Irving’s novel, The Cider House Rules, this fall season with a glass of the good stuff in tow.
For the hopeless romantics looking for a hearty love story filled with sadness, separation and distorted reality, order in your copy of November 9 pronto.
Colleen Hoover’s novel follows Fallon and Ben, two individuals who meet the day before Fallon is set to move to the Big Apple. They spend her last day in LA wrapped up in each other, and Ben quickly uses her as his subject for his dream novel. While their lives may be separated by miles, the pair decide to meet on the same day every single year, until Fallon is unsure if the reality of them both is a distortion of reality.
Store this one away for a cold, rainy November day or read it on November 9th to truly sink your teeth into the story.
They say don’t judge a book by its cover, but when it’s as beautiful as Erin A. Craig’s Small Favors, it’s hard not to.
This new autumnal tome is filled with dark magic and fairytale vibes. It follows Ellerie Downing, a young girl who lives in a small town called Amity Falls. It’s a town that doesn’t find itself with very many tourists, or even visitors. Some strange occurrences begin to upheaval the town, and it’s up to Ellerie to help race against time before life as she knows it goes up in flames.
Perfectly timed to come out as autumn hits, the novel is set during the autumn-winter crossover.
Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury
An old time favourite, Ray Bradbury’s Something Wicked This Way Comes follows two young boys on the brink of adulthood. But like all great horror novels, it’s not as easy as it seems once a traveling carnival erupts at their small American town.
Littered with mystery, terror and madness, life for Jim Nightshade and William Halloway becomes nightmarish.
Is there any better time to read a murder mystery novel than the approaching spooky season? We think not.
Fans of Agatha Christie are invited to devour New York Times bestselling author Maureen Johnson’s Truly Devious endeavour. Set at a prestigious private school, Ellingham Academy, the novel follows Stevie Bell, a young true-crime fanatic, who sets out to resolve the mystery of the school’s beginnings, a time where the founder and his wife were kidnapped shortly after it opened.
Curl up by the fire, your favourite brewed coffee in hand, while you bury your nose in Toshikazu Kawaguchi’s Before the Coffee Gets Cold.
Kawaguchi’s novel is one that’s been talked about ever since it was released. Set in Tokyo, the story centres a cafe that’s been cherished for its time-travelling ways for over 100 years, and follows four visitors. Each visitor is hoping to uncover a wish they are hoping the cafe can grant, from meeting the daughter they never got to know to seeing their sister for a final time.
The catch? Each journey must only last the length of time that it takes for the coffee to go cold.
From the Pulitzer Prize winning author of The Goldfinch, Donna Tartt, comes The Secret History, a novel that follows a group of bright college students as they discover a new way to live and think that’s a far cry from their current reality.
But are they willing to risk the chance to change their current existence forever?
I’m Thinking of Ending Things by Iain Reid
If you’re yet to watch Charlie Kaufman’s adaptation of Iain Reid’s I’m Thinking of Ending Things, make sure you read this short but devilishly digestible tome first. Because the book is always better than the film.
Set during autumn-winter, this psychological thriller follows a young couple as they embark on a long drive to visit the boyfriend, Jake’s, parents on their isolated land. Things start off looking and feeling ordinary but the night takes a drastic turn as he leaves his girlfriend at a derelict high school. During a snowstorm.
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Anyone who studied F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby at college knows how much the seasonal changes play a significant role in the making of Gatsby and Daisy’s relationship. We see their confused love story come into its own in the spring, tensions rise in the summer and the abrupt ending of Gatsby’s American dream – and (spoiler) his death.
Now that we’re approaching autumn, relive the roaring 1920s in style as you flick through this catchy tome and see Gatsby’s world in all of its glory and trouble.
Watership Down is one of those novels I can always come back to time and time again, and never get bored.
Fall back in love with the group of rabbits who set out on an adventure in search for a new home, a space that beholds the perfect escape for young rabbits to roam, mate and burrow away at. Along the way, the furry friends undergo struggles, ups and downs, but eventually find a place they can call home.