Nothing beats curling up with a good book and a hot cup of something in winter. Think rainy days, cool nights and a new world to explore from the comfort of your couch. It sounds like introverted bliss, but the literary respite is well-deserved during hibernation season. Here are the hottest reads for winter that’ll keep you toasty warm.
Careering | Daisy Buchanan
Meet Imogen: a headstrong woman driven to make her mark in the magazine world, writing raunchy sex columns between shifts at the pub. She’s a Carrie Bradshaw prototype for millennial women, but with more intersectional feminism than glamour and desperate to see her name in printed gloss. Then there’s Harri, jaded from working in the same industry and seeking to start something new when she discovers Imogen’s online column.
Careering follows the story of Imogen and Harri, both burnt by their industry but at two polarising sides of the career spectrum. Is this a calling to break up with hustle culture and the girl boss era? Or will both be swallowed by the unrelenting pace of working towards your ‘dream job’?
Daisy Buchanan’s hilariously honest novel lifts the veil between living to work and working to live, exposing the reality of facing (and sometimes ignoring) the toxic relationship we’ve built with our career trajectories.
Free: Coming of Age at the End of History | Lea Ypi
Lea Ypi’s award-winning memoir unfolds amongst political turbulence, tracing her experience from the final days living in communist Albania when it was the last Stalinist outpost. Everything changed overnight. Statues of dictators toppled and the ‘free world’ – the right to do as you please – took reign.
But what Ypi finds is that freedom doesn’t rule. The community disintegrated, shops shut and boatloads of people fled to neighbouring countries. Free: Coming of Age at the End of History straddles progress and the past, with Ypi using her experience to trace hope, fear and reality in a moment in time.
Women I Know | Katerina Gibson
Women are many things – clever, funny, stubborn, bored, witty, frank, busy, endearing, bold, brash, undermined, inpatient and sometimes in love. But underneath, there are stories that bookend our traits and superficial selves.
New literary talent Katerina Gibson weaves together tales of womanhood yet unravels our understanding of gender. How do our notions of being a woman influence who we are?
Women I Know is the perfect pick for those trying to fall back in love with reading. It’s sharp, steamy and smart. But most importantly, it’s relatable. The short stories mean you don’t have to commit to a novel, but we think you’ll find yourself devouring more chapters than one.
The Way from Here | Jane Cockram
Camilla and Susie are the poster sisters for polar opposites. But it is only after Susie’s untimely death that a grieving Camilla – or Mills – journeys from Australia to the French coast to uncover her sister’s true self.
From beyond the grave via five letters, Susie instructs her sister to scatter ashes at dedicated sites and to learn the stories that shaped her. Here, Mills discovers why threads in Susie’s life began to unravel one summer, stitching together moments that lead Mills’ to the present time and her mother’s past.
An emotive mystery filled with twists and turns, The Way From Here leaves you questioning if you truly know those you love as you uncover the hidden truth of Susie through her sister, charting the façade of honesty and ultimate secrecy.
If you’re a busy person or the proud owner of a short attention span, a brilliant way to get through your next read is by enlisting the help of an audiobook service. It’s just like listening to your favourite podcast on your drive to work, walk or gym session.
We recommend using this method for particularly salacious yet lengthy texts, like the newly-released The Palace Papers by Tina Brown (a 573-page-turner charting royal drama) and Anna: The Biography by Amy Odell (a 464-page glimpse into Wintour’s notoriously private life).