For me, reading has been such an escape these past few weeks.
Before COVID-19 had blown up where I live, before I was quarantined in my house and I was doing online school and taking dance classes over Zoom, I hadn’t read solidly in months. A book here, finishing a book there, reading this or that required book for school- but I really wasn’t reading for fun anymore.
I definitely still haven’t caught up to my Goodreads challenge yet (I’m still more or less 10 books behind), but with more free time, I’ve started reading a lot more. These days, it feels like my mind is going a million different directions and is perpetually anxious both about the present and future, and reading has become something that’s been able to calm me down, be an escape, and allow me to end my days (and often fill my days) with something that entertains me well.
I’ve discovered some new books recently that I want a chance to talk about (because that’s just me, always screaming about books), and I also of course have some older recommendations, but ultimately, I hope this post can offer you the same comfort books have been giving me lately, and give you something to do while social distancing!
I feel like it would be amiss for me to not first mention one of my new favorite books, 10 Blind Dates, by Ashley Elston. I only read this a few days ago, but it’s already taken its highly earned place as one of my favorite YA contemporaries.
Its cozy factor is created by a variety of reasons- it takes place during Christmastime, the main character, Sophie, has about 50 cousins and aunts and uncles who she is staying in her grandmother’s house with (making for much hilarity and family dynamics), it has a wonderful sister relationship, funny blind date fails and successes, and an adorable friendship between Sophie, her two cousins closest in age, and the neighbor boy they grew up with. I’m not going to lie, I read this all in one day, and I was pretty much smiling the whole time.
10 Blind Dates appealed to me because it looked heartwarming, romantic, and funny, and that’s exactly what it was! I was thoroughly entertained, and I think it’s the perfect book to read during social distancing.
Surprise, surprise, but I think this is a perfect time to reread Harry Potter, so why not start with The Sorcerer’s Stone? I was going to hold out until summer for my next reread, but I’m starting to think I might cave and return to Hogwarts in May.
Really, now is such an optimal time to return to any books that you’ve loved forever, whether that’s Harry Potter or not, because nostalgia equals cozy and cozy equals how you probably want to spend your quarantine. Another option I would highly recommend is returning to the Percy Jackson series, because that can absolutely never go wrong.
Or, if you’ve never read Harry Potter because it’s always been too long and there’s never enough time, chances are now you might finally have the time to dedicate to it. What better time to get invested in a series than now? You can even watch the movies, too, it’s a win-win situation.
I’m just saying. 😉
In addition to needing fluffy books during this time, I also understand the urge to want something deeper, which is why I also would recommend The Book Thief.
I reread this a couple of weeks ago, and I had forgotten how poignant it is. It’s completely heartbreaking, but in absolutely beautiful, too. It doesn’t shy away from exposing the horrors of Nazi Germany, but it also continually highlights the small moments occurring in Liesel’s life during the war- a key balance of seriousness and lightheartedness.
It’s unmatched in its storytelling, and is probably one of my favorite books of all time. If you’re not wanting to read anything serious during this time, maybe I wouldn’t recommend it, but if you’re all right with something that will make your heart ache (but because of how meaningful it is) and will allow you to get lost in a story, this is the book for you.
It’s not really a post by me unless I mention Harry Potter and Emma Mills, and since I already mentioned Harry, we’ve just got the Emma Mills part left. Not for long though, because my next recommendation is Foolish Hearts.
I know I’ve talked about this book way too many times, but I will only stop when everyone has read it. Just kidding. But like also, read it. It’s genuinely one of my favorite books ever, and I think it’s perfect for reading during quarantine because it’s absolutely adorable and cozy and sweet and Hufflepuff vibes!!
Look, friends-to-enemies. A theater production. A boy named Gideon who is possibly the softest, most sunflower-y boy to ever exist in YA fiction. A boy band obsession. Discussions about how to eat cereal. An adorable brother-sister relationship. I really could go on. I can’t explain my love for this book, and I feel very sure that if you read it, you would also love it?
I can’t think of any other book that one would want to distract themselves with more than this one, because it exudes cozy, heartwarming energy. I’ll just be over trying not to reread it (when I last read it in January) and waiting to hear what you all think of it!
At the end of 2019, a new movie adaptation of Little Women came out, and it quickly became really popular. Can you blame the world, it has Timothée Chalamet and Saoirse Ronan and Florence Pugh and Emma Watson and Meryl Streep and Eliza Scanlen and the best aesthetic and music and is directed by Greta Gerwig and I will stop now. I saw it three times in theaters, and I still would rewatch it in a heartbeat. It was genuinely one of the best movies I’ve ever seen, and most people I know have also seen it and also loved it!
With the new movie at your disposal and free time for reading a classic, why not read Little Women? As much as I loved the movie, I still think the book is better…so that means I love the book a whole lot.
Sister relationships of the very best kind, romance, growing up, Christmastime, the iconic boy next door, the best mother, all the soft and heartwarming vibes- this is Little Women. I’m also the hugest proponent of reading this book if you saw the movie because I feel like as much as the movie didn’t get anything wrong (actually, it exceeded all my expectations of a book-to-movie adaptation), some things are just ~explained~ more in the book. Really, there are only positives to reading this classic!
Thank you so much for reading, and thank you for all of your kind words and support on my last post, when I returned after way too long of an absence. It meant the world to me!🥺 I hope to be back on a more regular posting schedule in the future, now that I’ve gotten a handle on what online school and online dance are requiring of me. I’ve started getting back into reading blog posts again and I forgot how much I love it!
I’m looking forward to posting more content soon, hopefully something a little more lighthearted and maybe something that can take your mind away from our current situation~ I just wanted to post these recommendations because I felt like they might be able to help anyone who is struggling with distracting themselves, any of these books would hopefully do the job.
You’re all in my thoughts, and I hope you’re doing well and staying safe. Sending you hugs and positive energy!✨
How are you doing right now? Have you been reading more to keep distracted? Have you read any of these, or what are some of your comfort reads? I’d love to talk with you in the comments.