Escape the Winter Blahs this Weekend:
10 Book Genres to Get You Started

I hope winter's treating you nicely this year, because here in Chicago, Old Man Winter's really playing some serious mind games with us (case in point: I'm now referring to winter as a man, a mean man). But really, below zero, then snow, then warmth, then rain + freezing rain, then more snow?! Not cool, OMW, not cool. So, to beat the cabin fever that's inevitable right now, I've rounded up a bunch of books that make for a great escape. As an avid reader, I've found that certain books have a can't-put-down quality; books that you pick up on a whim and, hours later, you still want to keep reading.

To keep the list well-rounded, I've touched on examples from 10 genres, but this list is just a springboard. I could go on forever, but I'd really love for all of you to jump in with your favorite escape book! It doesn't have to be 'light' reading, just a book that you couldn't put down. I'd love to compile a list of recommendations to take to the library… which will mean heading out in the sleet/rain/snow to get to the library. OMW, man, OMW.

Click the links to read book descriptions, and feel free to add your favorites in the comments!

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1. 20th Century American Classics
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Breakfast at Tiffany's by Truman Capote
On the Road by Jack Kerouac
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

2. Romance
(*more like heart wrenching love stories, but those are better anyway, right?)
Atonement by Ian McEwan
Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami

3. Mystery
Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie; the collected Complete Works of Agatha Christie is also available for the Kindle for only 0.99!
Berlin Noir by Philip Kerr.
Gone, Baby, Gone by Dennis Lehane

4. Gothic
Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte. Because after all, as bad as our weather may be, we've definitely got it rosier than poor Heathcliff and Katherine.
Dracula by Bram Stoker

5.Travel Essays
Desert Solitaire by Edward Abbey
Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed
Travels with Charley by John Steinbeck

6. Westerns
The Border Trilogy by Cormac McCarthy
Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry
True Grit by Charles Portis

7. Humor
Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris
Bossypants by Tina Fey
Blanding's Castle by P.G. Wodehouse

8. Young Adult Fiction
(* A few years ago I re-read a bunch of Nancy Drew books when I was sick and realized reading YA novels as an adult can be incredibly fun!)

The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle
The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe by CS Lewis

9. Cookbooks
Edible Selby by Todd Selby
The Art of Simple Food by Alice Waters
Plenty: Vibrant Recipes from London's Ottolenghi by Yotam Ottolenghi

10. Helpful Non-Fiction
The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin
Pathways to Bliss: Mythology and Personal Transformation by Joseph Campbell
The Art of Happiness by the Dalai Lama

(Images: 1. Juan Enriquez / Kathryn & David's Mix of Modern & Craftsman Apartment House Tour, 2. Book cover images property of respective book publishers)

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