Are You a Seasonal Reader?

Posted January 30, 2015 by Cristina (Girl in the Pages) in Discussions / 27 Comments

discussionmasterIt’s the cusp of February, and my local weather is having a nice little glimpse of spring. The sun is shining and various little woodland creatures have started appearing in my yard to taunt my cats through the windows. The temperature is just a hint shy of being short-sleeve weather. I’ve noticed this turn in weather just doesn’t alter the type of activities I want to do and clothes I want to wear, but it alters what I’m in the mood to read as well. This got me thinking: are there patterns in what I read depending on the season?

After reflecting upon this, I think the answer is a resounding YES. I gravitate not just toward reads that are blatantly seasonal during certain times of the year (such as reading Christmas themed books in winter) but I’m much more likely to read certain genres during different times of the year as well. I almost never read books set in the summer during the winter (I just feel like I can’t get into them as much) and my motivation to reread books is usually highest in the winter (which is when I almost always do my Harry Potter rereads…there’s just something about cold weather, hot tea, and blankets that makes you want to curl up with a familiar book). After analyzing my Goodreads challenges for the past few years, here are the trends I’ve noticed:

  • Winter: rereads, fantasy, heavier “issue” based contemporaries
  • Spring: contemporary romances, fairy tale retellings
  • Summer: books made into movies, vacation/destination/travel novels
  • Fall: thrillers, mysteries, spooky reads, paranormal

Of course these trends aren’t always the case. They get trumped by things like a new book in a series I love where I must read it the second it comes out, if I’m buddy reading a book with someone else, or it just so happens that I am able to get my hands on it at the library. Yet for the most part I prefer certain genres and types of books at certain types of the year. I always do a re-read in November/December (in 2014 it was the Shiver trilogy, in 2013 it was the Twilight series, and in 2012 it was Harry Potter). In the summer I tend to bulk up on many novels that have turned into movies since they are usually being released at that time of year, and in the spring I like to pick up more lightweight contemporary romances because they’re quick and feel-good reads that I can throw in my bag for a trip to the park or the pool. Unsurprisingly, fall puts me in the mood for mysteries and paranormal, as Halloween gets me into the spooky spirit.

seasonalreadingUp until now I had never really taken the time to think about the books I gravitate to during certain seasons, but I find that I’m already doing it a month into 2015. Most of the books I’ve read in January have been fantasy (such as Splintered) or heavier, issue based contemporaries (Eleanor & Park). I keep meaning to read Lola and the Boy Next Door, but I find myself wanting to save it for sunny weather and a carefree day…so obviously I’m holding out on reading a cute contemporary romance for the spring!

Do you think you reading habits are impacted by the season? What types of books do you gravitate to during certain months? Do you like reading books in the season they take place, or do you like enjoying a summer book in the middle of winter to give yourself a mental break from your current weather? Have you already fallen victim to seasonal reading habits in 2015? If you have habits like this, would you want to change them? Let’s discuss in the comments!


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27 responses to “Are You a Seasonal Reader?

  1. I have to say that I’m not a seasonal reader at all. I think I actually avoid Christmas themed novels when it’s Christmas time 😛 But it doesn’t bother me to read a winter novel in summer or vice versa.
    If I had to classify my reading habits it would have to be as a “mood reader”. I find after I read a particularly dark story or a book with more mature subject matter, I need to read a lighter romance right after. Or after I read a YA novel, I read a New Adult novel just to give myself a refresher.

    • I can see why you may avoid Christmas novels at Christmas time- it may feel like it over saturates the season! I think rotating themes and genres sounds like a great strategy, especially to keep you from hitting a reading slump or getting too burnt out on a certain genre! Any recommendations on New Adult novels? I haven’t been able to find a good one to try yet!

      • Hmm, a good New Adult novel, that actually a hard one. It depends what you like in books.
        Keep Me Still by Caisey Quinn and Ruin by Rachel Van Dyken are probably good ones to introduce you to the genre. Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry straddles the line between YA and NA. And if you like your books to have a little more drama, I recommend Abbi Glines’ Rosemary Beach Series (Fallen too Far is the first one). If you don’t want a series, Breathe Into Me by Sara Fawkes is a great standalone!

    • Well for February I like to do romances in the spirit of Valentine’s Day, and short books help me feel productive when I get through them, which helps if I’m in a slump! I’d recommend The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith and/or Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins! If you want a book that you’ll be absolutely unable to put down I’d try Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas!

  2. shannyreads

    Great discussion post! To an extent I definitely enjoy seasonal reading, I love reading Game of Thrones during Winter – the setting/tone just suits so well. I typically just try to read whatever I feel like reading, and not force myself too much into a genre. A lot of the time I end up seasonal reading because the mood of the book just suits the mood the weather puts me in (if that makes any sense). In Australia we have really HOT Christmas’ (it’s summer in December) so a lot of the time classic Christmas reads don’t really suit the weather, but I still enjoy reading those then regardless. I guess I’m a mixed bag!

    • I still NEED to start Game of Thrones! (I have the first book but it looks so long and intimidating!!) You nring up a great point about Australia being in a different climate zone than the typical weather associated with some holidays (like Christmas in the Summer…I can’t even imagine reading Twas the Night Before Christmas when it’s hot outside!) Do you have more Australian based seasonal reads by Australian authors that correspond timing-wise more with your climate patterns?

  3. I’m not really a seasonal reader although sometimes I do read certain books during certain weather because it just seems more fun. 😛 But mostly I just read whatever.. 😀

  4. I don’t really think I’m a seasonal reader, although I am trying to read more seasonal books around Christmas and summer. I’m one of those that loves contemporaries all year round!

  5. I tend to do the opposite thing from you as in sometimes I read books set in winter during summertime to cool me down and vice versa 🙂 For example, I’m currently reading a summer contemporary because it’s quite cold in my country 😀

    • I know a lot of people who do that too! I’m currently on vacation in a warmer climate and it’s definitely put me in a spring mood, so I’ll be tempted to read something “warmer” when I get back home!

  6. Absolutely!!! I read lots of Elin Hilderbrand in the summer – I love those Nantucket beaches!! In the winter I love a good xmas book or any book that includes steamy mugs of tea/coffee and women getting along their fictitious lives, strolling along through a winter scene perhaps. In the spring I always reach for a good Rom/Com. I really love Kristan Higgins. Its funny, as I def have this seasonal reading pattern thing but have never noticed it until now!! 🙂 Great post!!

  7. I totally agree! I read books about road trips, vacations, and overall summer-themed books during the summertime. I love holiday/winter books when seasonally appropriate too. Apparently I also like fantasy books in the winter because I read a lot of those in January, haha.

  8. I’m always intrigued by seasonal readers, because this is so not me! I like the idea and think it could lead to having fun, themed months on your blog, but I moodread and what I want to read doesn’t seem to be influenced by the seasons.

    • Seasonal Reading definitely lends to cool blog features (I’m doing a valentine’s themed buddy read this month!). I find that my mood reading and seasonal reading habits tend to align, since I don’t like reading summer books in winter and vice-versa!

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