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Hello!! Welcome to my blog! My name is Bella Raine, and I am a Christ following, creative, outgoing teenager. This blog is about all things art, books, and writing!

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Winter Means Books! (A Guest Post by M.L. Milligan)


I don’t know where you live but for me here in Tennessee our winters can be hit or miss. Most times, a “Tennessee Winter” consists of 40° weather and freezing rain, sleet, and maaaybe the occasional few inches of snow. 😅 So yeah we don’t have the quintessential Hallmark white Christmas BUT that doesn’t mean winter isn’t an amazing time to curl up with a good book and some hot chocolate! 

Today my friend M.L Milligan and I are exchanging posts with our favorite winter books!! You can find my book list over on her blog here and I’m excited to share her list here!


Winter means books! | My favorite winter-y reads

By Mac From M.L. Milligan

What does the word “winter” mean to you? Does the mere mention of it bring about thoughts of early sunsets and warm drinks? Of snowfall and frost and the holiday season?

For me, it conjures up images of paper and ink, of warm blankets and stacks of books. And why not? Winter is the perfect time to cuddle up with a thick blanket and read!

“In the winter she curls up around a good book and dreams away the cold.” —Ben Aaronovitch

And what better books to read than those set in the winter! 🥰  


Shattered Reflections—Madisyn Carlin

Grab a mug of your favorite hot stuff and get cozy. This chunky tome is almost 500 pages long and worth every sentence. Carlin has crafted a compelling adventure chock full of action, high stakes, and characters willing to die for each other. Throw in a beautiful dark winter aesthetic with protector vibes and a light retelling theme, and take my money, I want the entire series. 😂

Seize the Night—an anthology

If any of you have heard of this anthology, you might know that I’m in it! But my story aside, this collection is such a touching one. Featuring eight stories from different authors, this collection is centered around winter, specifically Christ’s birth (but not every story is Christmas-themed 😉). I co-hosted this first in a four-book anthology series with my dear friend Abigail Harris and it’s the perfect read for a dark, winter night, if I do say so myself. 

An Old-Fashioned Girl—Louisa May Alcott

This is a personal winter read for me, meaning I try to read it every winter. 😂 I simply adore Alcott’s writing style and the premise of a country-girl in the wilds of an unknown city, struggling to adapt while still clinging to the truths and ideals she holds dearly, is one that gets me every time. 

Understood Betsy—Dorothy Canfield Fisher

I actually picked this book up on sale from The Good and Beautiful’s library (a homeschool curriculum site) a while back and I’m so glad I did! (I also recommend doing the same if you can, as it’s the “clean language version.”) I don’t know what it is about the bratty-kid-turned-responsible trope that I love so much, but this classic is a prime example of the values and lessons to be learned from working with your own two hands.

The Winter of Red Snow—Kristiana Gregory

One of my favorite Revolutionary War era books, The Winter of Red Snow is my all-time favorite middle-grade Dear America (rivaled only by its sequel, Cannons at Dawn.) Set during the winter at Valley Forge in 1777, this inspiring little book follows a young girl growing up in the War for Independence, facing the trials and danger that come with a country at odds. I definitely recommend this to anyone looking for a good book set during the Revolutionary War.

A Fool and His Monet—Sandra Orchard

This little gem is a recent addition to my bookshelf and I cannot wait to get its siblings on there too. The main girl is with the art division of the FBI and lemme tell ya, the cast in this book was amazing. Throw in missing art, a Jessica Fletcher-esque Aunt, and all the twists and turns that come with the mystery genre, and I’ll take the trilogy to go, please. 😊

Nicholas Bishop—P. D. Atkerson

Any chance I get to talk about my favorite spy series, I will take. And it just so happens that its prequel is the perfect winter read! Nicholas Bishop, the prequel to the AKA Simon Lee series by P. D. Atkerson, stars our boy Lee in Paris, of all places, and aaall the trouble he gets into after pulling off a high-profile art heist. (I’m sensing a winter/art theft theme here. 🤔 Is this a thing?) If you’re new to this series, this book is the perfect place to start!


There you are, folks! Some more winter-y reads to add to your TBR. Have you read any of these gems? Do you have a book you keep coming back to every winter? Which book stood out to you the most? Comment down below and let’s talk books!


Catch ya on the flip side!

_Mac 🤎


About The Author:

A reader of as many genres as she pens, M. L. Milligan is on a quest to bring about stories that both excite and inspire. Her Lord and Savior is her strongest weapon, her favorite treat either a cup of coffee or a bowl of popcorn with a movie—Okay, and getting a new book. This desert-loving gal makes her home in the Sagebrush state, surrounding herself with endless amounts of books and an increasing number of rescues. Connect with her at Author | M.L. Milligan (


Oo these were some great reccs!! I know I am adding these to my “To Be Read” list!! Thanks Mac for this fun list! Be sure to check out my list over on her blog here, and sign up for her newsletter while you’re at it! I always love getting her posts in my inbox! 😀

Until next time,

Bella 👋

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6 Responses

  1. One of my favorite winter reads is Greenglass House by Kate Milford. It’s a really cozy mystery set at Christmas time, with lots and lots of references to hot cocoa, snowy days, and warm fires! I’ll be sure to check out your recomendations!
    -Roxy Messier

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