winter fantasy books

10 Winter Fantasy Books to Read This Season

Winter fantasy books are perfect to cozy up with on a cold winter day.

There’s something I love about reading an atmospheric fantasy book with a cold, snowy setting during winter. Some books also just have a wintry vibe to them that can’t quite be explained.

Fantasy winter reads are perfect for you to curl up in an armchair to read, with a warm blanket and a mug of hot cocoa in hand!

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10 Best Winter Fantasy Books

1. The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden

The Bear and the Nightingale is the books that inspired me to make this entire list.

It’s the first book in the Winternight trilogy by Katherine Arden, followed by The Girl in the Tower and The Winter of the Witch and for me, these are the ultimate winter fantasy books.

Set in medieval Russia and based on Russian folklore, these books follow Vasya, a girl who discovers she has the power to see and communicate with magical creatures.

2. Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo

Shadow and Bone is not primarily set during winter, but it has an inexplicable wintry atmosphere to it and the latter part of the book does involve a hunt through the snowy tundra in search on a mythical creature.

This is the first book in the bestselling Shadow and Bone trilogy, which also consists of Siege and Storm and Ruin and Rising. 

It’s the perfect binge-worthy fantasy series to read during the winter season.

3. Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones

Wintersong is a darkly romantic fantasy novel perfect to read during the cold winter months.

Liesl has always grown up hearing stories of the terrifying Goblin King, who emerges on the longest night of winter to steal a human bride.

When her beautiful sister is taken by the Goblin King, Liesl will do anything to rescue her.

4. Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik

Spinning Silver has a fairytale atmosphere that is perfect for winter.

Based on the fairytale Rumpelstiltskin, this story follows Miryem, the daughter of a moneylender with an inability to collect his debts.

Miryem must step up to take his place, and soon gains a reputation for her ability to turn silver into gold.

This attracts the attention of the icy Staryk King, who presides over a snowy fey kingdom and has a use for Miryem’s gifts.

5. Wicked Saints by Emily Duncan

Another fantasy book to read this winter is Wicked Saints by Emily Duncan.

This is the first book in the Something Dark and Holy trilogy, followed by Ruthless Gods and Blessed Monsters. 

With its snowy Eastern European-inspired fantasy setting and dark Gothic atmosphere, this is a great wintertime read.

6. The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey

The Snow Child is a Pulitzer Prize-winning novel with a snowy winter backdrop. It’s about a childless couple named Jack and Mabel living in Alaska in 1920.

When they build a child made out of snow and find that she has come to life as a real girl the next day like something out of a fairytale, they love her as their own daughter.

But things are rarely as they appear, and what they learn about their snow daughter will transform all of them.

7. Winterwood by Shea Ernshaw

Winterwood is an atmospheric book with a wintry setting.

The town of Fir Haven is surrounded by a dark, dark wood that is rumored to be haunted, or even magical.

When a local boy goes missing during a snowstorm and is later found weeks later having no memory of what happened to him, local witch Nora has no choice but to find out what is really going on.

Because Nora is the only one who knows the truth about the wood…

8. Down Comes the Night by Allison Saft

Down Comes the Night is a Gothic-inspired fantasy novel that is perfect to curl up with on a cold winter’s day.

It follows Wren, a healer who has been dismissed from the Queen’s Guard for her reckless use of magic.

When she takes on a healing job at the manor of a reclusive lord, she hopes redeem herself.

But she discovers something far more sinister, and will have to work with her enemy to save not only herself, but the fate of her kingdom.

9. The Witch’s Heart by Genevieve Gornichec

The Witch’s Heart is another great winter fantasy book.

It’s inspired by Norse mythology, and if there’s anything I think of when I think about Norway, it’s the cold!

This story is about a witch named Angrboda who is banished by the Norse god Odin for her witchcraft, and ends up falling in love with the trickster god Loki.

10. Winterspell by Claire Legrand

Finally, Winterspell is the perfect fantasy book for winter. This is a reimagining of The Nutcracker, but a lot darker and with a lot more romance.

In an alternate Victorian era New York City, Clara is a teenage girl whose father is a notorious crime lord.

When he disappears, she enters a magical realm with the assistance of the prince Nicholas, who has been freed from the nutcracker statue where he has been held prisoner for years.

Best Winter Fantasy Books

These are the best winter fantasy books to curl up with this winter season!

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Are there any other winter fantasy books I should know about?

Leave a comment for me below! I’m always looking for recommendations for more atmospheric fantasy books to read.

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