Usual Service Disrupted Due to Snow…

I don’t know if any of you have heard (sarcasm fully intended) but there seems to be snow everywhere in the UK. This has become a veritable snow storm in the press and you’d think, especially with tube lines closing – shock horror – in London, the world might be going through another ice age. Oop north it’s pretty horrendous.


The shops are selling out of bread, roads are closing, schools shutting and I have to try and make it back to Liverpool through the snowy Peak District. Could be interesting!

Anyway while chaos reigns I thought I would ask you all for your favourite books featuring snow? If I manage to get home, or not, the likelihood is I will be snowed in with proper snow, so fancy a book that’s suitable. Your recommendations please…



Filed under Random Savidgeness

32 responses to “Usual Service Disrupted Due to Snow…

  1. “Snow falling on Cedars” by David Guterson and “Miss Smilla’s Feeling for Snow” by Peter Høeg. Both has lots of snow and are really good. 🙂
    Good luck with all your snow.

  2. novelinsights

    The Snow Child – but you’ve read it already! Perhaps children’s stories The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe by CS Lewis or The Snow Queen by Hans Christian Anderson

  3. Yes, “Snow Falling on Cedars” by David Guterson, “The Long Winter” by Laura Ingalls Wilder, pop to mind. But the most amazing book about snow (and ice) I’ve ever read is “Icefields” by Thomas Wharton. Here is the blurb from Goodreads! Check it out!
    At a quarter past three in the afternoon, on August 17, 1898, Doctor Edward Byrne slipped on the ice of Acturus glacier in the Canadian Rockies and slid into a crevasse . . .

    Nearly sixty feet below the surface, Byrne is wedged upside down between the narrowing walls of a chasm, fighting his desire to sleep. The ice in front of him is lit with a pale blue-green radiance. There, embedded in he pure, antediluvian glacier, Byrne sees something that will inextricably link him to the vast bed of ice, and the people who inhabit this strange corner of the world. In this moment, his life becomes a quest to uncover the mystery of the icefield that almost became his tomb.

    Within the deceptively simple framework of a tourist guidebook, Icefields takes a breathtaking, imaginative look at the human spirit, loss, myth, and elusive truths. Here is an impressive literary landscape, and an expedition unlike any you have ever experienced.

    • David

      Ooh, thanks for reminding me about ‘Icefileds’, Lee-Anne. I’ve had it on my shelves for years, and must get around to reading it as I enjoyed Wharton’s ‘Salamander’ very much when I read it maybe 10 years ago. I did wonder what had happened to him (I’ve seen nothing new since) but it looks like he now writes fantasy novels for children.

  4. The Long Winter by Laura Ingalls Wilder, though a children’s book, is perfect for snowy weather. Personally, my favourite snowy-scene is the Christmas party in Emma, with Mr Woodhouse’s anxiety over a little skiff of snow.

  5. The Tenderness of Wolves, set in 19th century Canada. Wonderful novel much of which has the two main protagonists making their way into the wilds through the snow.

  6. Gillian Slovo’s ‘Ice Road’ – one of the most gripping recounts of a snowstorm I have ever read.

  7. I recently re-read Susan Cooper’s “The Dark is Risiing” (as part of the five-book sequence) and that has some marvellous, malevolent snow …

  8. literary travels and explorationskatrina

    Miss Simila’s Feeling for Snow – we got sent home from school as the bus company panicked and said they would have to shut, there was just a tiny dusting of snow – ridiculous!

  9. David

    The one that instantly springs to mind is a recent book: Alexi Zentner’s ‘Touch’ which features some rather epic and memorable snow. Odd, but though I can think of several books with snow in them, there are almost none that have left me with an abiding sense of wintery-ness in the way that other books immediately make me think of summer and heat.

    Hope you don’t encounter too much disruption on your journey, Simon. The snow here is a bit pathetic – so much for the “blizzard” conditions the forecast was promising 24 hours ago!

  10. The Snow Child – nuff said. Get home safely.

  11. The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe by C S Lewis or Little Women by Louisa May Alcott 🙂

  12. ‘Snow’ by Orham Pamuk.

    I live in the ‘red zone’ – the border of the Welsh valleys, and we are completely snowed-in. Even 4x4s can’t get through to our village. Eek!

  13. Definitely “The Long Winter” – whenever I’m getting stressed by snowfall it makes me realise things are not so bad! And I’ve just been re-reading “One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich” and thanking my lucky stars that I’m in East Anglia and not Siberia…..

  14. I’d say The Winter House by Nicci Gerrard (half of Nicci French). It’s about friendship & lost love. All in a remote cottage in snowy Scotland.

  15. Sharkell

    The Friends of Meagre Fortune by David Adams Richards about the lumber trade in early Canada – how they cleared the forrests during the winters and floated the timber during spring. We are having record temperatures in South East Australia with many many bushfires.

  16. Just so you know, there is NO snow in Manchester. Well – there’s a light dusting, so all the news about snow and pictures of everywhere else must be just fibs! There’s even snow in Liverpool (which you’ll no doubt know by now…)
    I just this minute finished ‘Snowflake’ by Paul Gallico. Such a sweet little fairy tale. Bout a snowflake, don’t you know.

  17. It’s fun today, don’t know how everyone will feel if it continues, though. I’d say my favourite is The Snow Child but I think you’ve already read that. Hope you get home ok!

  18. JoV

    I would recommend ‘Snow’ by Orham Pamuk, “The Legend of Suicide” by David Vann, which is set in the icy landscape of Alaska. Read Snow Child last week. Non-fiction “Into the Wild” by Jon Krakauer about a very intelligent young man Christopher McCandless who travels around America and spends his last days in the wilderness of Alaska, eventually frozen to death. One of the most powerful book I ever read.

  19. I don’t really like The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe much as an adult, but snow always reminds me of the magic of reading it as a child, going through the wardrobe into the snow…
    My fave is Winter Holiday by Arthur Ransome, where the Swallows and Amazons have an expedition to the “North Pole” over frozen Coniston Water.

  20. How about some non-fiction on actual snowflakes? I recently read “The Snowflake” by snow research Kenneth Librrecht and photos by Patricia Rasmussen. Fascinating and quite understandable for the most part even if it does mention scary things like atomic and molecular physics. The author does a great job of simplifying concepts and explaining jargon even to someone (like me) who hasn’t had science since they were twelve. If nothing else, there are fab photos of snowflakes to look.

  21. Snowdrops by Andrew Miller, if you are in the mood for gritty, contemporary Russia (dead bodies revealed when the snow melts are called snowdrops). The Frozen Thames by Helen Humphreys, if you want something you can dip in and out of; these are fictional vignettes based on real occasions when it was cold enough for the Thames to freeze over.

  22. My recommendation … can you get to an airport? Come to Florida. Guest room – pool – beach – fluffy cat. Just let me know when to pick you up at the airport. 🙂

  23. I second some of the recommendations above, like The Snow Child (which I know you’ve read) and The Tenderness of Wolves. I liked a novel called No One Thinks of Greenland by John Griesemer, which takes place at a secret military hospital in Greenland. Also set in Greenland was a nonfiction book by Gretel Ehrlich called This Cold Heaven. Another good nonfiction is Ada Blackjack, which is about a woman who was the only survivor of an Arctic expedition. Although I’ve lived in New England my whole life, I really hate the cold, but I’m bizarrely obsessed with books that take place in cold climates.

  24. I’ll offer you a rather strange little book, not neccesarily my favourite one with snow but unusual and interesting; “Yan and the Christmas Tree” by Jun Machida. Despite 8 cm of snow where I work on the W edge of London the tube coped admirably unlike Heathrow which is also near to me.

  25. The first scene of V.S. Naipaul’s ‘The Mimic Men’!

  26. Bet

    I’ll repeat some mentioned above:
    The Long Winter by Laura Ingalls Wilder
    Miss Smilla…
    The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe (“where it is always winter and never Christmas”)
    and add a current non-fiction favorite:
    Winter:Five Windows on the Season by Adam Gopnik.
    And last, but not least, a link to my favorite snow poem: “Not only the Eskimos” by Lisel Mueller:

  27. Sarah Williams

    Liz- I just reread The Dark is Rising. I loved it growing up, and I believe I enjoyed it even more as an adult. And it was because of The Readers podcast that I read The Snow Child last year. Loved that, too.

  28. D E Stevenson’s Winter and Rough Weather (aka Shoulder the Sky). A newly married couple (a sheep farmer and an artist) experience their first winter in the border country of Scotland in the early 1950s.

    A Child’s Christmas in Wales. I know Christmas is now last month/last year, but it’s full of snow.

    (no snow this morning in Toronto. Lots of wind)

  29. Bink Owen

    Short and sweet: “To Build a Fire,” by Jack London (namesake of UK city).

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