Blog Hop: Autumn Books

I’m participating in the Book Blogger Hop again this week, which invites book bloggers to answer a bookish question and visit each other’s blogs.  Hosted at Soon Remembered Tales this week, here’s today’s question:

With Autumn upon us and Halloween drawing near, what books remind you of fall? What ones do you enjoy reading that are about autumn?

My first thought was that Autumn doesn’t seem to get that much play in fiction.  Summer and winter, with their more dramatic temperatures, seem to be more usual choices–and then of course, spring is the traditional setting for love stories.  (Also for L. M. Montgomery books, which while not all in the spring, all have that feel.)

But perhaps I don’t think of Autumn as a frequent setting because I don’t read the right books.  Perhaps Autumn comes up all the time in ghost stories and horror novels.  I wouldn’t know.

Anyway, I thought a bit more, and I did hit on two favorite books where Autumn plays a role.  First, The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland by Catherynne M. Valente features a heroine named September.  While not entirely set in Autumn, there is a scene where September turns into a tree–and begins to dry and crumble as Autumn comes in.  It’s truly frightening, and one of the most striking moments of the book.

Second, I thought of Peter Pan in Scarlet, Geraldine McCaughrean’s sequel to J. M. Barrie’s Peter Pan.  I imagine there are all seasons in Neverland (probably delightfully crammed together), but in a metaphorical sense, Neverland exists in a perpetual summer time.  This book explores what happens when the magic begins to crumble, and Autumn comes to the island.

I was in Kensington Gardens this September, where Peter Pan lived before going to Neverland.  True to the magic of the Gardens, Autumn seemed to arrive over night.  My hotel was nearby so I was visiting daily–and one day it was warm summer, the next it turned cold and drifts of leaves covered the ground.  It’s not hard to imagine that the fairies decided it was time for a season change, and went to work!

Autumn in Kensington Gardens

8 thoughts on “Blog Hop: Autumn Books

  1. I live in New England, and enjoy the change over into Autumn every year with it’s brilliant reds and oranges (though I do admit to wishing the next season was spring). I haven’t read the other Peter Pan book, though I have read The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland, as has my daughter. It’s a lovely book.

    Thanks for visiting!

  2. Oh, I LOVE Peter Pan!! As for “The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fariyland”, I haven’t read it, but I have seen it on other blogs. The image you bring to mind is pretty fantastical and interesting.

    That picture is just lovely!! You lucky, lucky girl — being able to visit Kensington Gardens! I’ve ALWAYS wanted to visit England!!!! Not much chance of that, though. Here I am in faraway South Florida, USA…

    Happy Autumn, and Happy Reading!! : )

    1. The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland is wonderful–the link above goes to my review too. I hope you get a chance to read it! If you like Peter Pan, I think you’ll really enjoy it–so many echoes of classic literature.

      You’re a whole continent closer to Kensington Gardens than I am, over here in California. You should go–it’s wonderful!

  3. I have an autumn book that I reread every year: The Perilous Gard by Elizabeth Marie Pope. It’s fundamentally a retelling of Tam Lin, which is a ballad about a fairy ritual on Halloween.

    Also, it’s Harry Potter fanfiction, but The Shoebox Project has excellent choices for autumnal reading.

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