Twas the season for reading

My perfect winter day is curling up on my couch, Christmas tree lit, a warm cup of peppermint hot chocolate and a good book in my hand. There is nothing better than relaxing by immersing yourself in a captivating story. Winter break makes the perfect time to do just this.

Below is a variety of “must reads” for your winter break suggested by national headquarters staff.  Check any of them out? Let us know your thoughts about the read in the comments below. Happy reading!

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

Kim Richard, director of events & programs, suggests this classic holiday read. She reads this book every December and it never fails to put her in the holiday spirit. She says A Christmas Carol is a classic and timeless story that is sure to get you in the mood for a cup of hot cocoa and some hugs from loved ones.

“After reading the book I highly encourage watching your favorite version of the movie…mine is The Muppet Christmas Carol!”


The Autobiography of Santa Clause as told to Jeff Guinn

This recommendation was made by Leah Eickhoff, program coordinator. It is one of three books in the “The Christmas Chronicles” collection. Leah says The Autobiography of Santa Clause is a wonderful way to learn about how the jolly old elf has evolved through history. The book highlights the story of how Santa has learned about other cultures and historical events around the world through via the perspective of Santa himself.


The Christmas Cottage by Samantha Chase

Hailey Harrison, communications coordinator, is a romantic at heart. The holiday season is meant for reading romance novels and watching Hallmark Channel movies, which is where this suggestion comes into play.

The Christmas Cottage was recently made into a Hallmark Channel movie which made me love the book even more. The romantic storyline of love and fate was brought to life in such detail throughout the book and the movie added to that. It is just a good feel-good book that will put you in the holiday spirit!”


Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things

Kelsey Turner, director of communications & marketing, highly recommends Jenny Lawson’s Furiously Happy. This collection of essays about Lawson’s experience with depression and anxiety are hysterical, educational and touching. She is real about her experience and anyone looking to understand depression and anxiety should read this book. Furiously Happy is about embracing everything that makes us who we are – the good, the bad and the crazy – and then using it to find joy.


The Beekeeper’s Apprentice

The Beekeeper’s Apprentice is recommended by Christy Adams, director of collegiate services. It is the first book by Laurie R. King in her Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes series, in which Holmes reluctantly takes on a 15-year-old Mary Russell as an apprentice to help solve a case with Scotland Yard. Christy says this book is humorous at times but also engaging and well-written. It is a classic Holmes with a twist!


The Body Book by Cameron Diaz

With the new year just around the corner, Abby Somers, collegiate expansion coordinator, says this book is the perfect read to help reset your mentality about treating your body well – giving it the nutrients and exercise needed in order to thrive.

“I read this book on a holiday break a few years back and many of its philosophies still stick with me today!”



The Woman in Cabin 10

Morgan Shiflett, collegiate experience coordinator, says when reading this book she felt like a detective. The whole story is full of twists and turns that leave you with an intense feeling to solve the mystery. Morgan’s advice is to read this book when you have a lot of free time because you will not want to put it down.




Dear Sugars

“As a new mom, I am finding I no longer have the free time to read books. However, I have found that listening to an audiobook or podcasts have helped with the commute to and from work. My latest obsession in podcasts is called Dear Sugars.”

Lisa Ferro, alumnae engagement coordinator, suggests a different kind of holiday read. The “Dear Sugars” podcast is hosted by Cheryl Strayed and Steve Almond. The podcast is similar to an advice column and discusses everything from tumultuous relationships to living your best life. It is insightful and does not take a lot of effort to focus on which is great for people on the go!

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