It’s coming to the end of April, a month in which we’re usually subject to Spring showers. Yet we’ve had uncharacteristically warm weather here in the UK, so not many opportunities for rainy days in bed with a book.
For me, a Rainy Day Read is something short that I can devour in a day under the duvet with the miserable weather kept firmly outside, maybe cracking the window an inch to let the noise drift in.
Here’s a few books that I think would be perfect for one of those rainy days:
Ghost Wall by Sarah Moss (page count: 152)
I really loved this book and with the lowest page count on my list, it’s great for reading in one sitting. It follows teenage Silvie, who is dragged out to the countryside by her father on an archeological retreat, recreating living conditions of the Iron Age. Despite taking place in the summer, there’s a bleak and miserable undertone to this book that perfectly compliments a rainy day of reading.
Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys (page count: 171)
There’s something about this book that makes me think ‘rainy day’, despite being set in the sweltering heat of the Caribbean. Maybe it’s the suffocating humidity that seems to permeate the novel that makes me think of dampness and rain. Another short read, this is a modern classic that imagines the life of Bertha Mason, Rochester’s first wife from Charlotte Brontë’s novel Jane Eyre.
Ella Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn (page count: 203)
Nothing particularly ‘rainy’ about this book, but it is a very quick read and extremely clever. The whole novel is told in a series of letters, and is set on an island that greatly values the pangram ‘The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.’ When one by one, the letters of this pangram begin to fall off the town’s statue, the council believes this is a sign that they, and therefore the correspondence which the book consists of, should no longer use these letters, lest risk banishment from the island. The town’s inhabitants quickly race to find another, shorter pangram before the population is forced into silence.
Bleaker House by Nell Stevens (page count: 256)
I didn’t rate this particularly highly when I reviewed it, but I do think it’s a good read for a rainy day. Not only is it quite short and easy to get through, but it takes places on an almost empty island in the Falklands, battered by wind and rain, as author Nell Stevens attempts to write her debut novel. Reading this on a rainy day would definitely add to the atmosphere.
The Opposite of Loneliness by Marina Keegan (page count: 208)
This is a collection of essays and stories that I, quite honestly, don’t remember much about. However, I do remember reading this book in the early hours of the morning, curled up in bed after finishing my first year of university and feeling so seen, like the author was inside my own head. Marina Keegan tragically died days after her graduation so this collection was published posthumously, making its frequent discussions of the pressures we feel about the future seem extremely poignant.