A Review-Based Student Publication of Townsend Harris High School

The Classic Critic

A Review-Based Student Publication of Townsend Harris High School

The Classic Critic

A Review-Based Student Publication of Townsend Harris High School

The Classic Critic

The Ultimate Fall Reading List: 7 Books to Savor this Autumn

Madison Donenfeld

As we embark on a new school year, with the weather getting a bit chillier, and the leaves change to an orange color, we start to get the urge to dive into a new spooky book. These are the books that I believe are perfect for cozying up with on a cold, windy night.

1. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

The Night Circus, a fantasy novel, follows a rivalry between two magicians, Celia and Marco, and “Le Cirque des Rêves.” This circus, often described as mysterious and magical, is the setting for the lifelong duel between the two magicians, a fight to the death. The descriptions of the setting and surroundings are the highlight of the novel. Inevitably, after a long, drawn-out slowburn, Marco and Celia end up falling in love. This book is absolutely enchanting, and beautifully written. It has the perfect halloween spirit that makes it the perfect book to read on a rainy day. 

2. The Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling

While it’s safe to say that practically everyone has delved into this series at some point, I believe these books are a perfect choice for a fall revisit. The story revolves around a “school of witchcraft and wizardry”, Hogwarts, and its iconic trio: Harry, Hermione, and Ron. These books are brimming with drama, heartwarming moments, humor, and enchanting magic. They exude a nostalgic charm that can transport you back to the Halloween nights of your childhood.

3. The Ex Hex by Rachel Hawkins

The Ex Hex reads like your classic rom-com novel. It follows Vivienne Jones, a charming witch who curses her ex-boyfriend, Rhys. Throughout the story, you’ll find yourself immersed in a fun “will they or won’t they” between the two lovable protagonists. Set at the annual fall festival in a quaint small town, the book not only captures the essence of the season but also provides a cozy and heartwarming narrative. That’s precisely why I think it’s the ideal choice for a delightful autumn romance read.

4. The Maidens by Alex Michaelides

The Maidens follows Mariana, a therapist consumed by her fascination with a group known as “The Maidens,” and Edward Fosca, a professor, and presumed murderer, at least in Mariana’s eyes. She spirals into a relentless obsession, convinced of the charismatic yet suspicious professor’s guilt. The novel has significant, compelling ties to Greek tragedies and myths. It’s an eerie, dark academia tale that seems tailor-made for autumn, and a must-read for anyone who wants a gripping psychological thriller.

5. The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde 

The Picture of Dorian Gray is one of the most beautiful books I have ever read. Set in the realm of gothic horror, it tells the story of a young and handsome man named Dorian Gray, who yearns for eternal youth and makes a fateful deal to achieve it. With complex writing and an alluring main character, the story is absolutely mesmerizing and makes a perfect choice for a dark October evening.

As we inch closer to the peak of autumn, I think it’s the perfect time for everyone to start a new spine-tingling, or romantic novel. Regardless of the genre you’re interested in, this list has the perfect book for you.  


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About the Contributor
Madison Donenfeld, Managing Editor
Madison is a junior at Townsend Harris High School. She enjoys reading, watching movies, listening to music (specifically Taylor Swift), and hanging out with her friends. You will often find her trying to learn a new instrument.
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