5 books to spice up your fall must read list


Samuel Misa, OMN Photographer

Freshman Ben Stier pictured reading “The Secret of Mirror Bay” the 49th volume in the “Nancy Drew” mystery series. Published in 1972 under the false moniker of Carolyn Keene, this installment sees the protagonist of the series, Nancy Drew solve the mystery of a woman seen gliding over the water in Mirror Bay.

Samuel Misa, Beaver's Digest Contributor

With the progression of this fall season, and as Halloween edges ever closer, now is as good a time as any to find a nice place to cozy up and read a good book. To help you find the perfect book for the fall, we asked for the help of the librarians at the Valley Library here at Oregon State University.

Nancy Drew– Multiple Authors

Starting off with a classic series of books that I think all of us have at least heard of, is the “Nancy Drew” mystery series. Chosen by Jasmine Cabanilla, senior undergraduate, she states that, “these books are probably the best books for fall ‘cause they’re classic mystery books in my opinion. When I think of fall I think of Halloween, spooky season. So a Nancy Drew mystery book is probably my fall go to.”

The “Nancy Drew” series contains numerous books ghostwritten by multiple authors using the collective pseudonym of Carolyn Keene.


The Fifth Season– N. K. Jemison

Kristin Swetland, library technician, recommended the book, “The Fifth Season.” “Fall always makes me very aware of the earth and living things and decaying things, and this book also brought those things to the forefront.”

cover of book broken earth
The final book in the “Broken Earth” trilogy, “The Stone Sky” also won the “Hugo Award” for best novel alongside its two predecessors. (Samuel Misa, OMN Photographer)

Swetland adds that the book is, “also a super awesome story to not be able to put down while sitting by the fire.”

Released in 2015 by the publisher Orbit, “The Fifth Season” was given the “Hugo Award” for Best Novel in 2016. It is only the first part of the “Broken Earth” trilogy by the same author, N. K. Jemison.


Outlander (Series)– Diana Gabaldon

“The first book of the series is a wonderful novel to cozy up with!” said Stefanie Hood, a library tech staff member.

“It transports the reader to different geographic locations and back in time,” Hood said. “When the weather changes as much as it does in the fall, it seems appropriate to read a book that offers a similarly dynamic story and trans-temporal travel.”

The first installment of “Outlander” came out in 1991, and the writer has written eight books so far. She plans to release two more, with “Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone,” the latest installment, set to be released before the end of this year.


My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry Fredrik Backman

When asked why she chose this book, sophomore undergraduate Jessi Wahnetah simply stated, “it’s my favorite book to read in the fall just because it’s my favorite book, and I love rereading it during my favorite season.”

The book follows the life of a young girl Elsa and her grandmother, as they navigate themes of human imperfection and forgiveness. Published in the author’s native country of Sweden in 2013, the English translation didn’t become available until two years later in 2015. The author, Fredrik Backman, is also a columnist and blogger.


Bonus: Siddhartha– Hermann Hesse

A personal selection of mine, Siddhartha, is one book that I find has a little bit of everything for everyone. While I did end up reading this book in the winter and not the fall, I nevertheless enjoyed the book thoroughly for the wisdom it contained.

cover of book siddhartha
This English translation of the book is from 1951, by Hilda Rosner for the arrival of the book in the United States. By the time of the 1960’s the book, more specifically this translation of it, became highly influential alongside Herman Hesse’s other works. (Samuel Misa, OMN Photographer)

Standing at just 152 pages long, the book is about the self discovery journey of one Indian Brahmin who spends his whole life finding enlightenment through exploring all that he can be. Based on the author’s experiences of visiting India before World War I, the book falls into the genre of philosophical fiction.

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