My Beautiful Wintry Fantasy

My Beautiful Wintry Fantasy

Here we are in these dark winter months, with a long way still to go. Instead of counting the days till warmer weather, we invite you to take a different approach. Embrace it. There is an undeniable magic to the chill, the way it can freeze the world into a living sculpture, and it's something to relish, not escape. In these dark and twisty fantasies (with some sci-fi peppered in), the winter setting heightens the stakes and adds an element of allure. Start at the top of this list, and you'll get some winterscapes that revel in the beauty of the cold. Go deeper, and we'll get darker. Are you up for it? –Audible Editors Melissa and Nicole
Product List
    • A Novel
    • By: Helene Wecker
    • Narrated by: George Guidall
    • Series: The Golem and the Jinni, Book 1
    • Length: 19 hrs and 42 mins
    • Release date: 04-23-13
    • Language: English
    • 4.5 out of 5 stars 18,633 ratings
    • Fall in love with winter in the city
    • Winters in New York at the turn of the century were not what they are today. The streets were unforgiving, and the coal smoke could be smothering. Life for an immigrant, be it human or a fantastical jinni or golem, was treacherous. But amidst the constant danger was the joy of the small everyday moments: the fresh smell of warm pastries, the reckless freedom of strolling the city rooftops at night, the arresting moment of meeting a handsome stranger’s eyes. Narrator George Guidall seems to understand viscerally the tentative balance of restraint and abandon in this story, and he walks you across the fine line between both in his performance.
    • By: Meagan Spooner
    • Narrated by: Saskia Maarleveld, Will Damron
    • Length: 9 hrs and 19 mins
    • Release date: 03-14-17
    • Language: English
    • 4.5 out of 5 stars 603 ratings
    • In this one, the beauty hunts the beast
    • Beauty, raised as a hunter, must attempt to save her father’s life when she discovers he has gone missing in the forest. The only clue to her father’s disappearance is his raving stories of the Beast that resides in the frosty woods. Is he still alive? How will she avenge her father? All of these questions plague her mind when she’s captured by the Beast, who has his own plans for her. Narrator favorites Saskia Maarleveld and Will Damron tag team the perspectives in a duel narration that only adds to the intricacies of the tale of Beauty and her Beast.
    • By: Eowyn Ivey
    • Narrated by: Therese Plummer
    • Length: 10 hrs and 57 mins
    • Release date: 07-16-18
    • Language: English
    • 4.5 out of 5 stars 2,432 ratings
    • Come closer, my child
    • Homesteading in Alaska can be lonely business. Especially for a young couple unable to conceive a child. But the deep woods can also bring gifts. A girl made of snow, for instance, that dances through the trees on winter nights and instills the landscape with a dreamy magic. In this listen you’ll feel the pull of unpredictable wildness, while the soothing narration of Therese Plummer will lull you into a false sense of security. But we’ll warn you now: don’t fall asleep.
    • By: Joan D. Vinge
    • Narrated by: Ellen Archer
    • Length: 20 hrs and 41 mins
    • Release date: 06-12-12
    • Language: English
    • 4.5 out of 5 stars 332 ratings
    • A classic sci-fi that feels like fantasy
    • Filled with the political strife of two combating cultures on a different planet, The Snow Queen is a blend between sci-fi and fantasy that fans of both Frank Herbert and Hans Christian Anderson (of which this is a retelling of his like-named work) will enjoy. Vinge's attention to detail when drawing the land and the culture of the people gives the story a creepy, fairytale feel. This classic is narrated by Ellen Archer, who brings in character work that is surprising and enlightening, adding a layer of complexity to the story.
    • By: Sara Raasch
    • Narrated by: Kate Rudd
    • Series: Snow Like Ashes, Book 1
    • Length: 10 hrs and 56 mins
    • Release date: 10-14-14
    • Language: English
    • 4.5 out of 5 stars 1,194 ratings
    • No winter lasts forever...
    • Kate Rudd shines in her narration of Raasch’s debut fantasy novel Snow Like Ashes, which tells the story of Meira as she attempts to revive her home. Where Meira comes from, winter isn’t just a season that passes through for a few months. Winter is her land, her kingdom, and now she is only one of the few left after outsiders conquer and slaughter. Just as she regains hope for the revival of her people, she’s swept away into the harsh reality of her world. What she would have staked her life on before may have always been a lie.
    • A Novel
    • By: Katherine Arden
    • Narrated by: Kathleen Gati
    • Series: Winternight Trilogy, Book 1
    • Length: 11 hrs and 48 mins
    • Release date: 01-10-17
    • Language: English
    • 4.5 out of 5 stars 8,135 ratings
    • Oh how frigid is the love of a frost demon
    • The Winternight Trilogy as narrated by Kathleen Gati is at turns haunting and lovely. It takes you across the snow-laden lands of Rus’, or ancient Russia, from the countryside all the way to Moscow. Set in a time when paganism and Christianity existed side by side, Vasya Petrovna has the second sight and can see the protective spirits of house and forest. It’s a dangerous road to walk for a young woman, being what she is, especially when the term “witch” is healthy and alive amongst the cold and desperate people. But Vasya has the kind of moxie that can outlast the hatred of a town, a city, and even a chaos demon. Prepare to love her fiercely.
    • By: Jacob Cooper
    • Narrated by: Michael Kramer
    • Series: The Dying Lands Chronicle, Book 1
    • Length: 24 hrs and 37 mins
    • Release date: 12-27-16
    • Language: English
    • 4.5 out of 5 stars 930 ratings
    • What if the onset of winter meant the death of your land – forever?
    • Audie Award winner Michael Kramer lends his talents to this magical story of deceit and greed brought on by the struggle to stay alive as an ancient enemy threatens the lives of the people of Arlethia. As Reign and her brother battle the threats to their borders, they must also regain the respect of their people that they lost in their efforts to survive. Filled with fast-paced action and stellar narration, Circle of Reign is a stunning tale of frost-tipped rooftops and the struggle for morality in a shady land.
    • A Novel of the Others
    • By: Anne Bishop
    • Narrated by: Alexandra Harris
    • Series: The Others (Bishop), Book 1
    • Length: 18 hrs and 33 mins
    • Release date: 03-05-13
    • Language: English
    • 4.5 out of 5 stars 6,462 ratings
    • These wolves really do bite
    • Set in a present-day alternate reality in which supernatural creatures have always lived alongside humankind, Written in Red invites us into the world of the Others through the eyes of Meg Corbyn, who isn’t quite human herself. Anne Bishop is known for not shying from dark subject matters, and here, we get shape-shifters and other creatures who see people as literal walking bags of meat. It can be a little ruthless, and the stakes are high for our main character, but that means the payoff is so satisfying in the end.
    • By: Tyrell Johnson
    • Narrated by: Jayme Mattler
    • Length: 8 hrs and 54 mins
    • Release date: 01-02-18
    • Language: English
    • 4 out of 5 stars 278 ratings
    • Imagine the bitter cold of a dead sun
    • There’s an icebox where the sun used to be in the post-apocalyptic world of Wolves of Winter. As the warmth is stripped from the earth, so is the humanity that once filled it. Struggling to survive in the Yukon of Canada, Gwendolyn and her family have a new mystery man in their camp, who brings with him trouble that the family wanted to avoid. With no place to escape from the winter nightmare that is Earth, Gwendolyn must face these fears head on in order to protect and preserve what’s left of her life.
    • By: Naomi Novik
    • Narrated by: Lisa Flanagan
    • Length: 17 hrs and 56 mins
    • Release date: 07-10-18
    • Language: English
    • 4.5 out of 5 stars 8,720 ratings
    • Like a glittering icicle to the heart
    • As our best fantasy pick for 2018, Spinning Silver’s fairytale setting and Lisa Flanagan’s subtly accented narration crawled into our brains and enchanted us. In a land reminiscent of Eastern Europe where snow people called the Staryk walk among humans, three young women learn to fight overwhelming odds through the force of their wills. One is taken by the snow king, another must marry a fire demon, and the third is under the thumb of an abusive father. Novik’s sparing use of language is reflective of the harsh land they live in, and yet, the world is still vivid in our mind’s eye, even months after listening. It is a story that lingers.
    • By: Leigh Bardugo
    • Narrated by: Lauren Fortgang
    • Series: Grisha, Book 1
    • Length: 9 hrs and 21 mins
    • Release date: 11-30-12
    • Language: English
    • 4.5 out of 5 stars 14,594 ratings
    • Now, go dark or go home
    • We begin in a warring nation. Alina Starkov, at first just a lowly army cartographer, is taken to be trained against her will for a power she has that makes her able to fight the dark forces of the Fold. The Shadow Fold is a nightmare-like territory complete with monsters that is threatening to take over the Slavic-inspired nation of Ravka. People are desperate, and even the good guys do bad things. Filled with twist after dark twist, jump on board with this YA trilogy that isn’t afraid to take us down to the rock bottom before picking us back up.
    • The Four Horsemen, Book 1
    • By: Laura Thalassa
    • Narrated by: Susannah Jones
    • Series: The Four Horsemen [Thalassa], Book 1
    • Length: 11 hrs and 22 mins
    • Release date: 05-11-18
    • Language: English
    • 4.5 out of 5 stars 2,253 ratings
    • When her hero is also her enemy
    • This one is a romance, but it’s real dark and twisted. It’s the end of the world, and the first of the four horsemen, Pestilence, is slowly infecting the human population with disease as he rides through the streets. Sara stays behind in her empty town to kill him, but is captured by the horseman instead. He then drags her behind his horse as he continues his death march. Sound romantic? Oh, you just wait.
    • By: Stephen King
    • Narrated by: Jeffrey DeMunn
    • Length: 22 hrs and 47 mins
    • Release date: 02-20-01
    • Language: English
    • 4.5 out of 5 stars 9,955 ratings
    • How dark can you go?
    • When four friends ban together to stop the bullying of the mysterious Duddits, who has Down Syndrome and unexplainable telepathic powers, they’re forever linked. When they return years later to reminisce on their annual winter camping trip, they stumble upon a terrifying enemy lurking deep in the snowbanks of their hometown. Can their telepathic bond stand the frost of this deadly Derry winter? Let yourself be swept away into one of the many nightmares that plagues this unsuspecting town from this now-classic rendition of an old school Stephen King.