There may be one small upside to the power going out, as it has been in parts of New York City, D.C., Connecticut, Virginia, North Carolina, Long Island, and other East Coast cities, with the arrival of Sandy. You can finally sit down and read the books you've been ignoring in favor of HBO series and movies and catching up with the news and staying on top of Twitter. You can, quite literally, curl up with a good book—an act especially cozy given what's happening outside. Get a blanket, light a candle, make an evening of it. Add some wine and if there is more than one of you in your hurricane hideout, you can even read to each other, if that suits your fancy. But what should you read? Since we wouldn't suggest that you go outside and try to find a book right now (libraries and bookstores are closed, and even if they weren't, you should stay inside!), here are a few categories of reading you're likely to have just sitting around your book-laden abode, if and when you decide to look up from the computer, regardless of whatever type of reader you purport to be.
Scary books that will make Sandy seem less scary. On Friday we listed some of the favorite Halloween-time reads of some writers and readers we respect the opinion of immensely. Try any of those, equally effective in times of snor'easterncane, we'd dare say.
Your favorite books from childhood (or beyond). There is little to read that's cozier in feel than a book you've already read and loved. May we suggest From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler? Or, go contemporary. Y.A. books in general (old or new) tend to reach out and grab you without the sort of intellectual distance that you get in fancy books for adults. So, it may be time to reread The Hunger Games trilogy, Harry Potter, or even—egad—Twilight. Whatever is compulsively engaging and addictive and will get you through the night, no judgments. Pride and Prejudice is a fantastic, reliable comfort read. Maybe it's time to re-read Donna Tartt's A Secret History, Michael Chabon's Wonder Boys, Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby, Salinger's Nine Stories, Beverly Cleary's The Luckiest Girl, or—this list would not be complete without my favorite re-readable of all time, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. See our re-readables list for more.