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Winter is a great time for more lighthearted reading, and if you agree, then look for these books.

No bones about it, lovers of classical music will want “Beethoven’s Skull” by Tim Rayborn. In this book, you’ll read about composers and their works; music and those who made it; and the scandalous, scary, and strange things you never learned from your old piano teacher. Because the book is categorized by composition periods, it’s also easy to find entries on your favorite composers or to learn about new ones. If you think classical music is boring and stuffy, this informative book with short chapters will make you change your tune.

History buffs already know there are things they don’t know, so why not learn about them by reading “When Churchill Slaughtered Sheep and Stalin Robbed a Bank” by Giles Milton? It’s a book that’s filled with those little nuggets of information you find when you’re not looking for them. That’s the fun of history, as Milton shows.

You’ll read about Chevalier d’Eon, who was very much involved in 18th century politics. But as his jobs changed, so did his gender, until nobody really knew whether the Chevalier was male or female.

You’ll learn a little about Churchill, Stalin, murder, the Nazis, the Bermuda Triangle, and more. It’s a book you can give to Grandpa and borrow back. It’s also great for a teen who loves quick, informative reads.

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