Here are some great books I had the pleasure of reading this past year, and highly recommend them. They come in a range of genres but all equally interesting, compelling and actually fun to read without being overtly tedious. Some are classics while others are more non-fiction modern. Give them a try and let me know what you think – would love to see some reviews.
Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain – A great book giving insight on introverts and the undervalued potential and contributions they provide for the world. Great for introverts and extroverts alike and helps further appreciate those special people in your life that you have underestimated all this time.
The Old Man and the Sea by Earnest Hemingway – he last major work of fiction by Hemingway that was published during his lifetime. One of his most famous works, it tells the story of Santiago, an ageing Cuban fisherman who struggles with a giant marlin far out in the Gulf Stream off the coast of Cuba. It starts of slow but then at some point you’re so enthralled by all the details you can almost smell the sea inside your living room!
History of the World May By Map by DK (with contributions by Smithsonian Institute) – More than 140 detailed maps telling the story of key milestones in world history, from the first human migrations out of Africa to the space race. This is miracle for map and history buffs (I am both), great pictures, concise and to the point it makes for a great quick read but more so looking at the maps and enjoying their incredible illustrated details.
The Boy Crisis by Warren Farrell and John Gray – this book is one of those that stays with you. Great for new fathers or parents of boys. Insightful and easy to read with very interesting links and studies that makes you re-look the entire social structure of how boys are brought up and the kindness we should be giving them – it’s also insightful on the impact on daughters as well.
I Can See Clearly Now by Wayne W. Dyer – Another very insightful gem that’s worth taking the time to read through. Written in a unique way it chronicles dozens of events from his life, from the time he was a little boy in Detroit up to present day. In detail he outlines the various decisions and actions he had t take and views the events from his current perspective, noting what lessons he ultimately learned.
The Authenticity Project by Clare Pooley – a unique twist on living life. Wondering if we release ourselves of inhibitors and filters how would that make our life lived differently. The basic synopsis is that one day, ageing artist Julian jots some secrets in a notebook and leaves it for a stranger to find. Monica picks it up and is inspired to write down her own. As the notebook moves around, it changes the people who reveal themselves in it as well.
You’re Not Listening: What You’re Missing and Why It Matters by Kate Murphy – Listening has become a rare skill, true listening is often distracted by a range of things including our self-involvement and obsession with short term attention spans. This book argues why we rely on technology for much of our communication, and why it’s more important than ever to listen to the people around us and why listening is so important in connecting with the people around us.
A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens – This classic I had to read, heard so much about it ad frankly was intimidated by its size and the scale of its popularity. But made the plunge and loved it immensely, especially because of the non-fiction and historical elements that are key to the story. Set in London and Paris before and during the French Revolution. The novel tells the story of the French Doctor Manette, his 18-year-long imprisonment in the Bastille in Paris and his release to live in London with his daughter Lucie, whom he had never met. The story is set against the conditions that led up to the French Revolution and beyond.
Secret Journeys of a Lifetime: 500 of the World’s Best Hidden Travel Gems by National Geographic – This is a bit of a guilty pleasure, and intended to take me away from the daily routine life into a fantasy world where I can travel the world. The pictures are all pieces of art as you would come to expect from National Geographic. Divided into themed chapters, the book features the “World at Your Feet”, “Last Wildernesses”, “Island Getaways”, “The Road Less Travelled”, “Secret History”, “Spiritual Havens”, “Hidden Treasures”, “Undiscovered Villages”, and “City Secrets”.
What Was Mine by Helen Klein Ross – beautifully written the imagery and detail is amazing in this book. It dives into a single moment that transformed the lives of a number of interconnected people. It narrates the story of a twenty-one years ago, Lucy Wakefield stole a child from a shopping cart. She was not caught and did not return the baby girl. Now the child, Mia, is grown and upon learning the truth about her “mother,” she’s forced to confront a whirlwind of emotions.