~ You’ll be into this if: you just wanna read something positive in this goddamn world ~
I liked this book so much I got a tattoo of it. Safe to say my mum does not like this book. No matter what page you open, you’ll always find something to make your day a little brighter or remind you to stop being such a jerk. This is the kind of book I’d pass onto my kids, but they better not get a tattoo of it.
~ You’ll be into this if: you’re a bit of a history buff ~
This book is completely badass. And beautiful. And eye opening. And horrifying. And feminist as fuck. It’s a historical fiction about two French sisters during World War II and their resistance, perseverance and struggle with the German occupation of France. What I found really cool about this book was that it details life for the women that stayed behind when their husbands went to war and how they were, in a way, fighting a war of their own. I loved this book.
~ You’ll be into it if: you’re lacking a little creativity ~
Elizabeth Gilbert is the woman who brought us Eat, Pray, Love and is solely responsible for my goal of traveling the world, eating only pasta and doing yoga. I’m very ambitious. Big Magic is another of her books and it’s really bloody cool, it talks about creativity in a way I’d never thought about before. I used to categorise myself as someone who just wasn’t all that creative – this book calls bullshit on that, saying that everyone can be creative and in fact, everyone SHOULD be. It doesn’t matter how good you are at painting – or how bad – creativity in any form is vital in leading a happier life. When an idea comes around, grab it, that’s the Big Magic.
~ You’ll be into it if: you’re looking for a little perspective ~
I first read this book when I was about 14 years old – a much older boy who I had a massive crush on lent it to me and I think I was more interested in him than I necessarily was with the book. Some seven years later, the boy is gone and I find myself reading it for the second time. This true story is about Morrie, a 78 year old professor facing a terminal illness in the most courageous way possible: with love. As Morrie says ‘only by learning how to die, do you learn how to live’ and that is exactly what this book gives you – lessons on how to live, what to place your value in and when to say ‘if the culture isn’t working, don’t buy it’. This book will tear your heart open and ultimately put it back together, leaving you teary eyed in the best way possible.
~You’ll be into it if: you’re big on politics and even bigger on feminism ~
Gloria Steinem is a bit of a holy name in the world of feminism (I wish I could just say ‘in the world’) and this book is nothing short of inspiring. Gloria modestly describes herself as an organiser – of political campaigns and women’s rights movements. My life on the road is simply that, an autobiography detailing the events of her life spent in a constant state of travel, never really having a home base yet always having a purpose. If you’ve ever felt limited in your capabilities or thought that little old you couldn’t possibly make a difference, this book will serve you well. Gloria is badass and brilliant and I am so inspired by her.
~ You’ll be into this if: you’re open minded and don’t mind a bit of self-help ~
Those who know me (I mean really know me) are aware of my obsession with Oprah. From her TV show, her podcast and most importantly her book club, I’m all over it. Enter: A Return to Love. Without trying to sound like a book club member who has only read the title, this book is all about love. And the return to it. But it really is. It reveals that there are two things in life, love and fear. And that only one of those things truly exists in this world, you just have to choose it. Approaching life from the perspective of love – from the interactions you have everyday to the big decisions in your life – is a concept that is so simple but sadly revolutionary in the culture we live in. This book shifted a lot of my perspectives and is something I have to remind myself of everyday. Thanks Oprah. And Mum, who for some reason knew I needed this book.
~ You’ll be into it if: you’re emotionally stable enough ~
Really though, I wouldn’t recommend this to anyone going through a tough time because it deals with some pretty heavy shit. Having said that, it’s one of the most beautiful books I’ve ever read. It follows the intertwined lives of four friends living and working in New York, centred around a man named Jude – whose life story is nothing short of harrowing. This book tackles the purest forms of love and hate that this world has to offer, and will stay with you long after you’ve read the last page.