I knew he wasn’t trying to see if I’d fit into his book club but rather strike up a more meaningful conversation than the weather. I appreciated it, but at the time, I wasn’t reading anything. Did trashy gossip magazines count? (Remember when people actually bought those at airports?) The short conversation stuck with me, and since that time, I’m proud to say I’ve been a reader 🙂
I gravitate towards memoirs and self-help books, but who couldn’t use more pick-me-ups in a pandemic?
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.
Charles Dickens was ahead of his time with A Tale of Two Cities, let me tell ya. If you’re in the need of a good book and want to have an even better answer when you finally sit down on a plane again, next to an inquisitive Chatty Cathy, you’re welcome.
“This is how you find yourself.” That’s what the first sentence of this book cover reads, and I couldn’t conjure up a better summary of this book if I tried. Untamed is all about expressing yourself and your truest desires, all the while abandoning the world’s expectations of you. Glennon explains her life path that has taken her from addiction, divorce and cultural conditionings to straight LIVING. She says, “The braver we are, the luckier we get.” TRUTH.
This memoir sits on my bookshelf looking crumbled, wrinkled and old. I read Educated in and out of the bath, hence the withered, wet look. I have to admit that while it took me a few chapters to get my stride, my interest and reading speed took off like wildfire shortly after. Author Tara Westover describes her upbringing in the mountains of Idaho to parents who didn’t believe in proper education, western medicine or self-expression. My jaw was constantly on the floor as Tara explained the violence within her family home and the level of confidence she expressed as she left home in search of a better life. I resonated completely with her quest for knowledge and immense curiosity about the world.
After the death of George Floyd towards the end of May, many Americans were outraged and fed up with the institutional racism, police brutality and blatant injustice – now playing out in front of our eyes with video phones. Black lives absolutely matter, but the words don’t mean anything without action. That can be anything from protesting to digging into the work, one such publication by Robin DiAngelo, the author of the New York Times No. 1 bestseller White Fragility. I bought the Kindle version after searching the interwebs for a copy, but to no avail. DiAngelo provides many teachable moments throughout and pushes white Americans to interrogate their own role in structures of racism. This book isn’t a walk in the park or a gripping novel, and I’ll admit that it wasn’t the easiest read. With that being said, it’s imperative for ongoing self-awareness, continued education and antiracist practice.
Ruthie Lindsey is one of the most inspiring people I’ve ever met. A few years back, we spoke on a panel together in Brooklyn, and I knew I wanted to be friends with this woman from that moment on. Ruthie will captivate you with her smile and energy, and then grasp you with her story thereafter. Since surviving an accident that nearly paralyzed her as a teen, she has coped with chronic pain. Her optimism and grit is contagious, and she has used her pain for purpose, teaching us to fully experience the beauty life can hold.
“To realize one’s destiny is a person’s only obligation.” Paul Coelho is the only novelist in my round-up today, and I can’t believe it took me so long to read his book. I’ve heard of it for the past many years: The story of a shepherd who travels to the Egyptian desert in search of treasure near the pyramids. Throughout the book, he’s met with many obstacles and various people who point him in the direction of his quest. The boy learns the important and powerful lesson of listening to his heart over everything else.
For more of my favorite reads, check out this post: My 8 Favorite Books from the Past Year
Currently reading: A Curious Mind: The Secret to a Bigger Life by Brian Grazer, Charles Fishman