I’ve made it my mission to read more this year.
I used to read an insane amount of books, and quickly too. I sped through books, series, chronicles like my life depended on it. But now, thanks to a few different factors, the amount of reading I do has dramatically decreased. Blame it on the fact I walk to and from work, so reading is an impractical endeavour. Or the fact that I aimlessly scroll through social media for hours on end. Either way, my reading has tanked, and I’m determined to fix it. Read on below to hear about the books I’ve read/listened to, and the ones on my list.
Becoming, Michelle Obama
I’m a little late to the game with this book, thanks to the fact that my mom demanded that she buy it for me for Christmas, so I wasn’t allowed to read it before then. I have long been a fan of Michelle Obama, and this book just solidified her status as an intelligent, warm, funny, wonderful person in my mind. Michelle takes you through her life, from growing up on the South Side of Chicago, to her time in college and work, through her life with Barack Obama, and her time as First Lady.
Michelle is honest, open, and eloquent throughout the entirety of the book, giving you a glimpse into a fascinating life. I would also highly recommend the audiobook, as Michelle’s voice is very soothing to listen to, and it adds an extra element to the stories as she tells them. You don’t need to have an interest in, or understand politics to enjoy this book. Michelle is telling her human story, and she tells it so well. I’ve recommended this book to everyone since finishing it, and I will be reading it again myself. Excellent.
Shoe Dog, Phil Knight
I knew literally nothing about how Nike came to be as a company. Shoe Dog is the memoir of Phil Knight, the creator of Nike. It’s fascinating to hear how many times it nearly failed as a company. How many times it was on the brink of extinction, how many hurdles they overcame. It’s an intriguing read, and one which I think anyone who has an interest in business, sports, entrepreneurship, and resilience will enjoy.
It’s also really interesting to hear about the different dynamics across cultures, as Phil predominately worked with companies based in Japan. I feel like I learned a lot from listening to this book, which is brilliantly narrated by Norbert Leo Butz. Definitely worth popping on your list.
Everything I Know About Love, Dolly Alderton
I have never related more to a person’s memoir in my life. I don’t know if it’s because I’m a similar age to Dolly, and going through similar things, but there were so many moments while listening to this book that I had to mentally pause and reflect. Dolly managed to have me crying one minute, and laughing the next, which garnered me some interesting looks while walking to and from work.
This book will speak to the souls of so many women in their late 20s and early 30s. It’s a tale as old as time, but told in such a way that makes it feel like your story. I feel like I wouldn’t have ‘got’ this book a few years ago. I wouldn’t have understood it. But now it resonates so much with my experience and feelings. Everyone I know who has read or listened to it, loved it. To me, it’s a love letter to friendship, which is part of the reason I’m encouraging all my friends to read it.
Heart Talk, Cleo Wade
This is the only non memoir on this list (I’ve had a bad run with novels the last few years), instead it is a book filled with poetic wisdom. I came across this book because I had been following Cleo on Instagram for some time and found that every time she posted a passage from the book I found myself shouting “YES!”, screenshotting it to send to friends and wanting to print the passage out and stick it on my wall.
Cleo has a way with words that are both calming and invigorating. I’ve dipped in and out of the book over the last while, but I do think I’m going to treat myself to a morning, sitting in the kitchen with a cup of coffee, and read it cover to cover. I’ll scribble in the margins, fold down pages to read out to friends later, and underline the words that speak to me. It will be good for my soul.
East of Croydon, Sue Perkins
I read another of Sue’s memoirs ‘Spectacles’, a few years ago, and genuinely laughed out loud. Sue has the most vivid, descriptive way of describing moments in time, events and her feelings that you can’t help but feel you were there experiencing it with her. This book, ‘East of Croydon’, has been on my bedside locker since Christmas, but I haven’t yet started reading it. But, I decided in the interest of transparency, that I would share the books I’m planning on reading next too!
I would love any other book recommendations you might have, so please pop them in the comments below!