I’m finally getting back into reading. It’s been far, far too long. I think university left me fatigued – I spent four years reading books on business, economics, and a good portion of those were in French. It’s not a criticism; I would go back and repeat those four years in a heartbeat, but it has meant that my reading mojo has been all over the place since graduating in July last year.
One year on and I’ve gone from forcing myself through non-fiction health and eco-friendly books (see The Microbiome Solution and Zero Waste Home) to dabbling with a few at a time. This is something I used to do growing up, and it’d drive my mum crazy. I’d switch from one fiction book to the next, picking up factual articles inbetween. I still feel sad for not continuing my bookworm habits, but in this day and age there’s only so much information you can consume at a time, and most of mine comes from online.
The moments when I’m taking a break from screens I really do cherish however. Snuggled up in bed in the morning or evening, they act like a buffer to the blue-light sleep-zapping gloom of my iPhone. Here’s what’s on my nightstand, and what I think of the books so far…
The Healthy Life
I touted Jessica Sepel’s The Healthy Life** as one of my favourite healthy books in the Spring of this year, and I’ve come back to it again and again. The book shows you easy steps in improving your wellness (that’s mind, body, and soul) and is bespoke in the fact that you write down your goals, identify what changes are possible for you, and review them. There’s also some really great recipes and ideas in the book that I’ve folded corners down to come back to in the future.
I picked this book up at Stylist Live last month, as a guilty-pleasure read for my inner blogging fangirl. I first started following Estée Lalonde when she hit 1,000,000 subscribers on her YouTube channel (yeah, I was really late to that party) and I’ve loved the way she’s grown from cute, newbie Essie Button into confident, glamorous Estée. Upon deciding to delve into her story by reading Bloom*, I have to say I have mixed views. There’s some really interesting insights into her life, her relationships, and her love of blogging, but I’m finding the editorial decision to leave her life stories in a half-baked, quickly-written blog style quite offputting. I find myself picking holes in the way things are written rather than learning her life lessons, but I’ve still got quite a lot of the book to go so I have hope!
The Lesser Bohemians
This book is on the other side of the scale when it comes to literature. The Lesser Bohemians* is an illegitimate love story wrapped up in the world view of a new Londoner and written in jarring prose that is so deliberately stop-start-stop-start that it makes me smile and frown simultaneously. Every time I pick the book up I find I have to really concentrate for the first 10 minutes or so to get into it, and then I’m flowing along with the story, dashing between inner monologues to speech to beautiful fragmented descriptions of the city I’ve come to know and love. I picked this up after realising Eimear McBride* wrote A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing, which was being shown as a play at The Young Vic theatre in Waterloo.
My final book on the list is not to be confused as the least worthy, in fact I’ve probably learnt more from this than the rest of them so far! #Girlboss* is Nasty Gal Founder Sophia Amoruso‘s first book, and it details the trials and tribulations she went through to go from eBay shop owner to CEO of a multi-million dollar fashion store. I’ve been listening to her podcast series Girlboss Radio for a while now, and realised that while my ambitions aren’t exactly aligned with hers, I would love to have her as a mentor and that her book will do for now!