This year, every few months I am choosing the books that inspired me or spoke to me the most, and sharing a little bit about them here on the blog. As always, you can see everything I’m reading on my Goodreads profile!
These last couple months were so lovely, because: a) it was Summer, b) I was at my mom’s quiet, cozy house, tucked away in the forest, and c) I had access to a library again! All of which meant that I got to read a lot and it was wonderful, as you can imagine. Here are my favourites from the last few months.
1. Rising Strong by Brené Brown
I adore Brené Brown (just look at all the times she’s inspired me over the years) and I was so excited to read her new book. I devoured it, and the whole time I had my laptop open next to me so I could take pages of notes. It gave me ideas and tools to actually use in my real life and relationships, including my personal faves “The story I’m making up is…” and the concept that everyone is doing the best they can. The stories she includes are so powerful and this book is such a helpful resource for anyone trying to live with more courage and integrity.
2. Better Than Before by Gretchen Rubin
I am also a huge fan of Gretchen Rubin: I have read all her books and listen to her podcast every week. She’s very wise and knowledgeable when it comes to happiness, and all her books have been helpful for me. I loved this one in particular because it discusses how to create habits on the basis of your own personality and nature, and that not every habit strategy works for every person. It’s truly helpful and full of awesome information to make your habits (and therefore your life) better and happier. I found myself passionately talking to friends about the 4 tendencies, and applying her recommended strategies to form my own habits.
For example, I’m a Questioner, so I exploited that element of my personality by researching the best strategies for flossing, and coming up with several compelling reasons to do it (“Because it’s good for me” wasn’t enough. “Because it’s the best way to whiten your teeth and improve the health of your mouth and your overall immune system” was much better.) You can take a free quiz about your tendency here.
3. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer
This one was recommended by one of my best friends and I loved it. It’s poignant, it’s sad, it’s full of joy, it tugs at your heartstrings, it’s kind of fantastical, it’s simply beautiful. It’s about a little boy who goes on a kind of scavenger hunt after his father is killed in the terrorist attacks of 9/11, as well as the history of his family and the stories of all kinds of characters he meets along the way. It also has a satisfying ending, which I think is a tough feat in this kind of story.
4. This Is How Your Lose Her by Junot Díaz
This was a short book, but the connected stories were all powerful and interesting and extremely well-written. It’s a bit sad to watch this guy act like a total trainwreck in all of his romantic relationships, but at times it’s really relatable too. It’s excellent fiction by a great writer, and I’m looking forward to reading his other books. You can read an excerpt of the book here.
You can see all my book recommendation blog posts here.