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5 Best Reads For Your Summer

5 min read

Looking for the perfect book to throw in the suitcase or take to the beach? Do you plan to spend your summer working on self-love and getting motivated? Let us help. Summer is ideal for fitting in some extra “you” time. Spending it with a good book can spark inspiration for both work and life. Books are also amazing for starting a conversation. Whether you want something thought-provoking or you are simply looking for a good read to bring you joy, we’ve got you covered. In the end, reading reminds you that you are not alone. Your struggles and dreams are shared. Your life is a part of a larger ecosystem. The greatest books comfort you with this sense of belonging. Enjoy!

‘What She Ate’ by Laura Shapiro

Everyone eats, and food touches on every aspect of our lives–social and cultural, personal and political. Yet most biographers pay little attention to people’s attitudes toward food as if the great and notable never bothered to think about what was on the plate in front of them. Once we ask how somebody relates to food, we find a whole world of different and provocative ways to understand her. Food stories can be as intimate and revealing as stories of love, work, or coming-of-age. Each of the six women in this entertaining group portrait was famous in her time, and most are still famous in ours; but until now, nobody has told their lives from the point of view of the kitchen and the table.

What She Ate is a lively and unpredictable array of women; what they have in common with one another (and us) is a powerful relationship with food. They include Dorothy Wordsworth, whose food story transforms our picture of the life she shared with her famous poet brother; Rosa Lewis, the Edwardian-era Cockney caterer who cooked her way up the social ladder; Eleanor Roosevelt, First Lady and rigorous protector of the worst cook in White House history; Eva Braun, Hitler’s mistress, who challenges our warm associations of food, family, and table; Barbara Pym, whose witty books upend a host of stereotypes about postwar British cuisine; and Helen Gurley Brown, the editor of Cosmopolitan, whose commitment to “having it all” meant having almost nothing on the plate except a supersized portion of diet gelatin.

‘Dare to Lead’ by Brené Brown

This is a book for everyone who is ready to choose courage over comfort, make a difference and lead. How do you cultivate braver, more daring leaders? And, how do you embed the value of courage in your culture? When we dare to lead, we don’t pretend to have the right answers; we stay curious and ask the right questions. We don’t see power as finite and hoard it; we know that power becomes infinite when we share it and work to align authority and accountability. We don’t avoid difficult conversations and situations; we lean into the vulnerability that’s necessary to do good work. But daring leadership in a culture that’s defined by scarcity, fear and uncertainty requires building courage skills, which are uniquely human. The irony is that we’re choosing not to invest in developing the hearts and minds of leaders at the same time we’re scrambling to figure out what we have to offer that machines can’t do better and faster. What can we do better? Empathy, connection and courage to start.

‘Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear’ by Elizabeth Gilbert

Elizabeth Gilbert shares her wisdom and unique understanding of creativity, shattering the perceptions of mystery and suffering that surround the process, and showing us all just how easy it can be. By sharing stories from her own life, as well as those from her friends and the people that have inspired her, Elizabeth Gilbert challenges us to embrace our curiosity, tackle what we most love and face down what we most fear. Whether you long to write a book, create art, cope with challenges at work, embark on a long-held dream, or simply to make your everyday life more vivid and rewarding, Big Magic will take you on a journey of exploration filled with wonder and unexpected joys.

SEE ALSO:  Why Do We Still Feel The Pressure To Meet Traditional Milestones?

‘The Moment of Lift: How Empowering Women Changes the World’ by Melinda Gates

If you want to lift a society up, you need to stop keeping women down. In this moving and compelling book, Melinda shares lessons she’s learned from the inspiring people she’s met during her work and travels around the world. As she writes in the introduction, “That is why I had to write this book – to share the stories of people who have given focus and urgency to my life. I want all of us to see ways we can lift women up where we live.” Melinda’s unforgettable narrative is backed by startling data as she presents the issues that most need our attention – from child marriage to lack of access to contraceptives to gender inequity in the workplace. And, for the first time, she writes about her personal life and the road to equality in her own marriage. Throughout, she shows how there has never been more opportunity to change the world – and ourselves. Writing with emotion, candour, and grace, she introduces us to remarkable women and shows the power of connecting with one another. When we lift others up, they lift us up, too.

‘The Friendship Cure’ by Kate Leaver

Our best friends, gal-pals, bromances, Twitter followers, Facebook friends, long- distance buddies and WhatsApp threads define us in ways we rarely acknowledge. There is so much about friendship we either don t know or don t articulate: why do some friendships last a lifetime, while others are only temporary? How do you break up with a toxic friend? And maybe the most important question: how can we live in the most interconnected age and still find ourselves stuck in the greatest loneliness epidemic of our time? It’s killing us, making us miserable and causing a public health crisis. What if meaningful friendships are the solution, not a distraction. In The Friendship Cure, Kate Leaver s much-anticipated manifesto brings to light what modern friendship means, how it can survive, why we need it and what we can do to get the most from it. From behavioural scientists to best mates, Kate finds extraordinary stories and research, drawing on her own experiences to create a fascinating blend of accessible smart thinking, investigative journalism, pop culture and memoir.

Last but not least, here is a literary treat for you!

‘Hospital Sketches’ By Louise May Alcott

Do you want to practise your Italian? Summer could be the right time. This book, originally published in 1863, is now out in a very exciting version. L’Iguana Editrice, an Italian Feminist niche publishing house, has also included the original text in English, so you will not miss any of the powerful words of one of the most beloved writers of all the times.
If you are a fan of Louise May Alcott, make sure not to miss this little gem. Her literary career started with a humorous account of her nursing experience in the Union Army. In fact, five years before breaking through with Little Women, between 1862 and 1863, thirty-year-old Louisa May Alcott served at the Union Hospital in Georgetown. From the letters sent to her family during the six weeks as a volunteer, she created the tragicomic adventures of the military nurse Tribulation Periwinkle. An evergreen feminist character we are sure you will love reading from the very first page.

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