Reading for pleasure is something most of us don’t get to do nearly as much as we’d like. But a good book can transport you to another world, leaving you relaxed, rejuvenated, and inspired…things that are particularly important in the chaos of today. The following five are must-reads worthy of my nightstand, and maybe yours, too:
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho is regarded as a literary masterpiece in many circles. It tells the tale of Santiago, a Spanish shepherd boy who journeys on a magical trek in search of treasure only to find special wealth beyond his wildest imagination. Bolstered heavily by the idea of following one’s dreams, this book is packed with wisdom for the young and old.
Life of Pi
Life of Pi by Yann Martel was the bell of the book club when it first debuted. It features the story of Pi, a young Indian boy who ends up shipwrecked and lost at sea on a giant life raft. While he’s the only human on board, he’s accompanied by an orangutan, a zebra, a hyena, and a tiger. He spends 227 days trying to survive the sea, as well as his carnivorous companions. The book explores themes of resilience, philosophy, nature, and religion.
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. Thompson is a semi-autobiographical story of Raoul Duke and his lawyer, Doctor Gonzo as they travel together to Vegas in search of wealth and prosperity. This book often stands out in literary crowds because of the drug use, the musing about 1960s culture, and the tendency to blend fact and fiction, a technique that would later become known as gonzo journalism.
Difficult Conversations by Douglas Stone, Bruce Patton, and Sheila Heen will help you have the many difficult conversations people tend to avoid. Whether you need to speak to your boss about a raise, talk to an employee who’s not giving their best, iron things out with your spouse, or negotiate a company merger, this book is full of practical, easy-to-digest information that can take your communication to a whole new level.
The Happiness Advantage
The Happiness Advantage by Shawn Achor uses years of research and work across 42 countries to offer readers a chance to control their success. With a focus on positivity and optimism, it offers easy-to-follow strategies to improve relationships, careers, health, and general life enjoyment.
Our everyday lives tend to get even crazier as the holidays approach. Embrace self-care by taking the time to read a good book or two. And, no, Netflix subtitles don’t count.