We wait until the coldest, darkest and saddest time of year to deny ourselves of everything we love. Forget celery cleanses and 5 am spin classes, New Year’s resolutions should nourish us with the things we need to brave the winter.
And what better way to start the year than with a good read? I’ve assembled ten of my favourite books for starting the year with a bang. Whether you’re looking for lifestyle advice or a page-turning thriller, I’ve got you covered.
Happy reading my friends…
Resolutions are much easier said than done. But luckily Charles Duhigg has scoured the psychological depths to help you turn words into action. This award-winning book focuses on the habits of the world’s most successful organisations and gives practical advice for transforming the way we think, work and do.
Far from your bog-standard self-help book, The Power of Habit has been praised by psychologists and business people all over the world for its scientific insight. Whether you’re looking to lose a few pounds or start your own business, this book has the power to change your life, one habit at a time.
A lot has changed since 1936. But 15 million copies and a spot on TIME Magazine’s most influential books of all time shows you that Dale Carnegie’s classic is just as useful as ever. But How to Win Friends… isn’t just a business book, it’s a timeless manual for positive interaction with others.
According to Carnegie, success is all about ‘the ability to express ideas, to assume leadership and to arouse enthusiasm among people.’ This book will show you how to do all three with simple techniques used by some of history’s most noteworthy figures. Perfect for business buffs and people-watchers alike.
If you haven’t heard of Rupi Kaur yet, where have you been? The fiercely talented Canadian poet shot to the top of the New York Times bestsellers list with her mesmerising debut collection in 2014. And Milk and Honey is as powerful now as it was then.
Split into four sections, Kaur’s debut clears a path through the full spectrum of human emotion. She examines love, loss, violence and anger with youthful vivacity and understated charm. Milk and Honey proves that there is sweetness even in life’s most bitter moments.
Parenting. It’s a breeze, right? Well, Pamela Druckerman’s hilarious memoir gives us hope that raising children can in-fact be easy, stress-free and surprisingly chic. This autobiographical tale tells the story of a New Yorker turned Parisian who discovered a whole new way to bring up les enfants in the heart of France.
It’s packed with interviews, anecdotes and first hand-experiences that will ring true on either side of the Channel. Witty, informative and incredibly funny, French Children Don’t Throw Food is the perfect gift idea for parents.
Ever wondered why we get butterflies in our bellies or always side with our gut-feeling? Dr Emeran Mayer is here to help you understand one of the most important relationships in the human body.
Mayer breaks down the dynamic between the brain, gut and microbiome (that’s the millions of microorganisms that call your digestive tract home). With practical advice, he shows us that a few simple changes can lead to healthy bodies and healthy minds. Food for thought indeed.
If you’re looking for the key to a better diet, Jenny Linford may just have the missing ingredient. This insightful book explores the crucial relationship between food and time looking at everything from the caramelisation of sugar to the fermentation of award-winning champagnes.
Linford travels across the world asking artisans and experts their opinion on patience. Her findings are fascinating! So whether you’re a seasoned chef or an aspiring foodie, The Missing Ingredient will transform the way you think about food.
We live in strange times. Luckily, author and funny man Daniel Mallory Ortberg is on hand to deconstruct pop culture with his trademark irreverence. This collection of essays takes a sideways glance at everything from tyrants to Twitter.
With the choppy waters of the new normal moving ever closer, Ortberg’s razor-sharp wit is on hand to steady the ship. Funny, insightful and refreshingly down-to-earth, Something That May Shock and Discredit will leave you laughing and \perhaps scratching your head.
American historian Tara Westover has lived a life unlike any other. Educated tells the story of her astonishing upbringing in the mountains of Idaho. After being kept from schools her whole life, she set out to educate herself on a journey that would take her over oceans to Harvard and Cambridge.
Endorsed by none other than the fabulous Michelle Obama, this real-life memoir is an incredible read. Packed with honesty, drama and moments of poignancy, Educated has a lesson for all of us.
If you want to start your year with a dose of positivity, Rebecca Solnit’s Hope in the Dark is a must-read. This powerful book draws on Solnit’s decades of environmental and social activism to find the antidote for an uncertain world. Hope.
Hope in the Dark was originally released back in 2004 but its message of optimism is perhaps even more potent now. Read it, share it, pass it on. Hope in the Dark should be read by everyone.
Winner of the Booker Prize 2019, Girl, Woman, Other weaves the interconnected stories of twelve black women living in modern-day Britain. Each character is unique and electric and opens up the stories that are so rarely explored in fiction today.
Evaristo tackles race, religion, identity and class with warmth, humour and intelligence, as she celebrates the very best of modern British culture. Girl, Woman, Other is the perfect book to start the new year.