I have a stack of books in my house that I’ve thought about reading a million times over. I pick them up, leaf through a few pages and then put them back down. Some are non-fiction books like The Four Hour Work Week. I was so excited to buy a used copy of this book on half.com, but I was bored from the moment I opened it. At one point the author suggests putting down any book or reading material that fails to interest you or provide any knowledge or meaning in your life. Well I must admit that I closed that book and put it back on the shelf the minute I read that sentence.
I’m currently reading Gorgeously Green, which to be perfectly honest I find enlightening and a bit scary all at the same time. The author suggests reviewing the ingredients in all of the products you use in your home or on your body to search for and eliminate any with toxic materials. I marched upstairs, reached into the bathtub and started reading through the list of unpronounceable ingredients on my shampoo, conditioner, and moisturizers and nearly threw everything into the garbage can.
In an effort to get my mind off of the toxins leaching into my skin and hair I borrowed a copy of Confessions of a Shopaholic. I’ll probably finish this one, but 112 pages in, I’m not feeling particularly entertained by it. I sure hope the movie is more interesting.
Since I’m not having much luck in my book selections lately, I was wondering if any of have recommendations. The books can be fiction or non-fiction, but I’m hoping for something that will either inspire, enlighten, or at the very least entertain me. If you have any suggestions please leave a comment below.
10 thoughts on “Books that Inspire You”
Hi – I’ve been following your blog for a long time and love your writing. As for book recommendations, I’m currently reading Eat, Pray, Love which I find to be very inspirational and uplifting – its the author’s story of traveling to India, Indonesia, and Italy. Another great read is Animal Vegetable Miracle which details the author’s journey into eating local for a year. I hope this helps!
I too was bored by Shopaholic. I couldn’t finish it. Good recent reads include Sarah’s Key, Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, Jemima J and Little Heathens. Jemima is super light and fluffy, Little Heathens is nonfiction and fascinating if you enjoyed stuff like the Little House book series as a kid and the other two are historical fiction. Hope you enjoy!
PS Animal Vegetable Miracle is very good. Eat Pray Love is ok – the author is very self absorbed.
I can endorse all of lowincomelady’s fiction recommendations for entertainment reading, the last pick being particularly lightweight, if not brief. If you like lightweight and entertaining but lengthy, you might also look into the two Kushiel trilogies. But only if you have a tolerance for occasionally steamy scenes. Not that they’re anything like typical romances.
For more “respectable” fiction, I would recommend Old School by Tobias Wolff, I, Claudius by Robert Graves, and Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier.
Where nonfiction is concerned, I was inspired by Gene Logsdon’s Contrary Farmer and Eliot Coleman’s Four-Season Harvest. But then, I’m a gardener. One of the best bios I’ve read in recent years was Samuel Pepys: The Unequaled Self. Who Murdered Chaucer is a fascinating history/biography by Terry Jones. Yeah, the one from Monty Python.
Sophie Metroplois Series by Tori Carrington just a quick fiction read-but funny!
I’m currently reading Thou Shall Prosper by Rabbi Daniel Lapin, which is about the morality of business and making money. it’s pretty darn good.
Also anything by th economist Walter Williams continues to rock my world.
I recently read They Poured Fire on Us From the Sky and got to meet 2 of the co-authors. Not a light read, but you’ll be amazed by the determination of the human spirit.
Thanks for all of the great suggestions. I’ve compiled a big list and I’m heading to the library tomorrow.
Eat, Pray, Love was pretty engrossing. I would second the recommendation on that one. Also try any of the Jen Lancaster books, the first is “Bitter is the New Black”. I found them to be laugh out loud funny.
Bitter is the New Black *was* funny, much more so than I expected.
I loved Gorgeously Green too – I credit it for starting my daily yoga practice!
A few that I just read and loved: The Necklace by Cheryl Jarvis, The Body Myth, The Untethered Soul by Michael Singer, and The Gospel of Food by Barry Glassner. Speaking of food, In Defense of Food and The Omnivore’s Dilemma were excellent too. 🙂 I did read another green book toward the end of last year – it inspired me to finally throw out some last cleaning stuff – but cannot remember the name right now ..
I recommend A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini, not light reading but very moving.