I like books. Read a couple of posts on here and I’m sure I mentioned some book or another. I find it so easy to get lost in a book. I can escape reality and be taken to a different world. It’s a great way to shut out the noise of the world and just relax. Plus, the knowledge and understanding I gain from books is invaluable. I’m always looking for new books to read, whether a novel or a non-fiction book.
It’s an inexorable habit of mine to always have books nearby. I’ve not bought as many books these past few months, though I still have a stack of unread books to get through. I’ve found that having books around me always gives me something to turn to in my free time. It’s been a great way to stay productive and learn new things.
Here is a selection of books that I recommend, as well as ones that I have on hand to read.
The Artist’s Way, Julia Cameron. It provides readers with tools to help them unlock their creativity and unleash their inner artists. The book is divided into twelve chapters, each focusing on a different step in the creative process. The goal of the book is to help readers move beyond fear and self-doubt and into a place of creative expression. It was one of the books instrumental to changes in my life that took place about seven years ago.
The Four Agreements, Don Miguel Ruiz. An outline of four fundamental principles or agreements that guide how we should live our lives. These agreements are: be impeccable with your word, don’t take anything personally, don’t make assumptions, and always do your best.
The Alchemist, Paulo Coelho. This tells the story of a young Andalusian shepherd who travels to Egypt in search of a magical treasure. Along the way, he encounters a variety of characters who help him understand the importance of following one’s heart and the power of dreams.
Book of Sketches, Jack Kerouac. A collection of short poems written that capture the beauty of nature, the excitement of travel, and the joy of life. I liked this better than On the Road, though it’s really just little bits of thought.
The Icarus Deception, Seth Godin. A short book about how taking risks, embracing the unknown, and pushing boundaries can lead to personal and professional success.
Vagabonding, Rolf Potts . A book about the art and philosophy of long-term world travel, exploring the rewards of taking time off to discover the world and yourself.
Assata: An Autobiography. Tells the story of the activist’s life, her involvement in the Black Panther Party and the Black Liberation Army, and her eventual exile in Cuba.
The New Paris: The People, Places, & Ideas Fueling a Movement, Lindsey Tramuta. The New Paris is a travelogue that explores the city’s grassroots movements and cultural influences. It focuses on how the city’s people, places, and ideas have come together to create a unique and vibrant atmosphere that has attracted people from all over the world.
Of Wolves and Men, Barry Lopez. Explores the relationship between humans and animals, and the cultural significance of the bond between them. It examines the deep and ancient connection between humans and animals, and sheds light on how the relationship has evolved over time.
The Hero With a Thousand Faces, Joseph Campbell. Examines the common motifs and archetypes in myths and stories from around the world. It argues that the hero’s journey is a universal pattern that can be seen in myths and stories from all cultures, and that this pattern can help us to understand our own journeys through life.
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, Michael Chabon. Often cited as an example of a modern retelling of the hero’s journey, the story of two cousins, Sammy Klayman and Joe Kavalier, and their journey to fulfill their dreams of becoming comic book creators. Along the way, they must overcome a number of obstacles, including the harsh realities of war and their own personal struggles.
The Collected Writing of Henry David Thoreau. A collection of essays and books by the renowned American writer and philosopher, Henry David Thoreau. The writings explore topics such as civil disobedience, nature, and individualism, and are full of insight and wisdom.
Anything by Neil Gaiman. My perennial favorite, and his books include Neverwhere, American Gods, The Ocean at the End of the Lane, and Good Omens (with Terry Pratchett). I first read Neverwhere when I was in high school, and I consistently recommend it to those looking for new book recommendations.