Well read: Book recommendations that we think you’ll love – from the Lizi’s community | Lizi’s

The act of settling down with a good book presents a stillness that is difficult to achieve with other activities. As well as providing the opportunity to expand our knowledge and gain fresh perspective, reading offers escapism – you can literally become another person through the written word on the pages of a book.

The benefits of reading are endless; it reduces stress, improves mental stimulation, focus and concentration, builds analytical skills and can even improve our memory. It’s considered to be a wellness activity by many, increasing our mindfulness and empathy.

So, with this fresh source of inspiration to pick up a book, we turned to the Lizi’s community to curate a list of popular books in a number of genres.

Self-development

Radical Acceptance – Tara Brach

This book by psychologist Tara Branch provides teachings in meditation and Buddhism to empower the reader to feel content in their lives by reducing self-criticism and stress, building mental resilience and feelings of peace, tranquillity and happiness.

The Chimp Paradox – Professor Steve Peters

By using a simple analogy, The Chimp Paradox explains how our primitive brain can be responsible for negative emotions and reactions. But, by using tactics to identify when ‘the chimp’ is about to take over, we can programme the logical part of our brain to kick in instead. This can help us make more reasonable and rational decisions, which can lead us to improve our communication, relationships and become happier.

Big Magic – Elizabeth Gilbert

Author Elizabeth Gilbert uses Big Magic to describe her creative process. In it, she encourages readers to ignore their fears, harness their creativity and ensure it keeps flowing. She also covers how to use creativity effectively in everyday life.

Cookbook and recipe books

Pinch of Nom – Kay Featherstone and Kate Allinson

Fresh from the webpages of the UK’s most-visited food blog, authors Kay and Kate provide recipes that empower readers to cook well while reaching their health goals. The recipes provide plenty of variety, giving readers a culinary tour around the world and the skills and knowledge to successfully re-create them.

Gizzi’s Kitchen Magic – Gizzi Erkskine

Not only does she have a fringe to die for, Gizzi is also wonderful at instilling cooking confidence into the least experienced of home cooks. She provides techniques and tips that add an extra dimension to the recipes in this book, encouraging readers (and bakers alike!) to step out of their cooking comfort zone.
Rosemary in your millionaire shortbread, anyone?

BOSH! – Henry Firth and Ian Theasby

As plant-based diets become increasingly popular, this cookbook provides recipes that use fresh, supermarket-friendly ingredients. From insta-worthy brunches to hearty dinners, desserts and party-foods, this book provides inspiration and motivation to expand on your plant-based dishes.

Fiction

The One Plus One – Jojo Moyes

A moving story by the author who brought us the world-wide success Me Before You. The One Plus One is a tale of hard work, family and down-to-earth adventures, and is the perfect feel-good read. The characterful shaggy dog and lovely little Kenzie are a bonus! If you loved Me Before You put this on your to-read list next.

One Day – David Nicholls

A charming story that follows the friendship of Emma and Dexter on the 15th July, every year. From the beginnings of their friendship at university, moving swiftly through their adult lives – this story has been a favourite on many lists. Even if you’ve seen the hit blockbuster movie featuring the fabulous Anne Hathaway, we still recommend the book – the attention to detail for each character is utterly charming!

Non-fiction

The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse – Charlie Mackesy

A beautiful collection of illustration and calligraphic copy that brings together profound messages of kindness, compassion and togetherness, through the depiction of four friends – the Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse. This book moves the reader and reignites the passion for our friendships and loved ones.

Sitopia: How Food Can Change the World – Carolyn Steel

Author Carolyn Steel uses her book to acknowledge the changes faced with regards to the way that civilisation and environment/nature have fallen out of synchronicity with rising hunger, climate crisis and the number of cases of obesity increasing. She also argues that food is a medium that can recalibrate our relationship with food, touching upon the political, humanitarian, sustainability, social and commercial aspects along the way.

Biography/personal memoirs

When Breath Becomes Air – Paul Kalanithi

This incredibly moving story was started by Paul Kalanithi, an intelligent and high-achieving individual who had nearly completed his neurosurgeon training – who discovers he has terminal cancer. The book stays with him as he navigates through his life with cancer, his personal relationships and embarking on IVF with his wife. Perhaps, most moving, is the fact that the book is completed by his wife, Lucy, whose final chapter will move you and shift your perspective on life.

Reasons to Stay Alive – Matt Haig

Author Matt Haig details his crippling experience with depression and anxiety that ‘blindsided’ him one day, having previously been enjoying a party lifestyle in Ibiza. Whilst covering the symptoms of his extremely serious illness, Matt’s dry sense of humour provides light relief and helps the reader to maintain perspective. This isn’t a self-help book; this is one individual’s encounter with a severe mental illness to give hope to others who might not yet see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Crime/thriller

The One – John Marrs

Would you agree to be matched to your soulmate on the results of a DNA test? The One takes us through a new world of dating in which a company claims to have uncovered the gene that pairs us with our soul mate, however, a DNA match isn’t capable of uncovering secrets – especially those that are truly shocking and have complication consequences.

I Let You Go – Claire Mackintosh

A tragic, psychological story, uncovering the dark emotions felt by the characters in the book that have been affected by the death of a child killed by a hit and run accident. The story of a mother trying to outrun her grief, a subplot and a shocking twist, author Claire Mackintosh draws upon her own experiences as a police inspector with pin-point attention to detail that leaves the reader a little shaken – a real page turner.

We hope that you enjoy the recommendations from the members of our community, and please share your thoughts on each read on our social channels and send us your recommendations too!

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