This post was entirely inspired by two of my girlfriends that are always interested in what I am reading and we spend time exchanging notes and recommendations. All three of us are suckers for a good "feel-good" or autobiography book, anything that will help us get closer to becoming our personal best.
One of the opportunities that came with working from home at the beginning of the nationwide lockdown, was the ability to get into a book whenever I had time. It was also important to find distractions that stimulate positive thinking.
I must confess, that lately, I wish I made more time to read or listen to an audiobook. Working from home is starting to pose some challenges in this regard. Writing this post, however, is reminding me that I need to carve the time out, no matter what.
For the past couple of years, audiobooks, particularly on Audible, have been a saving grace. They are easy to consume and I can consume with Eddie while in the car on a road trip or just at home before bed. So the books on my list are most likely available on audible if that is your thing too. Just to be clear, by "2020", I mean they came onto my radar in 2020 or I started reading them this year, not that they were released this year.
I would be remiss if I did not start my list with Elaine Welteroth's "More Than Enough". So let's kick off my list:
More Than Enough: Claiming Space for Who You Are (No Matter What They Say) by Elaine Welteroth. She is the ex-editor of US Teen Vogue and has been a prominent figure in pioneering diversity and inclusion in the industry. I like her for many reasons and this book is the main reason. I mean, just the title says it all. Who said wordy titles don't sell, hmmm? I won't spoil it for you, but if you are in need of a pick-me-up and get-me-going kind of book to set you up for your best next chapter, this is it. In South Africa, it is available at Exclusive Books and UpperCase for around R320.00
More Myself: A Journey by Alicia Keys by Alicia Keys. As a little brown girl, I loved watching Alicia Keys do her music and set the hair trend of a decade. Her book/ memoir was published under Oprah's new publishing gig. I have not read this one as yet, but I am intrigued based on some of the press interviews she did to promote the book, but also by the title "More Myself". Any journey to self for me allows me to reflect on my own life, so for that reason, I have it in my feel-good list. You can find a copy on Takealot for about R295.00
Parenting The Sh*t Out Of Life: For people who happen to be parents (or might be soon) by Mother Pukka and Papa Pukka. This is one is for the parents. I had to slip in something for them too. A little comic relief and a major dose of "community". Millennial parents have it hard, I don't care what any says. Yes, we have the technology and a dozen cool gadgets to simplify our lives, but the number of sources for comparison are plenty and we need books like these to restore a sense of "normal" in us. The authors are bold and unapologetic about their approach, they also don't impose their views, they are just sharing their experiences and as a reader, you take or leave or seriously laugh out loud at the common pain.
The 5AM Club by Robin Sharma. This one makes me chuckle because I bought it with a sense of urgency to motivate me to get into more healthy sleep habits in 2020. And then the Covid19 pandemic hit. Nonetheless, it is a great self-help book that can only help those who can honestly commit to waking up at 5AM. Unfortunately, I am not one of those people...yet. He sold me on the reasons and benefits but between a teething toddler and working from home late nights, let's just say, it gets complicated. You can also find a copy at Takealot for around R200.00
The Misadventures of Awkard Black Girl by Issa Rae. I downloaded this book on Audible last year and only got to it in 2020. I played myself because this book had me in giggles. I am of course a fan of Issa because she gave us Insecure and if you have been under a rock and never heard of the series, do yourself a favour and get into it. Much like the series, the book contains the same level of comic relief except it is an autobiography. I would go as far as saying that the series Insecure borders much on the person that Issa Rae is in real life. Complicated beautiful, funny and talented. She is the epitome of Black Girl Magic. You can find a physical copy at Takealot or audio version narrated by the author herself which is epic, on Audible.
I will end my list here for now and most likely post an updated version later in the year because I have a few more that I have not gone through yet or bought yet. I do want to add one more if you are interested in gaining some insight on the topic of Black Lives Matter: Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates.
Are you reading or listening to any interesting books that you would like to recommend to me? Comment below and let me know.