Like many people, I found my reading took a nosedive in the first few weeks of lockdown. Although I had more time to read, I found myself scrolling the internet instead. When I did pick a book up, I couldn’t concentrate or lose myself in it.
Thankfully I’ve recently read three books back to back, so I seem to be over it. I’m not sure whether it’s because I’ve become used to this new normal or that these books were so awesome they just broke through my reading slump.
I like to think it’s the latter. So in case you’re also in the reading doldrums here are my three most recent, brilliant reads.
Untamed by Glennon Doyle
Wow, this book! I wasn’t sure about picking it up, I vaguely knew Glennon Doyle and I wasn’t sure her books were for me. Then Laura Jane Williams recommended it on her Instagram and there were so many comments underneath saying how amazing it was, I thought I’d download a sample on my kindle.
I was immediately hooked.
This book is truly extraordinary. It chronicles the period, when Glennon left her husband, for soccer star Abby Wambach, how they made a new family together, and how Glennon became untamed.
It’s split into three parts; caged, keys, and free and told in a series of vignettes. Which move us through time, from where Glennon was, to where she is now.
Each vignette is short, stripped down to the bare bones, but my goodness they contain multitudes! They are so sharp and powerful, every word is a polished and shining – they’re almost poetry – and my goodness they make you think.
I did not know that i was supposed to feel everything. I thought I was supposed to feel happy. I thought that happy was for feeling and that pain was for fixing and numbing and deflecting and hiding and ignoring.
What we need are women who are full of themselves. A woman who is full of herself knows and trusts herself enough to say and do what must be done. She lets the rest burn.
Judgement is another cage we live in so we don’t have to feel, know and imagine. Judgement is self-abandonment.
Just a few of the parts I highlighted – I’ve never highlighted a book as much as this one. I think it’s extremely special and I urge you to pick it up.
Pairs On Air by Oliver Gee
If you are missing Paris because your trip was postponed or because you can’t leave your arrondissement, then this is the perfect book for you. Oliver Gee, the host of The Earful Tower, has written his memoir and it is wonderful.
He adores Paris, and this love is evident throughout. Plus he’s not afraid to speak to Parisians, so he meets some fabulous people and shares their Paris stories. I really enjoyed wandering the streets of Paris with him. Then visiting the French countryside, as he and his wife Lina, set off on an epic honeymoon seeing France by scooter!
I love a good move to Paris story and this is one of the best.
Grown Ups by Marian Keyes
Marian Keyes is a fabulous writer and so easy to read that her books are often dismissed as lightweight or chicklit. This is baffling to me, as she deals with many difficult and painful topics. She also does an incredible job of portraying families and friends in incredible and realistic depth.
Grown Ups focuses on the three Casey brothers and their families and I just loved it. I would love to go on one of their family trips, to a gorgeous hotel! Marian Keyes is brilliant at capturing the affection, memories, irritations, in-jokes and old resentments families have.
This is book deals with some tough subjects, but at the same time manages is to be an uplifting read. I fell headlong into and loved every minute. Definitely a perfect lockdown read.
What have you been reading during lockdown?