There is nothing better than a peaceful afternoon getting lost in a good inspirational book. With World Book Day on the horizon, we wanted to take a look at some of our favourite inspirational books, fiction, non-fiction and self-help that are perfect for a couple of hours or an evening on unwinding and relaxing.
From critically acclaimed bestsellers to some lesser-known candidates, there will be a book in this article for every reader. Whether you want to enjoy a read by the pool or on one of our spa hotel breaks or you want to head out into the countryside and find a quiet spot for an hour or two, there is nothing better for mindfulness and wellbeing.
We spoke to Liz & Lisa, authors of the up-and-coming book How To Save A Life, they told us why they think reading is so powerful and how it can affect the mind and wellbeing: “We’ve always believed that words are powerful. A great book can transport its reader to another world. This is why we feel strongly that reading is vital to self-care. The ability to understand and draw empathy from others is more important than ever, not to mention an excellent way to feed the soul.”
Whether you are into fiction, non-fiction or love an autobiography, keep on reading to find out which books you should be picking up over the next couple of months.
Delve into the minds of some of the worlds best authors with these tantalising fiction books and novels and uncover dark secrets, heroic accounts of love and friendship and tales that’ll grip the minds as well as the imaginations.
A book of determination, bravery and ambition to look past the present, Good Enough is a tale of twelve-year-old Riley’s battle with her health. An aspiring artist, athlete and a loving sister and friend, this read will captivate you as you travel on Riley’s journey with her through good times and the bad. A truly inspiring tale of a young girls bravery in dark times.
Rated 4.2/5 on Good Reads, Here’s to Happy Endings described it as: “A really moving novel and I feel like it should definitely be in public libraries and school libraries everywhere. Like the writing in her previous novel, Jen Petro-Roy really created a convincing character and plot that made my heart both break and melt at the same time.”
One of the most-acclaimed novels of the 20th century, Lord of the Flies by William Golding is a fiction book of power and determination to succeed. Set in the days between the great wars, a group of schoolboys are stranded after a plane crash, their freedom is initially celebrated but as darkness set over the skies, things are not as they seem.
“Lord of the flies illustrates survival, bullying, hope and tragedy by an exceptional writer, William Golding. Golding takes the reader on an adventure that leads to struggle for power and demonstration of human instincts.” Says the Brampton Guardian.
The boys have to survive on their own knowledge and wit to escape danger as strange echoes are heard in the nights and a dark figure joins them on their quest.
An enchanting novel written by Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist follows the wisdom shepherd boy Santiago who travels from his homeland to the Egyptian desert to find his fortune in the bustling city of Egypt.
A tale of discovery and self-worth, follow Santiago as his good luck leads him to worldly fortunes and transforming powers. A narrative to inspire you to follow your dreams.
“For anyone who reads not only to escape reality but also to understand reality, The Alchemist can offer the best of both worlds. The events of the novel sit just on the borderline of miraculous and the ambience is simply just not that of our humdrum teenage world.” Described The Guardian.
True stories of everyday lives, impactful speeches and battles through tough times, non-fiction novels allow us to follow the real-life and true stories of some of our favourite novelists and celebrities. The inspirational reads will make you think differently about the world around you and how we can overcome anything that comes our way.
“No One is Too Small to Make a Difference documents a seismic political and cultural moment and frames the defining debate of the twenty-first century so far. Collecting Greta Thunberg’s speeches together in one volume, this timely book lays bare the eloquence and fury that drive a global environmental movement.” Waterstones says.
A collection of some of the most moving and impactful speeches from eco-activist Greta Thunberg, No One Is Too Small To Make A Difference is a non-fiction novel of stark contrast. Named the Waterstones Author of the Year 2019, if you’re ready for your perception of our world to change, this is the book for you.
A passionate and determined young woman is set to deliver her message to the people of world one country at a time, follow her on her journey around the globe and sit alongside her as she delivers inspiring speeches to some of the world’s greats. If you’re ready to change the world, then follow Greta Thunberg on her quest to make change.
An adventure-filled book all about stamina and survival as Raynor and her husband Moth take up the journey of all journeys as they set to walk the South West Coast Path from Somerset to Dorset via Devon and Cornwall. The Salt Path is the Sunday Times bestseller, shortlisted for the 2018 Costa Biography Award & The Wainwright Prize.
No money and no shelter, the pages follow their progress as they battle with their minds as well as their stamina and tackle the natural world in its rawest form. A true story of rediscovery and a glimpse into the true healing powers of the world around us.
One of the most iconic women in history and an icon for many across the globe, a truly inspirational read, Becoming is a memoir of this courageous and powerful women.
The Becoming website explains a little more about the story of this magnificent woman: “In her memoir, a work of deep reflection and mesmerizing storytelling, Michelle Obama invites readers into her world, chronicling the experiences that have shaped her—from her childhood on the South Side of Chicago to her years as an executive balancing the demands of motherhood and work, to her time spent at the world’s most famous address.”
Find out what it was really like being the First Lady of the United States of America, raising two young children and being one of the most powerful women in the country in this gripping autobiography.
Blogger Sophia Bennett told us why she loves Becoming by Michelle Obama: “My favourite read from last year - and favourite audiobook too - was Becoming by Michelle Obama. I often find myself having ‘what would Michelle do?’ moments. Usually, the answer is: get up earlier and exercise more!”
Sophia told us a little more about why she thinks reading is important and how it was an escape for her: “Reading, for me, has always been an escape into new worlds and other people’s lives. One of my favourite reads, when I researching Love Song, was John Taylor’s autobiography about his days with Duran Duran: In the Pleasure Groove. It took me back to my teenage years and was all about hedonism, making music and growing up. Fantastic!”
A novel of challenges, tribulations and the perseverance to succeed, Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert is a story of just that.
Eat, Pray, Love is one of the recommended novels from Liz and Lisa, and they call it one of the most inspirational books they have read: “Some incredible stories that have inspired us are Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert and Know My Name by Chanel Miller. In both memoirs, a woman faces an incredible challenge and must rise from her own ashes to persevere. Their stories, boldly written on the pages of their books, are inspirational in the most personal way. Each reader, in the privacy of her thoughts—whether she is curled up on the couch or sitting on a commuter train—will take her own encouraging message from the brave and raw text.”
Health and wellbeing guides, on everything from self-control to mastering your makeup routine, are the new novel and have become increasingly popular over recent years. Improve your personal development and find inner peace with one of our favourite self-help guides and journals.
Released in March 2006, The Secret is a self-help book written by Rhonda Byrne. Based on the law of attraction, the book leads the reader in a different direction and teaches them that your thoughts can change your life’s direction completely
“In this book, you'll learn how to use The Secret in every aspect of your life - money, health, relationships, happiness, and in every interaction you have in the world. You'll begin to understand the hidden, untapped power that's within you, and this revelation can bring joy to every aspect of your life.” Waterstones reported in their synopsis.
Highlighting the importance of wanting to achieve one’s desires, the book details how gratitude and visualisation can help you along the way. The perfect book for those who are wanting to feel influenced and inspired.
A self-help book that looks at one of the most iconic psychological experiments in history and the implications of our behaviour can affect our lives later down the line. Read The Marshmallow Test by Walter Mischel and learn how to manage your self-control and feel self-worth like you’ve never felt it before.
This ground-breaking book brings together research and life experiences to uncover how willpower, cognitive skills and mental mechanisms allow us to face everyday challenges.
Audible editors reviewed the book on their website: “Self-control is a vital skill and in his latest book The Marshmallow Test, world-renown American psychologist and author Walter Mischel, describes exactly how to master it. With an expert narration by award-winning American actor Alan Alda, listeners are taken through the background of why people lack self-control and come to a deeper understanding of just how important it is for a healthy, balanced life. Hear the steps of how to gain this essential skill and apply it to any area of your life – from curing your bad habits to achieving your goals without distraction.”
No matter what sort of book you want to read as World Book Day approaches, sitting down for an hour or so a day is a perfect way to clear the mind and cleanse the soul after a busy day. Bring your favourite book to your next spa break and enjoy a good read whilst relaxing next to the pool.