I’ve had a successful start to my year of reading with these powerful summer reads!
For the first time in a long time I took two and a half weeks of leave over the Christmas/New Year period. In fact, I think I will do this every year because it was refreshing to properly switch off and recharge.
The weather wasn’t amazing in Sydney which was the PERFECT excuse to read all day. I’ve been around the world in January with a little bit of self-help thrown in there!
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Here are my January book reviews:
Australia on Horseback
A well researched history covering the atrocities against Aboriginals, early settlement life, bushrangers and war.
At times I found the book jumped around with stories from one decade then skipping back decades in the same chapter. I felt this made it difficult to follow in places and I found it hard to enjoy.
I found the chapters about the dispossession of Aboriginal people enlightening and I think this is where the link to the role of horses was at its most obvious.
Saving Mona Lisa
The incredible true story of the French heroes who risked their lives to save the treasures of the Louvre. The logistics of hiding centuries old and sometimes large paintings was not easy.
The book gives eye opening detail about the planning that was required to save the paintings. This included challenges like finding large enough trucks and buildings with the right temperature and humidity. Doing this under the noses of the Nazi’s wasn’t easy. There were many near misses with bombings and fires.
Hope In a Ballet Shoe
Michaela DePrince, Elaine DePrince
Michaela DePrince witnessed horrors and experienced things no child should go through. Orphaned in Sierra Leone, her life changed dramatically for the better upon her adoption.
Whilst this book was not a difficult read, it was still thought provoking and challenging. It coversa range of topics like war, racism and the harsh yet beautiful world of ballet.
As a white person I will never understand what it is like to have my hard work and dedication crushed due to the colour of my skin. Michaela’s gift to the world is hope. Hope that girls of colour all over the world may pursue their dreams.
Alice to Prague
This book made me cry!
From an early age Tanya has an adventurous spirit. She dreams of European forests while growing up in the red dust of the Australian outback. When she is in her 20s working a ‘dream’ job in a law firm she takes the ultimate plunge. She quits her job and moves to Czech Republic to teach English. The rest is history!
It was also the great thing about travel. You could take the views that you had grown up with and tip them upside down, looking at them in a different way, through a different prism.
I suppose I should give credit where it’s due – listening to Gary Vee inspired me to start this blog in the first place. This book was an inspiring compliation of Gary Vee advice and true stories of people who have crushed it using his methods. It was a good read however I sometimes felt there wasn’t enough practical advice…
If you’re earning what you need to live the life you want and loving every day of it, you’re crushing it.
The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck
This book basically teaches you that life is pretty simple:
- Decide what you do give a f*ck about vs what you don’t
- Decide what it is you are willing to struggle for – happiness comes from solving problems
- It’s about the climb itself, not just the glory of reaching the mountain top