The readable playlist for those seeking inspiration, motivation or just a book to fall in love with.

life of pi, by yann martel

Synopsis:
Pi Patel, an Indian boy from Pondicherry, explores issues of spirituality and practicality from an early age on a shipwreck.

Why we recommend:
The main message from this book is that life is only a story, and you can choose any story you like. For those in need of direction in life or seeking personal growth.

animal farm, by George orwell

Synopsis:
“All animals are equal. But some animals are more equal than others.”
One night on an English farm, Major the boar recounts his vision of a utopia where his fellow creatures own the land along with the means of production and are no longer the slaves of humans. Before long his dream comes true, and for a short while all animals really are equal.

Why we recommend:
A heavy load of satire for those political students who tackle the Soviet Communist system. Also an insight to the reality of the world around you that you can’t see.

to kill a mockingbird, by harper lee

Synopsis:
Compassionate, dramatic, and deeply moving, To Kill A Mockingbird takes readers to the roots of human behaviour - to innocence and experience, kindness and cruelty, love and hatred, humour and pathos. Harper Lee always considered her book to be a simple love story. Today it is regarded as a masterpiece of American literature.

Why we recommend:
A heartfelt tale about being the change you want to see in the world, and the best person you can be in the circumstances you’re in. And there’s nothing better than a book with a woman who won’t settle into society’s place.

the alchemist, by paula Coelho

Synopsis:
This story, dazzling in its powerful simplicity and inspiring wisdom, is about an Andalusian shepherd boy named Santiago who travels from his homeland in Spain to the Egyptian desert in search of a treasure buried in the Pyramids. No one knows what the treasure is, or if Santiago will be able to surmount the obstacles along the way.

Why we recommend:
A real book about humanity, and how if you believe in something enough, you will find the power to do it. And also, how you may not find what you were looking for, but are bound to encounter lovely things along the way for trying. A true believer in karma.

eat, pray, love, by Elizabeth gilbert

Synopsis:
The memoir chronicles the author’s trip around the world after her divorce and what she discovered during her travels. She spent four months in Italy, three months in India and ended the year in Bali.

Why we recommend:
Not just a book for recently divorced women, this book shows you that there really is so much more of the world to see and will allow those who lack religious belief to question the power of spirituality. A powerful reminder of what’s around you and how you can see it any time; also follows the belief that the world is there to teach you about yourself.

lord of the flies, by William golding

Synopsis:
Stranded on an island during the war, Golding illustrates a group of young boys and how they cope with life without adults. A dark tale which demonstrates the inherent evil of man without law.

Why we recommend:
Incredibly thought-provoking, this book is dark, disturbing and gets under your skin. The most prevalent books are the ones that linger on the unsaid - this book isn’t outright horrific but will leave a lasting psychological impression on you after seeing the scope of evil we are capable of.

Prozac nation, by Elizabeth wurtzel

Synopsis: 
Prozac Nation describes the author’s experiences with atypical depression and how she managed to live through her first year at Harvard while working as a writer. Succumbing to alcohol frequently, Elizabeth becomes numb to the world around her and fears never being loved.

Why we recommend:
The most sharp form of storytelling, and the most perfect book for young people struggling with depression, uncertainty about their futures or stress. This truly shapes the nature of sadness and empowers people through its strong message that it doesn’t have to be the end if you choose it not to be. Also, female empowerment!

it, by Stephen king

Synopsis:
The story follows the exploits of seven children as they are terrorised by a being, who exploits the fears and phobias of its victims in order to disguise itself while hunting its prey. “It” primarily appears in the form of a clown to attract young children.

Why we recommend:
A true gruelling horror, not just surface tension and gore. This book is one of the longest books you’ll ever read, but King writes this in a way that’s nothing if not terrifying. Besides the obvious being, this story also brings to light the power of memory and vivid childhood trauma. Something that will really shake you up if you’re after a powerful story.

world war z, by max brooks

Synopsis:
The novel is a collection of individual accounts narrated by an agent of the UN Postwar Commission, following the devastating global conflict against the zombie plague. Other passages record a decade-long desperate struggle, as experienced by people of various nationalities.

Why we recommend:
Yes, this book is about zombies and is also included in this section. However, Brooks manages to cultivate the true nature of war in his novel, as well as the insignificance of politics and the petty problems we face that would no longer matter if we were ultimately under threat. A true eye-opener to how the world is run and all the inconveniences we dedicate ourselves to.

Lolita, by Vladimir Nabokov

Synopsis:
The novel is notable for its controversial subject: the protagonist, a middle-aged literature professor called Humbert Humbert, is obsessed with the 12-year-old Dolores Haze, with whom he becomes sexually involved after he becomes her stepfather. “Lolita” is his private nickname for Dolores.

Why we recommend:
It’s so controversial that it’s immediately gripping and very twisted for those who enjoy a different read. It makes you reconsider your morals as it provides an innocent insight into those who would immediately be vindicated as disgusting criminals. Very tongue-in-cheek and exciting to explore such an unwritten subject.

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Written by Hannah Newberry, 10 months ago
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