#BookReview LOST CONNECTIONS by JOHANN HARI #NonFictionNovember

ABOUT THE BOOK


From the New York Times bestselling author of Chasing the Scream: The First and Last Days of the War on Drugs, a startling challenge to our thinking about depression and anxiety.

Award-winning journalist Johann Hari suffered from depression since he was a child and started taking antidepressants when he was a teenager. He was told—like his entire generation—that his problem was caused by a chemical imbalance in his brain. As an adult, trained in the social sciences, he began to investigate this question—and he learned that almost everything we have been told about depression and anxiety is wrong.

Across the world, Hari discovered social scientists who were uncovering the real causes—and they are mostly not in our brains, but in the way we live today. Hari’s journey took him from the people living in the tunnels beneath Las Vegas, to an Amish community in Indiana, to an uprising in Berlin—all showing in vivid and dramatic detail these new insights. They lead to solutions radically different from the ones we have been offered up until now.

Just as Chasing the Scream transformed the global debate about addiction, with over twenty million views for his TED talk and the animation based on it, Lost Connections will lead us to a very different debate about depression and anxiety—one that shows how, together, we can end this epidemic. 

PUBLISHED BY BLOOMSBURY PUBLISHING

MY REVIEW

This was a really fascinating and eye opening book on the causes/remedies behind depression and anxiety. It is one of those books, I think, that will split readers based on their own personal knowledge and dealings with depression and anxiety as it puts the case across for not ‘swallowing’ (pardon the pun) the normal prescriptive advice from the medical profession and to treat the problem as a whole – what has caused the low moods?

I think the world we live in nowadays, pills seem to be put forward as the answer to everything. In this book, the author looks a bit more objectively to that market and how that some people who are continually prescribed pills to deal with their depression, soon find that the pills begin to wear off so the dosage has to be increased – and repeat the process again. The author wants people to look a little more into the actual cause of the depression in your life and to work on that rather than just hoping a little pill will change your life overnight – for some that works! for others it doesn’t so it was nice to read this book to give the different views and options for helping yourself. It puts a lot of modern life into perspective and I enjoyed the way he looks at the world we live in and sees how that affects our perception of life and of happiness. The impact of social media in this disconnected culture we live in was staggering – basically our society sucks!! It’s a never ending world of wanting more stuff, feeling unworthy and forever chasing that ‘buzz’ be it something new, or a like on a social media post and it’s only going to get worse as youngsters are growing up in this world seduced by brands and impacted on how people portray themselves on instagram. You can see why many more young people struggle with their mental health nowadays – am so glad I grew up before the internet came along!

One phrase I’ll take away from this book is ‘ see the sanity in your sadness, not the madness’

This is a book that divides opinions but I’m grateful for reading something that challenges the pill popping world we find ourselves in – it makes you look a little more into drug companies as well and their ‘claims’! Scary!!

★★★★

#BookReview THE STORY OF ALICE by ROBERT DOUGLAS-FAIRHURST #nonfictionnovember

ABOUT THE BOOK


Wonderland is part of our cultural heritage – a shortcut for all that is beautiful and confusing; a metaphor used by artists, writers and politicians for 150 years.

But beneath the fairy tale lies the complex history of the author and his subject: of Charles Dodgson, the quiet academic, and his second self, Lewis Carroll – storyteller, innovator and avid collector of ‘child-friends’. And of his ‘dream-child’, Alice Liddell, and the fictional alter ego that would never let her grow up.

This is their secret story: a history of love and loss, of innocence and ambiguity, and of one man’s need to make Wonderland his refuge in a rapidly changing world.

Drawing on previously unpublished material, Robert Douglas-Fairhurst traces the creation and influence of the Alice books against a shifting cultural landscape – the birth of photography, changing definitions of childhood and sexuality and the tensions inherent in the transition between the Victorian and modern worlds.

PUBLISHED BY HARVILL SECKER

MY REVIEW

This was a fascinating and thorough look at the worlds of both Lewis Carroll and the real life Alice and was just an eye opener for me!

Having loved the Alice books for so long, I was always intrigued as to who wrote them, and this looks in depth at the author in his life pre-Alice and to afterwards and how the world he lived in impacted on his writing and the people who appeared in his life who shaped the characters. None more so than Alice Liddell, worthy of a book in her own right I think, with an amazing insight into her life and how the Alice books impacted on her too over the years.

There are brilliant glimpses of the man behind the books – his love of photography is shown through the photos he took, the postcards he wrote and the letters and this really helped to give a different perspective of him .

The book covers his family life from childhood, through to his time at Oxford and I was amazed to learn so much about him and also see how the stories came to be! It gives an insight into the books he read at the time that shaped his outlook on the world and inspired him to create the Wonderland world, as well as explored the odd relationships he made over the years which would probably be frowned upon now, but were seen as innocent at the time. A fascinating read!

★★★★

#BookReview THE ROSE IN FASHION:RAVISHING by AMY DE LA HAYE #NonFictionNovember

ABOUT THE BOOK


An exploration of how the rose—the most ravishingly beautiful and symbolic of flowers—has inspired fashion over hundreds of years​

The Rose in Fashion: Ravishing is a fascinating exploration of how the rose has inspired the way we look, dress, feel, and fantasize. It foregrounds innovative, refined, and challenging fashion design from elite 18th-century woven silks to the latest gender-neutral catwalk trends and Alexander McQueen rose dresses. Drawing upon fashion clothing, everyday dress, millinery, fine jewelry, perfume, and artificial and fresh roses, multiple expert contributors make reference to love, beauty, sex, sin, gendered identities, rites of passage, transgression, degradation, and death. This sumptuously illustrated book also includes a contribution and stunning images of roses by visionary photographer Nick Knight. Wild yet cultivated, savage yet delicate, this flower has remained an enduring symbol perhaps due to its versatility and the dichotomies it represents. 

PUBLISHED BY YALE UNIVERSITY PRESS

PURCHASE LINK

AMAZON

HIVE.CO.UK

BLACKWELL’S

MY REVIEW

If you’re expecting a ‘coffee table’ book with just lots of pretty pictures then think again!! This is far more than that, which made for a wonderful reading/viewing experience!

At the heart of the book is the humble rose! As a keen gardener, I’m always eager to have more in my garden and this book gives a fascinating insight into how this flower has captured the hearts of so many – in art, fashion, literature … the list seems endless! It explores the impact that the rose has had over the centuries in different ways, and how it has continued to evolve and stay current throughout!

I could have happily just had a book full of the stunning photographs, illustrations and paintings but to learn so much about the role of the rose was an added bonus! As it does feature a lot of fashion, the use of flowers on the clothes and styling was just amazing to see and it is definitely one of those books that you keep picking up and noticing different details everytime you look at a photograph.

A ravishing read indeed!!

★★★★★

My November TBR #nonfictionnovember

Another month flies by!! Scary!! Time to escape into even more books!!
And every November I try my best to pick up a few more non fiction books as I always find I do enjoy reading them, I just seem to need a bit of a kick to motivate myself to pick them up!!  So I’ve got a mix of non fiction and fiction that I’m hoping to read over the next month – we shall see how that goes!!


Non Fiction


WATERMARKS by LENIKA JANIUEREK

Lenka Janiurek’s story really begins after the death of her mother when she was a small child, and speaks of the men who came to define her life; she is the daughter of a Polish immigrant father, the sister of five brothers, the wife of one husband, the lover of several men, and the mother of two more. Her memoir speaks of identity and trying to find your place in a country that isn’t your own, within a family that doesn’t feel like your own.

This remarkable book traces Lenka’s journey from the UK to Eastern Europe, from the 1960s to the present day. However, across the years, she remains haunted by the rage, addiction and despair of the men she is closest to. Alongside these challenges, she develops a powerful connection with the natural world, particularly water, which provides her with strength and joy.


THE STORY OF ALICE by ROBERT DOUGLAS-FAIRHURST


Wonderland is part of our cultural heritage – a shortcut for all that is beautiful and confusing; a metaphor used by artists, writers and politicians for 150 years.

But beneath the fairy tale lies the complex history of the author and his subject: of Charles Dodgson, the quiet academic, and his second self, Lewis Carroll – storyteller, innovator and avid collector of ‘child-friends’. And of his ‘dream-child’, Alice Liddell, and the fictional alter ego that would never let her grow up.

This is their secret story: a history of love and loss, of innocence and ambiguity, and of one man’s need to make Wonderland his refuge in a rapidly changing world.

Drawing on previously unpublished material, Robert Douglas-Fairhurst traces the creation and influence of the Alice books against a shifting cultural landscape – the birth of photography, changing definitions of childhood and sexuality and the tensions inherent in the transition between the Victorian and modern worlds.


THE PRINCESS DIARIST by CARRIE FISHER


The last book from beloved Hollywood icon Carrie Fisher, The Princess Diarist is an intimate, hilarious, and revealing recollection of what happened behind the scenes on one of the most famous film sets of all time, the first Star Wars movie.

When Carrie Fisher discovered the journals she kept during the filming of the first Star Wars movie, she was astonished to see what they had preserved–plaintive love poems, unbridled musings with youthful naivet�, and a vulnerability that she barely recognized. Before her passing, her fame as an author, actress, and pop-culture icon was indisputable, but in 1977, Carrie Fisher was just a teenager with an all-consuming crush on her costar, Harrison Ford.

With these excerpts from her handwritten notebooks, The Princess Diarist is Fisher’s intimate and revealing recollection of what happened on one of the most famous film sets of all time–and what developed behind the scenes. Fisher also ponders the joys and insanity of celebrity, and the absurdity of a life spawned by Hollywood royalty, only to be surpassed by her own outer-space royalty. Laugh-out-loud hilarious and endlessly quotable, The Princess Diarist brims with the candor and introspection of a diary while offering shrewd insight into one of Hollywood’s most beloved stars.

CHERRY INGRAM by NAOKO ABE

The irresistible story of Japanese cherry blossoms, threatened by political ideology and saved by an unknown Englishman

Collingwood Ingram, known as ‘Cherry’ for his defining obsession, was born in 1880 and lived until he was a hundred, witnessing a fraught century of conflict and change.

After visiting Japan in 1902 and 1907 and discovering two magnificent cherry trees in the garden of his family home in Kent in 1919, Ingram fell in love with cherry blossoms, or sakura, and dedicated much of his life to their cultivation and preservation.

On a 1926 trip to Japan to search for new specimens, Ingram was shocked to see the loss of local cherry diversity, driven by modernisation, neglect and a dangerous and creeping ideology. A cloned cherry, the Somei-yoshino, was taking over the landscape and becoming the symbol of Japan’s expansionist ambitions.

The most striking absence from the Japanese cherry scene, for Ingram, was that of Taihaku, a brilliant ‘great white’ cherry tree. A proud example of this tree grew in his English garden and he swore to return it to its native home. Multiple attempts to send Taihaku scions back to Japan ended in failure, but Ingram persisted.

Over decades, Ingram became one of the world’s leading cherry experts and shared the joy of sakura both nationally and internationally. Every spring we enjoy his legacy. ‘Cherry’ Ingram is a portrait of this little-known Englishman, a story of Britain and Japan in the twentieth century and an exploration of the delicate blossoms whose beauty is admired around the world.



FICTION TBR


THREE RIVAL SISTERS by MARIE-LOUISE GAGNEUR


Much acclaimed amongst her contemporaries and yet all but forgotten today, Marie-Louise Gagneur was a defining voice in French feminism. These stories, translated into English for the first time, critique the restrictions of late nineteenth-century society and explore the ways in which both men and women are hurt by rigid attitudes towards marriage.

In ‘An Atonement’, the Count de Montbarrey awakes one morning to find his wife dead, leaving him free to marry the woman he really loves. Could the Count have accidentally killed his wife? And how can he atone for his crime?

‘Three Rival Sisters’ tells the story of the rivalry between Henriette, Renée and Gabrielle as they compete for the affections of one man. But marriage does not necessarily guarantee happiness, as the sisters are about to find out.

Steeped in wit, empathy and biting social criticism, and with echoes of Charlotte Perkins Gilman and Kate Chopin, these stories show Gagneur to be worthy of renewed attention. 


THE WOMAN OF THE WOLF by RENEE VIVIEN



A woman rides crocodiles like horses. A queen gives up her throne for her dignity. And Prince Charming is not who you might think . . .

The Woman of the Wolf and Other Stories, written in 1904, is perhaps the finest work by sapphic poet Renée Vivien. Blending myth, fairy story and biblical tale, Vivien creates powerful portraits of strong women who stand up for what they believe in – and of the aggrieved men who trail behind them.

Bold, defiant and suffused with a unique poetic voice, this scintillating collection of short stories offers a radical alternative to traditional lore


FACES ON THE TIP OF MY TONGUE by EMMANUELLE PAGANO


Meetings, partings, loves and losses in rural France are dissected with compassion.

The late wedding guest isn’t your cousin but a drunken chancer. The driver who gives you a lift isn’t going anywhere but off the road. Snow settles on your car in summer and the sequins found between the pages of a borrowed novel will make your fortune. Pagano’s stories weave together the mad, the mysterious and the dispossessed of a rural French community with honesty and humour. A superb, cumulative collection from a unique French voice.


MR DARWIN’S GARDENER by KRISTINA CARLSON


A postmodern Victorian novel about faith, knowledge and our inner needs.

The late 1870s, the Kentish village of Downe. The villagers gather in church one rainy Sunday. Only Thomas Davies stays away. The eccentric loner, father of two and a grief-stricken widower, works as a gardener for the notorious naturalist, Charles Darwin. He shuns religion. But now Thomas needs answers. What should he believe in? And why should he continue to live?


📚📚📚

#BookReview THE FIVE by HALLIE RUBENHOLD #NonFictionNovember

ABOUT THE BOOK

Five devastating human stories and a dark and moving portrait of Victorian London—the untold lives of the women killed by Jack the Ripper.

Polly, Annie, Elizabeth, Catherine and Mary-Jane are famous for the same thing, though they never met. They came from Fleet Street, Knightsbridge, Wolverhampton, Sweden, and Wales. They wrote ballads, ran coffee houses, lived on country estates, they breathed ink-dust from printing presses and escaped people-traffickers.

What they had in common was the year of their murders: 1888. The person responsible was never identified, but the character created by the press to fill that gap has become far more famous than any of these five women.

For more than a century, newspapers have been keen to tell us that “the Ripper” preyed on prostitutes. Not only is this untrue, as historian Hallie Rubenhold has discovered, it has prevented the real stories of these fascinating women from being told. Now, in this devastating narrative of five lives, Rubenhold finally sets the record straight, revealing a world not just of Dickens and Queen Victoria, but of poverty, homelessness and rampant misogyny. They died because they were in the wrong place at the wrong time—but their greatest misfortune was to be born a woman.

published by Doubleday

PURCHASE LINKS

Amazon UK  

hive.co.uk

whsmith

MY REVIEW

Polly, Annie, Elizabeth, Catherine, Mary Jane. Names we should all know considering their place in crime history, but many of us don’t as more focus is placed on the perpetrator of the crimes against them than the actual victims. But in this staggering work, the author has set about redressing the balance so we can get to know more about the women who were brutally murdered in London in 1888 by Jack the Ripper.


The attention to detail throughout is staggering and I can only begin to imagine how long it must have taken the author to put this work together. Each woman is given their own section so that their story can be fully told through painstaking research into family trees, newspaper reports and police statements from family and friends, and it just makes for such absorbing reading. It gives you a real glimpse into life in those times, the bleakness, the struggles and the human side of these women who were dealt a rough hand throughout their lives, only for them to be ended in such horrific ways, and then their characters talked down after their deaths.


But this book gives these women a voice, so we learn of their upbringings, the family history and they all came from different backgrounds so there’s so many interesting things to learn about life in the past – the attitudes of society, the family dynamics and the devastating effects of addiction are brought to the front and your heart just bled for these women. However they tried to improve their circumstances, there was always something just around the corner to bring them down once more.


What I also found most profound was the list at the end of the book which was which items the women had on them at the time of their murders. Very poignant and really hit home of just how tragic their lives were.


Mixed in with the local news at the time, the good(well known) and the bad (much less reported!), this book does a magnificent job of transporting the reader back in time and I found it truly astonishing 
and enthralling. A must read and one of my books of 2019!


★★★★★

#BookReview LANDFILL by TIM DEE @LittleToller #NonFictionNovember

ABOUT THE BOOK

A ground breaking new book from the author of The Running Sky and Four Fields, Landfill confronts our waste-making species through the extraordinary and fascinating life of gulls, and the people who watch them. Original, compelling and unflinching, it is the nature book for our times.


We think of gulls as pests. They steal our chips and make newspaper headlines, these animals, often derided as “bin chickens” are complex neighbours, making the most of our throw away species. In the Anthropocene, they are a surprising success story. They’ve become intertwined with us, precisely because we are so good at making rubbish. Landfill is a book that avoids nostalgia and eulogy for nature and instead kicks beneath the littered surface to find stranger and more inspiring truths.
Landfill is the compelling story of how we have worked the rest of the living world, learned about it, named and catalogued it, colonised and planted it, and filled it with our rubbis
h.

PUBLISHED BY Little Toller

PURCHASE LINKS

Publisher Website

Amazon UK

whsmith

MY REVIEW

If you don’t become a ‘gull’ fan after reading this book then I think there’s something wrong with you! They’re a bird I’ve taken for granted, especially living so close to the estuary and the large landfill site in Pitsea where a lot of this book is set (and I never knew such gull action even went on there!), but in this stunning little book, the author really gets behind the ‘trashy’ image we all get of gulls – that they’re aggressive and ugly and serve no real purpose other than nicking your food if you’re at the seaside, or attacking small animals in gardens, thanks to silly season reports in newspapers! The more that he studies these birds in various sites, the more he begins to appreciate them and realise just how much human behaviour has impacted on their habits. Hence the link with rubbish and why so many can be spotted at landfill sites across the county.


The author is a birdwatcher, and his enthusiasm and passion for the subject is infectious as he follows the birds and talks to the people who follow these birds and are known as ‘gullers’. They’ve become fascinated by the species and their behaviour and will travel long distances for glimpses of rare breeds but also to note changes in their numbers. And due to the changes in the way we dispose of food waste especially now, the numbers aren’t seen at landfill sites anymore so they’re having to change where they get their food, and heading away from the seaside and into towns.


I really enjoyed the mix of the way the author told the story of the gull – he used his own knowledge alongside where they’re mentioned in poetry, literature and films, and it made for an absorbing read and I never thought I’d find the subjects of gulls and rubbish so fascinating! The information and anecdotes were really well balanced and made for an enthralling read.


I’m really glad to have been educated about these birds that I think we all take for granted and largely ignore, so will definitely be paying more attention to the local gull population!


★★★★


My thanks to the publisher, Little Toller, for a copy of the book in return for a fair and honest review.

#BookReview THE WAY TO THE SEA by CAROLINE CRAMPTON #NonFictionNovember #TheWayToTheSea

ABOUT THE BOOK

Caroline Crampton was born on the Thames Estuary to parents who had sailed there from South Africa in the early 1980s. Having grown up with seafaring legs and a desire to explore, Caroline is both a knowledgeable guide to the most hidden-away parts of this overlooked and unfashionable part of the country, and a persuasive advocate for its significance, both historically and culturally. As one of the key entrances and exits to England, the estuary has been pivotal to London’s economic fortunes and in defining its place in the world. It has also been the entry point for immigrants for generations, yet it has an ambivalent relationship with newcomers, and UKIP’s popularity in the area is on the rise. As Caroline navigates the waters of the estuary, she also seeks out its stories: empty warehouses and arsenals; the Thames barrier, which guards the safety of Londoners more precariously than we might; ship wrecks still inhabited by the ghosts of the drowned; vast Victorian pumping stations which continue to carry away the capital’s sewage; the river banks, layered with archaeological Anglo-Saxon treasures; literature inspired by its landscape; beacons used for centuries to guide boats through the dark and murky waterways of the estuary; the eerie Maunsell army forts – 24 metre high towers of concrete and steel which were built on concealed sandbanks at the far reaches of the estuary during the Second World War and designed to spot (and shoot) at incoming enemy planes; and the estuary’s wildlife and shifting tidal moods.

PUBLISHED BY GRANTA BOOKS

PURCHASE LINKS

amazon uk  £11.89

whsmith  £11.89

hive.co.uk  £12.49

MY REVIEW

As someone who lives alongside the Thames Estuary, I found this to be a fascinating mix of memoir and history of the Thames from Caroline as she looks back to her first memories of the Thames with her parents, and how it has changed as she travels back along the Thames from the source to the open sea. And there’s huge differences in the River from one end to the other so it’s really interesting to hear her thoughts as she sees the landscape change around her on her journey.

And amongst her own personal recollections of time spent along, and in!, the Thames there are also clever uses of how the Thames has been recorded and used in history, literature, art and photography which gives you another look at how important a role that the Thames has played over the years, and continues to do so but in a rather different way now than before.

As a local to the Thames I found it fascinating to learn so much more about places and points along the river that I thought I knew so well! I understand the pull of the Thames so I really connected with the author and her ‘obsession’ with the water and the places along it. From the animal life to the diseases and disasters that have plagued this stretch of water, I found this book to be really entertaining and informative.

★★★★

#BookReview Woods: A Celebration by Robert Penn #NonFictionNovember

ABOUT THE BOOK

A tribute to the natural history of some of our most iconic British woods. The National Trust manages hundreds of woods, covering more than 60,000 acres of England and Wales. They include many of the oldest woodlands in the land and some of the oldest living things of any kind—trees that are thousands of years old. From Dean to Epping, from Hatfield to Sherwood, this book covers the natural history of Britain’s forests and how they have changed the face of a landscape. Covering the different species of trees that give these woods their unique characters, the plants and animals that inhabit them, and the way their appearance changes throughout the seasons, Woods is a fascinating and beautifully illustrated celebration of Britain’s trees and the ancient stories that surround them.

Published by National Trust

PURCHASE LINKS

Amazon UK  £20

whsmith  £14

MY REVIEW

A beautiful coffee table book that helps to shine a little light on just how important woods are and how the National Trust are doing all they can to help preserve and conserve these areas for many generations to come.

This book takes you through the seasons in a variety of NT owned woods and how the flora and fauna change through the year and how each wood is used nowadays – how can it stay relevant in these more modern times when large patches of woodland are disappearing fast.

It talks about the problems facing these areas and the diseases that are wreaking havoc amongst the native species. As well as personal commentary from the author, it also features poetry, history and literature that features woodland areas.

The photos are beautiful and especially Autumn for me with all the different colours showing, just shows how stunning these areas are and hopefully will continue to be with the help of the National Trust and other organisations.

★★★★

My November TBR – nonfiction November special!

I’m feeling rather smug for this month! I’m all  up to date with Blog Tour reading  so that means I’ve pretty much got free reign for this month, perfectly timed seeing as it’s Non Fiction November too so maybe I’ll now finally get round to the ever growing pile of non fiction titles that I’ve been saving up for this month!  Might even make more of a dent on my Netgalley TBR…I’m just getting ahead of myself now aren’t I?!  Right, here’s what I hope to read  in the month ahead….please click on the book title for a link to the GoodReads page for more info!

Brooklyn by Colm Toibin

This is the November choice for the Readalongs With Karen group on GoodReads

The Five by Hallie Rubenhold

Landfill by Tim Dee

The Way To The Sea by Caroline Crampton

Please Read This Leaflet Carefully by Karen Havelin

How To Catch A Mole by Marc Hamer

The Otters’ Tale by Simon Cooper

Woods: A Celebration by Robert Penn

Looks like I’m in for a very educational month! I just hope my poor little brain cells can cope!!

HAPPY READING!!

#BookReview A Book of Silence by Sara Maitland #nonfictionnovember

About the book

In her late forties, after a noisy upbringing and then adulthood as vocal feminist and mother, Sara Maitland found herself living in the country. She fell in love with the silence, and in this profound, frank memoir she describes how she explored this new love, searching for silence and solitude.

Published by Granta Books

Purchase Links

hive.co.uk

book depository

MY REVIEW

Seeing as we seem to live in a world that regards silence as dangerous or unsettling, I found this to be a fascinating look through the eyes of a woman searching for a much quieter life as she grows older. And as she explores various settings to access her dream, she soon finds out that silence can mean so many things to so many people, and that there are different kinds of silence!

I’ve noticed that as I’ve grown older I much prefer a quiet atmosphere which seems much more difficult to find in the modern world we live in which seems to want to bombard us with noise wherever we may find ourselves, and as the author goes to extreme measures to obtain the holy grail of silence it is interesting to see how her mind deals with the changes in her life and seems to respond in wonderful ways to enjoying the quiet thing in life!

This book follows her as she moves to rural properties and takes trips on her own to see what kind of effect this has on her state of mind – she starts to enjoy the less frenetic pace of life, takes time to notice the little things in life and breaks free from being a ‘slave to time’ that we all often find ourselves trapped in. It touches on the importance of silence in religion, spirituality and the way that modern life seems to demand a noise is made! Even a minutes’ silence now is often replaced by clapping- what is it about being quiet that scares so many people?!

I found myself really connecting with the author and her discoveries along her journey, and she even touches on how spending too much time in silence can affect your mental health, the bad sides and the good! It was so interesting to see how she found even the simplest task of shopping after spending time being quiet, as the noise from a shopping mall or supermarket was just so amplified. It was also clear that silence means different things to different people.

A really captivating look at such a simple subject and so much to think about in ways of getting that balance between living in a noisy world and taking time out to enjoy the peace and quiet!

✵✵✵✵✵