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To ask you for your all-time favourite life-changing books?

(186 Posts)
frogsoup Mon 18-Jun-18 11:59:25

Now my kids are getting older I'm finally getting the chance to start reading again. I'm at a bit of a crossroads in life and career terms and I'm feeling the need for books that are so amazing that they make you rethink life, the universe and everything. Any suggestions?

My starter for 10: Primo Levi's 'The truce', about his journey home from Auschwitz. One of the most astonishingly life-affirming books I've ever read.

Sausagerollers Mon 18-Jun-18 12:28:54

Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari.
It just makes sense of EVERYTHING (though a warning to those who have faith in a higher power, you may not enjoy this book.)

baxterboi Mon 18-Jun-18 12:45:30

Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari.

I bought that last week! Can't wait to start it after I finish my current one!

The unexpected joy of being sober was life changing for me after years of excessive drinking.

frogsoup Mon 18-Jun-18 20:35:13

Magic, thank you! Hopeful bump for any other suggestions - there must be more than three life-changing books out there grin

differentkindofpenguin Mon 18-Jun-18 20:39:23

The Power by Naomi alderman ( I think)
The Book Thief ( the name of the author escapes me, and I'm too lazy to Google...)

annandale Mon 18-Jun-18 20:40:43

It's such a cliche on here but A Fine Balance really did change my life and make me much less dissatisfied for a long time.

Emma198 Mon 18-Jun-18 20:42:44

Daring Greatly and Rising Strong by Brene Brown

newmobile Mon 18-Jun-18 20:46:58

Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman

LotsToThinkOf Mon 18-Jun-18 20:47:15

A Thousand Splendid Suns

The Bell Jar

White Noise

The Secret Life of Bees

The Color Purple

Kannet Mon 18-Jun-18 20:47:19

What Alice forgot by liane Moriarty. It's a fairly straight forward chick lit tile book, but it had a secondary story about Alice's sister struggle with infertility. It's amazing and she vocalised a lot of the feelings I had, especially with regards the anger you feel. Excellent book, it changed my life

AllChangeNat Mon 18-Jun-18 20:49:07

If Nobody Speaks of Remarkable Things by Jon McGregor. To discover the importance of the mundane.

Diary of an Ordinary Woman by Margaret Forster, about an ordinary woman living through remarkable times.

HesterLee Mon 18-Jun-18 20:51:12

Some Other Rainbow - Jill Morrell and John McCarthy. I could not put it down - was going to sleep about 3am every night!

BlueKittens Mon 18-Jun-18 20:54:13

What a lovely thread. Watching with interest and will have a think about mine

pumpkintree Mon 18-Jun-18 20:55:11

A child called it and the 2 other books that go with it are harrowing in bits of the book very good reads, took me a long time as so sad also Angela's ashes.

Nigel slaters books are also good the one called Toast.

Sorry if not what your looking for.

crispysausagerolls Mon 18-Jun-18 20:56:41

Captain Corelli’s Mandolin

frogsoup Mon 18-Jun-18 20:56:52

Ooh fantastic, thanks - haven't read any of these, will add them to my list!

Another one from me in return - 'What should I do with my life' po Bronson. Not great literature but not at all like the self-help book the title implies, it's a great set of stories about people who've led interesting and unusual lives for various reasons.

Whattheactualfuckmate Mon 18-Jun-18 20:58:38

Ooooh some great books!

I’m going on holiday soon and will need a good read !

PaintBySticker Mon 18-Jun-18 20:59:37

The Happiness Trap by Russ Harris has made a big difference to me, in terms of the way I think about and deal with the annoying and unhelpful thoughts that pop up day to day and whether big or small.

frogsoup Mon 18-Jun-18 21:02:04

Ooh yes I loved Toast. Uncomfortable reading though, he totally nails the descriptions of the mundane cruelty of his upbringing.

RiddleyW Mon 18-Jun-18 21:03:00

East of Eden

It’s so so beautiful.

ChipsAndKetchup Mon 18-Jun-18 21:07:26

I second A Fine Balance. I'm reading it for a second time at the moment. It's the only book I'll ever read more than once. Outstanding.

MyOtherUsernameisaPun Mon 18-Jun-18 21:09:11

The Poisonwood Bible - best book ever

frogsoup Mon 18-Jun-18 21:09:45

East of Eden, yes! I read it as a teenager and it was the first book where I'd occasionally reread a page just because the writing was so beautiful. Will put it on my 'reread' list to see how it fares three decades down the line!

ShirleyPhallus Mon 18-Jun-18 21:09:57

Shadow of the wind

So beautifully written, so powerful

muffinthepuffin Mon 18-Jun-18 21:12:18

I'll third A Fine Balance. A little life was a good, if harrowing, recent read.
For non-fiction, how to win friends and influence people was great for me to learn how people tick and what motivates them. My sister said my reading it made me much nicer!

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