When it comes to TV, movies and books I think there are two types of people: those who will happily re-read/re-watch their favourites, and those who prefer to seek out something new.
I’m definitely the former. I watch my favourite movies and TV shows on a never-ending loop. And also like to dip back into my favourite books, every year or two. Here are 7 of the fiction and non-fiction titles that I always revisit…
American Wife by Curtis Sittenfeld: American Wife is my favourite novel, and I try to re-read it every year. It’s a fictional re-telling of George W Bush and Laura Bush’s relationship – told from the perspective of the First Lady. That might sound a bit odd, but trust me when I say this is the most stunning book! Everyone I recommend it to always loves it too…
Sample Quote: “I had the fleeting thought then that we are each of us pathetic in one way or another, and the trick is to marry a person whose patheticness you can tolerate.”
Heartburn by Nora Ephron: Nora Ephron’s autobiographical novel Heartburn was heavily inspired by the breakdown of her second marriage, and it’s laugh-out-loud funny. Whilst Rachel seven months pregnant with her second child, she discovers her husband is in love with another woman. This all happened to Nora in real life, and the novel caused quite the scandal when it was released in the early eighties.
Sample Quote: “I think I was so entranced with being a couple that I didn’t even notice that the person I thought I was a couple with thought he was a couple with someone else.”
Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld: And another Curtis Sittenfeld novel (she’s my favourite fiction writer, if you couldn’t already tell)… Eligible is a modern re-telling of Pride and Prejudice, and it’s so much fun! Every now and then I get the craving for a romantic comedy, but I generally find romance novels unbearably cheesy, so Eligible has become my go-to when I want something light and flirty.
Sample Quote: ““My dear,” said Mr. Bennett, “if a sock puppet with a trust fund and a Harvard medical degree moved here, you’d think he was meant to marry one of our girls.””
Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) by Mindy Kaling: I love both of Mindy Kaling’s books. But it’s her first, Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?, which is the most thumbed-through. I can hear her voice in every sentence, and find it so relatable.
Sample Quote: “I’m the kind of person who would rather get my hopes up really high and watch them get dashed to pieces than wisely keep my expectations at bay and hope they are exceeded. This quality has made me a needy and theatrical friend, but has given me a spectacularly dramatic emotional life.”
Bossypants by Tina Fey: As with Mindy Kaling’s book, I dip in and out of Bossypants by Tina Fey whenever I’m feeling a little bit low, and need a pick-me-up. The essay “All Girls Must Be Everything”, in which she discuss body image and the pressures put on women, is essential reading!
Sample Quote: “My ability to turn good news into anxiety is rivaled only by my ability to turn anxiety into chin acne.”
Rising Strong by Brené Brown: Rising Strong is probably the single most important book I’ve ever read. I first discovered it after a romantic heartbreak, and I continue to dip in-and-out of certain chapters whenever I’m feeling vulnerable. It’s about getting back up after a failure and the physics of courage and vulnerability. Everyone could benefit from reading Brené’s work!
Sample Quote: “When we stop caring what people think, we lose our capacity for connection. But when we are defined by what people think, we lose the courage to be vulnerable.”
Tiny Beautiful Things: Advice on Love and Life from Dear Sugar by Cheryl Strayed: I truly don’t think anyone writes about the human condition more beautifully – or with as much compassion – as Cheryl Strayed. For many years Cheryl worked as an agony aunt for The Rumpus, and the most memorable letters are compiled in this soul-stirring book.
Sample Quote: “Nobody will protect you from your suffering. You can’t cry it away or eat it away or starve it away or walk it away or punch it away or even therapy it away. It’s just there, and you have to survive it. You have to endure it. You have to live through it and love it and move on and be better for it and run as far as you can in the direction of your best and happiest dreams across the bridge that was built by your own desire to heal.”
Which books do you re-read on a regular basis? Share your favourite titles in the comments section below, as I’d love to check them out…