Q+A. The Books Of My Life

Coming soon, my new book

"Neurodiversity; Pathways To Thriving"

My Life In Books

I cannot,  for the life of me actually remember reading a book or being read to as a child.

This doesn’t mean that I wasn’t read to or I didn’t read.  Our childhood is a narrative that blurs memory, fact and fiction. My first reading memory was around 16 and discovering poetry. My father grew up in Hampstead near where Keats lived and he gave me a beautiful copy of Keats poems. This is when I fell in love with words.

“The Unbearable Lightness Of Being” by Milan Kundera. It awakened in me the dynamics that play out in relationships, and helped me realise at 17 I loved philosophy.

Fitzgerald’s “Tender In the Night” is heartfelt and eloquently written. Set in the French Riviera during the Jazz Age, this 1934 novel is based on a promising young psychiatrist, and his wife, Nicole, who is one of his patients. It’s also autobiographical, said to be loosely based on Fitzgerald and his wife Zelda’s complex relationship and her struggle with mental health.

Just recently I reread “The Talented Mr Ripley”, a thriller noir at its finest. This book is timeless in that its about a character who aspires to be someone else, be a “fake somebody than a real nobody” who goes to great lengths to impersonate, even kill to make this happen. Set in Italy,  it makes a wonderful backdrop to this novel but its genius is the exposition of great truth about charming people with an ulterior motive and having something to hide.

My brain is wired fast and I have a natural inclination to want to do most things fast. Every word of Carl Honore’s book “In Praise Of Slow” resonated with me when I read it though because for the first time, I realised that slow can mean productive and in fact there is a time for us all to be fast, somewhere in between and slow. I am now part of the slow movement and Carl is my mentor and a dear friend.

“Attached” by Amir Levine and Rachel Heller teaches us more about how our attachment style can be liberating for moving forward and changing our negative patterns in relationships. 

To be human is to experience trauma at some point in our life “”The Body Keeps The Score” by Bessel van der Kolk is a compassionate, intelligent, and transformative book about trauma. We are a ‘whole person’ brain, body and mind and his approach to trauma and healing is compelling.

I personally prefer a hard copy, the feel of the book, the smell of the print and enjoy seeing the journey of reading through it. I think we should embrace whatever format works best for us. Even if I go on holiday I prefer to take print version.

The Hare With The Amber Eyes” made me cry. Ceramicist Edmund de Waal tells the story of his family, a wealthy european Jewish banking dynasty and their plight in the second world war as well as their attempt at reclaiming a significant art collection.

What are you looking for?