Find a cozy couch corner and snuggle up with a vouched-for book. Last year I read four dozen books and took notes. If you like the same things I like, (mainly memoir and motivational or business nonfiction) this list could save you hours browsing Amazon and take you straight to the good stuff.
These are my top 10 favorite of the 48 books I finished in 2017. It was hard to narrow it down to 10, because I typically abandon books I don't like, (meaning I enjoyed all 48 books I finished) but I did finally whittle it down for you.
This list includes affiliate links so I make a small percentage (at no cost to you) if you click through and buy a book. I've linked to the format I read, so if I read it on Kindle, I linked to the eBook, if I read it in paperback, then I linked to that format, and if I listened to the audio book, I linked to that. Thanks for supporting my blog.
Gabrielle Bernstein's latest (at the time) book had all the new-agey, straight from the heart, Real, spiritual-but-not-snobbish stories and advice I could want about making decisions from a place of love instead of fear.
Most business books I read go in one ear and out the other. But thanks to his S.T.E.P.P.S. acronym, Jonah Berger's book is one that I remember and actually apply when I want to make something ( a blog post, a book) as shareable and viral as possible.
I will usually devour anything Anne Lamott writes, this book on the three core prayers being no exception. In my imagination, Annie is my writing godmother and she has an on-again-off-again relationship with with my writing godfather, Mark Twain. Clearly, era is no obstacle in my imagination.
7. Love Warrior
After finishing this book, I wanted to ask every woman I know to read it. Glennon Doyle was born with no insulation around her emotional wiring and she just lets the current fly. It hits you right in the heart and zings everywhere. Read it and then google what's happening with her now because the ending has a mild cliff hanger.
6. Big Magic
I challenge you to finish this book without having started writing (or whatever your creative calling is) before the end of it.
If you like raunchy feminist comedy from a self-described "trash receptacle" (The incredible Amy Schumer) then you'll laugh your way through this no-holds-barred, memoir-ish jokefest.
I've read just about every self-help book out there. This one takes all the traditional advice and turns it on its head. And somehow ends up being really inspiring, just like the traditional advice. The cliff-edge ending (not a cliffhanger) really stuck with me.
This is part memoir about losing a loved-one to brain cancer, part love letter to a lost husband, and also part of the "things I want my child to know as he grows up" genre. It's sweet and funny and sad and heartbreaking, and ultimately beautiful and uplifting. Also, Mandy Moore likes it. “Thank you for the perfect blend of nostalgia-drenched humor, wit, and heartbreak, Nora," says Mandy.
I've written and read a lot of stuff about minimalism, but this book manages to hone in on exactly what makes focusing on only the essentials so powerful. It applies to corporations, small businesses, managers, and individuals.
1. The Big Leap
I finally read this self-help modern classic that's been recommended to me over and over. I can see why it's so beloved. If you've heard the phrase "upper limit problems," but aren't really sure what it means (my situation before reading this) then this will give you the answer for how to break through the limits that are holding you back.
BONUS: The Wealthy Creative
Because what kind of indie author would I be if I didn't plug my own book? It's really, really good. Get it. I interviewed dozens of creatives all making a living from their work and organized their answers by the vital practices and habits we all need to succeed. Reviewer Steve Garvin calls it "upbeat, encouraging, valuable." He writes, "I rank The Wealthy Creative right up there with Steven Pressfield's The War of Art and Austin Kleon's Show Your Work."