These are trying times for us all. Teams, including ours, are working remotely across continents for the time ahead of us. We know it’s tough to concentrate. Trust us, we spent a good 15 minutes staring into mid-distance writing this introduction. We also know that there are ways that we can all try to make a little time to look after our minds and to nurture our imagination.
You may have heard that we’re pretty big book-worms over at Harbour West. One way that’s really working for us is diving into a book that feeds the imagination and helps us hop into a different reality for an hour or two.
Without further ado. Here are 4 light hearted reads to give your mind a deserved rest from the never ending scrollathon that is the news. If you can’t get books delivered to you or you want to start right away try an e-book or audiobook subscription.
Still stuck for something to read? You really ought to take the Vancouver Public Library quiz for their recommendations. Fun, and comes with a personalised note from a librarian! Honestly, this made our day!
Life of Pi, Yann Martel
Transport your imagination!
The protagonist, Piscine Molitor “Pi” Patel, a Tamil boy from Pondicherry, explores issues of spirituality and practicality from an early age. He survives 227 days after a shipwreck while stranded on a boat in the Pacific Ocean with a Bengal tiger named Richard Parker. Take to the oceans and get your philosophy hat on! It’s a Canadian novel too, which we didn’t realise until now. This book is filled with imagination, wonder, exploration and perseverance and is also a great read for young adults.
A Short History of Tractors in Ukranian, Marina Lewycka
Family Drama & Dark Comedy
Long listed for the Man Booker Prize, this kooky story revolves around an 84 year old who falls in love with a 34 year old and gets married, to the consternation of his daughters who are much older than their step mom.
Valentina, the 34 year old Ukranian illegal refugee had only one aim – to become a citizen of UK. Whereas the old man truly fell head over feels for young Valentina.
This dark satire revolves around how his two daughters try to save him from his young, new ‘dangerous’ wife. A bit of a silly romp, dark in places but a good way to transport yourself to a whole other type of drama!
One Day, David Nicholls
A love story spanning decades
15th July 1988: Emma and Dexter meet for the first time on the night of their graduation. Tomorrow they must go their separate ways. So where will they be on this one day next year? And the year after that? And every year that follows?
Light hearted, with a floundering and fairly useless male protagonist (for the most part), this story is a page turner that we’ve enjoyed as a beach read in the past. It would certainly work well as a couch read too!
Bridget Jones’s Diary, Helen Fielding
Bridget Jones’ Diary is the devastatingly self-aware, laugh-out-loud daily chronicle of Bridget’s permanent, doomed quest for self-improvement — a year in which she resolves to: reduce the circumference of each thigh by 1.5 inches, visit the gym three times a week not just to buy a sandwich, form a functional relationship with a responsible adult, and learn to program the VCR. We know the story, but have you read the books?! A bit of a time travel too, as the book was first published in 1999 (how?).
We’ll be back with more ideas to keep your imagination stimulated and your minds happy and strong as we all move forward in this together.