Reading and Relaxing: Finding Peace on the Page
Everyone experiences periods of anxiety and stress when you just want to get away from everything because every single little thing bothers and irritates you. When you find yourself in one of these negative moods, it’s important to have healthy habits that can help shake you out of this mentality. I know that when I’m feeling this way, the healthiest thing I can do is stop what I’m doing and find a place to read.
At the end of a long day, one of my favorite things to do is to curl up in my bed with a good book. I love the feeling of losing myself in literature to the point I don’t even realize my fingers are turning the pages and any concept of time melts away.
In my personal experience, reading and relaxing goes hand in hand. When I have to travel, I always bring at least two books with me. I don’t think I’d be able to make it through a long flight or train ride without a book.
I usually read fiction because it gives me the opportunity to get out of my own head. A good work of fiction creates an entire world filled with vivid locations and characters that feel real. I get to forget about my own problems and all of the work that I have to do.
Any storytelling medium can act as an escape. You can get wonderfully lost in a song, play, movie, video game, or painting, but there is something about reading a book that creates a unique experience. I believe that it comes from the simplicity of a book. When you read text off of a page, there are no fancy special effects, no CGI. The world of the story is formed within your own mind.
There are many reasons to read. You can read to learn something, you can read for fun, or you can read for relaxation. Whatever your reasons are, if you’re looking for a good book, here are some of the books that are on our summer reading lists.
1) American Gods by Neil Gaiman
This award-winning fantasy novel by English author Neil Gaiman has been in the news lately because of its recent adaptation in a TV series by Starz. This modern take on mythology takes a unique look at American culture.
2) The Hand Maiden’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
Canadian author Margaret Atwood’s dystopian tale of totalitarian theocracy imagines the world as if it were run by religious extremists. Although a work of fiction, this novel acts as a warning for what can happen when people with extreme views have political power.
3) Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis by J.D. Vance
A personal and passionate memoir that depicts life for poor, desperate, white Americans. Hillbilly Elegy portrays the death of the American dream for a family with a long tradition of poverty and physically taxing jobs.
4) The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro
Japanese author Kazuo Ishiguro is known for writing novels that read like haunting memories. His work is not grounded in a sense of universal truth, but rather truth as interpreted by characters. The Buried Giant in an incredibly engaging and grim take on fantasy that will linger with the reader long after they have closed the book.
5) Book of Mercy by Leonard Cohen
2016 was a notoriously bad year for celebrity deaths. One of the great talents that we lost was singer and writer, Leonard Cohen. This collection of contemporary psalms was originally published over 25 years ago. Each line is charged with deep spiritual energy and is overflowing with emotion.
Marc | Copywriter