She Inspires Book Review for Book Lovers
Want to dive into a good read, whether it's a novel, cook book or something to light up your inspiration we've got a great collection right here for you.

To make life easy for you, we've linked the books to a local online seller and you can always just pop into your local independent book seller and pick up your favourite.

Fabulous Books

Here's our pick of the latest great reads:

Novels to Inspire

The Evening Chorus

By: Helen Humphreys

RRP: $24.99

A story of four lives torn apart by war, about falling in and out of love, and the unlikely moments that come to define a life.

Shot down on his first RAF mission, James Hunter spends his war in a German prison camp. The other captive soldiers busy themselves planning their escapes, but James dedicates himself to a detailed study of the redstarts nesting just beyond the camp boundaries - a project that gives him something to live for and earns him an unusual ally in the Kommandant in charge of the camp.

Rose, James's young wife, is spending her war in a cottage on the lip of Ashdown Forest in Sussex, with her dog Harris for company. She'd hardly known James before he went away and can barely engage with his letters, which talk of nothing but birds. Now she has fallen in love with someone else - Toby, a young pilot home on sick leave. They meet secretly at night.

Then James's brusque sister Enid is bombed out of her flat in London and comes to live in Rose's tiny cottage. Little more than strangers, both women are guarded, and Rose tries to conceal her affair from Enid. But later both look back on this strange interlude as one of their happiest.

Beautifully written and full of moments of hope, The Evening Chorus is a stirring story about love and the natural world, set against the backdrop of the Second World War.

About the Author

Helen Humphreys is a Canadian novelist and poet. She was born in London, England, and now lives in Kingston, Ontario. Her first novel, Leaving Earth, was a New York Times Notable Book in 1998 and won the City of Toronto Book Award.

She is also the author of The Reinvention of Love and True Story: On the Life and Death of My Brother, both published by Serpent's Tail.

Sophie and the Sibyl

By: Patricia Duncker

RRP: $29.99

A brilliant, playful novel of George Eliot, of literature, of a relationship between an author and her publisher, and of a surprising romance

In Berlin, Max Duncker and his brother, Wolfgang, own a thriving publishing business, which owes its success to one woman: 'The Sibyl', or George Eliot, whose final installment of the bestselling serial Middlemarch is in the process of being written.

Max is as fond of gambling and brothels as Wolfgang is of making a profit and berating his spendthrift brother, but Max is given a chance to prove his worth by visiting the Sibyl and her 'husband' Lewes, to finalise the publishing rights to her new novel. The Sibyl proves to be as enthralling and intelligent as her books, bewitching Max and all of those around her...

But Wolfgang has an ulterior motive for Max's visit; he wants his brother to consider the beautiful eighteen-year-old Sophie von Hahn as a potential wife. An old acquaintance, she comes from a German family of great wealth. However, Sophie proves to be nothing like the angelic vision of domesticity Max envisaged; wild and wilful, she gambles recklessly yet always wins, rides horses fiercely and is happy to disobey authority, especially when it comes to the forbidden act of contacting her heroine, who happens to be George Eliot. Enchanted by this whirlwind vision, Max nevertheless fears he will never be able to tame her...

With its vivid portrayal of George Eliot and how she lived her life, and of the turbulent and surprising love story of Max and Sophie, Sophie and the Sibyl is both a thrilling and compulsive read and a literary achievement of the highest order.

About the Author

Patricia Duncker is the author of five previous novels: Hallucinating Foucault (winner of the Dillons First Fiction Award and the McKitterick Prize in 1996), The Deadly Space Between, James Miranda Barry, Miss Webster and Cherif (shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers' Prize in 2007) and The Strange Case of the Composer and his Judge (shortlisted for the CWA Gold Dagger award for Best Crime Novel of the Year in 2010).

She has written two books of short fiction, Monsieur Shoushana's Lemon Trees (shortlisted for the Macmillan Silver Pen Award in 1997) and Seven Tales of Sex and Death and a collection of essays, Writing on the Wall. Patricia Duncker is Professor of Contemporary Literature at the University of Manchester.

Painted Horses

By: Malcolm Brooks

RRP: $29.99

A brilliant, enthralling debut novel about an extraordinary young woman's quest to tame a wild landscape, the tide of progress in the middle of the "American century," and a beautiful, passionate love story.

In the mid-1950s, America was flush with prosperity and saw an unbroken line of progress clear to the horizon, while the West was still very much wild.

Catherine Lemay is a young archaeologist on her way to Montana, with a huge task before her - a canyon "as deep as the devil's own appetites." Working ahead of a major dam project, she has one summer to prove nothing of historical value will be lost in the flood. From the moment she arrives, nothing is familiar - the vastness of the canyon itself mocks the contained, artefact-rich digs in post-Blitz London where she cut her teeth.

And then there's John H, a former mustanger and veteran of the U.S. Army's last mounted cavalry campaign, living a fugitive life in the canyon. John H inspires Catherine to see beauty in the stark landscape, and her heart opens to more than just the vanished past.

Painted Horses sends a dauntless young woman on a heroic quest, sings a love song to the horseman's vanishing way of life, and reminds us that love and ambition, tradition and the future often make strange bedfellows.

About the Author

Malcolm Brooks was raised in the rural foothills of the California Sierras and grew up around Gold Rush and Native American artefacts.

A carpenter by trade, he has lived in Montana for most of the last two decades. This is his debut novel.

Endurance

By: Tim Griffiths

RRP: $29.99

A gripping, white-knuckle novel set in the Antarctic and the muddy fields of the Western Front, told through the eyes of real-life adventurer and pioneer Australian photographer Frank Hurley. A moving portrait of the man behind the legend.

This novel tells the story of a real-life Australian hero, photographer, explorer and adventurer Frank Hurley. It is a story told through his eyes and in his words, and it reveals a tantalising portrait of the man behind the legend he has become.

Hurley's photographs and documentaries of Douglas Mawson's and Ernest Shackleton's Antarctic expeditions, and his astounding images of World War I have been so widely exhibited and reproduced that in many cases they are the principal means by which we have come to see those world-shattering events. His iconic images of the ship Endurance trapped in an ocean of ice, of men battling the most extreme elements in the Antarctic, and suffering under unthinkable conditions in war are imprinted on the Australian consciousness. One writer has claimed that Frank Hurley 'is the twentieth century'.

Here now is the man, Hurley, telling us of his part in the two ill-fated Antarctic expeditions and recounting tales of great heroism and suffering as he fights for his life among the ice and the elements, and witnesses the worst ravages of war on the Western Front. Endurance is an extraordinary debut novel, a rollicking white-knuckle adventure story that also takes us to the very heart of heroism and sacrifice.

About the Author

Tim Griffiths was living in Papua New Guinea when he first came across Frank Hurley's photographs of that country, leading to a long-term interest in the Hurley story.

He has had no experiences on the scale of Hurley's adventures and is yet to have an opportunity to visit Antarctica, but has travelled through Europe, Asia and America. He enjoys bushwalking, cross-country skiing, sailing, kayaking, surfing, diving and cycling.

Tim lives in Sydney with his wife and four children. He works as a lawyer and arbitrator, and has a keen interest in Australian history. This is his first novel.

Signs for Lost Children

By: Sarah Moss

RRP: $27.99

Only weeks into their marriage a young couple embark on a six-month period of separation. Tom Cavendish goes to Japan to build lighthouses and his wife Ally, Doctor Moberley-Cavendish, stays and works at the Truro asylum.

As Ally plunges into the institutional politics of mental health, Tom navigates the social and professional nuances of late 19th century Japan. With her unique blend of emotional insight and intellectual profundity, Sarah Moss builds a novel in two parts from Falmouth to Tokyo, two maps of absence; from Manchester to Kyoto, two distinct but conjoined portraits of loneliness and determination.

An exquisite continuation of the story of Bodies of Light, Signs for Lost Children will amaze Sarah Moss's many fans.

About the Author

SARAH MOSS was educated at Oxford University and is currently an Associate Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Warwick. She is the author of three novels: Cold Earth (Granta 2010), Night Waking (Granta 2012), which was selected for the Fiction Uncovered Award in 2011, and Bodies of Light (Granta 2014); and the co-author of Chocolate: A Global History.

She spent 2009-10 as a visiting lecturer at the University of Iceland, and wrote an account of her time there in Names for the Sea: Strangers in Iceland (Granta 2012), which was shortlisted for the 2013 RSL Ondaatje Prize.

Dog Gone, Back Soon

By: Nick Trout

RRP: $22.99

The gorgeous new novel from the author of the much-loved bestseller The Patron Saint of Lost Dogs is a wild and delightful ride through another jam-packed week in Eden Falls. This time, Cyrus Mills must figure out how to outsmart the evil veterinary conglomerate, win back his beloved's heart, find a home for an orphaned dog, and detangle himself from an absurd case of mistaken identity.

'Delightful, endearing, frequently hilarious...reminds us of the truth hidden away in our hearts: loving our animals is a sure way to heal our souls.' Garth Stein, author of The Art of Racing in the Rain

'This is the best writing I've seen in years, comedy and tragedy jostling within a single sentence. Give it your undivided attention.' Country Style

When Dr Cyrus Mills returned home after inheriting his estranged father's veterinary practice, The Bedside Manor for Sick Animals, the last thing he wanted was to stay in Eden Falls a moment longer than absolutely necessary. However the appealingly awkward and eccentric vet quickly found that he actually enjoyed treating animals and getting to know the eccentric residents of the tiny provincial town-especially an attractive and alluring waitress named Amy.

Now Cyrus is determined to make Bedside Manor thrive. Not an easy goal, given that Healthy Paws, the national veterinary chain across town, will stop at nothing to crush its humble competitor. And the rival vet practice isn't Cyrus' only competition. A handsome stranger shows up out of nowhere who clearly has a mysterious past with Amy. To top it off, Cyrus finds himself the guardian of a very unique orphaned dog and smack in the middle of serious small town drama.

This charming companion to the bestselling novel The Patron Saint of Lost Dog, is a wild and delightful ride through one jam- packed week - in which Cyrus must figure out how to outsmart his rivals, win back Amy's heart, solve several tricky veterinary mysteries, find a home for an orphaned dog and detangle himself from an absurd case of mistaken identity. Dog Gone, Back Soon brims with Nick Trout's trademark humour, charm, and captivating tales and intriguing characters, and is proof that all dogs - lost or not, on four feet or two , deserve a second chance.

About the Author

Dr Nick Trout graduated from veterinary school at the University of Cambridge in 1989. He is a Diplomate of the American and European Colleges of Veterinary Surgeons and is a staff surgeon at the prestigious Angell Animal Medical Center in Boston.

He is the author of four books, the New York Times bestseller Tell Me Where It Hurts (2009), Love is the Best Medicine (2011), Ever By My Side (2012) and Patron Saint of Lost Dogs (2013); and has been a contributing columnist for The Bark and Prevention magazines. He lives in Massachusetts with his wife, two daughters, and their two dogs, Meg, their yellow Labrador, and Sophie, their Jack Russell terrier.

Seiobo There Below
Winner of the 2015 Man Booker Prize

By: Laszlo Krasznahorkai, Ottilie Mulzet (Transcribed by)

RRP: $32.99

A timeless masterpiece from one of the world's most distinguished writers - winner of the 2015 Man Booker International Prize.

Finalist for the 2015 Man Booker International Prize

Beauty, in Laszlo Krasznahorkai's new novel, reflects, however fleeting, the sacred - even if we are mostly unable to bear it.

In Seiobo There Below we see the Japanese goddess Seiobo returning to mortal realms in search of perfection. An ancient Buddha being restored; the Italian renaissance painter Perugino managing his workshop; a Japanese Noh actor rehearsing; a fanatic of Baroque music lecturing to a handful of old villagers; tourists intruding into the rituals of Japan's most sacred shrine; a heron as it gracefully hunts its prey.

Told in chapters that sweep us across the world and through time, covering the furthest reaches of human experience, Krasznahorkai demands that we pause and ask ourselves these questions: What is sacred? How do we define beauty? What makes great art endure?

Melancholic and mesmerisingly beautiful, this latest novel by the author of Satantango shows us how to glimpse the divine through extraordinary art and human endeavour.

Winner of Best Translated Book of the Year Award 2014

Translated by Ottilie Mulzet

About the Author

Laszlo Krasznahorkai was born in Gyula, Hungary, in 1954. He has written five novels and won numerous prizes, including the 2013 Best Translated Book Award in Fiction for Satantango.

In 1993, he won the Best Book of the Year Award in Germany for The Melancholy of Resistance and in 2015 was listed as a finalist for the Man Booker International Prize.

A Want of Kindness
A Novel of Queen Anne

By: Joanne Limburg, Karen Duffy (Editor), Sam Redman (Editor)

RRP: $27.99

An ambitious, absorbing and authentic historical novel which reimagines Anne's life from child princess in the glittering Restoration court to Queen of England.

The wicked, bawdy Restoration court is no place for a child princess. Ten-year-old Anne cuts an odd figure: a sickly child, she is drawn towards improper pursuits. Cards, sweetmeats, scandal and gossip with her Ladies of the Bedchamber figure large in her life. But as King Charles's niece, Anne is also a political pawn, who will be forced to play her part in the troubled Stuart dynasty.

As Anne grows to maturity, she is transformed from overlooked Princess to the heiress of England. Forced to overcome grief for her lost children, the political manoeuvrings of her sister and her closest friends and her own betrayal of her father, she becomes one of the most complex and fascinating figures of English history.

About the Author

Joanne Limburg was born and grew up in London, at the northern end of the Jubilee Line, but now lives in Cambridge with her husband and son. She has published two collections of poetry with Bloodaxe Books: Feminismo, which was shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best First Collection, and Paraphernalia, a Poetry Book Society Recommendation.

Her latest collection is the pamphlet The Oxygen Man, published by Five Leaves Publications. Her latest non-poetry book is The Woman Who Thought Too Much, a memoir about OCD, anxiety and poetry.

The Looking Glass House

By: Venessa Tait, Louise Cullen (Editor)

Vanessa Tait, great-granddaughter of the Alice who inspired Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, tells the fascinating story of the childhood classic's strange beginnings through the eyes of a naive and deceived governess.

What happened before Alice fell down the rabbit hole?

Oxford, 1862. As Mary Prickett takes up her post as governess to the daughters of the Dean of Christ Church, she is thrust into a strange new world. Mary is poor and plain and desperate for change but the little girls in her care see and understand far more than their naive new teacher. And there is another problem: Mary does not like children, especially the precocious Alice Liddell.

When Mary meets Charles Dodgson, the Christ Church mathematics tutor, at a party at the Deanery, she wonders if he may be the person to transform her life. Flattered by his attentions, Mary begins to believe that she could be more than just an overlooked, dowdy governess.

One sunny day, as Mary chaperones the Liddells on a punting trip, Mr Dodgson tells the story of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. But Mary is determined to become Mr Dodgson's muse ­ and will turn all the lives around her topsy-turvy in pursuit of her obsession.

About the Author

Vanessa Tait grew up in Gloucestershire. She went to the University of Manchester and completed a Master's degree in Creative and Life Writing at Goldsmiths College.

She is the great-granddaughter of Alice Liddell, the little girl who inspired Lewis Carroll to write Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. The Looking Glass House is her first novel, inspired by family treasures and stories of the 'original' Alice.

The Incorrigible Optimists Club

By: Jean-Michel Guenassia

RRP: $19.99

Paris, 1959.

As dusk settles over the immigrant quarter, 12-year-old Michel Marini - amateur photographer and compulsive reader - is drawn to the hum of the local bistro.

From his usual position at the football table, he has a vantage point on a grown-up world - of rock 'n' roll and of the Algerian War. But as the sun sinks and the plastic players spin, Michel's concentration is not on the game, but on the huddle of men gathered in the shadows of a back room...

Past the bar, behind a partly drawn curtain, a group of eastern European men gather, where under a cirrus of smoke and over the squares of chess boards, they tell of their lives before France - of lovers and wives, children and ambitions, all exiled behind the Iron Curtain.

Listening to this band of survivors and raconteurs, Michel is introduced to a world beyond the boundaries of his childhood experience, a world of men made formidable in the face of history, ideas and politics: the world of the Incorrigible Optimists Club."

About the Author

Jean-Michel Guenassia was born in Algeria, 1950. He is a prolific screenwriter and he lives in France.

Inspirational

Bookd to inspire, get you thinking, even just have a good old laugh....

The Man Who Saved Smithy
Fighter Pilot, Pioneer Aviator, Hero - the Life of Sir Gordon Taylor MC, GC

By: Rick Searle

RRP: $32.99

The incredible true story of a largely unsung Australian aviation hero.

Patrick Gordon 'Bill' Taylor was a pioneer of Australian aviation. As a fighter pilot during the First World War, he was awarded the Military Cross and discovered a life-long passion for flight and air navigation. Returning to Australia after the war, he became a close friend of Charles Kingsford Smith; they went on to form an incredible flying partnership, setting records around the globe.

It was on a flight across the Tasman in Smithy's famous Southern Cross that Taylor earned the Empire's highest award for civilian bravery, the George Cross. With one engine out of action and another fast running out of oil, Taylor repeatedly climbed out of the cockpit to transfer oil to the stricken engine and keep the Southern Cross flying - all this while suspended over the sea in a howling slipstream.

After the deaths of his friends Charles Ulm and Kingsford Smith in separate accidents, Taylor became Australia's greatest surviving aviator, pioneering vital new trans-oceanic air routes during the Second World War and receiving a knighthood in honour of his services to flight. The Man Who Saved Smithy is the enthralling account of his remarkable life and achievements.

About the Author

Rick Searle has been a full-time freelance writer and film maker for almost forty years. He has worked in radio, television and film, and lectured in television writing at the Queensland University of Technology.

Rick has had a lifelong interest in aviation, and a long-standing fascination with the life of Australian flyer and navigator Sir Gordon Taylor.

Stuff Brits Like

By: Fraser McAlpine

RRP: $22.99

As the lead writer for BBC Anglophenia, Fraser McAlpine (a man assembled from almost every region of the UK*) spends his life explaining Brits to foreigners. Now he lifts the lid on our Marmite pot of nations and takes you on a journey from the Isle of Wight to Inverness, Belfast to Bangor, exploring the joyful enthusiasms (and pet hates) of an endlessly multifarious Britain.

STUFF BRITS LIKE celebrates why we like puns and pedantry, decorum and drawing willies on things, Trainspotting and Downton Abbey, apologizing needlessly (sorry) and cocking a snook.

We cheer both the underdog and the bad guy, we adore melancholy types like Morrissey and grumpy Eeyore...and we love being told off by scolds.Meet mythical beasts from the Scottish Nuckelavee to the Cornish Knocker; the branch of the WI called the Iron Maidens, and the British Cheese Board (yes, it is really called that); find out which eccentric Lord would only eat his meals in his swimming pool, why postboxes are bright red (it's health and safety gone mad) and the origin of weird traditions such as the Burning of the Clocks.

STUFF BRITS LIKE you through why Doctor Who could only have come from Britain, why cricket is a form of siege warfare in whites, and why we argue about the best five British films or what makes The Great British Guitar Band...

First Lady
The Life and Wars of Clementine Churchill

By: Sonia Purnell

RRP: $45.00

'My Beloved, I send this token, but how little can it express my gratitude to you for making my life and any work I have done possible, and for giving me so much happiness in a world of accident and storm.' Winston Churchill Without Winston Churchill's inspiring leadership Britain could not have survived its darkest hour and repelled the Nazi menace.

Without his wife Clementine, however, he might never have become Prime Minister. By his own admission, the Second World War would have been 'impossible without her'. Clementine was Winston's emotional rock and his most trusted confidante; not only was she involved in some of the most crucial decisions of war, but she exerted an influence over her husband and the Government that would appear scandalous to modern eyes.

Yet her ability to charm Britain's allies and her humanitarian efforts on the Home Front earned her deep respect, both behind closed doors in Whitehall and among the population at large. That Clementine should become Britain's 'First Lady' was by no means pre-ordained. Born into impecunious aristocracy, her childhood was far from gilded. Her mother was a serial adulteress and gambler, who spent many years uprooting her children to escape the clutches of their erstwhile father, and by the time Clementine entered polite society she had become the target of cruel snobbery and rumours about her parentage.

In Winston, however, she discovered a partner as emotionally insecure as herself, and in his career she found her mission.

Her dedication to his cause may have had tragic consequences for their children, but theirs was a marriage that changed the course of history. Now, acclaimed biographer Sonia Purnell explores the peculiar dynamics of this fascinating union.

From the personal and political upheavals of the Great War, through the Churchills' 'wilderness years' in the 1930s, to Clementine's desperate efforts to preserve her husband's health during the struggle against Hitler, Sonia presents the inspiring but often ignored story of one of the most important women in modern history.

Getting (More of) What You Want
How the Secrets of Economics & Psychology Can Help You Negotiate Anything in Business & Life

By: Margaret Neale, Thomas Z. Lys

RRP: $27.99

Forget about 'getting to yes' - in most negotiations, we can get what we want. Drawing on the latest research in psychology and behavioural economics, Getting (More of) What You Want shows us how new behavioural models allow negotiators to move past the outdated win-win approach and find the most advantageous outcome for each and every negotiation...Be it with colleagues, superiors, spouses, friends, enemies, estate agents or market traders, negotiation is present in almost every social interaction.

Neale and Lys's detailed analysis of economics, psychology, and strategic thinking show that, by taking into account rational behaviour and irrational biases - and learning how best to exploit that - anyone can become a more successful, more effective negotiator.

Find out:

  • when to negotiate and when to walk away;
  • how to know what a good deal is;
  • when to make the first offer and when to wait;
  • the difference between aspiration and expectation;
  • and why meeting in the middle can be the worst of all possible deals...

Drawing on three decades of ground-breaking empirical research, Getting (More of) What You Want reveals the counterintuitive methods used by successful negotiators to get everything they want - and more.

World War Two in Secret
The Hidden Conflict - 1939 to 1945

By: Jeremy Harwood, Gavin Mortimer

RRP: $39.99

World War Two was a conflict of tanks, ships and aircraft, fought across the globe, from the icy waters of the North Atlantic to the steaming jungles of South-east Asia.

It was a war that called for that most basic of battlefield requirements - raw courage. But World War Two was also the war of top-secret technology. A conflict that began with Polish horsemen attacking German tanks ended with the dropping of two Atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.


World War Two in Secret is a fascinating exploration of the hidden stories behind the first truly technological war. From Bouncing Bombs to Atomic Bombs, from S.O.E to S.A.S and from radar to Enigma code-breakers, the book will lift the lid on all aspects of World War Two that were crafty, cunning, and covert, explaining the thinking behind their creation and the influence that top-secret weapons and strategies had on the outcomes of the war.

Dozens of eye-catching photographs have been drawn from the archives compiled by all the major fighting powers, accompanied by illuminating text.

Inspiring and informative chapters follow the arc of the Axis attack, the turning of the tide, and the war going global, while placing special focus on crucial World War Two operations-for example, the secret war at sea, the role of the Special Forces in North Africa, the Blitz and the radar race.

About the Author

Gavin Mortimer is an award-winning author and historian. His most recent books include The First Eagles (Zenith Press, 2014); Merrill's Marauders (Zenith Press, 2013); and The SBS in World War II (Osprey Publishing, 2013).

In addition to his books, Gavin contributes articles to an eclectic range of publications from the Times to BBC History Magazine and writes regularly on sport and current affairs for the online edition of the Week magazine.

Shakespeare
Ideas in Profile

By: Paul Edmondson

RRP: 19.99

A short introduction to Shakespeare by expert Paul Edmondson

Ideas in Profile: Small Introductions to Big Topics

Shakespeare is the world's greatest writer. In this lively and authoritative introduction, Paul Edmondson presents Shakespeare afresh as a dramatist and poet, and encourages us to take ownership of the works for ourselves as words to be spoken as well as discussed.

We get a wide sense of what his life was like, his rich language, and astonishing cultural legacy. We catch glimpses of Shakespeare himself, how he wrote and see what his works mean to readers and theatre practitioners.

Above all, we see how Shakespeare tackled the biggest themes of humanity: power, history, war and love.

Shakespeare scholar Paul Edmondson guides us through the most important questions around Shakespeare and in the process reminds us just why he is so celebrated in the first place.

About the Author

Paul Edmondson is Head of Research and Knowledge and Director of the Stratford-upon-Avon Poetry Festival for The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust.

He has published numerous articles and books on Shakespeare and speaks at academic conferences and other Shakespeare related gatherings around the world. He is a trustee of The Rose Theatre and Chair of The Hosking Houses Trust for women writers.

Altruism
The Power of Compassion to Change Yourself and the World

By: Matthieu Ricard

RRP: $32.99

The new bestseller from Matthieu Ricard is the result of a lifetime's thought. This inspirational book argues that by understanding kindness and developing it as a skill we can change the world.

In Happiness, Matthieu Ricard demonstrated that true happiness is not tied to fleeting moments or sensations, but is an enduring state of soul rooted in mindfulness and compassion for others. Now he turns his lens from the personal to the global, with a rousing argument that altruism - genuine concern for the well-being of others - could be the saving grace of the 21st century.

Altruism is, he believes, the vital thread that can answer the main challenges of our time: the economy in the short term, life satisfaction in the mid-term, and environment in the long term. Ricard's message has been taken up by major economists and thinkers, including Dennis Snower, Amartya Sen, Joseph Stiglitz, and George Soros.

Matthieu Ricard makes a robust and passionate case for cultivating altruistic love and compassion as the best means for simultaneously benefitting ourselves and our society. It's a fresh outlook on an ardent struggle - and one that just might make the world a better place.

About the Author

Matthieu Ricard is a Buddhist monk who had a promising career in cellular genetics before leaving France to study Buddhism in the Himalayas forty years ago.

He is also a bestselling author, translator and photographer, and an active participant in current scientific research on the effects of meditation on the brain. He lives in Tibet and Nepal and is involved in humanitarian projects in both these countries.

Just Your Average Muslim

By: Zia Chaudhry

RRP: $21.99

This fascinating and original book provides a better insight into the life of "just your average Muslim" than you will find anywhere else. A powerful antidote to common but exhausted stereotypes, it challenges non-Muslims to reexamine their perceived ideas of what they "think they know" and Muslims to examine how they portray themselves to the world. It encourages us all to reflect on our similarities, not our differences.

"A must read for anyone interested in or even concerned about Muslims in this country, and indeed the faith of Islam." -- Roger Phillips, BBC presenter

Food

Hmm, why would this be one of my favourites to bring to you I wonder? Let's start here....

Lindt Chocolate Bar
The best ever recipes

By: Lindt

RRP: $16.99

Lindt is famous around the world for the quality of its chocolate. In this little book Lindt's Maitres Chocolatiers come to you with 26 of their best recipes to share the secrets and tips of cooking with chocolate with amazing results.

Whether you are looking for a quick dessert or to venture into a more elaborate project, this book has everything you need to put together a fantastic dessert.

Cakes, pizzas, creme brule, hot chocolate - from the classic to the unexpected, there are plenty of ideas in here for you to play around in the kitchen.

With easy to follow instructions, each recipe is accompanied by beautiful photography. In addition to its delicious content, the shape of the book - designed in the shape of a Lindt chocolate bar and it makes it a fun addition to any collection of recipe books.

Lindt Chocolate Bar is an ideal giftbook that no chocolate lover will be able to resist.

Crepes and Galettes
From the Breizh Cafe

By: Bertrand Larcher

RRP: $39.99

The culinary offering from Breizh Cafe is a cut above typical Breton crepes and galettes. Working with exceptional raw materials is the principle at the heart of Bertrand Larcher's culinary enterprise.

Using only the best products - including the highly regarded Bordier butter - all his core ingredients are locally sourced and made by Brittany's top farmers and artisans.

His singular approach forms the driving force behind this book, where he has gathered over 60 original crepe and galette recipes. Simple yet premium-quality Breton products are combined with unique flavours for an authentic and surprising result: Breizh roll with goat's cheese tartare, smoked salmon and ikura galette, chicken and cider sauce galette, honey and saracen ice cream crepe.

Creating enhanced traditional recipes that become exceptional dishes is what Breizh Cafe stands for - the perfect balance between simplicity and excellence.

About the Author

Shortly after graduating from the Ecole Hoteliere de Dinard, BERTRAND LARCHER started a successful career as a chef and restauranteur. Moving to Japan in 1995, Larcher opened his first creperie, La Bretagne, in Tokyo's Kagurazaka district. His first French restaurant , Trivabro, opened in Cancale, Brittany, in 2002, followed by Breizh Cafe a couple of years later in 2005.

Between 2005 and 2008, six additional Breizh Cafe restaurants were opened in various Japanese cities (from Tokyo to Yokohama and Kawazaki). Finally, Larcher opened his one and only Breizh Cafe in Paris in 2007. Bertrand Larcher was awarded the prestigious Fooding Prize of Honour in 2011 and 2014.

Cakes, Custard and Category Theory
Easy Recipes for Understanding Complex Maths

By: Eugenia Cheng

RRP: $27.99

A curious cookbook for the mathematical omnivore - maths at its absolute tastiest.

Most people imagine maths is something like a slow cooker: very useful, but pretty limited in what it can do. Maths, though, isn't just a tool for solving a specific problem - and it's definitely not something to be afraid of.

Whether you're a maths glutton or have forgotten how long division works (or never really knew in the first place), the chances are you've missed what really makes maths exciting.

Calling on a baker's dozen of entertaining, puzzling examples and mathematically illuminating culinary analogies - including chocolate brownies, iterated Battenberg cakes, sandwich sandwiches, Yorkshire puddings and Mobius bagels - brilliant young academic and mathematical crusader Eugenia Cheng is here to tell us why we should all love maths.

From simple numeracy to category theory ('the mathematics of mathematics'), Cheng takes us through the joys of the mathematical world. Packed with recipes, puzzles to surprise and delight even the innumerate, Cake, Custard & Category Theory will whet the appetite of maths whizzes and arithmophobes alike. (Not to mention aspiring cooks: did you know you can use that slow cooker to make clotted cream?) This is maths at its absolute tastiest.

About the Author

Eugenia Cheng is Senior Lecturer in Pure Mathematics at the University of Sheffield. She was educated at the University of Cambridge and has done post-doctoral work at the Universities of Cambridge, Chicago and Nice.

Since 2007 her YouTube lectures and videos have been viewed around 700,000 times to date. A concert pianist, she also speaks French, English and Cantonese, and her mission in life is to rid the world of maths phobia.

At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen
Celebrating the Art of Eating Well

By: Amy Chaplin, Johnny Miller (Photographer)

A sophisticated vegetarian cookbook with everything you need to feel at home in the kitchen, cooking in the most nourishing and delicious ways.

With her love of whole food and expertise as a chef, Amy Chaplin has written a book to entice everyone to eat well every meal, every day. She provides all the know-how for creating delicious, healthy dishes based on unprocessed, unrefined food - from the basics of good eating to preparing seasonal feasts all year round. Part One lays the foundation: how best to stock your cupboard.

Not simply a list of ingredients and equipment, it provides real working knowledge of how and why to use ingredients, plus an arsenal of simple recipes for daily nourishment.

Part two is a collection of recipes celebrating vegetarian cooking in its brightest, whole, most delectable form, with such vibrant dishes as black rice breakfast pudding with coconut and banana; fragrant aubergine curry with cardamom basmati rice, apricot chutney and lime raita; and honey vanilla bean ice cream with roasted plums and coconut crunch. Inspirational, healthy, sustainable and delicious - this is whole food cooking for everyone.

About the Author

A native of Australia, Amy Chaplin has worked as a vegetarian chef for over 20 years. Prior to settling in New York and working as Executive Chef at Angelica's Kitchen, Amy founded a catering company in London specializing in gourmet vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free food. Her cakes were featured in British Vogue and BBC Good Food magazine.

In Amsterdam, Amy worked as a chef as Shizen, a popular Japanese macrobiotic restaurant, and as a pastry chef at the famed bakery and cake studio De Taart van m'n Tante.

Currently, Amy teaches and cooks privately for clients that include Natalie Portman and Liv Tyler, consults and develops recipes for restaurants and food companies, and blogs at coconutandquinoa.com, where she shares original, seasonal recipes and health tips.

She has been featured in Martha Stewart Living and has contributed for publications such as Whole Living, the Guardian, Delicious Living, and Reader's Digest's Best You. Her whole food cleanse was featured in New York Magazine.

The Best Homemade Kids' Snacks on the Planet
More Than 200 Healthy Homemade Snacks You and Your Kids Will Love

By: Laura Fuentes

RRP:$29.99

If you're a parent or a caregiver, you know that kids are hungry all the time. And while you want to give them the best, snack time can be a true test.

How do you avoid the convenient-but-unhealthy storebought treats and instead provide something that not only tastes good, but is good for them them too?

With The Best Homemade Kids' Snacks on the Planet, you'll find more than 200+ great ideas for solving the snack conundrum.

Recipes and ideas you can whip up in minutes, without fuss in the kitchen, or fuss from your kid!

So whether you're packing snacks for your purse, the school bag, the sports bag, or the can't-make-it-until-dinner whining hour, you'll find quick and healthy ideas everyone in your family will love.

Smoking, Curing & Drying
The Complete Guide for Meat & Fish

By: Turan T. Turan

RRP: $35.00

Detailed step-by-step instructions show you how to master the techniques of brining, curing, air-drying, hot and cold smoking; from basic steps through to advanced processes.

Everything you need to know to create your own delicious smoked, dried, and cured meats and fish at home, from using traditional techniques. Including more than 50 recipes; from kippers to prosciutto, and salt cod to jerky; this book will enable you to produce high-quality, delicious cured produce at a fraction of shop-bought prices, and with better results.

Detailed step-by-step instructions show you how to master the techniques of brining, curing, air-drying, hot and cold smoking; from basic steps through to advanced processes.

All types and cuts of meat and fish are included, while expert tips show you how to develop flavor and experiment using different woodchips, herbs, spices and more.

About the Author

TURAN T. TURAN is passionate about smoked and cured food and has been smoking his own for over a decade, spending hours experimenting with different techniques and flavors.

Turan runs regular food smoking and curing courses in London and all over the UK. He has published articles for Great British Food magazine.


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About the Books

About the Books

Just as with any magazine's regular book reviews, many of the books featured in our book reviews are provided to us from a range of publishers while others have come from my personal library.

I try to choose books I think you, my reader, will enjoy but as the She Inspires reader has her own tastes and times for reading, I try to include a range of topics that you'll want to read or find that perfect book gift idea - what better present is there than a book?

If there are types of books that you'd love to see more of in our reviews then please let me know because I do find it a tad challenging sometimes making sure I am picking out books outside of my own favourite categories! Who would have thought?

So what happens with the books after we've reviewed them? If we're running an event they'll go in the goodie bags, otherwise some are given to the smaller country libraries on my regional trips, some to kids reading programs while others are passed around with friends and families - what matters is the sharing of them.

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