For many of us, summer 2020 is all about staycations, lazy long weekends and sunny days spent in the garden – all ideal opportunities to immerse yourself in a good book. If you’re not sure which books to invest your time in these holidays we’re sharing some of our favourite literary picks for holiday reading. From immersive literary reads to self-help guides that will inspire you to do better at work and your personal life, here are my picks for the top 5 best holiday reads of 2020.
Softening the Edge by Mimi Nicklin
You may recognise Mimi Nicklin from her popular podcast, ‘Secrets of the Gap’ or her much-loved weekly breakfast show, ‘Empathy for Breakfast’. And now, her long-awaited book is finally here in South Africa! Already a best-seller in the USA, Canada, Australia and the UAE, Softening the Edge addresses empathy in all its facets and explores how humanity’s oldest leadership trait is changing our world. A great read for anyone who loves self-improvement-style guides, Softening the Edge will surely offer some much-needed inspiration this summer.
The Greek Holiday by Maeve Haran
Four old university friends return to the romantic Greek island they visited in their youth. Each is looking for something to help them through difficult times in their lives. In Kyri they discover the opportunity to reinvent themselves, embrace love and happiness and even help a community in need. But at the heart of the story is the true importance of female friendship. This hilarious and heartwarming novel is perfect summer escapism. Great for reading on the beach while you sip on a mocktail.
The New Success Paradigm by Stephen Engels
Stephen Engels’ new book The New Success Paradigm: “A Personal Leadership Discovery Platform” is centred around a metaphor of the ‘River of Life’ and in using this metaphor he develops the book’s key theme of personal leadership strategies. Whether you’re seeking guidance or are looking for a way to derive meaning from your life, or your business, this self-help guide by Engels is sure to be an inspiring holiday read. The book takes on the form of a very effective personal leadership programme, offering the tools you need to make a change in your professional or personal life now. With its step-by-step, interactive approach, this book makes it enjoyable to contemplate success. Designed to be used alongside a very practical workbook and the highly interactive ELS LeaderApp, this book is ideal for anyone who wants to use the holiday season as an opportunity to better themselves before the start of a new year.
My Only Story by Deon Wiggett
In November 2019, Deon Wiggett’s sensational weekly podcasts held South Africa in thrall as he hunted down the paedophile who raped him as a schoolboy. Now, in My Only Story, he completes his exposé of Willem Breytenbach, the teacher and later media luminary who led a predatory life. As he traces systemic failures through schools great and small, he uncovers a culture of complicity that poses a clear and present danger to the country’s children. While investigating men who prey on boys and girls, Deon devises a model that anyone can use to identify paedophiles in their midst. My Only Story is a riveting, thoughtful and often irreverent account of one man’s determination to overcome childhood trauma; to help others face their demons; and to extract some beauty from the boyhood he lost.
The Animals at Lockwood Manor by Jane Healey
Hetty needs to find a safe place to store the animals from the Natural History Museum during the war, and she finds that safe place in Lockwood Manor. At least it seemed safe enough until some of the exhibits under her care begin to go missing. Hetty must balance her determination to protect her charges with her confusing feelings for the lady of the house in this immersive 20th-century story. If you love historical fiction reads, then this riveting read is sure to keep you spellbound whether at home or away.
After years of working as an Editor and writer for popular websites like Joburg’s Darling, Cape Town’s Darling and Joburg.co.za, Crystal left her sanity and an established career in lifestyle journalism behind to follow her dream of creating a website for the intellectual and discerning woman. Today she spends her time chasing the thrill of being the first to know about ‘the next big thing’. She’ll try anything once and has been known to put her body, hair and health on the line – all in the name of research.