Fragility, suspense, disassociation and murder are all words that come to mind in Didion’s debut. A haunting tale of a splintered marriage set against the backdrop of timeless childhood memories and Californian history sparks feelings of deep isolation. Relatable in times of social distance!
“You are growing into consciousness, and my wish for you is that you feel no need to constrict yourself to make other people comfortable.” In a series of honest essays to his son, Ta-Nehisi Coates offers a framework for our nation’s racial history and current crisis. He grapples with the past and present, the terribleness and simultaneous beauty of America, and charts a path forward — away from the comforting narrative of divine law, away from tales of irrepressible justice.
Through a beautifully woven series of personal stories and reflections, Kimmerer investigates environmentalism and botany through the lense of indigenous North American cultures and traditions. In short, the awakening of a greater ecological consciousness requires a reciprocal relationship with nature and other beings.
Prepare yourself for a heavy read and a nuanced take on neoliberalism as a tool to remake humans into the image of homo oeconomicus. Wendy Brown’s compelling argument brings to light an image of a demos reduced to growth rates, investment climates and credit ratings. Critical of the future of democracy under neoliberal rationality, Brown makes a case for a new common sense. Trust me on this one — you’ll come away with thoughts that don’t leave.
Kamel Daoud – an Algerian writer – offers a powerful rebuttal and critique on the work of Albert Camus’ The Stranger. Set against the backdrop of colonized Algeria, Daoud uses an indigenous voice to retell Camus’ popular story. The result? Algeria becomes more than a platform for Camus’ existential questions. Amid a story of identity crisis, Algeria itself becomes the question.
A classic read in the realm of meditation and self-improvement, Tolle breaks down a series of strategies to live in the present, observe the mind and cease judgement of one’s thoughts. According to Tolle, pain comes from resisting the aspects of life one cannot change. Living in any moment other than the present is thus useless and counteractive to fulfillment.