Summer reading is one of our favourite pastimes and now that we’re expecting lots of sunshine in the coming days and weeks – it’s the perfect time to stock up on some new books to keep you company on warm afternoons. Right now, when things are going back to normal, you might be feeling a little bit demotivated about what’s yet to come, which is why we thought this would be the perfect time to round up five non-fiction books that will keep you inspired this August. From learning about the innate human desire for kindness to celebrating some of the most successful black women in Britain, these are your next must-reads…
1. Rag and Bone by Lisa Woollett
Rag and Bone traces the story of our rubbish, and, through it, our history of consumption. Throughout a series of beachcombing and mudlarking walks beginning in the Thames to the sea around Cornwall, Lisa Woollett also tells the story of her family of which some made their living from London’s waste. This book is a mixture of social history, nature writing and a family memoir where we can learn from what we’ve thrown away and think more about what we leave behind.
2. Humankind by Rutger Bregman
From the author of bestseller Utopia for Realists, comes this extraordinary, uplifting history of human capacity for kindness. Contesting the idea that we are innately self-seeking and chiefly driven by egotistical goals, this fresh, urgent and inspiring read shows how the recognition of kindness and altruism around us – and within us – can help us to achieve real positive change.
3. Outraged: Why Everyone is Shouting and No One is Talking by Ashley Dotty Charles
In this book, exploring the insatiable taste for outrage in today’s world, BBC presenter and DJ Ashley ‘Dotty’ Charles calls for a return to civility. Many exploit the outrage of others in order to gain power but by shouting about everything, we are creating a world where outrage is without consequence. In order to enact change and become more effective online, we must learn to channel our responses. This is the essential guide to living through the age of outrage.
4. Coming Undone by Terry White
To everyone else, Terri White appeared to be living the dream, named one of Folio’s Top Women in US Media and accruing further awards for her work as a magazine editor. But, although her success defied all expectations, in reality she was rapidly skidding towards a mental health crisis that would land her in a psychiatric ward. Coming Undone is Terri’s documentation of her unravelling and her precarious navigation back from a life in pieces – an urgent and necessary read for our times.
5. Slay in Your Lane by Yomi Adegoke and Elizabeth Uviebinene
From education to work to dating, this inspirational, honest and provocative book recognises and celebrates the strides black women have already made, while providing practical advice for those who want to do the same and forge a better, visible future. Illustrated with stories from the best friend authors’ lives and using interviews with dozens of the most successful black women in Britain – Slay in your Lane is essential reading for black women inspired to find success in every aspect of their lives.
Need the perfect spot to read your new book? Read our latest post: Pack The Hamper: London’s 11 Best Picnic Spots For Summer….