Happy Easter to those of you who celebrate!
As some of you may know from my Goodreads banner (which you might/should see here on your right), I am a prolific reader as well as writer, having read 75 books in 2020 and am already on to book number 13 for 2021.
I am frequently asked for book recommendations from friends and so I thought it might be fun for the collective “us” to start a monthly book club, where I can jot down my thoughts on what my top picks for the month are, and you can comment with yours in the hope we all might find some new and interesting reads, or, indeed, tell me if you think my choices are rubbish!!
I am really open minded when it comes to book selection, whether fiction or not: classics, philosophy, chick lit, indie authors, true crime, imagined crime or just anything that makes me think once I am finished.
I will confess now that I have traditionally struggled a bit with sci-fi and some fantasy (as opposed to erotic!) novels but find that I can cope with a moderate to high degree of dystopia. Up for the challenge though!
I almost always finish a book even if I am not enjoying it – though I had to admit defeat with Wolf Hall – as wonderful as I can see it is, it felt like I was trudging through treacle reading it or when listening on audiobook!
I will probably come back later in April with a fuller run down of my top pick/s but to kick us off, I wanted to recommend and easy-link you in to this thought provoking read below, which I finished last night and had to give five stars to:
Religion for Atheists, by Alain de Botton:
I was already familiar with De Botton’s reputation for being a modern philosopher from having read another one of his books: The Course of Love, which covered the story of one couple’s marriage over the decades in a kind of pseudo-fictional read whereby the commonplace psychology of their ups and downs was flagged and elaborated upon. Whilst interesting, I didn’t find it a particularly groundbreaking read in terms of thinking and so only gave it a three star review on Goodreads. I was slightly apprehensive about trying another De Botton, but the blurb on the back piqued my interest and I couldn’t resist.
Thankfully, this time Alain delivered what he promised. Religion for Atheists fascinated me and I just can’t stop thinking about it. Atheist, non-atheist, or something in between; in my view, this book will give you pause for thought about the impact that religion has had on the development of humankind over the centuries and, furthermore, the impact of the role of secularism has as an increasingly popular modern day objective as sought by a number of countries today.
If you are a regular reader of my posts, you will know that the exploration of my own spirituality (or not), often plays heavily on my mind. This book has helped me move my thinking along in so many ways and so I would strongly urge any fellow amateur philosophers to consider reading this book. If nothing else, you will finish it having some fantastic new talking points to share with friends over your Friday night Zoom catch-ups (please end soon lockdown!)
If you have read or do decide to go for this book, I would love to hear what you think of it once finished in the comments below!
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