You’ve survived a month of lockdown, you’ve cleaned the house from top to bottom, finished the DIY and baked all the bread you can possibly eat. Maybe it’s time to put your feet up with a good book? Contrary Life brings you five fresh suggestions, to take you to another place and keep those spirits up whilst you take a bit of time out…
Time’s Tide is a beautiful novel from Adrian Harvey, the bestselling author of Being Someone and The Cursing Stone. Time’s Tide is a compelling story of loss, belonging and the silence between fathers and sons.
A father and son struggle to overcome the distance between them. Each is drawn irresistibly to an unforgiving landscape, one that has been the scene of tragedy and loss. The son’s return to the northern shore he abandoned as a young man promises the chance to heal the rift. But is it too late?
Arni left his remote corner of Iceland as soon as he could, seeking opportunities beyond winter and fishing. Married to an English woman, he builds a life as a successful scientist but can never quite escape the pull of the West Fjords and bleak landscape of his birth, nor shake the guilt he feels towards his distant father. When Eirikur goes missing, he sets off to find him on a windswept spit of land lost in an angry ocean.
Out of the Blu
This science-fiction comedy thriller from Vitali Vitaliev examines the idea of the multiverse via three almost identical couples. Two of the couples have slipped through the cracks from other universes and find themselves trapped in a world, which is almost – but not quite – like their own. Through the concept of the multiverse, the book explores the eternal question of how well we know the ones we love.
In their ever so slightly alien world, relationships between the characters become strained and new attachments are formed. The many facets of what makes humans exceptional are put under the microscope and Vitaliev seamlessly weaves serious topics and undertones with comedic episodes throughout the book.
Jennifer Juniper – A Journey Beyond the Muse
This memoir by Jenny Boyd is a moving story of her extraordinary life. It follows the anxieties and dreams of a girl coming-of-age, to reaching womanhood and finally claiming her true self.
Boyd’s extraordinary life is the stuff of novels and movies. It has been peopled by luminaries from Princess Diana to the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi; legendary bands from The Beatles to Fleetwood Mac; and set in exotic locations from Kenya and London, to India. She inspired Donovan’s famous song Jennifer Juniper and was a top fashion model, alongside her sister Pattie, in ‘Swinging London’ at its trendy epicentre in Carnaby Street.
Girl Gone Greek
Girl Gone Greek is a poignant, relatable and realistic portrayal of life in a new culture that will make you want to take the plunge, learn a new skill, start a new life and fall head over heels in love with Greece and Europe.
Rachel is finding it increasingly difficult to ignore her sister’s derision, society’s silent wagging finger and her father’s advancing years. She’s travelled the world, but now finds herself at a crossroads at an age where most people would stop globetrotting and settle. She’s never been one to conform to the nine-to-five lifestyle, so why should she start now? Was it wrong to love the freedom and independence a single life provided, to put off the search for Mr Right and the children? Perhaps she could find the time for one last adventure…
Girl Gone Greek is a charming story interwoven with the reality of a changing world, none less so in Europe. Through her writing, Rebecca A Hall lays bare the many misconceptions associated with Greece.
Girl Gone Greek by Rebecca A Hall is out now.
N-stinctive – The Power of Natural Intelligence
For those of you struggling with working from home, our last suggestion is a non-fiction book by Rosie Tomkins. Tomkins’ new book is about unlocking the power of ‘natural intelligence’. N-stinctive is an inspirational book that can be read in a day and applied immediately to develop yourself and others.
Tomkins’ book introduces better ways to lead and deliver a competitive edge in today’s fast-moving, increasingly disconnected and uncertain world. As an alternative to traditional methods, Tomkins unlocks the power of the natural world to provide strength and confidence to people who are shouldering huge responsibility.