Read to Inspire

Today I was asked if I like to read. Hell yes! I am a total book worm. Sometimes I’ll be so engrossed in a book I will ignore phone calls and tell friends I have plans for the evening. Which isn’t technically lying… Reading a book alone is totally a legitimate plan 😉 I go through phases where I read a lot. My current book situation is: obsessed. I am such a total book nerd at the moment. I have read (and reread) so many super inspiring stories recently that I want to share a few of my favourites with you guys. Who knows you might be desperate for some new book inspiration or just looking for something new to read. My favourite books may soon become your favourite books too (let me know if they do). Here are my top 5 books that I think you would really bloody enjoy..

  1. Born to Run – Christopher McDougall.
    I first read this book whilst I was studying in Manchester. I had just taken up running and was way too focussed on the minutes and the miles to ever really enjoy myself. This book taught me to run wild and free and inspired me to try barefoot running. I’ve now bought a total of four copies of this book since people keep ‘borrowing’ this from me then leaving the country! I must have read it about five times now. The book focusses on several quirky characters, each running for their own reasons and each with a super cool story. My favourite character by far is Jenn Shelton. She is my real life hero and I have heard rumours that she is currently writing a book of her own which I can’t freaking wait to get my paws on. You can stalk her on instagram and be super amused by her tweets here.
  2. Tracks – Robyn Davidson.
    A real life story of a woman’s epic adventure across the Australian desert, accompanied by her dog and a trio of camels that she trained herself. This amazing book has also been turned into a beautiful film that I would highly recommend watching. This book taught me that if you really want something, you will find a way to make it happen. When I was young I was once told, ‘anything you can believe and perceive, you can achieve.’ I think this is true of Robyn’s story. She dared to dream big and defied the people who said she was crazy by making her dream come true.
  3. Wild – Cheryl Strayed.
    Another real life story of about a woman with some serious sisu. Devastated by the loss of her mother, Cheryl found herself lost in a world of drugs, meaningless sex and misery. She makes the decision to walk her way back to happiness by taking a solo hike across the Pacific Crest Trail, 11000 miles of harsh terrain which sees her crossing deserts, snowfields and mountain passes. I read this book just before I took on the less scary Offa’s Dyke Path last year and I found her words to be a great comfort whenever I felt a little scared or alone in my tent.

    I knew that if I allowed fear to overtake me, my journey was doomed. Fear, to a great extent, is born of a story we tell ourselves, and so I chose to tell myself a different story from the one women are told. I decided I was safe. I was strong. I was brave. Nothing could vanquish me.

  4. The Whole Story, A walk around the world – Ffyona Campbell.
    The true and gritty story of Ffyona Campbell’s 11 year journey of 20,000 miles on foot around the world. Ffyona lives through a turbulent adolescence and goes on to begin her epic and hugely challenging journey. She endures so much hardship throughout her journey, this book will be sure to bring tears to your eyes. It’s not all sad though she has some truly amazing experiences and finishes her journey feeling satisfied and whole. I devoured this book in a couple of days and will be sure to read it again in the future. Ffyona now teaches foraging classes in Devon, I am definitely going to try and join her for an afternoon this summer. You can find out more about her foraging classes here Wild Food Walks

    You can be whatever you want in the western world except one thing: you cannot be what you really are; you cannot be animal.

  5. Natural Born Heroes – Christopher McDougall.
    Christopher McDougall’s hotly anticipated second book did not fail to disappoint. Here he tells amazing tales of extreme endurance and survival against all odds. I’m always rooting for the underdog so this book was right up my street, it is full of tales of dirty tricksters, local heroes and peasants triumphing against the big guns. If you liked Born to Run you’re sure to love this book.

Questions for you…

  • Have you read any of these books?
  • Would you recommend any books for me?
  • Are you eagerly waiting for any books to be published?


Happy flippin’ pancake day,

Olivia ♥


3 thoughts on “Read to Inspire

  1. I recently read Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand. I don’t know if it is necessarily categorized as a travel book, but it is a real-life account of Louis Zamperini’s journey of survival during WWII. Happy reading! ☺

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