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BooksSelf Care

How to become a better reader (plus some of my fave books)

By March 28, 20237 Comments

My Dad used to tell us kids that TV rotted your brains. So, we didn’t have a television. 

My older brother and I used to go next door to watch their television.

Except, we didn’t go through their front door. No, no, no. Too easy.

Instead, we climbed onto the roof of our house. Taking a few deep breaths, and a few steps backwards, we’d start sprinting. We’d build up enough speed and momentum and taking a leap of faith we’d run –  flying through the air – and land on the roof of our neighbours house. 

We’d crawl across the roof, as stealth as you could be as a six and seven year old, and we’d watch the television through their skylight.

Understandably, this method of watching TV didn’t last long. 

So what did we do without TV?

I explored the bush, I played down the beach, I sang badly, I went surfing, I explored rockpools, I went running, and I read. 

And when I look at photos of me as a kid, I always have a book either in my hands or in close proximity. 

So I’m a reader.

I love reading. I find it’s an escape to another world, it gives an insight into different perspectives, and sometimes it’s just entertaining. 

And it’s something I’m trying to pass onto my kids. We go to our local library every week. Sometimes my boys are interested, sometimes they spend the whole time playing Lego. Annnd sometimes they play up and wrestle and we leave after ten minutes. 

Maybe you’re a reader. Maybe you’re not.
And if you’re not, but you’d like to be, can I give you some tips? 

I shared them on an episode of my podcast.

You can listen right here.

Oh! And if you want some book suggestions?

Here’s some of my recent faves:

Gone Girl — Gillian Flynn
Scrublands — Chris Hammer
School for Good Mothers — Jessamine Chan
Where the Crawdads Sing — Delia Owens
Big Little Lies — Liane Moriarty
The Vanishing Half — Brit Bennett
Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo — Taylor Jenkins Reid
Little Fires Everywhere — Celeste Ng
Lessons in Chemistry — Bonnie Garmus
The Bluest Eye — Toni Morrison
Educated — Tara Westover
The Guest List — Lucy Foley
All the Light we Cannot See — Anthony Doerr
The Paper Palace — Miranda Cowley Heller
A Little Life — Hanya Yanagihara
The Dry — Jane Harper
Hamnet — Maggie O’Farrell
Too Much Lip — Melissa Lucashenko
The Great Alone — Kristin Hannah
The Alice Network — Kate Quinn
Breadfruit — Celestine Vaite (one of my Mum’s books!)


  • Julie says:

    Turia, I’m loving your running program and now I’m even happier to learn that you’re a reader as well and you have Anthony Doerr on your list and so many other great books you’ve made my night, thank you 😊
    Ps. I also loved the live chat in RWT tonight.

  • Jo says:

    Thank you so much…I am going to try to become an avid reader to take my mind off things 🙏

  • Simone Kerwick says:

    Thank you Turia. I appreciate you putting this list together. You are such an amazing woman and love your view on life and your resilience is simply incredible. Much love to you and Michael and the boys 😘

  • Dawn says:

    I love your book list, we’ve got very similar taste.

  • Cherylyn Martin says:

    I have loved reading as long as I can remember also.
    The books on your list that I recognise are fairly recent.
    Are any of them from your childhood?
    I love a good child/young person read. They allow my mind to escape back to being a child.

  • Fiona says:

    Hi Turia,
    My surname is literally Reading (pronounced redding though – husband’s English ancestory). I am a voracious reader and used to be an avid runner until an undiagnosed back injury saw me give it away. I achieved my goal of running a marathon by the time I was 40 in my home country of Scotland (ran the Edinburgh marathon – dead flat not an incline anywhere). I turn 50 next year and my injury has flared up again without the joy of running. While the physio was needling me like a pin cushion yesterday my thoughts turned once again the freedom, clarity and catharsis that running gave me and what has been missing the last tumultuous and hectic few (7) years of my life. The physio told me running again by 50 is achievable with a ground up, strength and conditioning approach. You have inspired me to rediscover the love of running. Because you’re absolutely right, nothing beats even a quick 20 minute run.

  • Deb says:

    Awesome reading your emails, Turia. I’ve always been a keen reader. I used to read a lot of fiction. Now it’s all self help books for me, and podcasts.