Happy Monday guys & girls. It feels good to be getting back into the swing of things over here. Every since I realigned my “short term goals” in my mini update post, I’ve been feeling a lot more motivated and way more organised.
Many of you will know, this year I’ve set myself the challenge of reading one book a month. Now, if you’re an avid reader, this probably looks like a little bit of a flimsy challenge. But for me, I really stopped “reading” properly once I started university. I was probably reading 2-3 books a year at max. This was mostly because I swore by page turning and I didn’t want to have to switch to for e.g. Audible, but now I’ve finally succumb. I love Audible as I’ve accepted that I honestly find it impossible to find the time to read unless I’m doing something else which is quite light at the same time (hence, audio books).
So – putting an end to all my rambling – here’s what I’ve been reading lately…
1. Prisoners of Geography: Ten Maps That Tell You Everything You Need To Know About Global Politics – by Tim Marshall
This book was actually recommended to me by my older brother, and I recommend it to all of you now that may stumble across this blog. Essentially, the book uses world maps to put together at least a few of the pieces that help to explain why geopolitics are as they are now. Of course, world maps alone will not tell you everything you need to know – but it’s definitely a good start.
The book is split into a few chapters with one geography as the focal point each time. For e.g. there’s a chapter on Russia, the US, China, Africa, etc etc.
The good stuff: My favourite chapters were those on the US, China and Indian & Pakistan. The US chapter was interesting as it really put into perspective to me what an absolutely huge and extraordinary power the US is when it comes to a number of factors such as education, tech and of course… their military (they don’t have chip and pin yet though, which… seriously baffles me). Both the US and China chapters definitely also help put into perspective all the current US-China trade war shenanigans dominating the headlines right now. The India & Pakistan chapter was interesting because I realised I knew literally zilch about the current dynamics and history of these two countries. I mean when I found out that not too long ago these two countries were actually one country, it genuinely blew my mind and I ended up researching it as soon as I hit the desk at work that morning.
The meh: Now, having Nigerian blood in me, of course I was very interested in getting to the Africa chapter. And, some of the points were definitely interesting when it came to the way the continent is built and how this has affected factors that were vital to country growth such as trade. A lot of the stuff I of course knew, such as how the continent was artificially split into countries by the Europeans and how this caused conflicts due to different cultures essentially being mashed together. That said, the chapter itself was sort of short and low in detail which was somewhat of an anti-climax but perhaps suggests the writer was not himself sure of how geography and the development of Africa as we know it actually link.
Otherwise – fascinating book and I really enjoyed it!
2. Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood – Trevor Noah
Next up, my friend recommended I read Trevor Noah’s book “born a crime”. When she first mentioned it I sort of shrugged off the suggestion. I like Trevor Noah but I assumed the book was an autobiography and if I’m going to read an autobiography, I have to be genuinely very fascinated in your life. Later on, she explained that the book was actually about what it was like for him growing up as a mixed race child in apartheid South Africa – hence the title: “born a crime”.
Well, I finished this book within a week. That’s how addictive it was. It was so well written, also funny, and a genuinely interesting insight into what things really were like in apartheid South Africa for those that were black and living through it. Also, it was interesting to see the internal conflicts Trevor himself went through being mixed race, and not really accepted at all.
After I read this I went on a search to see if Trevor Noah had released an actual autobiography, as the book didn’t touch on how he ended up getting to where he is now. I’d definitely be first to snatch that one up when it eventually comes to market! 😉
3. Heart & Hustle – Patricia Bright
Last but not least, I recently picked up Patricia Bright’s book “Heart and Hustle”. Personally, I have been watching Patricia Bright since way-back-when on YouTube – since she was “Britpopprincess” and back when Mike was still a boyfriend – it’s been a while. So although it took me some time to finally pick up the book, I was inevitably going to have to give it a read!
Overall, it was a good read. It was nice learning a bit more about Patricia Bright’s life and her journey to where she is now. And, for any of us on social media, there were some very good tips. Even if some of the tips weren’t mind blowingly new (of course), sometimes you just need a reminder of these tips to be drilled back into you. Simple things such as climbing a ladder to your own goals vs. everyone else’s, balancing full time work with many side hustles, and investing into these side hustles too.
I would recommend this mostly for those of you that are fans of Patricia Bright / those of you that follow her! It was not absolutely “ground-breaking” – but it was definitely a nice light read by someone who is good at her ish!
I have yet to pick my next read but will be starting something within the next week! I’ll probably switch back to a “heavier” / more informative read then maybe go back to a nice chick-lit to lighten the mood. If you have any suggestions – please share! 😉