Books That Changed My Life

Honestly, such a large part of my (limited) free time is spent reading. I love jumping into new books, but there will always be those books that I come back to, and read over and over again because they’re so amazing and life-changing. Reading for fun is cool and all, but I absolutely love when I can fall in love with and relate to the message that a book is portraying. So many books teach us some freaking amazing things, and a lot of us can learn from them.    

There are five specific books that have been literal life-changers for me, whether it be changing how I see myself, others, or the world. These are the five books that changed my life:

  1. 1. Turtles All the Way Down by John Green

    John Green is by far my all-time favourite author; I literally own every single one of his books and I’m not even joking. It’s basically about main character Aza’s mental health journey with her Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Even though a lot of the story seems to focus on a love story forming between two of the characters, the main focus of the story is definitely the way Aza starts to understand and cope with her mental illness. As someone who suffers from their own mental illness, I really appreciated Green’s very real representation of the realities of mental illness. Mental illness is something that isn’t talked about enough, which definitely needs to change. I feel like this book is an amazing starting point for sparking the conversation about mental illness.

  2. 2. Hunger by Roxane Gay

    Hunger is a fascinating memoir written by a strong-minded woman who struggles with her own body image. Her story relates closely to me as someone who also struggles with their own body image. Throughout her book she discusses the various times in which she struggles with her relationship with her own body. In a society where a certain “ideal” body type is continuously being pushed by the media, it sadly becomes easy for a lot of folks to feel insecure about their body types. It doesn’t help when a lot of times a straight size brand does “plus size” clothing, and they don’t change the configuration of the clothing to look flattering on other body types. Gay discusses the language that is used to talk about weight and obesity, as well as all of the “norms” versus actualities of her life. The overall focus of this book is the way in which sexism informs girls' and women’s ideas about how they should look and act. This book definitely helped me in coming to terms with accepting my own body image.

  3. 3. Girl, Stop Apologizing by Rachel Hollis

    Rachel Hollis explains the importance of putting yourself above all else in your life. This book dives deeper into her self care practices and provides some tips and tricks to be a happier and more successful version of yourself. Life is far more difficult when you are constantly worrying about every aspect. She focuses so much on being a strong, beautiful, and independent woman and how powerful it can be. This whole book gives off some beautiful energy, and for me, it was the best book to read when I was finally ready to make some changes and focus on my life.

  4. 4. The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls

    Jeannette Walls’ memoir focuses on how easy it is to judge a book by its cover. We rarely stop to think about how our first impressions of people could be way off. Everyone has their own stories about how they got to where they are, and we have no right to judge people before knowing them. We can’t look inside someone’s mind to see what is there, they aren’t made of glass. Walls’ memoir shows what some people are like beneath the surface and how they became the way they are. This booked helped me so much in realizing how harmful assumptions can be, as well as the importance of truly getting to know someone for who they are.

  5. 5. A Beautiful Composition of Broken by R.H. Sin

    Honestly, I love all of R.H. Sin’s books, but this one is definitely my favourite. Through his abstract poetry, he writes about various times at which he felt “broken” and the times he was feeling better than usual. When I can’t sleep at 3am, his books tend to be what I will pick up. I love how he brings the reader on this rollercoaster of emotions with him. The poems are filled with many moments that most people can relate to and understand. His wording is always beautiful and a pleasure to read for sure. If you need a book to put you in your feelings, this is definitely the book for you.

These are five books I will always read, no matter how many times I've read them before; these are the books that changed my life. I hope everyone can give them a chance like I did, and fall in love with them as much as I have. Happy reading!