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Hope you all had a very Happy Easter and are still eating chocolate!

 

In a previous blog I wrote about my love of reading, and how it started with my granda taking me to Donegall Road Library in Belfast when 5 years old.  The benefits of reading have always been clear to me, and more research over the years has shown the importance of reading every day.

 

The Queen’s Reading Room has been a source of reading inspiration for me since it began in January 2021.  Its aim is to champion literature in the UK and beyond, and since its inception there have been thirteen series with four books chosen for each series.  It’s a wonderful online space to dip into and reconnect with old favourites and discover exciting new titles.

 

Last week, an Instagram post from The Queen’s Reading Room caught my attention.  They undertook a pioneering neuroscience study to understand what happens in the brain when we read a book.

 

Key findings include –


Just 5 minutes of reading can reduce stress by nearly 20%.


Improve concentration and focus by as much as 11%.


Reading earlier in the day can help readers feel ready to tackle challenges.


Reading a work of fiction can significantly reduce feelings of loneliness.

 

So not only is reading a joyful experience, but it is also good for our health!

 

This is my list of favourites from The Queen’s Reading Room –


Restless by William Boyd


The Book of Dust by Philip Pullman


The Light Years by Elizabeth Jane Howard


Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie


Hamnet by Maggie O’Farrell


Atonement by Ian McEwan


The Book Thief by Markus Zusak


Labyrinth by Kate Mosse


Charlotte Gray by Sebastian Faulks


The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd


My Family and Other Animals by Gerald Durrell


The Secret History by Donna Tartt


The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver

 

I hope my list gives you inspiration or reconnects you with an old favourite.

 

I’m always looking for new book recommendations so please leave a comment with your favourite.

 

 

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