Wimbledon is approaching and the music festivals are underway. Our summer holidays are close and time to select inspiring books to read on the plane and the beach to boost our self esteem and plan for the second half of 2017.
Why do naturally talented people frequently fail to reach their potential while other far less gifted individuals go on to achieve amazing things? The secret to outstanding achievement is not talent, but a passionate persistence. In other words, grit.
MacArthur Genius Award-winning psychologist Angela Duckworth shares fascinating new revelations about who succeeds in life and why. Based on her cutting-edge research, Duckworth shows how many people achieve remarkable things not just by relying on innate natural talent, but by practising what she calls grit. She then offers a Grit Formula to help anyone to become more gritty, focusing on six key factors: hope, effort, precision, passion, ritual and prioritisation.
Leaping past clichés such as ‘success is all about hard work’, Grit offers a fresh and motivating way to climb to heights far beyond what natural talent would predict.
A visceral coming-of-age tale from the young woman who dared to stand up to a kingdom of men. Best known for her campaign work for women’s rights, including the Women2Drive campaign, this is Manal al-Sharif’s fiercely intimate memoir.
Manal al-Sharif was born in Mecca the year fundamentalism took hold in Saudi Arabia. As a young girl she would burn her brother’s boy band CDs in the oven because music was haram: forbidden by Islamic law. By her twenties she was a computer security engineer. But as she became older, the unequal way in which women are treated became too much to bear: she was branded a slut for talking to male colleagues at work; her school-age brother had to chaperone her on business trips and, while she kept a car in her garage, she was forbidden from driving down Saudi streets. Her personal rebellion began the day she got behind the wheel of a car: an act that ultimately led to her arrest and imprisonment. Manal’s Women2Drive campaign inspired other women to take action. Manal has been lauded by the Oslo Freedom Forum, described by Time Magazine as one of the most 100 most influential people in the world, and she was awarded the Vaclav Havel Prize for Creative Dissent.
Daring to Drive is an account of Manal al-Sharif’s fight for equality in an unequal society. It is also a celebration of resilience, the power of education and the strength of female solidarity in the face of hardship.
Britain’s rise to global dominance from the 16th century onwards owed as much to the vision and creative energies of traders, merchants, industrialists and bankers as it did to wars of conquest fought by empire-building military men. Dragons tells the story of British business endeavour through the lives of ten titans of commerce. Beginning with the Tudor merchants who transformed England’s economy via trade with the New World, Liam Byrne traces a golden line of British entrepreneurial genius through men such as Thomas Pitt, saviour of the East India Company; financier Nathan Rothschild, creator of the modern bond market; ‘ethical capitalist’ George Cadbury; and William Lever, brand-builder, philanthropist, and creator of Britain’s first great multinational. At the start of the 21st century Britain remains a major economic power. Dragons is both a rousing celebration of British business acumen and a fascinatingly informative narrative of a neglected but essential strand of our island’s story.
“It was the day I put the tennis balls into the tumble dryer that I realised I thought about tennis a little bit differently.”
What happens when you find you have exceptional children? Do you panic? Put your head in the sand? Or risk everything and jump in head first?
As mother to tennis champions Jamie and Andy Murray, Scottish National Coach, coach of the Fed Cup, and general all-round can-do woman of wonder, Judy Murray is the ultimate role model for believing in yourself and reaching out to ambition. As a parent, coach, leader, she is an inspiration who has revolutionised British tennis. From the soggy community courts of Dunblane to the white heat of Centre Court at Wimbledon, Judy Murray’s extraordinary memoir charts the challenges she has faced, from desperate finances and growing pains to entrenched sexism. We all need a story of ‘yes we can‘ to make us believe great things are possible. This is that story.