From Canberra, the Australian Capital, Juliette moved to Morocco fresh out of high school on a gap year, in the spirit of adventure. She has since spent the year travelling around Morocco, Spain and France. Juliette is passionate about literature and poetry, also frequently writing her own in her spare time. She loves to travel and make friends from lots of different cultures. She hopes to study journalism in the future.
Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor Frankl
“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of human freedoms – to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”
Although this book was written seventy years ago, it is a timeless testament to how much one can endure. Written by a renowned psychologist, he recounts his chilling time in Auschwitz but this is simply a backdrop for a larger message: if one has meaning in life, they can be resilient through anything. As Frankl eloquently puts it, “Life is never made unbearable by circumstances, but only by lack of meaning and purpose.
Similar to the Mayshad Woman philosophy, he stresses that if you are true to who you are, your own values and what pushes you to keep going and don’t let negative forces and circumstances affect this, you can achieve and endure more than you ever thought possible.
Giving the reader a new perspective on life in a way few books can, this is must read book to feel inspired this summer.
Far & Away: How Travel Can Change The World, Andrew Solomon
“You cannot understand the otherness of places you have not encountered. If all young adults were required to spend two weeks in a foreign country, two-thirds of the world’s diplomatic problems could be solved. It wouldn’t matter what country they visited or what they did during their stays.”
Andrew Solomon in Zambia, 1997 (Photo: Luca Trovato, Courtesy of Andrew Solomon)
Written by a renowned reporter, this is an ode to travel and the effect it has on the world. Over 30 years, across 7 continents and 83 countries, Solomon was a witness to some of the most fascination cultural shifts in the last 20 years.
His chronicles span from his time spent with Russian artists at the end of the cold war in 1988, the fall of the Taliban in Afghanistan in 2002, to more recent events like the crime crackdown in Rio de Janeiro 2014, seen firsthand from the favelas. He finds himself amongst those who live through hardship most can’t fathom, and draws inspiration from their resilience to deal with his own demons.
Written with incredible compassion and insight, with more extensive travels than can be summarised here, this book will make you laugh and also move you deeply. Solomon’s experience immersing himself into different cultures across the globe will inspire you broaden your horizon and give into your wanderlust this summer.
Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer
‘The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun.”
Into the Wild tells the moving story of Christopher McCandless, a young man determined to break free of his life and forge his own path. Christopher was an exceptionally intelligent and idyllic man, who after finishing college was bound for law school but instead donated the rest of his education fund, 24,000 dollars, to Oxfam and vanished from his former life.
He then becomes extremely elusive, living under pseudonymous and traveling across the country. The author, Jon Krakauer, attempts to piece together what became of Chris, and what made him who he was. With anecdotes from people who met him on the road, the reader becomes deeply invested in his journey.
Chris had one final goal: to go to Alaska and live off the land in complete isolation. Although his story ends tragically, his unshakeable determination to reach his goal and truly live by his morals is deeply inspiring and has mystified people for years. Dive into his story this summer for a truly inspiring page-turner.
I Am Malala, by Malala Yousafzai
“One child, one teacher, one book, one pen can change the world.” Malala Yousafzai
Where better to look for inspiration than from the memoir of the youngest Nobel Price Winner, Malala Yousafzai. At only 11 years old, Malala became an outspoken activist in Pakistan about women’s rights to education.
She began writing a blog about her life as a girl under Taliban rule, but almost paid the ultimate price. At only 15, she was on her way from school when the Taliban stopped her bus and she was shot at point blank range. Defying all expectations, she survived.
Despite the horrific attempts to silence her, Malala was only more determined to speak out for her country and women everywhere. She has only become more vocal, and now her voice and story are heard across the world. She is living proof that just because you are only one person, you still have the power to change the world. As she puts it, “When the whole world is silent, even one voice becomes powerful.” This book will inspire you to speak out for what you believe in this summer, and never silence yourself for other people.