Relaxing Reads for Lockdown 2021
I don’t know about you, but for me 2021 started quite stressfully. Not only with the return to work, but also – of course – the UK Lockdown. I decided to distract myself by throwing myself into books, and as such, I’ve created a list of relaxing reads for lockdown 2021.
The Duke & I by Julia Quinn (Bridgerton Books)
Anyone who has Netflix is guaranteed to have heard of Bridgerton, and probably at least 50% of them have watched the new series. I binged it in two sittings, and have since read three of the Julia Quinn Bridgerton books. The first book in the Bridgerton series is The Duke & I, followed by The Viscount Who Loved Me, An Offer from a Gentleman, Romancing Mr Bridgerton, To Sir Phillip With Love and three more which I’ve yet to buy.
These are regency romps with real humour and an addictive writing style which is really hard to put down. I read The Viscount Who Loved Me and An Offer from a Gentleman in two days! They are so easy, and ridiculously relaxing – even if some of the plot lines are problematic. I still highly recommend them, particularly if you’re in a reading slump as they’re a lot of fun.
I promise not all of these books are set during the regency era. I read Pride & Prejudice during the first lockdown and the experience was amazing. Not only because this is a great book, but because it has the ability to take you into a romantic, witty and relatable setting; perfect when you’re stuck in lockdown! It’s surprisingly easy to read, as such it’s a great read for those readers who are a little scared of classic literature. Plus, it’s a great one to tick off the bucket list.
I’m no stranger to Greek Mythology, but even I learned a ton of things in this amazing books about the origin of Greek Myth characters by Stephen Fry. I highly recommend listening to the audiobook version of Mythos, as Stephen Fry has a strangely relaxing voice. This is a great book for those that want to learn something during lockdown, but don’t want to sign up for a course or order a kit of some kind.
I’m not the biggest fan of J.K. Rowling right now, but Harry Potter is way bigger than the author these days. As such, who wouldn’t want to enter the world of Hogwarts during lockdown? It’s easy-to-read fantasy, and for many of us a classic of our childhood that will likely remind us of better times.
This book has something for everyone. Historical fiction, LGBT themes, romance, mystery, friendship, movies… so much. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo follows Evelyn, a stunning American actress in the golden era of movies in the 1950s. The story flows like silk, and for anyone who misses the world of cinema and the glamour of Oscar season it’s the perfect read in January-February.
I recently listened to The BBC Radio 4 Dramatisation of the entire Chronicles of Narnia and it was a brilliant escape from reality. Yes, there is a ton of religious rhetoric in these books. But, if you ignore that and focus on the characters it’s a brilliant series to get your teeth into.
If you’re only planning on reading one of these books I highly recommend starting with The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe – even though it’s the second book in the series. But if you want a long-term read to to truly pass the time, then read the whole chronicles in the correct order! That way each story is connected, and it’s amazing how it all fits together – Narnia becomes a character in itself!
This is a non-fiction book that Marianne Power wrote after she chose to dedicate one year of her life to following well-known self-help books. She chose one book a month and acted out some of the elements that the book recommends. It’s funny, relatable and surprising, as some of the self-help books are actually beneficial to her way of life. It will make you see self-help in a whole new light. Great for those into the New Year, New Me mentality.
What relaxing reads would you remember for lockdown, and 2021 in general? I tend to journey towards classics, mostly to get away from the reminder of modern day.
Let me know your book recommendations in the comments below. Happy reading.