Summer Reading List: 5 Books that Transform & Inspire

There is magic in the summer. People frolic, oceans roar and the world becomes illuminated.  There is so much room to live, so much lightness in our beings, so much room to grow. Transformations happen in the summer. Evolution speeds up as our beings shed physical and mental weight. We reconstruct as transformations solidify and assimilate within. The best summer accessory is a book that will expand and fortify character.

1. You Are Not Your Brain by Jeffrey M. Schwartz

The science of brain plasticity is not new. Yet, the book’s thesis on the power of the mind over the brain is intriguing. Through will power, Schwartz shows us how we can rewire our brain. The book contains a step-by-step, scientifically sound program to consciously reshape our thought processes and habits. Schwartz asks the reader to introspect deeply about their goals, values and personality while identifying habitual responses which are misaligned with one’s spiritual core. The reader is then coached on how to change behaviors to accurately reflect their most authentic beliefs.  Fascinating and applicable, this is a transformative guide led by neuroplasticity.

2. The Top Five Regrets of the Dying: A Life Transformed by the Dearly Departing by Bronnie Ware

Reflection is a critical component in developing authentic and happy lives. This book was written by a professional caregiver who observed the greatest regrets of the dying. She lovingly recounts the profound grief and restlessness caused by five repeating regrets. Her stories serve as both a warning on the importance of life’s critical decisions and as a compass to the principles that should guide us.

3. The Seat of the Soul by Gary Zukav

This is a fascinating exploration into the source of authentic power. Gary Zukav meditates on the impact of our intention and how real power comes from our spirit. Jay-Z and Oprah Winfrey both rank this among the books that influenced their lives.

4. Coco Chanel by Axel Madsen

As the feminist saying goes, ‘well behaved women seldom make history’. This biography is a glimpse into one such ill behaved woman who dared to be different, eccentric and break all the rules. She lived a life that was unnatural for women of that era and then changed the world. Exploring the lives of such trail blazers never fails to inspire.

5. The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari by Robin Sharma

An immersive fable about living with greater courage and developing a more fulfilling life. Aspirational and inspiring, this leisurely read leaves much to chew on.

Photograph courtesy of HMH Kids

  • Karen C
    August 20, 2015

    Great list of books! The Coco Chanel biography seems right up my alley 🙂 Thanks for sharing this with your readers. I wanted to recommend a book I think you might really enjoy (and feel inspired from) called “The Pedestriennes” by author Harry Hall ( During the Industrial Revolution the sport of endurance walking was taking off (of course it was hugely dominated by men) until a group of women, calling themselves the Pedestriennes, took over. Endurance walking was a BEYOND difficult sport that required the competition to last for days and weeks. Madame “Ada” Anderson (top walker among men and women) walked 1,008 miles and it took her one week. Her feet were so swollen they had to wrap them in turpentine and raw beef! The book tells the story of many successful women endurance walkers and the controversy and difficulty that followed their career choices. I cannot recommend this book enough. It is a fascinating look into a sport I had no idea existed! Hope you will give it a read

    • shivikasinha
      April 3, 2016

      Karen, thank you for your very kind words and apologies for my delayed response. It means a lot to me that you’ve read my story and commented. I’m definitely going to read The Pedestriennes, thank you for the recommendation. What a fascinating story of grit and resilience.

      I’d love to stay in touch and please don’t hesitate to reach out to me via any platform. Also, if there are other issues/ideas you’d like to read about on my blog, please let me know. I wish you much love and luck.


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