Wednesday 31 January 2018


O's Little Guide to the Big Questions by The Editors of O

I'm really into inspirational reads at the moment; books that make you think and give you a greater appreciation of life. I love how this journey and exploration has led me to discover all kinds of reads that I didn't necessarily gravitate towards before but I am now absolutely in love with. O's Little Guide series is one of those. Up until a few weeks ago I wasn't aware of their existence but after devouring the latest thought-provoking installment in just a day and a half I'm already eyeing the rest of the series, because these little books are true treasures that will enrich my life (and my book shelves, because they're very pretty as well ♥).

O's Little Guide to the Big Questions is an extremely well-curated collection of empowering non-fiction essays, short stories and quotes that have previously appeared in O, the Oprah Magazine. They cover topics such as life and death, religion and spirituality, loss and love, and finding happiness and fulfillment, in raw and evocative ways.

An eclectic mix of authors have contributed to this stunning book, each with their own unique voice and story to tell, creating a hugely varied collection of stories. Though they all work really well-together, complimenting each other in unexpected ways. Some are thought provoking, others are inspiring and yet others extremely moving in their brazen honesty, especially in those moments where the author shares a personal tragedy.

Yet despite the sheer variety of writers and subjects present within this little tome, each of the contributions felt hugely relatable. It's a testament to the incredible authors for turning their experiences into words that will not only make the reader think, but that also create a beautiful connection. This is especially admirable considering the short length of most of the stories; each word and each sentence carefully selected to leave a powerful impact upon their recipient.

It is impossible to pick a favourite from all of these beautiful contributors as I loved each one for different reasons and there wasn't a single one I did not feel some sort of a connection with. However, there are some sentences throughout that were particularly memorable to me, including:

"You can't discount how hard it'll be to leave your bad marriage or stop writing your bad book, but if you're unhappy, nothing can get better as long as the status quo stays the status quo." – Walk Away by Elissa Schappell

"The art of being helpful is behaving as if everything we do matters – because we never know which things might." –  Helpfulness by Gloria Steinem

"Once I stopped wasting energy on things I didn't want to do, I suddenly had head space for all the things I used to say I didn't have time for." – Give Yourself a Happiness Raise by Margarita Bertsos

Even on their own, disconnected from their respective stories, these quotes leave a powerful impact. Needless to say the full essays and shorts they're taken from are even more excellent and will most definitely provide plenty of inspiring food for thought.

The big questions discussed within this book aren't things that feel beyond comprehension for the average person, such as 'What truly happened to the dinosaurs?' or 'How much time do we have left on earth?'. Instead they're far more important questions for you as an individual that force you to think and ask yourself: 'What do I believe in?', 'What is truly important in my life?' and 'What makes me happy?

These are questions that are perhaps difficult – almost impossible – to answer, but this beautiful little book filled with inspiration and wisdom will provide some guidance to empower you and help you on this never-ending journey.

O's Little Guide to the Big Questions is published by Pan Macmillan and you can get your copy from Foyles or your own preferred retailer.

🎵 Listening to: Hamilton – My Shot
🔹 Mood: Accomplished

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