Cozy up with these top reads

by Philip Blackwell

Karma Group’s Literary Luminary, Philip Blackwell, shares three eclectic books to read in the time of Corona.  Philip is the CEO and Founder of Ultimate Library, who provide bespoke libraries and book collections for hotels, resorts and private clients around the world. Just some of the Karma Group destinations Philip has curated libraries for include Isles of Scilly, Tuscany, Bali, St. Tropez, Goa, and the Greek Islands.

Zucked: Waking Up to the Facebook Catastrophe by Roger McNamee

Zucked is McNamee’s dramatic story of his struggle to face up to the damage caused by the catastrophic failure of one of the world’s most powerful companies. As an early investor in the company, McNamee investigates the serious damage that Facebook is doing to our society. With the emergence of one horrific piece of news after the other, from Brexit to the election of Trump, revealed are the malign ends to which the Facebook platform has been put. Not only is this the story of a company and its leadership, but it’s also a larger tale of how the business sector became unmoored from normal constraints, during a time of political and cultural crisis. This is a hard-hitting and important book that helps to uncover some of Facebook’s darkest secrets.

Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata

This Japanese literary sensation explores the pressure exerted on young women to conform. Keiko’s family worry she will never lead a typical life. Having never been seen ‘as normal’ at school or university, to try to quell their fears, Keiko decides to take a job at a newly opened convenience store where she finds that the mundane, everyday tasks please her. But in Keiko’s circle where marriage and children are the norm, stacking shelves is looked down upon by her peers. As the pressure to find a ‘proper’ job and ‘perfect’ husband mounts, Keiko is forced to take desperate action.
As winner of the prestigious Akutagawa Prize, Convenience Store Woman is a must-read oddball comedy that astutely examines what is impossibly expected of young women.

Silence in the Age of Noise by Erling Kagge

Caught up as we are in a continuous cacophony of traffic, technology and ever-spinning thoughts, silence is something we are perhaps unused to. But what really is silence? Where can it be found? And why is it more important now than ever? Norwegian adventurer, Erling Kagge, spent 50 days walking alone through Antarctica with only a broken radio for company. In this meditative, powerful and instructive book, he explores the importance of the notion of silence. Take a deep breath, and prepare to submerge yourself in the power of silence with this calming and thoughtful title.

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