Pain can get really old, really quickly. I like to use literature to take me away from it, but I’m not at all into the whole mindful, deep breathing, yoga self help books that are meant to help you to control pain. I just want to vent my frustration or to escape entirely from where I am in real life into a better place,or into a better person.
Depending on whether or not I want to calm down, I am more likely to pick up a book to help me overcome pain with rage, or to bring me cuddly peaceable feelings. So if you’re in pain, or even just angry, I’m going to offer both options, because sometimes, situations just call for them!
When you want to get rage-filled
Everyday Sexism by Laura Bates
There’s nothing more infuriating than sexism (to me anyway) and so this book will make you ready to take a chunk out of anyone who dares to be a total pig to you or anyone in your vicinity based on gender. Nothing like re-routing your anger into smashing the patriarchy!
Plus, if your pain is due to chronic illness, Bates covers it in her book, so you won’t feel left out and voiceless… which was a very satisfying feeling for me.
Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith
Nothing like a nice gory crime novel with some prime idiots to make you feel better.
Especially when Cormoran starts punching those prime idiots right in the face. Just imagine your pain into their position and BAM.
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
People truly do suck in this book. From the racists to the sexists to the murderers, this book is full of people to direct your frustration at.
Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë
This book is the total opposite of that dreadful earworm that is the Lego movie theme… Everyone is dreadful, and everything is crap coz they’re evil freaks.
No one in this book is much good.
At best, they’ll haunt you for twenty years and smash your window. At worst, they’ll hang your dog, dig up your rotting corpse and ruin your child’s life. So there’s that.
Books to calm down over
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Anne Barrows and Mary Ann Shaffer
This book is too lovely for words. You’ll become happy and cry at the end with joy, guaranteed. This is a place hurting from war, but also a place full of joy and beauty.
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
Arthur Dent and his intergalactic co-conspirators are some of the funniest characters in the history of literature, and will definitely make your day, week, month and year. Plus, the books are really short, so re-reading is totally doable and there’s a whole series to devour!
Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovich
This series is also hilarious! I recommend it to anyone and everyone, and it will not fail to give you a smile. There’s so much awesomeness going on here!
Playing Beatie Bow by Ruth Park
This book is one of the ones I wish I’d read as a child, but I’m still so happy to have enjoyed it as an adult. This time travelling book is beautiful and historically interesting, and will take you into another world
Orkney by Amy Sackville
The writing in this beautiful novel is beyond words, and truly transports you to that beautiful island. I read this while having the gnarliest cold ever, and having a terrible time at university, but it helped me to escape from it all.
Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day by Winifred Watson
Sneaky entry here, but it’s so transportative and glorious to miss out on.