Five books to help inspire you

If you know me well, you know that I absolutely love reading. I always have a new book in hand, and when I don’t, I eagerly wait next to my mailbox for my new book arrival just as I did this morning. I got super excited when I saw that little special key in the mail box to open the 1B compartment to find my Indigo box with my new books ready for the summer.

I don’t really remember what started my fascination with reading, my dad simply raised me loving books and would always buy me a new book or series so that I would always be reading something. I remember when I was younger and found myself to be a crazy horse girl, my dad got me the whole 20 something books of Heartland, and I believe I read one per week until I ran out.

Reading is calming, and helps your brain on so many levels. Being a photographer, I spend loads of time on a screen from my camera, to my computer to my phone. All this screen time can make you go crazy and with this fast moving world we live in, I find there are more and more screens.

People are having difficulties putting down their phones, tablets and even just shutting off their computers or TVs. When we loose electricity, people tend to find themselves in total boredom and that’s when you realize how disconnected we are to the world and our surroundings when we are connected.

Since my diagnosis with generalized and social anxiety, I have started to spend less time on my phone and computer, and using that time towards reading, drawing or simply working on new projects and being outside in nature with my dogs. I realized how addicted I got when my anxiety would act up to the fact that I haven’t checked Instagram in the last two hours! Now I barely go on, even tho I post once a day (or try) and have the occasional daily stories, (I usually post it at the end of the day to share my experiences) and then usually disconnect right away and focus on something else. My screen time went from a whopping five hours a day to a one hour a day. To me one hour is still too much, but I am still very happy on the outcome of simply not caring as much about social media.

Summer is here, and a lot of you are planing trips within the country or out. Some will be relaxing at home and enjoying the local activities. I think summer is a perfect opportunity to start reading, because we seem to have more ‘‘time’’ with daylight ending later. I decided to round up my favorite reads so far, english and french for you to be inspired and to possibly find a new passion.

Here is a list of my top five picks for this year:

  1. Closer to the Ground - By Dylan Tomine

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Closer to the Ground is a small and easy read in english, written by Dylan Tomine, a journalist that gave up the busy city life to raise a family on a tiny island off the coast of Oregon. His ‘‘memoir’’ type book talks about how they manage to live on the island with using the natural resources found from fishing, to catching clams, to chopping down some dead trees for firewood. I really enjoyed this book because it’s easy to read and it inspires you to be more sustainable as a person and to use local resources instead.

2. Écrans Verts - Beside

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Écrans Vert (French version) - Green screen (English version) is a small book (no more than 200 pages) full of interesting articles and essays from various artists talking about the connection we have with the environment and how we can all benefit from a ‘‘digital detox’’ by spending more time in nature than with our technology. I am always so impressed by Beside’s articles, magazines and projects and after reading this book (in which took me a couple of hours) it was refreshing to read like minded articles about how dependent we have become with technology with transparency. A couple of the articles definitely helped me see a new interesting side to the way we use screen time and so for that reason this little booklet is definitely a good read to add to your reading bucket list.

3. Path of the Puma - by Douglas Chadwick

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One of my highlights, not because it’s about animals, but also because the biologist who wrote it is one amazing human that spent his whole career learning and studying about Puma from North America, all the way down south. Mountain lions are actually one of the only species of wild cat that is not suffering from extinction, and is actually having no problem, as they start to spread out further across the world. This book explains the studies and how Douglas became so interested and passionate about Puma conservation and his multiple projects and opportunities he has had working with these silent predators. This book is not just made for animal lovers, but is an easy read and will inspire you to learn a little more about wildlife conservation and the work that goes behind saving our animals before they are all gone.

4. Un point sur la mer - par Georges Langford

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Un point sur la mer is a wonderful artistic book in FRENCH by author Georges Langford, about the beauties of Iles-De-La-Madeleine. Another very easy read, and what I particularly like about this book is that it’s a series of small poems, songs, quotes etc all about the maritime life living on the islands. If you are a creative, and you are looking for something unique and artistic, this is an excellent read that will inspire you to visit the island very soon.

5. Being Caribou - by Karsten Heuer

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This is probably one of my favorite books because it’s about my favorite animal: The Porcupine Caribou. The book is about the incredible journey of biologists Karsten Heuer and his wife Leanne Allison as they follow the Porcupine herd during their full migration which is about 2, 800 miles across the northern part of North America. They spent about 3 months trekking and following the herd to document and bring back information how to protect this endangered species. The book is an easy read, with some incredible photography. Not only that, but it is also a documentary in which you can watch the entire movie after to relive the experience. Definitely an amazing and inspiring book for any adventurer out there that has a profound passion for wildlife, and northern regions.


In conclusion, I could of easily added another ten books to this list, but this is by far my favorites. Every story has an adventure within, and another way to reconnect with nature, cozy in your home. If you’re not much of a reader, I invite you even more to challenge yourself by picking a book in the list above and to read it. Feel free to add book ideas in the comment section below to inspire others to check out more, there are just so many good reads out there!

Alex