10 Books That Changed My Life

Reading is important. It allows you to block out the noise of reality, enabling you to dive in and lose yourself in a story. Right now, we are inundated with more media than ever. So there is no better time than to open up a good book to block out the noise.

The following 10 books have been picked by CoWork Me members. They have been chosen for many reasons, the main one being that they all played a major role in shaping the way these individuals think.

Hopefully they will be of service to you:

Looking for Alibrandi- Melina Marchetta
Chosen by Emma Woodward

An Aussie classic, Looking for Alibrandi is the story of a teenage girl in her final year of school, a year she sets herself free and finds her own identity. The book is just as moving as it is revealing, a brutally honest insight into the life of a person on the brink of adulthood.

Not only has this been a bestselling book, it was made into an award winning film. For Emma, Looking For Alibrandi is the reason she started to enjoy reading.

The Origins of the Political Order- Francis Fukuyama
Chosen by Scott Ko

Published in 2011, The Origins of the Political Order is written by political economist Francis Fukuyama about what makes a state stable. Scott Ko believes that it’s a fascinating overview of how political structures are formed in different countries around the world, the influence of agriculture, regular culture, religion, ancestor worship, tribalism, amongst others. This is an accessible read that explains political structures.

Body Lengths- Felicity McLean
Chosen by Jess Fernandez

Body Lengths is Australian Breaststroker, Liesel Jones confronting biography that tackles mental health and the bullying that occurred within the Australian Swimming Team. Liesel Jones faced criticism both in and out of the pool which was hard to read. Jess believed that this book should be read by all Australian teenagers so that they are educated on what is acceptable behaviour in the sporting profession.

Unfu*k Yourself: Get Out of Your Head and Into Your Life- Gary John Bishop
Chosen by Mark Williams

This book is known to be a BS- free self empowerment guide. Similar to Mark Manson’s ‘The Subtle art of Not giving a F*ck, Gary John Bishop offers an honest, tough-love approach to help you move past roadblocks in your life. Bishop believes that roadblocks come from negative self-talk rather than putting the blame on other factors. According to Mark, it’s a great read, plus it has the word “f*ck” in it which makes it even better.

The Alchemist- Paulo Coelho
Chosen by Mick Millar

This book is so popular, it’s uncommon if you haven’t at least heard about it. The Alchemist is a philosophical book that tells you to never lose hope. For Mick this book confirmed for him that everyone is on their own journey and that it’s okay sometimes to be unsure of your next move. Blocking out negativity and being present in your own journey through life are the main lessons he took away from this important read.

Londoners- Craig Taylor
Chosen by Niina Peiponen

This book comprises 83 short stories, each focusing on different people from all walks of life who have lived or travelled through London. The stories showcase the London experience and whether or not they love it or hate it. Niina loves this book as it paints a picture of how the city functions and how people live out their daily lives. She added that it’s an interesting read and she would recommend it to anyone, even if they have never been to London.

Calm The F*ck Down- Sarah Knight
Chosen by Stephanie Hausler

This book could not be more relevant right now. We are in the middle of a pandemic and life has changed drastically. Steph said this book was a game changer for her and it helped that the book was an awesome read. Calm the F*ck Down shows you what can realistically do about a situation, it helps you to get on with your life and start bouncing back.

Freakonomics- Stephen J. Dubner and Steven Levitt
Chosen by Dan Lawson

Through forceful storytelling and wry insight, Freakonomics explores the hidden side of everything. Dan said that this book changed the way he sees the world, in fact he liked Freakonomics so much that he listened to the podcast to coincide with the book. Just through reading the blurb this book has me hooked, no wonder it’s been called “the most readable economics blog in the universe.”

Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of Nike
Chosen by Rach Savona

We all know Nike, the infamous “swoosh” is one of the most recognisable brands in the world. Shoe Dog is a tenacious New York Times bestseller written by Nike founder and board chairman Phil Knight, in which he takes you through the evolution of the company’s early days to becoming one of the world’s most iconic and profitable brands. Rach was hooked from the moment she started and finished the book in a week.

Steve Jobs- Walter Isaacson
Chosen by Ed Andrew

There have been many stories written about Apple and its cofounder Steve Jobs, however none more enthralling than Walter Isaacson’s best selling biography. Spanning over 2 years, Isaacson interviewed Steve Jobs 40 times as well as speaking with his friends, colleagues and competitors. This is a story that has touched millions of readers and Ed is one of them, with Ed stating that this is a well written and insightful look into one of the greatest entrepreneurs of our time.

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