Recommended reading - 6 of our favourite books

We’ve put together a list of some of our favourite books, ranging from the personal and professional development genre to exceptional works of modern fiction.

1. Outliers: The Story of Success
Malcolm Gladwell’s Outliers analyses how people achieve extraordinary success by examining overlooked factors and circumstances, rather than simply pinning it on pure talent and drive. This book looks at the backgrounds, environments and peculiarities of wildly successful people from different fields, including businessmen, sports stars and famous musicians.

“In fact, researchers have settled on what they believe is the magic number for true expertise: ten thousand hours.” (Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell)

2. The Millionaire Messenger
Brendon Burchard’s The Millionaire Messenger is a must-have for anyone with entrepreneurial vision and a commitment to it. This New York Times bestseller shows you how to take your knowledge and turn it into a marketable product or service. It provides practical knowledge to help you package what you know for the expert industry and grow it into a flourishing business.

“Treat people with respect. Be a good citizen. Follow your dreams.” (The Millionaire Messenger, Brendon Burchard)
For personal enlightenment

3. The Alchemist
Paulo Coelho’s The Alchemist is a simple and moving fable-style novel about a shepherd called Santiago and his quest. Santiago goes on a mystical adventure for his treasure at the foot of the pyramids of Egypt. On his way, he meets a gypsy, a monk, a desert woman, a crystal merchant and an alchemist in an oasis. He talks with nature, learns the language of the world and follows his bliss, inspiring you to follow yours.

“Every blessing ignored becomes a curse.” (The Alchemist, Paulo Coelho)

4. The Prophet
The transcendent and exquisitely written The Prophet is a masterpiece from the poet, artist and philosopher, Kahlil Gibran. He offers profound insights on the various facets of the human condition and has earned iconic status in counterculture with this book. Each chapter deals with a different theme, such as sorrow, freedom, death, love, work, time and pain.

“Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding. It is the bitter potion by which the physician within you heals your sick self. Therefore, trust the physician and drink his remedy in silence and tranquility.” (The Prophet, Kahlil Gibran)
Exceptional works of modern fiction

5. Half of a Yellow Sun
Half of a Yellow Sun is a modern classic written by the incredibly gifted Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. This powerful post-colonial novel is set in the 1960s Nigeria-Biafra war and the period leading up to it. The prose is graceful and evocative, as Adichie looks at this strange and tragic time in African history from the perspectives of five remarkable characters.

“I knew what I wanted to run to. But it didn’t exist, so I didn’t leave.” (Half of a Yellow Sun, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie)

6. The Reactive
The Reactive is a contemporary novel by Masande Ntshanga, a young award-winning South African author. Along with his two friends, the protagonist illegally sells anti-retroviral medication in order to pay for his next high. The novel is set in Cape Town and written in lyrical, sparse prose. It’s a fast-paced story that is gritty, hard-hitting and redemptive.

“Ten years ago, I helped a handful of men take my brother’s life.” (The Reactive, Masande Ntshanga)

Do you love books? If you do, consider taking this short quiz to find out: “What Kind of Book Are You?”