WellBeing reviews

Books, podcasts & apps that will enrich your life

Counter Culture

Reviews by Kate Holland & Jo Jukes




The Best is Yet to Come


The Best is Yet to Come is a heart-warming read about friendship, motherhood and feeling invisible. New mum Izzy and elderly widower Arthur are neighbours. As Arthur grieves his late wife, Izzy is grieving the woman she used to be as she struggles to adjust to motherhood, and an unlikely friendship develops between them. Like Katy Colins’ other books, this novel is full of warm, complex but relatable characters. Some difficult mental health issues run throughout but are handled with grace and sensitivity. This book made me shed a few tears, but ultimately I finished it with a smile on my face. The Best is Yet to Come is a timely reminder of the value of friendship and community and that it’s always OK to ask for help. JJ



The 14 Day Mind Cleanse


How are you? Really, how are you? It’s been a challenging few years and collectively our mental health has taken a hit. Anxiety, depression, feelings of overwhelm and rumination can be tough cycles to break. It’s OK if you feel some or all of these things. Jacqui Lewis’ new book, The 14 Day Mind Cleanse, is a potent and practical toolkit for those seeking a whole new way of living. The 14-day program includes a daily meditation ritual, tweaks to your digital consumption, tips for reducing multitasking and how to generally achieve more by doing less. The book shares simple techniques to clear out your mental clutter while introducing calm and positivity into your life. Yes please. We’ll take more of that. KH


Self-Care for New Mums


Ruby Matley’s latest book, Self-Care for New Mums, hasn’t left my side since becoming a new mum. My only regret is that I didn’t come across the book sooner, especially during the postpartum phase. Self-Care for New Mums is a warm, wise and practical guide sharing self-care routines designed for women dealing with the demands of new motherhood. Diving deeply into guilt, connection and mental health, the book speaks to many mothers’ experiences. It makes a perfect gift for new mums, expecting friends or dads looking for ways to help their partner find enjoyment and experience some much-deserved “me” time. If all mums were to take a page out of this book, it would make a world of difference. KH


The Women’s Pool


“The Women’s Pool” in Sydney’s eastern suburbs is Australia’s only ocean pool reserved solely for women. But for the women who share their stories in The Women’s Pool anthology, it’s not just a nice place for a morning dip; the swimming spot has changed their lives. This book tells stories of the pool and its significance to women throughout time: stories of friendship, love, bravery, recovery and new beginnings. Between the pages you’ll meet women from all backgrounds: Vietnamese-born Lai, who finally found the courage to swim at The Women’s Pool after the horrors she’d witnessed aboard a refugee boat; and Dominique, who found relief from her often painful genetic disorder in the pool’s soothing waters. Inspiring, often funny and sometimes heartbreaking, the stories of these women are well worth diving into, whether you’re a Sydney local or not. JJ


4Ten Percent Happier with Dan Harris

“Happiness is a skill you can train, just like working your bicep in the gym.” That’s the promise of Dan Harris in his podcast Ten Percent Happier. If your happiness muscle is in need of a workout, consider adding this podcast to your playlist. After having a panic attack on national television, Harris started exploring the question: How can we be happier? His guests include meditation experts, scientists and psychologists. Together, they deep dive into the science and psychology behind happiness and mental health, providing solid research and going beyond the clichés and already well-trodden topics. If you’re tired of hearing that “breathing exercises” are the key to self-care and prefer actionable life tips grounded in science, give Ten Percent Happier a listen. JJ




They say the best way to learn a language is to immerse yourself in it, but how do you do that from the comfort of your own living room? Enter Lingopie. This subscription-based streaming service offers a selection of authentic foreign-language television shows including cartoons, sitcoms and feature films, combined with learning tools to help build your vocabulary as you watch. Think Netflix meets Duolingo. Lingopie caters for all experience levels, with learning tools including progress tracking, subtitles, flashcards, playback controls, quizzes and auto-repeat features. Languages available include French, Spanish, German, Italian, Japanese and Korean. If you’re heading off on an overseas trip soon, there’s no better time to brush up on language learning. Binge-watching will have never felt so productive! JJ

Kate Duncan

Kate Duncan

Kate Duncan is the Editor of WellBeing and WILD. She loves surfing, creating raw desserts, flowing through nourishing yoga sequences and spending time with her new pooch, Maribou.

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