book reviews

What the WellBeing editors are reading and listening to right now

Reviews by Kate Duncan and Sophie Flecknoe




Do you know what vegetables are currently in season? Wondering whether you should store your broccoli in the fridge or pantry? Confused about which spices or flavours pair well with your fresh asparagus? Never fear, foodies! The beautifully presented cookbook Ruffage, by chef-turned-author Abra Berens, answers all of these questions and so much more. The hardback book delivers home cooks of any skill level a practical guide to vegies as well as over 100 recipes to cook and enjoy. Both Berens’ guidance and her insights are punctuated by absolutely beautiful photographs from EE Berger and super-sweet illustrations by Lucy Engelman. Whether you’re striving to eat more plant-based meals or simply just enjoy cooking at home, this book is a must-have for the kitchen bench. It’s full of delicious pearls of wisdom for the cooking novice and the seasoned chef alike. SF

Inspired by Nature: Creating a Personal and Natural Interior


You know those homes that beautifully embrace and honour nature’s rhythms in their textures, scents, lighting and mood? The kind of homes where you can grab a good book, steep your favourite herbal tea, fall into a sublimely soft couch and take a deep and long exhale. These are the homes captured by interior stylist Hans Blomquist in his new book Inspired by Nature. Having grown up in a small village in Sweden adjacent to a forest, Blomquist has always been inspired by nature’s beauty. He photographed a collection of spaces and artfully documented how each incorporated nature into their interior décor. Think muted, delicate tones, rustic cuts of foliage and soft flowers as well as gorgeous, fibrous textures. The entire book, from page to page, evokes a deep sense of quiet and peace and pays homage to the beauty of the natural world. Keep this book on your coffee table and sink into it when you want to feel inspired, nurtured and undeniably calm. SF

Yoga: A Manual for Life


Naomi Annand’s first book, Yoga: A Manual for Life, is a compelling guide to modern yoga, its poses (asanas) and how they can be worked into sequences to calm your busy mind. Beautiful images, neutral colours, nature photography and stunning illustrations fill the pages of the hardback, exposed-binding book. With accessible language and images, the guide teaches you how to use yoga and breath work to wake up feeling energised and inspired. Written for those who wish to develop a home self-practice, the sequences in Yoga: A Manual for Life offer self-care that can be fitted into your busy day-to-day life. Annand, the founder and owner of Yoga on the Lane, an East London yoga studio, has been practising and teaching yoga for almost 20 years. The book, which was written as a reference guide to hone your practice when you need, is a source of inspiration and contains everything you need to acquaint yourself with the fundamentals of yoga. So, whether you’re at the beginning of your yoga journey or a fully-fledged yoga enthusiast, Yoga: A Manual for Life will soon become your favourite yoga tool. KD

Curation 2020


At the beginning of Curation 2020, a diary and yearly planner, Michelle Obama is quoted: “Success isn’t about how your life looks to others. It’s about how it feels to you.” Curation 2020 designer Alexandria Phillips invites you to make one simple pledge this year: put yourself at the top of your to-do list. She reminds you that, with 366 days (yes, you get a bonus day this year thanks to the leap year!) come 366 opportunities. At the beginning of the diary you’re asked to write a “self-care menu” that includes your favourite mind, body and soul routines and rituals. You are also asked to jot down your yearly mission statements, add any habits you’d like to form and list your savings goals. Monthly and day-view calendars are on offer, with each day offering space for you to brainstorm, mind map and sketch, list your weekly food menu, add self-care activities and reflect on the things you’re grateful for. With motivating tips and affirmations shared at the bottom of each page, Curation 2020 ends by asking you to reflect on the year just gone. Hopefully, thanks to Curation 2020, it was a year of deep intention, healthy habits and new-found inspiration. KD


Waterpeople Podcast


At the start of each episode of the Waterpeople Podcast, creators Lauren L Hill and Dave Rastovich ask their speaker to share a time or experience after which they were never the same. Usually, the moment reflected on revolves around water in its many forms: the ocean, lake or ice. Sharing tales from different types of people such as surfers, activists, politicians, entrepreneurs and ex-addicts, the Waterpeople Podcast connects the human spirit through challenge and triumph. Hill and Rastovich, who are based in the Northern Rivers of New South Wales, are free surfers and activists who define what it means to be water people. It’s through the questions that they ask guests such as Hayley Talbot, Derek Hynd and Zara Noruzi that the listener learns meaningful life lessons. With honesty, rawness and an unshakeable realness, the stories shared resonate deeply. The Waterpeople Podcast not only humanises the many different trials and tribulations a person can face, but it reminds us why we must be custodians of the ocean — a role we shouldn’t take lightly. KD


Sacred Earth Oracle


Spiritual seekers across the globe will attest that there is always room for more knowledge, self-reflection and wisdom. A practical and enjoyable way to tap into the world of self-discovery is through tarot and angel cards. The Sacred Earth Oracle card deck beautifully combines the illuminating wisdom of Toni Carmine Salerno with the applied philosophy of Leela J Williams. Each of the 45 cards is illustrated with the striking and evocative artworks of Helena Nelson-Reed and invites deep contemplation of self. If you are seeking more spiritual guidance or want to take the first step on a journey of self-discovery, then this deck is for you. More wisdom, love and personal harmony is on offer, calling your name. Can you hear it? SF

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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