Brain Food: book reviews What the WILD team is reading & listening to
Here at WILD, we're always on the hunt for new books, podcasts and card decks to keep our brains busy and expand our worldview. These are our current obsessions.

Reviews by Kate Duncan and Jodie Wolf


A Climate in Chaos

Looking for a simple and clear way to explain climate change to your kids? Neal Layton’s latest children’s picture book, A Climate in Chaos, is written for kids aged five years or older and clearly explains what climate change is, what’s causing it, and why it’s dangerous for all inhabitants on earth. In detail — and keeping his younger audience in mind — Layton discusses greenhouse gases, renewable energy sources and sustainable living. The book lists practical ways kids can positively impact the planet, like growing vegies, walking and cycling instead of driving, and thinking carefully about waste. A Climate in Chaos leaves young readers excited about what they can do to make a difference and encourages them to think of new ways to help the planet, giving reference to young activists like Greta Thunberg, Ridhima Pandey and Sahil Doshi. KD

My Tidda, My Sister

My Tidda, My Sister: Stories from Australia’s First Women is a powerful collection of stories, interviews, poems and meditations from Australia’s First Nations’ women. Author Marlee Silva is a Gamilaroi and Dunghutti woman based in Sydney and the founder of Tiddas 4 Tiddas, a social media initiative celebrating Indigenous women and girls through storytelling. In My Tidda, My Sister, you’ll learn the many hardships faced by Australia’s first women, as well as their pride in identity and love of community and activism. Silva has woven Tidda Talks throughout the book where she speaks on issues such as caring for country, January 26, mental health and the resilience and strength of her tiddas: her sisters, sis, sissy and aunties. Beautiful artwork and symbols by Rachael Sarra, an Aboriginal artist from Goreng Goreng country, grace every page of the book. And, at the back, you’ll find a comprehensive list of books, documentaries, films, organisations and social media accounts to immerse yourself more into Indigenous culture and current affairs. KD

Heavily Meditated

Are you craving stillness? Looking for ways to slow down? Trying to develop a regular meditation practice? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, you need to read Heavily Meditated: Your Down-to-Earth Guide to Learning Meditation and Getting High on Life, a beautiful new book by entrepreneur, yogi and speaker Caitlin Cady. In it, Cady explores meditation and how it can help you feel “high on life”. She explores five different types of meditation techniques, helps you find the right one for you, and how to fall in love with your practice every day. You’ll also find unique meditation exercises, cheat sheets and worksheets. With personal and relatable stories, Heavily Meditated guides you towards a place of stillness, enjoyment and fun. JW


The Michelle Obama Podcast

We were excited to discover that Michelle Obama, the former US First Lady, has her own inspiring podcast. In her curious and warm timbre, Michelle invites her friends, family and colleagues to open up and share honest and raw conversations. Together, they explore what it means to be human: dissecting relationships, friendships, external influences and inner transformation. In her first episode, she interviews her husband, the former US president Barack Obama. They discuss community and individuality among many other important topics. With an array of remarkable guests and thought-provoking topics lined up for the season, The Michelle Obama Podcast is an easy-listening audio that is perfect to pop on while multitasking at home. JW

The EXPANDED Podcast with Lacy Phillips

Lacy Phillips is a manifestation coach, speaker and host of The EXPANDED Podcast. On her website, To Be Magnetic, and in her podcast, Phillips explores grounded manifestation, which she defines as a manifestation process rooted in psychology, neuroscience and energetic insights. Each week, Phillips invites industry experts onto her podcast to discuss all things manifestation — from clarity and pings to procrastination, accountability, heartbreak, transformation and much more. The podcast’s premise centres around manifesting the things you want from your subconscious mind, which is where you store your beliefs, past experiences, memories and skills. Phillips’ voice is soothing, her guests are inspiring, and the topics unique and diverse. If you’re interested in learning the art of manifestation, then download a few episodes of The EXPANDED Podcast. You never know, it might be exactly what you’re looking for. KD


Conversation Menus

What makes a really great dinner party? The meal, of course, is important, but the quality of conversation is at the heart of a memorable dinner. The School of Life’s new card deck, Conversation Menus, ensures conversations get deep and intimate at the dinner table. Each card or “menu” lists questions from three different categories: starter, main course and dessert. Designed to bring meals to life, the menus are themed around topics like children, the body, resolutions, sex, friendship, love, hope and more. Containing questions like “Which of your ex-partners hurt you the most?”, “How did your parents shape what success and failure mean to you?” and “How have you been ageing recently?”, the cards offer moments of reflection, healing and truth. The cards are great to play with old friends, your loved ones, parents and new acquaintances if you want to get deep quickly. After a few rounds of Conversation Menus, you soon realise the raw fragility of humankind, the commonalities we all share and the importance of honest answers. Conversation Menus will encourage smiles, deepen relationships and foster intimacy at the dinner table. KD