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Reading specs on: CALM does World Book Day

Today is a lot of things: a new month, St. David’s Day, University Mental Health Day and – bane of all parents’ costume-making careers – World Book Day. In honour of some of the best books we’ve read recently, here are CALM’s top picks…

Help, by Simon Amstell

Amstell’s book ‘Help’ cleverly weaves together strands from past stand-up shows with the evolution of his outlook on life, from being the shiest kid to love show business, growing up on the telly, and mind-altering drugs being the best way to life-altering happiness. A smart, funny, weekend of a book with a healthy dose of Amstell’s familiar mop-haired cynicism.

Check out our take on Simon’s talk at Being a Man Festival 2017 in the latest CALMzine >


Recovery, by Russell Brand

There may or may not be something pseudo-Godly in the self-styling of this man’s literary ambitions to date. His latest book, ‘Recovery: Freedom from our addictions’, is no different and reimagines the 12 steps programme, kicked off with the most blatant of provocateurs: are you fucked? Upon reading, we were mostly thinking: um, yes, probably. It’s honest, it’s positive and – as far as self-help books go – remarkably readable.

Read CALM’s interview with Russell here >


How not to be a boy, by Robert Webb

If you can get past hearing it read aloud in your head in the voice of Jeremy from Peep Show, ‘How not to be a boy’ by arch-funnyman Robert Webb will both tickle your mirth-maker and pickle your brain on everything you ever thought about masculinity.

More from Webb and his book in the latest CALMzine >


Chase the Rainbow, by Poorna Bell

What do you do when your husband and fellow dog-parent goes and dies? By suicide? Your life changes, forever. Poorna’s tale about losing Rob, titled with loving optimism ‘Chase the Rainbow’, is a deeply moving read, full of a journalist’s curiosity to explore the mind of someone so close who takes an action so final.

Poorna joined a panel for CALM in 2017, check it out here >

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