They say books are man's best friends. Well, quite right they are.
At times, when people lose heart and have nobody to turn to, a good inspirational book can provide them with much-needed solace. I've compiled a list of five books which are time-tested when it comes to inspiring people. This list is by no means authoritative but with so many good books written by so many great authors, it's quite impossible to compile one such definitive list.
Let's see the books now:
The Great Gatsby
Arguably, one of the finest works of F. Scott Fitzgerald, the book paints a vivid portrait of Jay Gatsby, a self-made millionaire and his quixotic love with Daisy Buchanan set against the backdrop of the American society in 1920s when lust for money and powered were at an all-time high. It's an amazing, elusive novel which is written in prose beautiful enough to be a very long and descriptive poem. Some people might find it as a slightly difficult read but trust us, your hard work will not go unrewarded. The Great Gatsby has become a standard text in high school and university courses on American literature in countries around the world.
Chicken Soup for the Soul
Chicken Soup for the Soul is a series of books, usually featuring a collection of short and dense inspirational stories and motivational essays. Many of the books are directed at specific groups of people, such as Chicken Soup for the Mother's Soul, Chicken Soup for the Prisoner's Soul, Chicken Soup for the Soul: Tough Times, Tough People etc. These stories are based on real-life events and discuss the lives of real people and are very moving. Even though there are scores of spin-offs of this book, the notion of “old is gold” can be applied well here. The first book, published in 1993, sold millions of copies and remains a bestseller till date.
This is a beautifully scripted account of one of the greatest spiritual figures the world has ever seen: Buddha himself (Buddha was born as Siddhārtha Gautama). It makes for an easy read. Author Herman Hesse conveys a very profound message for all seekers. The book is a story of a brahmin boy who follows his heart and goes through various lives to finally understand what it means to be enlightened. Hesse makes Siddhartha's early life extremely accessible and his sensitive portrayal of a young prince who gave up everything for spiritual fulfilment makes this a must-read for anyone who's remotely philosophically curious.
How to Win Friends and Influence People
How to Win Friends and Influence People is one of the first bestselling self-help books ever published. Written by Dale Carnegie and first published in 1936, it has sold 15 million copies world-wide. This book has served as a guidebook for managers across the world and makes for an easy read. Dale Carnegie had a crisp, lively style that keeps you involved and you feel as if he's talking to you. This book isn't based on dry theory, but on the experiences of students in Dale Carnegie's courses who applied the ideas to find out what really works in more effective human relations.
The Alchemist is a wonderfully simple story of a young shepherd who follows his dreams of treasure and encounters many experiences and people, learning wisdom and life lessons along the way. Paulo Coelho has skillfully woven many bits of truth and wisdom about life into this masterpiece, and it is a true delight to read it. Just like it teaches, it is not the destination, but the journey with this book, that counts.