10 Books To Read In Quarantine

Updated: May 18




Having been at university for the last four years, I forgot about my love for books. It was just as much not wanting to read as well as not having the time to read. After full days of placement, lectures or madly revising, the last thing I wanted to do was pick up another book. I’d watch Netflix or hang out with my housemates instead. Now that life has come to a brief pause with this pandemic, suddenly I have all the time in the world! I decided to re- immerse myself into a favourite pastime - reading. 


Nothing is more relaxing than lying in bed or sofa with a book in hand. Make a cup of tea, put on your favourite Spotify playlist and just READ. I personally prefer fiction - old classics mostly. I don’t know what it is about old books but I just love the language and the weird and wonderful characters we’d never read about today. Non-fiction is important too. I love reading books that increase my general knowledge or inspire me - like on humanitarian issues or empowering women.  It’s good to try different books and decide for yourself what kind of a reader you are. Obviously, the most important thing is choosing a book that’s going to make you want to finish it - no matter how long it takes. So here, I’ll take you through some of my favourite books with the hope of inspiring you to read more in this quarantine period. 


War Doctor, David Nott

As a medic, I do love a good medical book. However, this book struck out to me more as a humanitarian book than a medical one. It’s beautifully written with very moving yet enthralling stories about saving lives in a war zone. David Nott is clearly a great humanitarian but also a very captivating storyteller. This should be an inspiration to anyone who wants to become a doctor! 

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Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead, Sheryl Sanberg

An empowering book about what it is to be a woman in a male-dominated profession. As the COO of Facebook, she has a wealth of advice on how to succeed in life. She reflects on positive and negative experiences along her career with some very powerful anecdotes. I think this is an important book for both men and women. 


A Tales of Two Cities, Charles Dickens 

This is one of my favourite books of all time. It is about an English doctor, imprisoned for 18 years in pre-revolutionary France, being released to live with his daughter in London and the consequences that follow. It is set before and during the French revolution up to the Reign of Terror. A very powerful and poignant book that will make you want to read it again. 


The Spy Who Came in From the Cold, John Le Carre 

This book is true espionage. The story is so cleverly written that by the end of the book you’ll re-read some chapters again to try and work it all out.  It’s about a burned-out spy who embarks on one final, chilling assignment for British Intelligence. A must-read if you like suspense and thriller. 

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Bridget Jones’ Diary, Helen Fielding 

I know you’ve seen the movie, but have you read the book? It’s utterly witty, bold and hilarious. The story is like the film, but the book explores the characters better and has some amusing story arcs that were cut from the film. One of the most lovable, genuine fictional characters I’ve ever come across! 


Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte 

Another beloved classic and sombre love story. You can’t help but feel sorry for most of the characters in this book but it does bring out the beauty of love and friendship. Emily Bronte has written a truly timeless book. The language is so beautiful and when I first read it as an 11-year old, it was quite hard to understand some big, old-fashioned words. Good to read on a rainy day with a cuppa. 


The Help, Katharine Stockett 

A poignant but funny book about the divisions of the deep south in 1960s America. The narrators of the book are three extraordinary women who decide to embark on their own civil rights movement in their town. Katharine Stockett was inspired by her own upbringing in a segregated America which is why this book perfectly sums up the events that occurred during this period. The film adaptation is just as brilliant - but read the book first. 


Divided: Why We’re Living in an Age of Walls, Tim Marshall 

It’s a great introduction into geopolitics, for anyone interested in international affairs. It covers the dividing factors in nations such as politics, religion, race and money. From the Great Wall of China to a Brexit Great Britain, Tim Marshall gives a very knowledgeable overview of world history. 


This is Going to Hurt, Adam Kay 

This is an outrageously hilarious book. Many medics can relate to this book because of its pure bluntness and honesty about what it’s really like to be a doctor - the on-calls, the patients and the bureaucracy. His sarcastic surgeon personality is reflected wonderfully in his writing. It will either make you really want to do medicine or rethink your career choice. I could not recommend this enough. 


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Persuasion, Jane Austen 

A short and sweet love story, not much to say. I love it! 


Enjoy!


By Pan Myat - Tutor at We Make Academics

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