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Nesting Instinct

Life under lockdown will be lightened with the mindfulness tips, empathy and escapism offered by these books / BY Nathalie Atkinson / January 13th, 2021

As our circumscribed lives continue at home under lockdown, consider the mindfulness tips, empathy and escapism of these picks as fortification for the long, socially distanced winter ahead.

Obsessive Book Buyers: Zoomer editors have carefully curated our book coverage to ensure you find the perfect read. We may earn a commission on books you buy by clicking on the cover image. 

1The House Party: A Short History of Leisure, Pleasure and the Country House Weekend by Adrian Tinniswood

This handsome little book about the golden age of British country house parties, by an esteemed historian of heritage architecture historian and National Trust consultant, is a perfect match for those who couldn’t get enough of “The Balmoral Test” episode in the latest season of The Crown. It will make you want to watch Gosford Park again.

2The Flavor Equation: The Science of Great Cooking Explained in More than 100 Essential Recipes by Nik Sharma

The tyranny of the midweek meal is real. The Mumbai-born molecular biologist and food writer behind popular cookery blog A Brown Table can alleviate the rut: he unpacks the science of food flavour (and emotion, sound and mouth feel) in a hundred ways that turn the kitchen into a delicious educational playground. For pros and amateur home cooks alike.

3The 99% Invisible City by Roman Mars

By the host and producer of the popular 99% Invisible design podcast, this field guide will help you notice and decode the design intent of details we take for granted in our urban spaces, and will make that daily walk much more interesting.




4Humans by Brandon Stanton

Stay connected as a global citizen with the international version of the Humans of New York blog that goes far afield to gather stories of everyday people from around the world.




5This One Wild and Precious Life: The Path Back to Connection in a Fractured World by Sarah Wilson

Endorsed by no less than Elizabeth Gilbert, this spiritual workbook by an Australian journalist turned minimalist philanthropist is a hopeful tonic for troubled times. The wildfires, climate change, and now the COVID-19 pandemic — Wilson’s several years of research combine scientific research, interviews and religious texts in addressing our disconnection, loneliness and collective anxiety.

6 On Connection by Kae Tempest

In the absence of live music and theatre going, this philosophic book-length essay by the young British spoken word and prize-winning musician is an inspiring exhortation on how rekindling our individual creativity (regardless of skill) can bring us together.




7Plant Therapy: Why an Indoor Green Oasis Can Improve Your Mental and Emotional Wellbeing by Dr. Katie Cooper

Turns out those leafy green #plantmom vignettes on Instagram were more than a trend: houseplants can have a dramatic effect on improving emotional and mental well-being, and this book by a green-thumbed psychologist is both an exploration of the relationship between people and plants and a how-to.

8The Gran Tour: Travels With My Elders by Ben Aitken

In which a cynical millennial English travel writer (and avid Bill Bryson fan) takes a series of European bus tours with his elderly relatives and several eccentric – and extremely candid – pensioners, who have a lot to teach him about living.






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