Aspirational books – they tempt me with a promise of perfection. It used to be parenting books. I took home Ian Grant’s Growing Great Boys and Growing Great Girls. I tried to organise family meetings to talk through our “issues” but like most attempts I had at creating the perfect family, they failed. I should have just read The Honest Toddler : a child’s guide to parenting, it would probably have been just as effective.
The winner of the aspirational titles of all time must be the diet books. They march out the library doors promising not only weight loss but also complete overhaul of our fat miserable lives…
Loving yourself to great health : thoughts & food : the ultimate diet by the Self Help guru Louise Hay is perhaps the book that promises the most – health, happiness, and spiritual awakening. Greedy girl’s diet second helpings : fab food fast for a slim life promises that healthy food can be fun, and interestingly has a section on guilt free Junk Food!
Interior Design and Cooking are the most aspirational books I flick through these days. Perfect for the coffee table – and little else – they leave me wanting a house that is a calm oasis of neutral/Scandinavian/eco-friendly/retro cool.
I am however beginning to give up on cooking books as I don’t have the stomach for cashew nut cream or coconut oil, and the word Paleo brings me out in a rash.
I can’t help but love these books. I take them home for inspiration and ideas along with hope of that magic elixir that will make everything perfect. For that brief window when I read and wonder, I am transported to the perfect me, the perfect family with the perfect house, and – like reading the much maligned Mills and Boon- they are time away from the realities of life, and create the opportunity to dream.