Read Books In 2021: Rekindle a Love of Learning

read books

Read Books, Then Pass Them On

As my readers know, many of my recent blog posts have encouraged everyone to eat plant-based in 2021. During a conversation last week, someone interested in going plant-based asked me for more information.

After directing them to Plantbased.com, I recommended books to read, beginning with The China Study Solution by Thomas Campbell, M.D. With his father, T. Colin Campbell, Ph.D., he co-authored The China Study.

Both books are excellent, but the shorter, newer one (published in 2016) is more suitable for this person. I hope reading it is just their first step on the way to a healthier diet! 

Why I Urge Plant-Based Beginners to Read Books

To truly motivate someone, goal-setting strategies and encouraging platitudes aren’t enough. For most of us, a change in belief must come before a behavior change.

And a great book has the lessons that can change its reader’s view of the world – with behavior-altering consequences!

For example, reading Dr. Neal Barnard’s The Cheese Trap transformed my views about cheese. Although already vegan, I didn’t cringe at the sight of someone eating it.  

But now I do! Watching someone consume cheese revolts me – and my gag reaction results directly from reading Dr. Barnard’s groundbreaking book.

Last Saturday, my blog post mentioned Dr. W. Chris Winter’s The Sleep Solution, the book currently shaping my life. It’s been on my mind since I first read it in 2019.

I credit it with influencing my top New Year’s Resolution for 2021 – to wake up at the same time every morning! 

From Great Books, We Learn Great Lessons

Great fictional works also teach life-changing lessons. My Mom was born by the Amazon deep in the jungles of Peru. A Spanish translation of Leo Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina provided her first glimpse of a wider world.

She gained a new perspective on the interactions between men and women. More importantly, her new appreciation for learning increased her desire to read books, especially classic literature.

Reading transported her far from the beautiful but challenging jungle. Spurred by dreams of a life beyond the rainforest, she found her way to Chicago and Zeeland, Michigan – and met my Dad.

She’s passed her love of reading on to me. When I was 12 or 13, Mom challenged me to read Victor Hugo’s epic Les Miserables.

My reward for completing it? I accompanied her to the University of Michigan to watch their Les Miserables theater production. One of the most memorable dates of my life!

But Victor Hugo’s story of the French people’s gallant struggle for equality gave me much more than memories. It taught me about generosity, self-sacrifice, justice, and mercy. 

No one will ever destroy my faith in the power of these lessons. They’ll stay with me forever, and I learned them from reading a book!

Resolve to Read Books, Then Pass Them On!

I’m passing my passion for books on to my children. Last year, my daughter read Tolstoy. She’s currently reading Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice to her 12 year-old-brother!

She also enjoyed The Sleep Solution and several of my recommendations on plant-based living. The family loved Walking With Peety by Eric O’Grey. We all plan to read many good books this year.

In fact, another of my New Year’s Resolutions is to read a few books every week. My life’s already swamped with work and activities, so even something I love doing requires resolve.

Maybe you’re like me, wondering how you’ll find time in your days to commit to reading. 

But when something has such an incredible life-changing impact, isn’t it worth finding the time? What time-wasting practices could you eliminate from your daily schedule? 

Instead of bingeing on all of Netflix’s latest original series, can you use some of that time to read books? Or cut back on your social media involvement. 

Why not join me in my resolution? Committing to even just one book a month would give you twelve chances to transform your beliefs – and your life!

Come to think of it. Walking with Peety is a great book to kick off anyone’s year. 

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