Related to: 'The Less-Stress Lifestyle'

December Book of the Month

Nikki and Damien continue in Take Me

I awake to an empty bed and the smell of frying bacon. I roll over to find my phone on the bedside table, then glance at the time. Not yet six. I groan and fall back among the pillows, but I don't really want to go back to sleep. What I want is Damien. I slide out of bed, then grab the tank top and yoga pants I'd left draped across a nearby armchair. I head barefoot out of the bedroom and move the short distance down the hall to the third-floor kitchen. We're standing in Damien's Malibu house, and the wall of windows that faces the ocean is wide open, the glass panels having been thrust aside to let in the breeze. The smell of the ocean mingles with the scent of breakfast and I breathe deep, realizing that I am content. Whatever demons had poked at me during the night, Damien effectively banished them. I glance toward the windows and out at the darkened Pacific. Waves glow white in the fading moonlight as they break upon the shore. There is beauty there, and part of me wants to walk to the balcony and stare out at the roiling, frothing water. But the siren call of the ocean is nothing compared to my desire to see Damien, and so I turn away from the windows and head straight to the kitchen. It is larger than the one in the condo I used to share with my best friend, Jamie, and it is not even the primary kitchen for this house. That is on the first floor, and could easily service a one-hundred-table restaurant. But this - the "small" kitchen - was installed as an adjunct to the open area that serves as a venue for entertaining, and since it is just down the hall from our bedroom, Damien and I have gotten into the habit of cooking our meals and eating in this cozier, more informal area. Usually we're joined by Lady Meow-Meow, the fluffy white cat I took custody over when Jamie moved out. I know Lady M misses Jamie, but she's also enjoying having the run of this huge house, and Gregory - the valet, butler, and all around house-running guy - spoils her rotten. Now I lean against the half wall that marks the break from hallway to kitchen. Damien is standing at the stove cooking an omelette as if he were nothing more than an ordinary guy. Except there is nothing ordinary about Damien Stark. He is grace and power, beauty and heat. He is exceptional, and he has captured me completely. At the moment, he is shirtless, and I cannot help the way my breath stutters as my eyes skim over the defined muscles of his back and his taut, strong arms. Damien's first fortune came not form business, but from his original career as a champion tennis player. Even now, years later, he has both the look and the power of an elite athlete. I let my gaze drift down appreciatively. He is wearing simple gray sweatpants that sit low on his narrow hips and cling to the curves of his perfectly toned ass. Like me, he is barefoot. He looks young and sexy and completely delicious. Yet despite his casual appearance, I can still see the executive. The powerful businessman who harnessed the world, who shifted it to his own liking and made a fortune in the process. He is strength and control. And I am humbled by the knowledge that I am what he values most of all, and that I will spend the rest of my life at his side. "You're staring," he says, his eyes still on the stove. I grin happily, like a child. "I enjoy looking at pretty things." He turns now, and his eyes rake over me, starting at my toes. "So do I," he says when his gaze reaches my face, and there is so much heat in his voice that my legs go weak and my body quivers with want. His mouth curves into a slow, sexy smile, and I am absolutely certain in that moment that I am going to melt. "You spoiled my surprise," he says, then nods toward the breakfast table where a tray sits with a glass bud vase displaying a single, red rose. "Breakfast in bed."

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YEAR OF WONDER: Classical Music for Every Day

Clemency Burton-Hill
Authors:
Clemency Burton-Hill

'Year of Wonder is an absolute treat - the most enlightening way to be guided through the year.' Eddie RedmayneClassical music for everyone - an inspirational piece of music for every day of the year, celebrating composers from the medieval era to the present day, written by award-winning violinist and BBC Radio 3 presenter Clemency Burton-Hill.Have you ever heard a piece of music so beautiful it stops you in your tracks? Or wanted to discover more about classical music but had no idea where to begin? Year of Wonder is a unique celebration of classical music by an author who wants to share its diverse wonders with others and to encourage a love for this genre in all readers, whether complete novices or lifetime enthusiasts. Clemency chooses one piece of music for each day of the year, with a short explanation about the composer to put it into context, and brings the music alive in a modern and playful way, while also extolling the positive mindfulness element of giving yourself some time every day to listen to something uplifting or beautiful. Thoughtfully curated and expertly researched, this is a book of classical music to keep you company: whoever you are, wherever you're from.'The only requirements for enjoying classical music are open ears and an open mind.' Clemency Burton-HillPlaylists are available on most streaming music platforms including Apple Music and Spotify.

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Eat, Drink, Run.

Bryony Gordon
Authors:
Bryony Gordon
Tinder Press

Tin Man

Sarah Winman
Authors:
Sarah Winman

The unforgettable and achingly tender new novel from Sarah Winman, author of the international bestseller WHEN GOD WAS A RABBIT and the Sunday Times Top Ten bestseller A YEAR OF MARVELLOUS WAYS. 'Exquisite' Joanna CannonIt begins with a painting won in a raffle: fifteen sunflowers, hung on the wall by a woman who believes that men and boys are capable of beautiful things.And then there are two boys, Ellis and Michael,who are inseparable.And the boys become men,and then Annie walks into their lives,and it changes nothing and everything.Tin Man sees Sarah Winman follow the acclaimed success of When God Was A Rabbit and A Year Of Marvellous Ways with a love letter to human kindness and friendship, loss and living.

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When We Were the Kennedys

Monica Wood
Authors:
Monica Wood

WHEN WE WERE THE KENNEDYS is a brilliant, award-winning memoir about the death of a father and the healing of a family, by the acclaimed author of THE ONE-IN-A-MILLION BOY, Monica Wood, for those who loved Cathy Rentzenbrink's THE LAST ACT OF LOVE or Helen Macdonald's H IS FOR HAWK. 'Stunning. The ordinary and extraordinary Wood family will capture your heart... It's by far one of my favourite books and I recommend it to everyone I know. Wonderful, and full of everyday wonders' Julie Cohen1963. The Wood family is much like their neighbours, all dependent on the fathers' wages from the local mill. But when Dad suddenly dies on his way to work one April morning, Mum and the four deeply connected Wood daughters are set adrift. And then, come November - the family still overwhelmed by grief, the country shocked by the assassination of President Kennedy - Mum announces an unprecedented family road trip. Inspired by the televised grace of Jackie Kennedy, herself a new widow with young children, Mum and her girls head to Washington, DC, to do some rescuing of their own. WHEN WE WERE THE KENNEDYS is a funny, moving and imaginative memoir about how one family and one country, each shocked by the unimaginable, find the strength to move on. 'Intimate but expansive ... A tender memoir of a very different time' O, the Oprah Magazine

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Mad Girl

Bryony Gordon
Authors:
Bryony Gordon

A new Sunday Times bestseller from Bryony Gordon, Telegraph columnist and author of the bestselling The Wrong Knickers. For readers who enjoyed Matt Haig's Reasons to Stay Alive and Ruby Wax's Sane New World, Mad Girl is a shocking, funny, unpredictable, heart-wrenching, raw and jaw-droppingly truthful celebration of life with mental illness.'I loved it. A brilliant fast and funny and frank look at something that absolutely needs to be talked about in this way' Matt HaigBryony Gordon has OCD.It's the snake in her brain that has told her ever since she was a teenager that her world is about to come crashing down: that her family might die if she doesn't repeat a phrase 5 times, or that she might have murdered someone and forgotten about it. It's caused alopecia, bulimia, and drug dependency. And Bryony is sick of it. Keeping silent about her illness has given it a cachet it simply does not deserve, so here she shares her story with trademark wit and dazzling honesty.A hugely successful columnist for the Telegraph, a bestselling author, and a happily married mother of an adorable daughter, Bryony has managed to laugh and live well while simultaneously grappling with her illness. Now it's time for her to speak out. Writing with her characteristic warmth and dark humour, Bryony explores her relationship with her OCD and depression as only she can.Mad Girl is a shocking, funny, unpredictable, heart-wrenching, raw and jaw-droppingly truthful celebration of life with mental illness.

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Anxiety Rebalance

Carl Vernon
Authors:
Carl Vernon
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Anxiety Rebalance

Carl Vernon
Authors:
Carl Vernon

Anxiety Rebalance is Carl Vernon's personal experience of overcoming 15 years of crippling anxiety. In this online best-seller, Carl combines a compelling account of his experience with the answers he found, including the 10 key actions that helped him achieve balance. The response from his readers (of his original self-published edition) has been extraordinary, and his solutions will become as much as a life manual as Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway and Sane New World.'Throughout the fifteen years I battled with anxiety and depression I was constantly looking for a cure - until I realised I was looking for answers that didn't exist. Don't waste another minute.' Dealing with anxiety requires ONE thing: BALANCECarl's step-by-step guide teaches you: The truth about anxiety and depression - by exposing them for what they really are. How to instantly reduce your stress and anxiety, and feel immediate relief. How to control all anxiety-related symptoms and disorders including panic attacks, social anxiety, OCD and agoraphobia. Why BALANCE is the only real solution for overcoming anxiety and depression, Plus the 10 actions you need to take to achieve lifetime change.Where do you come on the ReBalance scale?

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The Naturalista

Xochi Balfour
Authors:
Xochi Balfour

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10 Keys to Happier Living

Vanessa King
Authors:
Vanessa King

'Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions' The Dalai Lama, patron of Action for Happiness. Vanessa King, positive psychology expert for Action for Happiness has created 10 key evidence-based actions that have been shown to increase happiness and wellbeing - at home, at work and in the world around you. If you have read The Art of Happiness, The Happiness Project or Sane New World, this book will be the perfect complement.We all want to be happy but what does that actually mean and what can we do in our everyday lives to be happier? Fortunately, psychologists, neuroscientists and other experts now have evidence of what really makes a difference and helps us to be happier and more resilient to life's ups and downs.In this book, Vanessa King of Action for Happiness has drawn on the latest scientific studies to create a set of evidence-based practical actions. They will help you connect with people, nurture your relationships and find purpose. You'll get ideas for taking care of your body, making the most of what's good and finding new ways to stimulate your mind. So here are the 10 Keys to Happier Living - ideas, insights and practical actions that you can take to create more happiness for yourself and those around you.

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Detox Your Ego

Steven Sylvester
Authors:
Steven Sylvester
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Parisian Street Style

Zoé de Las Cases
Authors:
Zoé de Las Cases

'For the colourer with contemporary tastes' Financial Times WeekendIn her stylish adult colouring book - Parisian Street Style - Zoé de Las Cases invites you to join her on a day trip around the streets of Paris. With a mix of full-page floral patterns, Paris cityscapes, picturesque streets and everyday fashion essentials, this sophisticated and intricate colouring book is the perfect gift for all your friends and for yourself.From floral headdresses and dungarees, to brogues and retro swimwear, there is something every girl will love and plenty of space to embellish with your own unique style.So pick up your favourite pencils and start colouring your way to a stress-free, Parisian-chic day.

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Demand (India Only)

Adrian Slywotzky With Karl Web, Er
Authors:
Adrian Slywotzky With Karl Web, Er
Business Plus

The Flipside

Adam J. Jackson
Authors:
Adam J. Jackson

Adam J. Jackson

As a young boy, Adam J. Jackson was plagued by the skin disorder psoriasis. From acute physical and social suffering, he went on to develop one of the world's most successful non-steroid treatments for the condition, and now helps thousands of fellow sufferers. Adam is now an internationally renowned therapist, motivational speaker and author. His SECRETS OF ABUNDANT HEALTH, WEALTH AND HAPPINESS series has been translated in 27 languages. Adam has appeared on GMTV, The Big Breakfast and Kilroy Silk and has also been featured in the Sunday Express, Today, GQ and Here's Health.

Bryony Gordon

In the 18 years that she has worked for the Telegraph, Bryony Gordon has become one of the paper's best-loved writers. She is the author of the bestselling The Wrong Knickers plus The Sunday Times Number One bestseller Mad Girl which was nominated for a British Book Award. Her weekly column in the Sunday Telegraph has won her an army of fans who have followed her journey from single girl about town to - finally! - settled mum. Bryony is now 37 and lives in Nappy Valley (Clapham) with her daughter Edie and her husband, a financial journalist. The last sentence is one she never thought she would see written down on paper.

Carl Vernon

Carl Vernon is an entrepreneur, speaker and author renowned for his personal experience in overcoming anxiety after fifteen years. Since his transformation, Carl has been passionate about helping others overcome anxiety and achieve more than they thought possible by sharing life-changing habits and principles. Find more at www.carlvernon.com

Clemency Burton-Hill

Clemency Burton-Hill is one of the UK's leading arts broadcasters and writers. She is one of the presenters of BBC Radio 3 Breakfast, the Proms, and Young Musician of the Year as well as numerous other music and arts programmes on radio, television and online. A former presenter of The Culture Show and The Review Show, as a journalist she regularly contributes to the Observer, Economist, 1843 Magazine, FT Weekend, Guardian and Telegraph. She is also the classical music columnist for BBC Culture. An award-winning violinist, Clemency has performed all over the world under leading conductors. She is the co-founder of Aurora Orchestra and a patron of the music and arts education charities The Choir of London Trust and Dramatic Need.

Monica Wood

Monica Wood is an award-winning, bestselling novelist and memoirist. Born in Maine, New England, to an Irish Catholic family, she worked as a guidance counsellor and in a nursing home before becoming a full-time writer. She is also a singer, and travelled the New England circuit singing jazz, country, pop and gospel for many years. She lives in Maine with her husband.

Sarah Winman

Sarah Winman grew up in Essex and now lives in London. She attended the Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art and went on to act in theatre, film and television. She has written three novels, WHEN GOD WAS A RABBIT, A YEAR OF MARVELLOUS WAYS and TIN MAN.

Zoé de Las Cases

Zoé de Las Cases is an illustrator and artistic director of a Parisian creative agency.She is the author of a number of colouring books including - Secret Paris: Colouring for mindfulness; Secret Japan: Colouring for mindfulness: Secret Paris: Colour Your Way to Calm. www.zoedelascases.comFollow on Twitter @zoedelascases