Pre-lockdown, reading a book seemed to be a taken-for-granted activity that could be conducted anywhere: whilst on the tube, in bed before falling asleep, or on a plane to a far away destination. While the locations where said pastime may take place are currently out of bounds for the most of us, the act itself is not, and we're here to remind you of that. The team at Because have shared the books that they are about to/in the midst of/just finishing as a way of inspiring you to gander through your dusty bookshelves. Because there isn't a better way to spend your extra time than through reading.

Caroline Issa, Editor-In-Chief
Nikita Lalwani's debut novel is a powerful look at the UK and its immigration policies, a fictionalised, but very real trauma served under the Teresa May Home Office and showing the ramifications to our British society and woven fabric of community. Today, as we see a disproportionate fatal effect of the Corona Virus on BAME hospital and care-giver staff, the issue of who is keeping us safe, fed and healthy has come to the forefront, and this delicate but powerful novel is helpful to start putting the pieces of the puzzle together, of how we carry on as Brits.

Carmen Bellot, Junior Fashion Editor
Yes, I'm late to the hype. Back when this book was released in 2017, I optimistically remembering thinking, "I need to read that!". In reality, it took me three years and finding it on my living room bookshelf (it's my housemates copy) to get around to it, but better late than never! For me, Why I'm No Longer Talking about Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge is an apt (and surprisingly relevant) book to read during this pandemic. As a novel that explores the Black and Asian experience within British society, past and present, reading this text is an education into the complexities of Britain's race relations. It'll make you question yourself, your families, and your friends place within this structure, and its uncomplicated language means that literally anyone can read it and get the message. During such an unwonted time, reflection is necessary, and while we may be hoping that normality returns, this novel shows that we might want to rethink that wish. 

Delia Wagner, Publishing Assistant
I have a list of all the books I want to read in my lifetime. This is of course an aspirational list, because life gets in the way and I end up picking up a new best-seller I read about or something that was recommended to me by a friend. But my lifetime list persists, so I decided to dig into it, starting with Nietzsche's last great book Why I Am So Wise. In this short and poignant autobiography, he picks into the depths of his own thinking, putting himself and his work on trial. In this time of great uncertainty over the future, there is something very calming about picking up a timeless classic.

Nasreen Osman, Project Co-Ordinator
As you can see from the tattered edges, this book has done it's time on my bookshelf and in my backpack throughout the years. Flowers for Algernon is a book I started back in college (i.e. a while ago!) but I never got very far with interruptions every week in the form of prescribed texts and case studies. The short story by Daniel Keyes follows a mentally handicapped man, Charlie Gordon, who undergoes surgery to become intelligent. As he gains knowledge and an understanding of complex emotions, it makes readers question whether knowledge goes hand in hand with happiness, and the limits of science. Be warned, you'll probably shed a tear or two but it's nothing short of a beautiful and enlightening tale. Now that I've finally finished it, I can say the delayed gratification was worth it. 

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