‘I needed the therapist to be the perspective’: How couples therapy can help to repair a marriage
‘I needed the therapist to be the perspective’: How couples therapy can help to repair...

Amanda Cassidy

Kourtney Kardashian and Travis Baker opted for a low-key courtroom wedding — will celebrity ‘minimonies’ spark a new marriage trend?
Kourtney Kardashian and Travis Baker opted for a low-key courtroom wedding — will celebrity ‘minimonies’...

Sarah Gill

Make-up, the infamous op-ed and Elon Musk: Here’s what’s new in Depp v Heard
Make-up, the infamous op-ed and Elon Musk: Here’s what’s new in Depp v Heard

Sarah Finnan

The new perfume from this major fashion house is designed to smell like Dublin in the rain
The new perfume from this major fashion house is designed to smell like Dublin in...

Holly O'Neill

The enduring appeal of ‘Derry Girls’: Fare thee well, we’ll miss you
The enduring appeal of ‘Derry Girls’: Fare thee well, we’ll miss you

Sarah Finnan

Mums of IMAGE: 4 nuggets of wisdom for navigating motherhood
Mums of IMAGE: 4 nuggets of wisdom for navigating motherhood

IMAGE

Self-care Diaries: Maria Hatzistefanis, the CEO of Rodial who wears Bottega Veneta heels while WFH
Self-care Diaries: Maria Hatzistefanis, the CEO of Rodial who wears Bottega Veneta heels while WFH

Holly O'Neill

‘Everyone thinks my narcissistic mother-in-law is amazing. I feel so alone’
‘Everyone thinks my narcissistic mother-in-law is amazing. I feel so alone’

Amanda Cassidy

PSA: Zara has started charging for online returns and customers are not best pleased
PSA: Zara has started charging for online returns and customers are not best pleased

Sarah Gill

Meet the couples taking on Ireland’s crumbling historical homes
Meet the couples taking on Ireland’s crumbling historical homes

Megan Burns

Image / Editorial

Five For the Commute


By Bill O'Sullivan
09th Jun 2013
Five For the Commute

1.? The Gulag Archipelago by Alexander Solzhenitsyn

41RJiysfE9L

The Gulag was the Russian government agency that managed a series of forced labour camps from the 1930’s until the fall of the Communism. If you think that work is bad, this three-volume tome should make your heart a little lighter while you take the 122 to a job that, presumably, doesn’t involve breaking rocks. Solzhenitsyn won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1970 and his work is criminally under-read outside of Russia despite his popularity. It’s not that his books are particularly hard to read, but rather that the content is crushingly depressing as well as compelling. The Gulag Archipelago is perfect for the Monday morning commute in that respect.

2.? Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

Emmanuel Polanco- Lolita 2

Almost everything by Nabokov will elicit a few odd glances on public transport, so intimidating is the perfection of his prose – so why not up the ante by reading an obscene book with absolutely no obscene terms in it whatsoever? Humbert Humbert, our paedophile narrator, is recalling his past life and disturbing ‘relationship? with the young nymphet Lolita, even marrying her overbearing mother just to get close to her. Lolita is sinister and blackly funny, and accessible despite its subject matter.? You might even get so absorbed that you miss your stop.

?3.? The Stand by Stephen King

stand-stephen-king

Stephen King books are rarely considered particularly impressive or intimidating, but The Stand is a different proposition altogether. This much-beloved-by-hardcore-King-fans book is huge, a doorstopper of gargantuan proportions, a labyrinthine composition with hundreds of characters and almost as many interweaving storylines.? Set in a post-apocalyptic world in which almost everyone has, weirdly, died of the flu, The Stand eventually descends into an epic battle of good against evil, the Hand of God against the power of malevolence and fear.? Spoiler alert – this battle takes place in Las Vegas (of course).

?4.? Anything from the Four Corners Familiars series

4corners_familiarsgroup_print

Four Corners Books is a small publishing company that is challenging the old tradition of the illustrated book – in particular, their reworked classics (or Familiars) are a joy to hold and to read.? William Makepeace Thackeray’s Vanity Fair is packaged beautifully in pink with illustrations of Becky Sharp resembling Bette Davis and Oscar Wilde’s A Picture of Dorian Grey is dressed up to look like a vintage men’s magazine.? The only one perhaps not suitable for your commute is the lavishly illustrated Madame Bovary – but that’s because it weighs about two kilos.

?5.? Any book, wrapped in brown paper

brown-paper-wrapped-books

It’s a rather sad fact of life that people-watching is a universal pleasure, and most of us get our fix on the bus.? You may not particularly want people to see what’s you’re reading, or vice versa, especially if it’s?Fifty Shades of Grey.?It’s possible to buy pre-made fabric book covers online (they’re incredibly popular in Japan) but brown paper is really a classic.? Added to that, you get to be the person on the bus with an air of mystery – and those people are very rare.

Sarah Waldron is our Books Editor.