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Thursday, January 25, 2018

*[[Review]] The Little Book of Hygge: The Danish Way to Live Well by Meik Wiking

The Little Book of Hygge: Danish Secrets to Happy LivingPenguin presents the unabridged, downloadable, audiobook edition of The Little Book of Hygge, written and read by Meik Wiking. Denmark is often said to be the happiest country in the world. That's down to one thing: hygge. 'Hygge has been translated as everything from the art of creating intimacy to cosiness of the soul to taking pleasure from the presence of soothing things. My personal favourite is cocoa by candlelight...' You know hygge when you feel it. It is when you are cuddled up on a sofa with a loved one, or sharing comfort food with your closest friends. It is those crisp blue mornings when the light through your window is just right. Who better than Meik Wiking to be your guide to all things hygge? Meik is CEO of the Happiness Research Institute in Copenhagen and has spent years studying the magic of Danish life. In this beautiful, inspiring book he will help you be more hygge: from picking the right lighting and planning a dinner party through to creating an emergency hygge kit and even how to dress. Meik Wiking is the CEO of the Happiness Research Institute in Copenhagen. He is committed to finding out what makes people happy and has concluded that hygge is the magic ingredient that makes Danes the happiest nation in the world.
Summary & Cover taken from
Length: 3h 13 minutes (Audiobook)
Source: Toronto Public Library 
Available Formats: Print/E-book/Audiobook
Genre: Non-fiction
Add to Goodreads: Goodreads

I'll admit I'm a little late to the Hygge (pronounced Hoo-Gah) bandwagon but, hot damn am I on bored.  For those who do not know what Hygge is it's basically the danish way of being, kind of like the North American word cozy but with more feeling. During this past holiday season I was doing so much running around, cleaning up and stressing out because we brought my Dad home from the nursing home for a couple of days that I didn't  have anytime to sit down and just read, so I downloaded The Little Book of Hygge: The Danish Way to Live Well by Meik Wiking and away I went.

Firstly, can I just say how refreshing it was to have an author narrate their own book? While I was listening to the Little Book of Hygge I just could not get over how perfect Meik Wiking was at reading it aloud. I couldn't imagine anyone else reading it and I found his diction to be perfect. He was warm, and friendly and was just want this little book needed and made this a fun, easy and addictive listen.

While I am new to the term Hygge I would like to say that I'm not new to the concept. I love the idea of cozy living. I don't believe in spending vast amounts of money in the pursuit of happiness mostly because I don't have a lot of money and because money doesn't buy happiness. I was raised in a low income family and I suppose I still am in a low income family situation but to me that is a benefit. I've got to give it to my parents who put family togetherness before everything. We grew up thrifty and to me that is comfort, and comfort is hygge.

Food is a main focus of Meik Wiking's guide to hygge and I couldn't agree with him more. Food is where I find a lot of my hygge. Is it because food uses so many senses? The human sense of smell has the strongest memory retention. When we smell something it is what helps us remember more than any other sense. Though it is not alone, taste, sight and the action of doing all make food hygge. For example, I lost my mum a little three years ago and when I want to shut the family in, have everyone all snug in the house after a rough week I make her spaghetti. We all bundle up and either eat together or go to our own corners of the house, and remember how she used to cook and keep her memory with us. It sounds silly to put an element of hygge so simply, however to me that is what hygge is it's simplicity. It is coziness, it is contentment, it is being in a large group of friends or it is being alone. It is spending a weekend away, or a weekend in. It is as different in what in means to different people as there are different people in the world.

Besides giving some tips on how to find hygge in our ever more hectic, high speed, ultra connected, impersonal world, Wiking spreads a message of happiness, gives an interesting look into the Danish way of life, and  lays out some ways one might try to capture hygge.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading about his tips on creating hygge, little factoids about happiness and how it is measured in his job at the Happiness Institute, and sharing some personal stories about himself and some of his particularly hygge memories.

The audiobook of The Little Book of Hygge was only 3 hours 13 minutes long but it felt longer, and I don't mean that in a bad way. While it did seem like time flew by while I was listening to this, it certainly made an impact on me and now I find myself on a quest to be more hyggelig in the future and made me think about how I can be more hygge in my life. I feel as though there was a lot of personal reflection that happened after I finished this book, that I will be reading more books about hygge soon which is why I can't recommend this audiobook enough. Get some tips, add a few new recipes to you're recipes, and remember how to laugh and be happy without spending an arm and a leg.


  1. I have this book on hold at the library and am looking forward to it. I'm a big fan of cozy so I'm curious to see if this can help me add coziness to my day to day life. I love that you make your mom's spaghetti. What a wonderful way to remember her!

    1. Thank you! I hope you get to this one soon. I had to put all three formats of this book on hold at my library (physical copy, e-book, e-audiobook) and see which I would get first as it was proving to be quite the popular book. If you can put the audio on hold as well as it's a really easy listen.

  2. Had no clue about this I'm going to have to look into it more :D And dude I've never seen an author narrate their own book LOVE IT!

    1. I KNOW RIGHT?! I know some self help folks read their own work but I'm not sure I would qualify this as a self help book. Definitely look into it!

  3. I know this was a popular read and it's a popular lifestyle. It sounds pretty good. I may check it out.
    Thank you for your past, two visits. I tried Nalini Singh's angel series and didn't dig it; I thought it was somewhat typical with the whole male archangel dominance and sex. I will try her Psy-Changeling series one of these days.
    And if you do get into cardmaking, Jennifer McGuire has tons of videos. Let me tell you there is so much out there for cardmaking. I bought blindly in the beginning and now I'm half-planted in Tim Holtz's world with Distress Ink. That is how I get my vintage-distressed looks.

    1. I really hope you check it out :) I'm sorry you didn't like the Guild Hunter series, I'm not sure if you would like the Psy-changling series if you weren't a fan of this one as there are a lot of similarities in the character stylings. Thanks for the tips about card making!

  4. Nice review and sounds like an interesting book. Your right nothing wrong with being cozy and keeping things simple. Its family, friends and the little things that matter in life

  5. Never heard of this one before so really appreciate this post.

  6. I keep seeing this book around and wondering if I should read it and... you've convinced me I should!

    Also, that was not the pronunciation that was in my head :p

  7. I skimmed through this book and found it charming, but clearly audio is the way to go! I also love the way you incorporated your own experiences of hygge into your review. It's a great concept (hygge, I mean), and one I'd like to try to weave into my own life and home.

    1. I definitely recommend the audio. I skimmed through the book afterwards when my e-book hold cam through and while it is a cute little book to look at, audio was my preference. Hope you can listen to it soon Lark.

  8. I have seen a few books on this concept lately and have added a few to my to-read list. I'm glad you enjoyed it!

    1. Thank you! It's definitely a great concept, I hope you get to read a few Hygge books soon :)

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