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WellFemme’s Holiday Cultural-Binge Guide

Our top picks in books, viewing and listening material are “just what the doctor ordered” for the holidays

If you’re looking forward to some chillout time over the holidays but haven’t planned your veg-out materials yet, here are some tips from the team to keep you amused.

Dr Lynda Newman: Books and Yoga

“I LOVE reading and when on holidays will always have a few books on the go.

I have just finished All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Remarque. It is a scathing look at war. Erich fought in the first world war and wrote this book because all his friends and family had been killed during the war. He was the only survivor and left Germany after the war and never returned.

I am currently reading Fibre Fuelled by Dr Will Bulsiewicz. One of my patients has gut dysbiosis, a condition where the bacteria in the gut are out of balance due to illness, the use of medications (especially antibiotics) or too much processed foods. Their gastroenterologist recommended the book to them and it has helped them a lot. It is about how our gut biome needs constant feeding of different types of fibre in order to keep us optimally healthy. I often read books that patients bring to my attention.

And lastly, I have just finished reading Bohemian Negligence by Bertie Blackman. Bertie is the daughter of artist Charles Blackman. This is the story of her really wayward childhood as the daughter of two artists. Warning – it has references to child sexual abuse in it.  

It is not holidays yet, so this is not a holiday suggestion, but I have been doing a 30 day yoga challenge with “Yoga with Adriene”, an internet based Yoga Program. I am not a technology person at all, but I had to do something about my very sore back and the thought of going to a physio was just too much for me. I am on day 17 of the challenge – it has been great. The sessions vary from 15 minutes to 30 minutes, which makes it manageable for a busy person.

Have a merry Christmas and I will see some of you next year😊”

Dr Katie Kent: 

Favourite recent film- The Swimmers (Netflix)

Recent reads: And The Mountain Echoed, and A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini.

“I have just discovered audible too for the car – I know I’m 10 years later than the rest of the world but I love it.”

Dr Helen Demetriou:

Loved “Lessons in Chemistry” (Bonnie Garmus), a great book about a smart independent woman.

I’ve been working my way through the RecipeTin Eats cookbook (bonus points for her gorgeous golden retriever).

Non fiction: Brainstorm- “The Power and Purpose of the Teenage Brain” (Daniel J. Seigel); it’s given me my mantra of “frontal lobe not connected” that I have to repeat A LOT.

Music: Hamilton, and I’ve re-found Kate Bush.


Dr Niamh Leonard:

“We’re loving The Swimmers on Netflix too (not quite finished!). Also loved “Bad Sisters” on Apple TV – so good – set in Dublin so am a bit biased, but funny dark comedy and a lot of strong female characters in there!”

Dr Alice Webb:


  • Anything by Dervla McTiernan; gripping books, cannot put the book down! She is an Irish writer living in Perth, so I too also may have a bias here!
  • Becoming” by Michelle Obama.
  • The Family Doctor” by Debra Oswald

TV show: has to be Derry Girls on Netflix!

Music: “My G” by Aitch and Ed Sheeran. A beautiful song dedicated to his sister with Down’s Syndrome❤️

Dr Sunita Chelva

The Women’s Doc” (Caroline De Costa)- this is the story of an amazing lady – one of the first female obstetricians in Australia and she went to my college in Dublin. In catholic Ireland she used to smuggle condoms and IUDs on the train from Northern Ireland and the UK as a student. What a trailblazer!!!

Also “The Space Between The Stars” (Indira Naidoo): I am reading this currently and it is very powerful (and not Irish!)”

Dr Kelly Teagle

I am reading “Secrets of Women’s Healthy Ageing” (Cassandra Szoeke), recommended to me by a patient. It’s helping me get up to speed with lifestyle related evidence for women, ready for our healthy lifestyle community and online program next year. After seeing all these suggestions though, I’ll be downloading lots of the books above to take away on hols!

Our favourite podcast for long drives is “Chat 10, Looks 3“; Annabel Crabbe and Leigh Sales have great fun bouncing ideas off each other at high speed. They have the best recommendations of shows and books, plus some juicy popular media goss and hilarious personal stories. They also do live shows together… I’m seeing them in Canberra this weekend! 🙂


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