Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 18 September 2019

The ZZZ-list: 30 books to help you get the best night’s sleep

Sheraton Grand London Park Lane has created a library of fiction and non-fiction titles designed to help its guests get a great night of slumber

Sheraton Grand London Park Lane has partnered with its neighbour Hatchards, the oldest bookseller in the UK capital, and Dr David Lewis, a sleep expert and chartered psychologist, to create the ZZZ-list. Courtesy Sheraton Grand London Park Lane
Sheraton Grand London Park Lane has partnered with its neighbour Hatchards, the oldest bookseller in the UK capital, and Dr David Lewis, a sleep expert and chartered psychologist, to create the ZZZ-list. Courtesy Sheraton Grand London Park Lane

It is common knowledge that the blue light emitted from the screens of our phones, computers and televisions can have a disruptive effect on our sleeping patterns. So a hotel in London has come up with the perfect antidote.

Sheraton Grand London Park Lane has partnered with its neighbour, Hatchards, the oldest bookseller in the UK capital, and Dr David Lewis, a sleep expert and chartered psychologist, to create the ZZZ-list. This exclusive library contains a specially curated selection of books that will help guests get the best possible night’s sleep during their stay at the hotel.

The criteria

A total of 30 fiction and non-fiction titles have been included, in accordance with a specific set of guidelines established by Lewis. These include books that use short sentences - lengthier sentences produce long slow (alpha) waves in the brain found in a relaxed state, rather than short faster waves (beta waves). Concluding chapters that satisfy the brain’s desire for completeness were another desirable attribute when it came to putting together the ZZZ list.

Falling asleep in a bed that isn’t your own can be difficult and the ever growing use of smartphones and tablet computers during evening hours can cause sleep disturbances – meaning those staying in a hotel can sometimes find it harder to get to sleep.

Dr David Lewis

An incomplete chapter creates the "Zeigarnik Effect", a nagging feeling at the back of your mind that something has been left undone, which makes sleep less likely. Books that avoid a large amount of detail and follow a simple narrative structure also help the reader drift off, Lewis maintains. The more complicated the story structure, the greater the cognitive effort needed to make sense of it.

The books sit within a dedicated library in the hotels’ Club Lounge and have been categorised into age brackets: Generation Z, Millennial and Generation X. They can be accessed by bibliophiles staying in suites and club rooms, as well as members, and guests can either read in the comfort of their room or in the lounge, where they can also access breakfast, beverages and canapes throughout the day.

“A leading theory suggests that sleep may provide the brain with an opportunity to rebalance itself. Falling asleep in a bed that isn’t your own can be difficult and the ever growing use of smartphones and tablet computers during evening hours can cause sleep disturbances – meaning those staying in a hotel can sometimes find it harder to get to sleep,” says Lewis.

The books on the list

The library even contains books that were chosen specifically to appeal to a Middle Eastern audience. These include Architect’s Apprentice by Elif Shafak, Palace Walk by Naguib Mahfouz, Yacoubian Building by Alaa Al Aswany and What I talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami.

In case you are looking for some inspiration for your own library, here is a full list of the books on the Sheraton Grand London Park Lane’s ZZZ-list:

Generation Z

Tangerine by Christine Mangan

Penguin Book of English Short Stories by Christopher Dolley

Architect’s Apprentice by Elif Shafak

The Improbability of Love by Hannah Rothschild

The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock by Imogen Hermes Gower

Still Me by Jojo Moyes

Don't Point That Thing at Me by Kyrii Bonfiglioi

Palace Walk by Naguib Mahfouz

Circe by Madeline Miller

Story of Mr Sommer by Patrick Suskind

Conversations with Friends by Sally Rooney

The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton

Millenials

Wind, Sand and Stars by Antoine de Saint-Expurey

Last Orders by Graham Switft

Collected Dorothy Parker by Dorothy Parker

Diary of a Provincial Lady by E.M.Dellafield

The Loved One by Evelyn Waugh

What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami

Lucky Jim by Kingsley Amis

This is What Happened by Mick Herron

The Young Hornblower Omnibus by C.S. Forester

Jonathan Livingstone Seagull by Richard Bach

Generation X

The Complete Hercule Poirot Short Stories by Agatha Christie

Hotel du Lac by Anita Brookner

Yacoubian Building by Alaa Al Aswany’s

The Lemon Table by Julian Barnes

One Fine Day by Mollie Panter-Downes

Violins of St Jacques by Patrick Leigh Fermor

Century Girls by Tessa Dunlop

Updated: July 1, 2019 06:31 PM

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