Extreme fasting; extreme yoga; extreme meditation – this is a sideways look at the wellness world through the eyes and journey one seeker.

The author is a journalist, in part reporting on travel and wellness, and this is a memoir partly of those jobs; partly of her own search; partly of walking the line between the demands of the wellness gurus and the draw of a hectic daily life.

It’s slightly cynical, slightly harsh, at times slightly sad, and comes across as an honest and mostly disappointing journey – there must be something there, but where is it? How much of that is the authors slant, poetic justice in written form, how much the truth is hard to say, although you do wonder if the extremes she introduces can be made up – 101 day fasting detoxes; endless hot Bikram yoga (even meeting Mr Bikram himself, which much count as beyond the call of the authors duty); meditation retreats upon retreats; enemas; urban solace.

This is not a saccharine spiritual book; it’s a memoir, a log, the view from outside looking in. Is there a message? I’m not sure, other than we all search in our own ways, some of us write about it.

I’m not sure whether it’s a book I’d recommend. I suppose I like to learn; and to me this was just a report, gripping in its own way, but I’m not sure I’m much the wiser for reading it, there was nothing unsurprising or novel in its pages. However for anyone who doesn’t do spiritual books, but has an interest in the journey, there may be something attractive about sharing the authors experiences and learnings; that’s not to slight her, I hasten to add.

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