For me, the true test of a really useful book is marked by whether or not I would recommend it to a friend.
Live a Life You Love by Susan Biali, MD Beaufort Books, 2010, 208 pages, $17.95 ISBN - 10: 0825305993 ISBN - 13: 9780825305993 For me, the true test of a really useful book is marked by whether or not I would recommend it to a friend. Before finishing the first chapter of Susan Biali’s Live a Life You Love I was already making a mental list of people who would be receiving this one as a gift. In that moment I was also grateful for the weekend’s rainy weather forecast that would allow me to read through without interruption to the last practical page. I want to thank Susan Biali for sharing her personal story and for having the experience, wisdom, and skill to make it one that resonates intimately with each reader. Who can help but be captivated by a beautiful young doctor who reveals a personal story of burnout, depression, self-doubt, and unrealized dreams? As Biali tells it, the unhappiness in her early medical career was in contrast to what society expects from those brightest of medical students who eventually become its caregivers. Without self-pity or self-centredness, a now-successful Biali strings together the events and private transformations that led her to become a wellness coach, writer, speaker, and lover-of-life. Between poignant, well-paced anecdotes, she drops gentle reminders of the seven practical steps outlined in her book. Like a trail in the woods with surprises at every turn, each paragraph leads readers deeper into self-discovery of their own inner treasures. We know from the outset that Biali turned her back on long-held career goals to pursue her dreams and become a professional flamenco dancer—and this “trial by fire” gives her voice an honest, genuine quality. It’s an authenticity that will easily gain the respect of readers who seek life-changing advice. Because of Biali’s credibility we want to read more, pay attention, and heed her counsel. And if this weren’t enough, Live a Life You Love includes a 52-page companion workbook that can be downloaded at no charge from Biali’s website. Inspired in part by Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way, this workbook stimulates and supports the reader’s commitment and becomes a usable “contract with the self” toward a more satisfying, healthier life. Thanks Dr. Biali, I did it!