A helpful guide for readers hoping to move beyond self-blame that’s holding them back.

OUT OF LOVE

FINDING YOUR WAY BACK TO SELF-COMPASSION

A writer/teacher learns to move beyond her guilt—and suggests how others can do the same—after a mastectomy, the end of her marriage, and her husband’s suicide.

Debut author Ingheim, a doctoral student at the California Institute of Integral Studies, has experienced her share of tragedy: In 2016 she received a breast cancer diagnosis and had a double mastectomy. The next year, she found the courage to leave her nearly 10-year marriage only to receive a call later that night that her husband had killed himself after receiving the news. Overcome with guilt and self-loathing, she eventually learned to move forward by practicing self-compassion, or “recognizing that the voice that wants to blame you for something that is in no way, shape, or form your fault is just that—a voice that doesn’t speak the truth.” She explains how she did it and offers tips for others with similar concerns in 67 brief chapters that blend self-help with reminiscences of her Seventh-day Adventist childhood, her challenges after her husband died, her life with a stepson by a happy second marriage, and other ups and downs. Jumping around chronologically, she offers vignettes from her own life and examples of how practicing “self-compassion” has helped her cope with difficult issues. In a chapter entitled “Scars,” for example, she describes both her physical and emotional scars and invites readers to contemplate what they’ve learned from their own wounds. Every chapter ends with a prompt that encourages self-reflection, so the people who will benefit most from this book are those who are willing to do some deep soul searching and consider questions like, “When do you beat yourself up?” or “Who or what brings you alive?” The brevity of the chapters and the frequent chronological shifts may give some people mental whiplash, but those who are willing to spend time reflecting on her prompts should be able to begin to “let go of the guilt and the ghosts” and begin their own journeys toward self-compassion and healing. 

A helpful guide for readers hoping to move beyond self-blame that’s holding them back.

Pub Date: May 26, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-63152-695-4

Page Count: 216

Publisher: She Writes Press

Review Posted Online: Feb. 5, 2020

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Doyle offers another lucid, inspiring chronicle of female empowerment and the rewards of self-awareness and renewal.

Our Verdict

  • Our Verdict
  • GET IT

  • New York Times Bestseller

  • IndieBound Bestseller

UNTAMED

More life reflections from the bestselling author on themes of societal captivity and the catharsis of personal freedom.

In her third book, Doyle (Love Warrior, 2016, etc.) begins with a life-changing event. “Four years ago,” she writes, “married to the father of my three children, I fell in love with a woman.” That woman, Abby Wambach, would become her wife. Emblematically arranged into three sections—“Caged,” “Keys,” “Freedom”—the narrative offers, among other elements, vignettes about the soulful author’s girlhood, when she was bulimic and felt like a zoo animal, a “caged girl made for wide-open skies.” She followed the path that seemed right and appropriate based on her Catholic upbringing and adolescent conditioning. After a downward spiral into “drinking, drugging, and purging,” Doyle found sobriety and the authentic self she’d been suppressing. Still, there was trouble: Straining an already troubled marriage was her husband’s infidelity, which eventually led to life-altering choices and the discovery of a love she’d never experienced before. Throughout the book, Doyle remains open and candid, whether she’s admitting to rigging a high school homecoming court election or denouncing the doting perfectionism of “cream cheese parenting,” which is about “giving your children the best of everything.” The author’s fears and concerns are often mirrored by real-world issues: gender roles and bias, white privilege, racism, and religion-fueled homophobia and hypocrisy. Some stories merely skim the surface of larger issues, but Doyle revisits them in later sections and digs deeper, using friends and familial references to personify their impact on her life, both past and present. Shorter pieces, some only a page in length, manage to effectively translate an emotional gut punch, as when Doyle’s therapist called her blooming extramarital lesbian love a “dangerous distraction.” Ultimately, the narrative is an in-depth look at a courageous woman eager to share the wealth of her experiences by embracing vulnerability and reclaiming her inner strength and resiliency.

Doyle offers another lucid, inspiring chronicle of female empowerment and the rewards of self-awareness and renewal.

Pub Date: March 10, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-9848-0125-8

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Dial Books

Review Posted Online: Dec. 22, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2020

Did you like this book?

An eye-opening glimpse into the attempted self-unmaking of one of Hollywood’s most recognizable talents.

Our Verdict

  • Our Verdict
  • GET IT

  • New York Times Bestseller

  • IndieBound Bestseller

  • Rolling Stone & Kirkus' Best Music Books of 2020

OPEN BOOK

The debut memoir from the pop and fashion star.

Early on, Simpson describes the book she didn’t write: “a motivational manual telling you how to live your best life.” Though having committed to the lucrative deal years before, she “walked away,” fearing any sort of self-help advice she might give would be hypocritical. Outwardly, Simpson was at the peak of her success, with her fashion line generating “one billion dollars in annual sales.” However, anxiety was getting the better of her, and she admits she’d become a “feelings addict,” just needing “enough noise to distract me from the pain I’d been avoiding since childhood. The demons of traumatic abuse that refused to let me sleep at night—Tylenol PM at age twelve, red wine and Ambien as a grown, scared woman. Those same demons who perched on my shoulder, and when they saw a man as dark as them, leaned in to my ear to whisper, ‘Just give him your light. See if it saves him…’ ” On Halloween 2017, Simpson hit rock bottom, and, with the intervention of her devoted friends and husband, began to address her addictions and underlying fears. In this readable but overlong narrative, the author traces her childhood as a Baptist preacher’s daughter moving 18 times before she “hit fifth grade,” and follows her remarkable rise to fame as a singer. She reveals the psychological trauma resulting from years of sexual abuse by a family friend, experiences that drew her repeatedly into bad relationships with men, most publicly with ex-husband Nick Lachey. Admitting that she was attracted to the validating power of an audience, Simpson analyzes how her failings and triumphs have enabled her to take control of her life, even as she was hounded by the press and various music and movie executives about her weight. Simpson’s memoir contains plenty of personal and professional moments for fans to savor. One of Kirkus and Rolling Stone’s Best Music Books of 2020.

An eye-opening glimpse into the attempted self-unmaking of one of Hollywood’s most recognizable talents.

Pub Date: Feb. 4, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-06-289996-5

Page Count: 416

Publisher: Dey Street/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: Feb. 16, 2020

Did you like this book?

more