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Book Review: Bare Naked at the Reality Dance by Suzanne Selby Grenager

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Bare Naked at the Reality Dance by Suzanne Selby Grenager is a self-help/self-exploration book written as a journal meant to guide readers through the author’s experiences and journey.

Although this is Grenager’s first book, she is a former columnist for the Philadelphia Inquirer and Spiritsite.

Grenager, a spiritual mentor and yoga instructor by day, references writing in her journal throughout the book, and it seems very clear that she and the editors did very little editing of her journal entries before publishing it as part one of her series. Maybe because the book is a journal there is very little background about what has led Grenager to the apparently unhappy state that she is in, although she references several events throughout the book that had a dramatic impact on her.

Although she makes many profound and insightful comments throughout the book, her thoughts all seem disconnected and disjointed from each other. In some sections of the book it takes her paragraphs or even pages to get back to her original thought, if she comes back to it at all.

Reading this book felt like reading someone’s free-writing exercise, the process that writers go through in order to get their thoughts down on paper and figure out what it is they actually want to write about before going back and starting the next phase of actually creating a first draft.

Here are some of the things I liked about the book:

* Grenager is profoundly honest about the journey she is going through and the steps she is taking to get to a better place.

* Because she is a life coach and a yoga instructor by day she offers a lot of wisdom about the “self” and includes many references to other writings.

* Throughout her “journal” she used often referenced obscure teachings or used words in other languages. When she did this though there was a side bar explaining the meaning, or offering more information.

There is no doubt that Grenager was on to something with this book and the concept itself. However, it definitely could have done with a lot more editing and a few more drafts before it was published.

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