Welcome to the book blog of writer and creative writing tutor, Diane Paul.

Thanks to the publishers and kind PR people who send me books and releases about their clients' books for review. Press releases and review copies of fiction and non-fiction are always welcome. (No sci-fi, fantasy or erotica please.)

Due to the barrage of requests from self-published authors for reviews, I'm unable to deal with them all, although I'm sometimes drawn to non-fiction for the subject matter. And because I love print books, the smell, the touch of the paper and the sight of the words, I don't have an electronic reader or review e-books.

E-mail to: bookblogforbookworms@keywordeditorial.com for the postal address.

My writing website: http://www.keywordeditorial.com/

Friday, 13 August 2010

Teach us to Sit Still by Tim Parks

Since the 1980s, metaphysical counsellor Louise Hay has devoted her life to helping people heal their lives by getting rid of the negative attitudes that she believes can bring about physical illness. Her philosophy: 'We are each one hundred per cent responsible for all our experiences, our future. The point of power is in the present moment. When we really love ourselves, everything in our life works. We create every so called illness in our body. We must release the past and forgive everyone.' One of her books in particular, You Can Heal Your Life became an international best seller and it included advice and exercises that could be put into instant use. Forgiveness is cleansing. I've tried it and it works. Louise came to this conclusion when she was diagnosed with cancer, which she says disappeared after she had a thorough mental and physical cleansing, clearing herself of all resentment.

A Sceptic's Search for Health and Healing

Best-selling author and translator (this is book number 21), Tim Parks wasn't a believer in alternative therapies or 'new age mumbo jumbo' and throughout his healing process, he maintained his sceptical stance.  But he decided to write a book about his healing journey and how he discovered that body and mind are indeed linked. Once you get past the medical opinions about his prostate, which came to nothing and move on to his quest for an alternative solution for the relief of his chronic bladder pain, the read becomes more fascinating. It's also worth bearing in mind that when the medical profession give up on you, it is simply an indication that they have reached the limit of their knowledge and not that your condition is necessarily untreatable; there may possibly be someone somewhere else that can help you. Like many people who reach this stage, Tim turns to alternative therapies for help. In India, he consults an ayurvedic doctor who tells him about energy flow and blockage caused by 'mental tussle', but sesame oil enemas don't appeal. He becomes fascinated by internet postings of people with similar physical symptoms - so many different opinions and treatments. His health becomes an obsession but he's convinced by now that 'medicines are not the answer'. But sitting down all day at a desk could restrict blood flow to the contracted muscles and affect surrounding nerves in the pelvic floor and even affect muscles away from that area. And the antidote was relaxation and massage. How the author resolves his problem is for readers to discover but it begins with a book called A Headache in the Pelvis by David Wise and Rodney Anderson - breathing and meditation form the main part of his healing journey. Being an award-winning writer, it's no surprise that Parks expresses himself so well in print. His journey will be of interest to anyone with chronic pain. Interspersed with his own story, he studies the effects that illness has had on other writers, artists and well-known people. Published by Harvill Secker, London 2010.

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