3 out of 4 stars
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The Secrets to Living a Fantastic Life: Two Survivors Reveal the 13 Golden Pearls They've Discovered is a self-help book written by Dr. Allen Lycka and Harriet Tinka. Both Dr Lycka and Harriet Tinka share their personal stories of overcoming adversity in this inspirational read. Dr Lycka is a renowned cosmetic dermatologist whose life took an unexpected turn when he was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s disease and given six months to live. Harriet Tinka is a youth counselor and former Vogue fashion model who suffered traumatic abuse in a toxic relationship. This book is split into thirteen sections, with each section focusing on one of the metaphorical ‘golden pearls’ of wisdom that the authors discovered on their journey of transformation.
What I like most about The Secrets to Living a Fantastic Life is the informal, conversational style in which the book is written. This casual style makes for an easy and engaging reading experience. I particularly like how each section begins with a brief feature story highlighting the key points that will be covered in the section. I also like how Dr Lycka and Harriet Tinka generously share other resources such as helpful books, website links and videos to enable their readers to delve further into any ‘pearls’ of wisdom that may interest them.
The Secrets to Living a Fantastic Life is truly an eye-opening self-help book. I have learnt so much from a fairly short book, and I can hardly find anything I dislike about it. Having said this, I am afraid to say that the only parts I found distressing to read were the lucid descriptions of the harm inflicted upon Harriet Tinka by her abuser. Even though this was soon reconciled through Tinka’s explanation of the healing power of forgiveness, it does not discount the horrific recounting of the memory.
Overall, I rate The Secrets to Living a Fantastic Life 3 out of 4 stars. This book has been well-researched and professionally edited, I could not find a single error. The book gives us insight into a new way of looking at life, emphasizing the idea that “It’s not what happens...It’s what you do with what happens” that matters most. The only reason I cannot give it full marks is because I personally did not enjoy reading the few intricately detailed passages about physical abuse.
I would highly recommend The Secrets to Living a Fantastic Life to everyone who is on the path to learning how to create more joy and happiness in their day to day lives. I would not recommend this book to those who are sensitive to graphic descriptions of violent abuse.
The Secrets To Living A Fantastic Life...
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