“Sammy, the crow who remembered” by Elizabeth Baldwin Hazelton

I had this book as a kid. I remembered it because it has a character named Sonya, which is the only place I ever saw my name in a book, even spelled wrong differently. Well, until Crime and Punishment, but that was much later. Representation is important! I also remembered an overall warm feeling about […]

“Through the Gates” by Susan Windle

Subtitle: A Practice for Counting the Omer

Recommended to me by: Kol Aleph – Jewish Renewal Omer Offerings Online

I tried Counting the Omer this year, moving through the sephirot of the Kabbalah in all their pairings over 49 days. I quickly found that I needed a woman’s voice to guide me through this […]

“She Who Dwells Within” by Lynn Gottlieb

Subtitle: A Feminist Vision of a Renewed Judaism

Recommended to me by: Orasimcha Batdina

I loved this book. Lynn Gottlieb talks about exactly what I needed to hear, that other women find Judaism to be hostile ground. I cheered on her battle to make that hostile world hers in a new way, and winced […]

“Wheels of Life” by Anodea Judith

Subtitle: A User’s Guide to the Chakra System

Recommended to me by: Katherine Macomber Millman

This is a thorough, inclusive, grounded introduction to the chakra system. It includes Hindu history, symbolism, and interactions with yoga. It discusses both the “liberating” current, moving toward the upper chakras and universal energy, and the “manifesting” current, moving […]

“Overcoming Trauma Through Yoga” by David Emerson and Elizabeth Hopper

Subtitle: Reclaiming Your Body

Recommended to me by: a client

This book is divided into three parts: a general introduction to the history of trauma treatment and PTSD, a suggested yoga practice for traumatized people, illustrated with photographs, and suggestions for offering trauma-sensitive yoga for clinicians and yoga teachers.

Throughout the book, it is […]

“A Theory of Everything” by Ken Wilber

Subtitle: An Integral Vision for Business, Politics, Science, and Spirituality

Recommended to me by: David Mitchell

I read this book to learn about Spiral Dynamics, a classification of cultures that makes room for change and values all levels, from bare subsistence to military control to cooperative and aware. The levels are labeled with colors […]

“Core Awareness” by Liz Koch

Subtitle: Enhancing Yoga, Pilates, Exercise, and Dance

Recommended to me by: David Mitchell

I enthusiastically endorse this book’s focus on awareness, especially in core areas that we often learn to block out. The psoas muscles connects the front of the lumbar spine to the inside of the pelvis to the inner upper femur, all […]

“The Focusing Student’s and Companion’s Manual” by Barbara McGavin and Ann Weiser Cornell

Recommended to me by: Jael Emberley

I took Focusing classes I and II from Jael Emberley, and bought both parts of the manual, even though the second part is for classes III and IV. Both parts are written in clear, friendly language, and delightfully illustrated by Mary Ferris. Her expressive line drawings of anthropomorphized […]

“How to Learn the Alexander Technique” by Barbara Conable

Subtitle: A Manual for Students

Recommended to me by: reading Conable’s previous book, What Every Musician Needs to Know About the Body

This book is less playful and more dense than What Every Musician Needs to Know About the Body, but it is not at all the dry instruction manual I thought it would […]

“Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo, and Me: A Graphic Memoir” by Ellen Forney

The story and drawings quickly engaged me, despite the author’s sometimes bizarre, sometimes heavy journey through mania, depression, and eventually, balance. She has the fantastic support of her mom, friends, and psychiatrist, but still struggles for years before finding a set of meds that works for her.

In depression, she can barely get […]