Dissatisfied with her job as a pharmaceutical rep and struggling with the decline of her long-term relationship, Grace, a well-heeled Londoner, uses yoga class to unwind, reflect, and momentarily transcend her earthly dilemmas. While pitching her company's latest antidepressant to the disarming Dr. James, she is inspired by his plan to study Eastern medicine in Vietnam and decides to quit her job to become a yoga teacher.
After studying at the eccentric White Lotus Foundation in California, Grace returns to London ready for her new life. But nothing could have prepared her for the motley crew of students she amasses - from the octogenarian industrialist desperate for distraction to the supermodel who indulges yogic aspirations when she tires of kabbalah to the American film star who uses yoga classes to conceal a scandalous affair. Overwhelmed, Grace soon finds herself relying on her bicontinental correspondence with Dr. James for solace and inspiration, his words hovering above her London life like a sweet promise. With an eye for the absurdity in every encounter, Alexandra Gray gently skewers our society's preference for a quick-fix nirvana in this chronicle of one woman's quest for love and meaning in a world numbed by materialism and psychotropic drugs.
©2008 Alexandra Gray. Excerpts from the poems “Time Suite” and “Cabin Poem” from Jim Harrison’s The Shape of the Journey: New and Collected Poems (1998) are reprinted by permission of Copper Canyon Press, www.coppercanyonpress.org. Recorded by arangement with Grove Atlantic, Inc. (P)2014 Audible Inc.