In this fictionalized account of her life, Nikki Friedlander tackles two interesting and immersive topics: women’s struggles to have it all, and the universal search to find a deeper meaning in life.
The book begins in the early 1970s, when the author’s altar ego, Tori Litchfield, is middle-aged. With her daughters in college, Tori decides to return to her career as a New York City fashion designer. But days before Tori is scheduled to do a Vogue magazine photo shoot in Malta, her husband, David, is critically injured while horseback riding. Tori is torn between staying at home with him or going on the photo shoot. She chooses her career but agonizes over whether she’s being selfish, just as her mother was.
While Tori is in Malta, she has a spiritual awakening. When she returns home, she begins a yoga practice and starts delving into Eastern religion. At the same time, she cares for the recuperating David and nurtures her burgeoning fashion career. After several years of trying to be everything to everybody, Tori suffers a breakdown. It is her deepening interest in Eastern spirituality that helps her heal, and as she becomes older, her spiritual practices expand.
The tight plotting keeps readers engaged, as something is always happening to Tori—her husband’s accident, the travails of working at a major fashion house, encounters with yogis and other spiritual guides. Readers will enjoy sharing in her adventures. The story is cleanly and precisely written, and the author breaks up the third-person copy with interludes in which Tori talks directly to the reader.
Overall, The Divine Journey provides a captivating look at an everywoman’s quest to find meaning in her life—as a wife, mother, daughter, friend and spiritual being. This is a deeply personal novel, but its message is universal enough to appeal to spiritual seekers and general readers alike.
Also available in hardcover and ebook.