Category Archives: Reviews

Z Helene – Dancer, Choreographer, Teacher – Reviews "Unveiling"

Z Helene – Noted Dancer, Choreographer, Teacher, “Herstorian,” and Spiritual Visionary – Reviews Unveiling: The Inner Journey

The newest 5-star Amazon review of Unveiling – posted just last evening – is by noted dancer, author, choreographer, teacher and “herstorian” Z Helene Christopher.

Z Helene’s review is absolutely wonderful! Not just because it’s a glowing endorsement (it is), but because she so adroitly summarizes the thoughts, themes, and interwoven concepts and sources for Unveiling: The Inner Journey.

By reading her review, you’ll get a great sense of Unveiling’s nature – and also learn how a creative dancer, thoughtful researcher, and spiritual leader such as Z Helene applies Unveiling to her own life.

Z Helene writes:

Alay’nya has created a cohesive and enlightening gestalt that is both relevant and extremely useable, and this, I believe, is her true gift as an authoress. Potentially difficult information is presented in a way that is digestible and immediately accessible. We get practical hands-on exercises throughout the book (and at the end of each chapter) to guide us on our quests towards individuation. From tips on posture, poise, and presence to breathing and journaling techniques, Unveiling can also be considered a workbook to be used for small group study, akin to Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way.








To read Z Helene’s review, please go to Amazon’s Unveiling page, and then scroll down and click on “See all 19 customer reviews”:








If you’ve already read Unveiling, please go to the Amazon page and “Find Helpful” Z Helene’s review. (Also, please “Find Helpful” other 5-star reviews by noted scholars and author such as Morocco (writing as Carolina V. Dinicu), Donald Michael Kraig, Julie Rahm, and others.)

Then, go to Z Helene’s own site and read her excellent papers! I particularly like her one on Middle Eastern Dance: The Emergence of the New Sacred Temple Priestess. I’m finding what she writes is true in my own life, and you may find that you resonate with this as well. (Note also that Z Helene has produced some excellent instruction and performance DVDs; check them out – she’s received widespread accolades and respect for her work.)

If you haven’t yet read Unveiling, first read Z Helene’s review – which makes now for a total of EIGHTEEN 5-star Amazon reviews (yippee!!!), and then order your own copy as either a trade paper or Kindle edition.

Or if you’d like to get a dated, numbered, and signed copy, the Unveiling website gives info on book signings, radio and TV appearances, and other events.

You can purchase signed copies of Unveiling at these great independent bookstores:

North Virginia: One More Page Books in Falls Church, VA, offers books (with an emphasis on local interest/local authors), interesting wines, and exotic chocolates. What better combination for a sensual weekend of reading?

Tantalizing chocolates – right near the check-out counter at One More Page Books in Falls Church, VA.

(And just for fun, read Arlington Magazine’s recent feature article about One More Page Books.

Albuquerque, New Mexico: Bookworks is a locally-owned, locally-operated, independent bookstore that was founded in 1984. “We were indie before indie was cool.”

If you’re out-of-town, or can’t make it to either of these events (or to one of Unveiling’s much-loved indie bookstores), you can STILL get a specially-inscribed (dated, numbered, signed) copy of Unveiling through Cleopatra’s Closet. (Order your copies now and stockpile as Christmas presents!)

If you’re teaching dance, consider using Unveiling as “recommended reading” for your students. And if you’re a member of a book circle, consider using Unveiling as one of your selected readings.

If you’re truly feeling ambitious, follow the Seasonal Study Guide with Unveiling, using the references for each chapter to augment your own self-discovery and unfolding.

Have a lovely, wonderful, and blessed day!

Yours in dance – Alay’nya

Book of the Month: Dr. Christiane Northrup’s "The Wisdom of Menopause"

Dr. Christiane Northrup’s The Wisdom of Menopause – Now Richer than Ever!

You probably already know that the women involved in dance tend to be a little above-the-average (sometimes a LOT above-the-average) in terms of intelligence. Emotional intelligence, body-intuitive intelligence, expressive and movement intelligence, and good, old-fashioned, intellectual intelligence.

If you’re like me, you’ve been taking little imaginary “mini-vacations” using books lately. (That’s using our intellectual intelligence and creative, imaginative intelligence in tandem.)

Are you nearly over your “beach reads”?

I’ll confess – I’ve been doing a little “staycation” this week. Still “clocking in” to work (at my home office) every day – but have ripped through two totally “beach-read” novels in past two days alone. (Yes, that means staying up real late.)

But within a week or so, I’ll be over this, and interested in something more “solid.” Which brings me to Dr. Christiane Northrup’s books. Her loving endorsement of Unveiling (see below) has me re-reading her works again.

Dr. Christiane Northrup, author of the New York Times best-sellers Women's Bodies, Women's Wisdom and The Wisdom of Menopause .

Dr. Christiane Northrup, author of the New York Times best-sellers Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom and The Wisdom of Menopause .

We have something in common, Dr. Northrup and I. We’re both professionals – she’s an Ob/Gyn practitioner, and my Ph.D. is in theoretical physical chemistry. She’s done a lot of mainstream medical work over her career, and I’ve been an inventor, with four patents in computer science and a book about neural networks (the computer sort; think the android “Data” from the later Star Trek series, with his “neural network brain”). But both of us have examined our inner worlds – gone on our own “inner journeys” – and have observed and inquired into what other people have been learning. And we’ve each put what we’ve learned in book form.

We’re similar also in that our “writing voice” is very warm, intimate, and personal. Somehow, we’ve each managed to escape from the dry, distant “academic voice” with which we were taught, and learned to write in a way that makes you – the reader – feel connected.

And you know what? I’m really enjoying reading her book, The Wisdom of Menopause. It feels like we’re having a cup of coffee together, and she’s telling me about her life.

Dr. Christiane Northrup’s recently revised and updated The Wisdom of Menopause (Jan., 2012) is worth our time. (And I’m rereading it – and loving it more than ever!)

Her book is available in trade paper form from Amazon, and also as a Kindle download.

Dr. Northrup just sent me an email describing Unveiling as “delightful,” and saying that it brings “divine sensuality to women.” (Hooray for her! And hooray for me! So thrilled to get this accolade from an author as respected and loved as her!)

I reference The Wisdom of Menopause in Unveiling:

As described by Dr. Christiane Northrup in The Wisdom of Menopause, we become attuned to new pathways opening up for us at this time. With the monthly cycle of hormones diminishing, we have a more steady and consistent “baseline” for our self-observations. (Unveiling, p. 125)

If you’re just beginning your “inner journey” – or are well into the midst of it – Dr. Northrup’s book(s) and my own Unveiling make great hand-in-hand reads. Check us both out!

And as you make the transition from purely a “beach read” to something more substantial – what are you reading now? And what’s “in your bag” for Labor Day weekend?

Comment below – nominate your favorite reads – and I’ll select one to blog about the few days before Labor Day – so others will tune in to your favorite book!

Book Review – "The Survivor Tree" by Cheryl Somers Aubin

“The Survivor Tree,” by Cheryl Somers Aubin, and beautifully illustrated by Sheila Harrington, has warmed, melted, and deeply touched my heart. The core message of this book is that “survivors can heal” – and that even though those of us who survive any kind of life-ordeal may be scarred and damaged, we can still be beautiful.

The illustrations are exquisite, and touch me deeply – they perfectly complement the story.

A delightful You Tube video interview with Cheryl shares how she was inspired to write this book, succinctly captures the story line, and shows several of the deeply moving illustrations.

This is a book that I will give to friends who have undergone any kind of challenging life-ordeal, from which they emerge as “survivors.” It has a reach well beyond those impacted by 9/11, to the broader community of those who “survive” harrowing experiences. It will deeply help their healing process.