This has been a difficult review to write - because this is a book that can not be rushed. I often can finish a book at two sittings but this one got under the skin and has taken a while to read through to honestly comment on.
What we have is a series of paradoxes which Richard lets you ponder as he offers thoughts, some quite tangential and the need for personal change; to appreciate that true gain is spiritual not material. It is not written in a fervent evangelistic way whatsoever but in a quiet, almost unassuming amassing of idea after idea that created ripples of thought in my mind and made me think. The process could not be hurried.
It compares the two `halves' of life but note these are not to be seen as mathematical halves but life formation and then living it to the full. The example of Helen Keller mentioned on p 154 shows that the first `half' can be over fairly rapidly - if you let it.
There are quotes from myths, poets, psychiatrists and other thinkers as well as from the bible. There are no gimmicks, no hard sell. In fact that would be the very antithesis of Richard Rohr's approach which I found refreshingly understated. It is really all down to us, as individuals to make the changes, no simple solutions or magic formulae but a succession of gentle encouragements to take the risks. The Christian angle was subtle and draws on material from many contributors.
I would recommend it for those facing a crisis of confidence or even just at a point where they need to re-examine their priorities. Richard describes his journey as a Pilgrim's progress, though the shadows that re-enforce our personal self deceptions and the need to meet the problems of life in all its tragic senses: identity, life transitions, perfectionism, religion as against true belief, suffering and so on.
There is a useful index and brief notes together with a bibliography.