Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Psychic: My Life in Two Worlds by Sylvia Browne

Synopsis From Dust Jacket:

At the age of seventy-three, New York Times–bestselling author Sylvia Browne is ready to tell the whole story of her extraordinary life. In Psychic, we meet the woman behind the public figure: from the teenager doubting her own sanity to the new mother living through staggering highs and lows; from the burgeoning celebrity to the successful, happily married woman she is today. Filled with never-before-told stories, Psychic is a riveting account of how Sylvia Shoemaker, a traditional girl from Missouri, became world-famous psychic Sylvia Browne.

Nothing is off-limits. Sylvia tells the little-known truths behind her three failed marriages — including physical abuse, bankruptcy, and legal troubles — and the financial and emotional damage they wreaked. She revisits her personal demons and describes her physical challenges, from a series of painful hip surgeries to her relatively recent discovery that she’d suddenly gone blind in one eye. And then there is the greatest surprise of all: Sylvia tells how, once she had reached her seventies and believed her romantic life was over, the real Mr. Right finally — impossibly — showed up.

I've never known much about Sylvia Browne outside of the fact that she was a psychic and appeared on the Montel Williams show a lot.  That lack of knowledge is the main reason I wanted to read this book and hear her life story from the source, not some tabloid you find at the supermarket checkout counter.  For the most part I was disappointed, I felt that I cam away from this with a little bit of an understanding of who she is a woman who passionately loves her family and who takes her ability and the help that she can provide to people, seriously but with gratitude as well. 
Throughout the book she comes across as a woman of strength who has overcome and lived through some truly horrible times, including an abusive husband.  Growing up in a household where my father wasn't exactly the nicest person on the planet and who would show that on my mom, I have a great deal of sympathy and respect for women or men who come out of abusive relationships stronger for it and who are willing to give life a second chance.
The rest of the book has Sylvia explaining her beliefs on where we come from, where we go when we die, who the angels are, and various other segments of her beliefs.  Now I'm going to be honest, I'm not sure how much of what she says I believe myself.  I'm not even sure it matters, all I know is that she truly believes it.  The odd thing, at least to me,is that her beliefs made more sense to me than I thought they would when I first started in on this book.  The way she views life and the afterlife meshes to a degree with my own personal beliefs, though I think we may think of them in completely different terms.  I will say this, my curiosity has been grabbed and I have every intention of checking out some of her other books. 
Sylvia Browne is a number one New York Times–bestselling author and world-famous psychic. She has appeared regularly on The Montel Williams Show and Larry King Live and has made countless other media and public appearances. She is also the founder of a church, the Society of Novus Spiritus, which will celebrate its twenty-fifth anniversary in 2011.  Visit Sylvia at her website,

I would like to thank Tricia of TLC Book Tours for the opportunity to review this book.  For more stops on the tour please visit the TLC Book Tour page.


Laurel-Rain Snow said...

I don't know much about her, either, so I might just have to read this one! I like memoirs that spotlight the formative years and help us understand the person's unique journey.

Thanks, Ryan!

Stephanie said...

This does sound interesting. And there is something hopeful about hearing from people who believe they have special knowledge about the afterlife.

Ceri said...

Interesting . . .

I've never been who believes in anything 'psychic-y' but it sounds like an interesting book about her life and what she's overcome.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like she really got you thinking!

And as a side note, I usually read your blog in Google Reader so I hadn't noticed the parrots - LOVE THEM!

Staci said...

I honestly like Sylvia and have enjoyed her when she was on Montel's show. I haven't read one of her books but your review makes me want to pick up one by her in the future.

La Coccinelle said...

I read a number of her books years ago, and while much of what she says meshes with my own beliefs, a lot of it doesn't.

I'm also not sure about the need for another book about her life. I haven't read Psychic, but I've read about her life in her other books... so I'm not quite clear on why this information needs to be repeated.