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Posted August 6, 2010
Readers realize they are entering a different universe right from the copyright page of What Should You Do with Your Life?: "The characters and events in this book are fictitious but the locations described are actual places. The Fairy God Angels, on the other hand, are almost fictitious. Any similarity to real Angels, here or there, is not coincidental and is intended by the author."
The book relates the story of Diana, a woman struggling through life until she finds herself following the guidance of her guardian angels. Given Anderson's background, the use of angels in this story is not metaphoric but rather instructional, as the author seems sincerely eager to teach her readers about the benefits of staying in tune with one's guardian angels.
Diana's guardian angels are named Charming and Impatient; and as their names imply, they are the yin yang of angel world. ".Charming just nodded her little round head covered with tight blonde ringlets and smiled sweetly, her rosebud cheeks dimpling a bit and her halo vigorously bobbing up and down. Impatient (not the flowers) was not to be deterred from her tantrum as she bounced up and down and shook her finger at Charming." Anderson portrays them as stereotypical chubby-cheeked, robe-wearing, cloud-flouncing angels who spy and cluck maternally over their charge from above, chastising Diana for working out her problems from a "rational third dimensional set of solutions."
Anderson mainly relays the story of Diana's evolution through conversations rather than narration. Much of the plot is developed in a chatty, run-on fashion, a style that feels as if readers are eavesdropping on the characters' internal dialogues. The tone is nearly child-like as the characters prattle on to themselves with an overly generous use of exclamation points, capital letters and giggles. This book would have benefited from additional editing for consistency, redundancies, and rambling dialogue, which take away from the impact of the author's compassionate intent to share her vast knowledge with readers.
Throughout What Should You Do with Your Life?, the author's voice is heard in all the characters as she advises readers in the importance of positive, non-judgmental thought patterns, expressing gratitude, meditating, and remaining attuned to one's intuition. Through the fictional story, Anderson provides a model for the concept of "synchronicity" as Diana makes a gratitude list in an effort to overcome great obstacles in her life. "This gratitude or grateful energy will then start flowing into a huge circle surrounding her. The more she sends out of her gratitude and thankfulness, the larger the circle becomes and it then begins attracting into the circle opportunities for her to consider. The more good she sends out in the form of thankfulness and gratitude, the more good returns to her in the form of opportunities and ideas and suggestions."
Thus readers may come away from this book prompted to work with their guardian angels in order to enact positive techniques toward self-actualization and manifestations of their dreams. At the very least, What Should You Do with Your Life? offers earnest and heartfelt reminders to stay positive, listen for messages from the Universe, stay in the moment and express gratitude.
Quill says: One woman learns to accept the guidance of her guardian angels in order to realize her dreams.