Bookish in the Mitten

Book reviews, book recommendations, book talk, and a little knitting

Deep Living with the Enneagram – A Discovery Review

June 9, 2020


You may recall that a few weeks ago I agreed to write reviews for a British book site called Reedsy Discovery. Below is the complete text for my first review; the book is unlike anything else I’ve discussed in this blog. You can see the review in its natural habitat here: https://reedsy.com/discovery/book/deep-living-with-the-enneagram-roxanne-howe-murphy-edd

And here is the review:

If you’re looking for an Enneagram personality type quiz, you’ve got the wrong book.

If you seek a tool to help you identify and address your patterns of thinking, feeling, behavior, and interacting with others – in a compassionate, affirming way – keep reading.  

Deep Living With the Enneagram: Recovering Your True Nature is a revised and updated version of Dr. Roxanne Howe-Murphy’s 2013 book titled Deep Living: Transforming Your Relationship to Everything That Matters Through the Enneagram. The main body of the book is divided into three parts and an Appendix (don’t skip the Appendix!) along with valuable resources for further exploration.

In Part I we are introduced to new terminology and concepts that run counter to every “quick-fix” self-help book out there. Don’t rush through this section; it’s not light reading. As you make your way through its pages, you may find that specific concepts or phrases tap you on the shoulder. Have your highlighter ready.

Part II is devoted to a detailed description of the framework used to explain the blueprint of the human personality – a framework then applied to the nine personality types of the Enneagram. Each type is described in depth, using terms and concepts that have been introduced earlier in the book. The graphics in this section are simple and clear, providing a comprehensive visual snapshot of each type’s characteristics and dynamics.

Part III, “Change for Life,” provides concrete, practical steps for effecting personal change.  The reader will enjoy this section and can implement these strategies immediately.

There is more practical advice in the Appendix, which guides us through an exploration of the use of presence for healing.   Be sure to take advantage of the additional helpful resources following the Appendix.

The author refers to the Enneagram as “ancient,” which piques one’s curiosity, but there is minimal mention of its ancient origins prior to its introduction to the Western world. While mildly disappointing, this does not diminish the book’s message or value.

Regardless, the body of knowledge shared in this expertly crafted book is impressive, exceeding this reader’s expectations.  Dr. Howe-Murphy has produced a reference and healing tool that belongs on the bookshelf of anyone interested in real change, as well as on the shelves of those called to support others through that change. 

REVIEWED BY

Catherine Beeman


I am a reader with ten years of bookselling experience who is passionate about sharing my love of books with others. My goal is to be direct and relatable, with hopefully a little humor thrown in.

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