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When I first heard that PsychoTraveller, my favourite YouTuber, was releasing her own book I knew that I was to read it straight away. I have followed Aly’s adventures for years and she even inspired me to create my own travel blog. 15 year old me would catch up on her videos after school and would always watch on with excitement for my own travels I knew I’d embark on. Where is she?: Travel to Trauma: One Woman’s Journey To Completely Losing Herself left me speechless with both sadness and frustration. However, because of the incredible woman Alyshia Ford is, the book takes you on a journey of incredible strength and courage.

In the initial few chapters of this book I found myself reading with excitement. She was headed off to embark on her one year working holiday visa in Australia. Living the dream, she soon began to experience the typical life of a backpacker. Meeting new friends, budgeting and exploring this amazing country. I read in envy at her experiences; from raising a baby lamb, to meeting real aboriginal people. On top of this, her writing style is very comical at parts – she described brilliants moments such as when a tour guide told her he ‘didn’t think’ there’d be crocodiles in a lake she was advised to wash in.

The title of Psychotraveller’s book reads, ‘One Woman’s Journey To completely Losing Herself’.  Initially I had assumed that by ‘losing herself’ she meant she was physically losing herself in the big world wide. I found I was wrong and by ‘losing herself’ she meant how she had to find who she was again after she experienced a horrific event. This book takes you on her road to recovery. I thought I knew her just from watching her on YouTube, and this book has taught me that you can never truly know someone in front of the camera. Aly is incredibly brave for sharing her story and I honestly believe this book is a service to society and can help so many people.

 

I first began reading Eleanor Oliphant is completely fine by Gail Honeyman a few months ago. I used it to past the time on my commute to work, but alas, university was stressful, and I felt guilty for reading anything other than boring journal articles. Once I began to read it again this week, it was completed in two days. I just could not put it down. Dealing with themes of loneliness, the importance of friendship, abuse (both physical and mental) and alcoholism, this book has you both running for the tissues one page and then smiling the next.

DISCLOSURE: This article will contain spoilers, read on at your own risk!