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The Book of Two Ways

Updated: Sep 21, 2021

A riveting and thought-provoking novel about life, death and the path not taken



Have you ever wondered where you would be if you had made different decisions in your life? Fifteen years ago Dawn Edelstein, was following her dream to be an archeologist studying ancient Egyptian hellographic, When she gets a call from her dying mother everything changes. She rushes home and becomes the caregiver for her mother and her thirteen year old brother. Today she is living in Boston with her physicist husband and their beautiful teenage daughter with self-image issues. Instead of her career in Egyptology She is a death doula and spends her life helping people make the final transition to death. But now she is thinking, what if....

Several factors have caused Dawn to begin questioning her past . After miraculously surviving a plane crash, Dawn is now contemplating which path to take. Should she return to Boston, and her beloved family. Or should she journey back to the Egyptian archaeological site she left over a decade earlier, and attempt to reconnect with her long lost love.


THE BOOK OF TWO WAYS is a riveting, thought-provoking novel of a woman questioning life-changing decisions she made years earlier.

Picoult’s writing covers an intriguingly wide array of heavy topics for one novel. In addition to her typical emotionally evocative writing, in this case a long lost love story, she throws in a little education for us on quantum mechanics, end-of-life coaching, and Egyptology. Love it!

Picoult also draws symbolic parallels of the ancient Egyptian, text of The Book of Two Ways and Dawn’s current mid-life crisis. The ancient text depicts the paths a soul can take through the afterlife. The two paths, one land and one water, zigzag across a dangerous landscape and are separated by the Lake of Fire which can destroy, but also revive.

I particularly enjoyed Dawn’s character and the exploration of how the choices we made in the past changed our lives and make us who we are today. I listened to the audio version of the book and loved the narration.

Thanks to Netgalley for an advance reading copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Publisher Random House Publishing Group Ballantine

Published September 22, 2020

Narrated Patti Murrin

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