In preparation for the 2018 Festival of Faith and Writing, I perused the list and discovered this nonfiction, which sometimes doesn’t feel as sexy and fun as fiction, let’s face it. However, the subtitle sealed the deal for my 54 year old self: The Science, Art, and Opportunity of Midlife.

An NPR correspondent and religion journalist, Barbara Bradley Hagerty found herself at 53 with a health scare. She spent the next couple years researching and exploring the midlife scene, which she categorizes as 45-65 years old. Part memoir, part investigative journalism, part pep talk Ms. Haggarty tells of her adventures and others’.

It mostly boils down to these two important factors: challenge yourself mentally and physically, and cultivate life-giving relationships. If you’re into seeing all the facts, studies, and aging theories, give it a read for sure.

I appreciated all those, and I loved her examples in the people she interviewed and her own journey with cycling. She offers a balanced look at the good, the bad, and the other of midlife. I thought it was a great read and made me examine my own physical movement. I bought an Apple watch to monitor how much I was moving and as an inducement to push myself a bit harder. (After reading about her cycling, I was super inspired and a little chagrined.) I also added some mental “pushes” to my life list … dusted off a cello that a child abandoned.

4.5 out of 5 stars for me. I read the library copy, so do not have for loan.