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Donna only daydreams of pulling up stakes and starting a new life, until an impetuous decision catapults her on a soul-changing journey in the Amazon rainforest. Tested mentally, physically and spiritually it is hard for her to feel lost in the wilderness when pure joy pounds in her heart. Written with stirring poignancy, laugh-out-loud humour and deep compassion, Donna captures her real-life experiences of isolation, challenges, and the true beauty of the Amazon rainforest where she taps into a wordless knowledge to recognise it was her wild self who coerced her to travel over ten thousand miles so it could unleash itself.
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Chapter 4: Guyane (docx)
283 word blurb:
She built a new life in the Amazon
After decades spent dreaming of a fresh start, she discovered happiness is green.
Feeling trapped in her conventional life of a nine-to-five office job, six-figure mortgage, and stressful routine, Donna made a rash decision to move to the Amazon rainforest.
In a strange new land where monsoonal rains brought life and chaos, her jungle shack was shared with more animal, bird and insect species than found in Europe, and poor navigational skills assured she got constantly lost in the rainforest, nature alleviate all life’s pressures and an unimaginable feeling of freedom made her heart soar.
In Happiness is Green, Mulvenna shares with humour how she survived in a place where nearly every living thing sticks, stinks, or stings, opening up a hidden world many of us have never seen. With deep insight, she describes moments when the jungle tested her physically, mentally, and spiritually saying, ‘Even if you don’t believe in God, you know he’s there’.
Happiness is Green introduces us to two versions of Donna, says novelist Becca Lawton. ‘The one with the perfect home and fingernails, and the one who finds the courage to make a new home in the rainforest. Her story speaks to the inner-adventurer in us all. It challenges us to question the safety and comfort of our everyday existence, to wonder if happiness is a little bit greener than we’ve been taught to believe.’
‘Adrenaline spiked my heartbeat as I brushed against a plant with leaves large enough to hide a jaguar.’
‘A policeman stared in my direction. I fought an urge to make a run for it even though I’d done nothing wrong.’
‘Standing at the kitchen sink, I removed a dozen black-shelled beetles that had burrowed into the sponge overnight.’
‘The horde of golden-handed tamarins sailed through the air from tree to tree. As they cruised past they gawked at me open mouthed, like laughing clowns in a sideshow game.’
‘Not even crashing pots and pans were an antidote for a house quieter than a mausoleum.’
‘The first shriek sounded like someone in unbearable pain cried for help. Other cries echoed back until the jungle came alive with howling and roaring that shocked me from my hammock.’
‘The fulfilling life I’d been searching for found me.’
‘Coeden towered so far above the other trees it was comic she evolved from a tiny seed.’
‘My fingers traced her bark crevices and curled around the soccer ball-sized burl on her trunk.’
Praise for Happiness is Green
‘Rich, vibrant, and captivating like the Amazon rainforest. This dive into the wild will inspire you to rekindle a connection with the natural world, and yourself, anywhere you are.’ —Sylvia Heike, Pushcart
‘Happiness is Green is a beautifully written book of one woman’s journey to find true health by reconnecting with nature. Donna Mulvenna’s story of her powerful relationship with a tree who shared so much wisdom with her is so touching and moving. This is such an important book for the times we live in. And it is a truly a stunning story!!’— Sandra Ingerman, Soul Retrieval
Reader discounts and giveaways
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25 percent discount (plus postage) on print or ebook copies of Happiness is Green, when purchased direct from Stormbird Press Store, with the following coupon at checkout: sp-happiness-25
Free eBook copies of Happiness is Green, when downloaded through the Stormbird BookFunnel Page.
Paperback and eBook
Donna Mulvenna is a horticulturist, whose journey as a nature writer began when she moved to the Amazon rainforest. Donna is a Fellow of the International League of Conservation Writers, and the author of Happiness is Green, Wild Roots: Coming Alive in the French Amazon, and The Awe of Nature. She co-authored All Things Breathe Alike: A Wildlife Anthology, and is the co-editor of Tales of the River: An Anthology of River Literature.
For more details about Donna Mulvenna visit her author page
Author: Donna Mulvenna
Release date: September 1, 2018
RRP: AU$29.99 (pbk), 9.99 (ebk)
Territory: English language market
Format: Paperback and eBook
Size: 203 x 128 mm
ISBNs: 978-1-925856-00-2 (pbk), 978-1-925856-01-9 (ebk)