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Walking into Alchemy: The Transformative Power of Nature

4.72  ·  Rating details ·  32 ratings  ·  28 reviews
Exhausted and wounded after coping with redundancy and depression, Amelia Marriette suddenly found her life taking a turn for the better through a chance meeting with an Austrian-born woman, Katie, with whom she was to find love. The couple relocated to Austria and Amelia set out on a journey both physical and spiritual, a journey of self-discovery and rejuvenation through ...more
Kindle Edition
Published November 24th 2019 by Mereo Books
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Karen Cooper
Aug 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Amelia has created a truly beautiful and enriching publication with Walking into Alchemy.
Right from the introduction, when Amelia drops her bottle of Southern Comfort, I knew that I was going to thoroughly enjoy this book, despite the tears running down my cheeks.
As a regular walker myself with my two boisterous dogs, I felt in very good company with Amelia.
For me, I felt like I wanted to savour the journey; reading only one or two chapters a morning; not wanting to hurry to the end - like I wa
May 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Amelia‘s book is refreshing and honest and the way she connects her observations to interesting facts had me amazed. I am lucky enough to live in the area where she took her ‚walks‘ and I have started to be more aware of my surroundings too. Even people who don’t know this part of the world will be able to imagine what it’s like here and how each of the four seasons come and go. Amelia’s descriptive narrative makes this very easy for the reader.
She also mentions various paintings, artists, autho
May 08, 2022 rated it it was amazing
I started walking last year and felt so much better for it and reading this book had inspired me to start again.

‘Walking into Alchemy’ is a personal story of rediscovery and personal growth that would resonate with most people. Life gets the better of us all sometimes, but we persevere and sometimes the darkest moments lead us to beautiful destinations.

This is a story of realisation and new beginnings. I loved reading Mariette’s journey, I felt I was with her all the way. A motivational, humbl
Jackie Baker
Dec 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a truly beautiful, honest and inspiring book.

The book format makes it an easy read along with the stunning photographs. You are taken on a journey full of wonder, nature and enlightment.

This is a life changing, life affirmimg and life healing.

If you are stuck emotioinally, need a mental uplift or simply love nature and creativity this is the book for you.

I have learned so much while reading this book about culture and art, history, gender politics, nature and its flora and fauna, about
Sharon Probert
Dec 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Having picked up this book , I must say I found it hard to put down . It’s a truly inspirational read . For anyone struggling with life , it shows us that there is hope , and that better things are around the corner , if we are willing to take chances . The book is a journey of rediscovery and self discovery . and an enjoyable read , with wonderful photography throughout. A thoroughly enjoyable read , thankyou Amelia marriette for inspiring us all ...
Jacquie Walters
Mar 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
If you're looking for a gently transformative book, solace for your soul, or just like reading about someone going for walks I heartily endorse this book. It's gentle, thoughtful, considered and eloquent. Delivered enriched with observational details and honest self reflection by its author, with whom I would take a long walk any day for the pleasure of her erudite company. Highly recommended. ...more
Clare Shepherd
Feb 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A young woman is depressed as a result of redundancy. This inspirational book tells the story of how she found love, moves country and finds peace by walking in the countryside every week for a year . She finds love, healing and happiness. By the way we learn of many aspects of life: her love of music, literature, the theatre, and much else. This is the most uplifting book I have read in the last year, and can't wait to see what she writes next. ...more
Feb 02, 2021 rated it really liked it
Coming to Austria a couple of years ago much like Amelia and becoming a habitual walker, this book was like a printed version of many of my inner thoughts and emotions. It's rare when that happens. It's also rare to find a writer with the amazing range of thoughts that Amelia puts down so fluidly. From clouds to art, to birds to agriculture.
The book is a meandering in many delightful ways. Just walk along chapter by chapter.
Helen Tranckle
May 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Finding solace in the natural world is probably one of our great healers and this book beautifully illustrates a journey both physically and mentally. It is written with honesty ...observing; remembering; finding; marking and of course love.

It is a captivating and easy read which conjures a landscape I have never visited and now would love to see. Poetry and fact lay seamlessly together as the author unravels her new found love of walking which brings a sense of recovery and sense of the world.
Dec 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A truly wonderful and profound exploration of self and environment. This book describes beautifully the power and human need to be in nature whatever Mother Nature bestows. A definite recommended book to own and read.
Helen Cruse
Feb 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
Everybody at some point will be presented with life challenges and troubles. The perfect accompaniment I felt in this book as a way of healing was nature itself. Nature, creatures, the wild and the wonderful freedom of open spaces can bring oneself a sense of wonderment. This was most certainly a journey of transformation and one of great wisdom. If anyone is looking for hope, positivity and need to be energised then this is the book to find it in so give it a go and have a read, you will enjoy ...more
Kerry Carruthers
Feb 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A celebration of nature and the power of stopping to notice the world before it goes by...

If you have never been to the Austrian countryside this is one way to experience it.

With beautifully written descriptions, as a reader you walk alongside the author, as clear picture of the countryside you are experiencing together unfolds. Not only are you having the beauty of detail revealed to you but being informed and educated about what you are seeing.

The links the author draws with art, music and he
We all recognize those moments where we feel exalted by a particular scene or memorable sight in nature.Imagine a succession of these linked in a healing chain and inspired by glorious surroundings .This , in essence , is the form of alchemy evoked by Amelia Marriette in her thoughtful and beautifully written book .Her offering is no purposeless countryside amble ; it is set against a difficult and troubled time in her life . A sad void is filled not only by a new venture but also a whole mechan ...more
Mr D P Corder
Aug 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Walking into Alchemy is a lovely read.

Recommended to me by a friend it’s not normally the type of book I would be drawn to but in a stressful world where I seem to be forever chasing my tail to get work done on time for multiple people, I actually felt quite calmed when reading it.

Really like the diary format and anecdotal stories that come up as part of the walks in what sounds like an absolutely beautiful area to visit let alone to live. Although I’m sure Amelia’s move was not without its cha
Mrs. Gillian A Agopsowicz
Jan 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A delightful read and a Christmas present that I will cherish. My family nearly had no lunch on Boxing Day as I was so absorbed!! I hope when you have read it that you will feel as transformed as the author herself.
It is a gentle, well written book of short chapters, but each containing so many facts about nature, culture, art and the power of love.
Each chapter walks one alongside the author in the Austrian countryside. No ordinary walk as, on each one, a subtle transformation is taking place i
Helen Swan
Jul 29, 2020 is currently reading it
I so much enjoy Walking into Alchemy.

So many things in this book have echoes in my own life. I grew up with Breughel’s ‘Hunters in the Snow’ a picture hung in the hall. Yet Amelia casts a new light on it, that I, a child, never understood. The illusion of the impossibly beautiful. Yet she spends the rest of the book showing us the impossibly beautiful!

The chapter ‘Dad’ reminded me of my own Dad who died recently. It was lucky that my brother and I were able to take my parents up to the land of h
Diana Sweeney
Feb 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I genuinely believe that at times, books often fall into your hands just when you need them. Walking Into Alchemy by Amelia Marriette is definitely one of those books. Overwhelmed by the dark times we are living in and trying to adapt to my new life as a retiree, I felt empty and adrift. Marriette's description of being "exhausted and wounded" resonated with me, and I felt compelled to follow her journey into "healing, peace, and true happiness." The book is a joy to read. Like an intricate tape ...more
Amelia Marriette
Dec 30, 2019 added it  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
I wrote this book firstly for myself and then for my partner, Katie. Then, after I had given some readings to a local English Speaking Group in Wolfsberg, Austria, I realised that there was a genuine interest in my book. As a foreigner here, and coming to nature later in life, I seem to be able to see more beauty here than the locals do. This is quite normal, of course. I am very appreciative of my surroundings; I take time to see beauty wherever I can. To mine for gold, to extract the essence o ...more
Judith Wills
May 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Thank you Amelia for sharing your uplifting, beautiful and inspiring journey.
A perfect read for lockdown, it was wonderful to be transported to the stunning countryside of Carinthia, to see it in all it’s glory through the seasons was truly delightful.
I was very sad to come to the end of this book and really hope we can go on more journeys with Amelia in the future.
Jan 18, 2021 rated it really liked it
What strikes at first is the presentation, the way the book lies in the hand (I read the softback, not the Kindle edition), the page layout, the photographs, aptly chosen and beautifully set out at the chapter heads. It is a success on many levels, astonishingly so when one considers it basically describes the same walk 52 times over. How could that be anything but repetitive and dull? Well, Amelia has certainly cracked it with sensitive descriptions, attention to details which most people would ...more
Ann Hollowell
Sep 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A unique cleverly written piece of writing.
The power of nature is of course topical resulting from our enforced 'Covid19 Lockdown'
and this book is a fitting example of, as the title suggests, the amazing healing power of nature. Our busy 'jam-packed' lives often overtake what appears to be the simple pleasures in life and we get carried away and bogged down with the work /life pattern and demands from our children.
Please take the time to read this, it will inspire you. No fear, maybe not to fol
Paul Evers
Dec 06, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Amelia Marriette’s book ‘Walking into Alchemy’ is one to savour and delay finishing too soon. Each walk is an outward and inward journey of emotional and physical transformation that can’t help but transform the reader as well. Amelia’s use of history, botany, the weather and thought is delivered in a style that makes word's the paint on the end of a painter’s brush, forming images of a land and people through the focal of her soul. Both a travel book as well as a work of philosophy her book nee ...more
Mar 03, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the story of the author's walk to health, tracing the same route weekly for one year. It is a personal discovery of the healing power of nature, the value in noticing detail, and the benefits that can come from peaceful moments of solitude.

It is a powerful tale, peppered with anecdotes and beautiful photos. Many chapters include interesting references to art, philosophy, literature, history and music, as well as informative details about the flowers, butterflies and birds.

I felt as if I
Lucy Lepchani
Jun 22, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Walking Into Alchemy is a unique and fascinating read that speaks to every sense. Set in the dramatic Austrian landscape, it is a superb journal of journeys, each one woven with details of discoveries made in the natural world throughout the changing year. Making connections too, with history, art and culture, and an unfolding love story, it is a beautifully written and delightfully generous autobiography. I am holding on to my own copy but will certainly buy this book again, to give as gifts to ...more
Laura Hobson
Apr 05, 2021 rated it it was amazing
One of my favourite chapters of the book, which is written SO evocatively and beautifully, is Suspension, Amelia makes/ connects the analogy of the silky cobwebs at sunrise to the Coleridge quote “suspension of disbelief” and tying that into memories of how actors cast out their webs to connect with the audience. Just beautifully written.
I thoroughly enjoyed escaping into Amelia restorative journey and it has made me want to travel back to Austria and go and explore more mountains rambles.
Dawn O'Connor
Nov 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I loved reading this book! Amelia managed to capture so many wonderful aspects of walking in a really engaging way. I felt as though I was on the walks with her and experienced her delight in the discoveries she was making, both physical and mental. Her writing style is a joy to read and the book is packed with so many historical, cultural, botantical and ornithological references that I gained a real education as well as a thoroughly good reading experience.
Feb 17, 2021 rated it it was amazing
From the moment I picked this book up, I was hooked. It has such depth, is rich with descriptions and is packed with information about Austria, birds and flowers. A fabulous turn-your-life-around-book with poignant stop and think moments. It's a feel good, honest diary and it's now on my favourite books shelf. Read it, because you wont regret it. ...more
Mar 15, 2021 rated it it was amazing
The work has the delicious sensory intensity of early childhood memory. Wild flowers and wild birds take centre stage in Amelia’s vivid evocations of nature . Descriptions are sweetened by nostalgia, personal recollections and the rich layering of references.
A joyful and restorative read.
rated it really liked it
Sep 22, 2022
Jan O'Highway
rated it it was amazing
Aug 28, 2020
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Amelia Marriette was a curator, radio presenter and playwright, but a new relationship and redundancy led to an opportunity to begin anew, and Amelia relocated to the Carinthian Region of Southern Austria in June 2015.
As well as focusing on her writing, Amelia is also an English trainer and lecturer in Shakespeare Studies in Austria and the UK. Her book Walking into Alchemy: The Transformative Pow

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