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Tales from the Yoga Studio
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Tales from the Yoga Studio

3.22  ·  Rating details ·  1,490 ratings  ·  281 reviews
A sparkling new series introducing five unforgettable women who flock to yoga at turning points in their lives and find the gift of lasting friendship.

The yoga studio is where daily cares are set aside, mats are unfurled, and physical exertion leads to well-being, renewal, and friendship. An aggressively expanding chain of Los Angeles yoga "experience centers," has Lee an
Paperback, 279 pages
Published December 28th 2010 by Plume Books (first published October 26th 2010)
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Average rating 3.22  · 
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 ·  1,490 ratings  ·  281 reviews

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Feb 12, 2011 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this novel, a great diversion, pretty light, but not overly so. There's one passage that I carried with me, where Lee begins a yoga session with this meditation:

"Let's start seated," she says, "eyes closed. This class has been described as a journey. But before we embark, how about doing a little UNpacking? Your expectations, your desire to do ten sun salutations, your plans for later in the day, the argument you had this morning, your safety net. Leave them all behind. Start of
Keisha Shippy
Mar 12, 2011 rated it really liked it
The book is part “yoga is awesome” and part study of how complicated our lives become when we don’t follow our instincts. It follows the lives of five very different women: Lee, the studio owner; Katherine, an ex-junkie turned massage therapist; Graciela, an injured dancer trying to make her big break; Imani, a successful actress trying to hide from herself; and Stephanie, a talented screenwriter who is one more rejection from giving up. The only thing they have in common is yoga and Lee’s passi ...more
Jul 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
I know almost nothing about yoga, but what I do know is that Rain Mitchell is the pseudonym of Stephen McCauley, one of my favorite novelists. This was a totally lite and fluffy diversion, complete with lots of yoga, which I now know something about.
Jul 10, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction, chick-lit, yoga
A chick-lit novel that centers around a yoga studio. Overall it started off well, but quickly deteriorated into cliches--the married couple with troubles. The former drug addict trying to move forward. A woman who seems to have it all but has to overcome an awful loss. Blah blah blah blah blah.

Initially engaging, after a while I found I couldn't really care about the characters and had trouble keeping them apart. My paperback version had a helpful guide to the four main characters, but even when
Natalie Shawver
Apr 04, 2017 rated it it was ok
I'm not really one for chic lit. Especially chic lit centered around a yoga studio. But, this was wasn't terrible - it was just the fluff I needed I suppose. And, if nothing else, Tales from the Yoga Studio made me excited to get back into a yoga routine and possibly find a studio again in a few months. It was fun getting to know the four women from the studio and read a bit behind-the-scenes of what goes on into running a business. But, it felt a little like forced friendship with "outside-the- ...more
Dec 31, 2014 rated it really liked it
Ok I'm probably 4 books in to the yoga novel world, and I'm starting to identify some of the consistent tropes, and it's so, so much fun. The small studio owner with a plot arc about the fate of the studio is one. THis owner tends to be described as 'blond, no makeup, boring looking until you look into her eyes and see the wisdom of the ages' and so on. Another is that there is a persistent and I think successful effort to have a racially diverse cast. There's often a workaholic type, like a Mir ...more
Mar 10, 2011 rated it did not like it
ARGH!! I am *so* disappointed. I had this book on my To Read list for ages and finally took it out from the library. I really wanted it to be beautiful and spiritually calming and introspective.

It was crap.

Well, at least the first few chapters were. That's as far as I made it. The moment the "actress" character ran into another actress friend...the description of whom just SCREAMED Jennifer Aniston (famous hair, "America's sweetheart", sitcom start called "Neighbors" or some tripe like that)...
Feb 20, 2011 rated it it was ok
I gave this two stars because I was hoping this would be really good brain candy. Instead it was more like a sour patch kid for my brain - it started off nice and sweet and like it was going to be really good. However, as I read more and more and none of the characters ever really got developed - the just did stuff - and the ones that the author did try to develop fell flat - I find myself wondering why I was reading the book at all. I have taken several yoga classes in my life and most of the t ...more
Jo Sullivan
A couple quotes I liked..."the craving is just a ghost from the past that visits her from time to time, drops in from the misguided study and too much stress..."
"Inhale through your nose into whatever traces of tension you're still holding on to, and sigh it all through your mouth. Let it go."
Let's start seated," she says, "eyes closed. This class has been described as a journey. But before we embark, how about doing a little UNpacking? Your expectations, your desire to do ten sun salutations, y
Aug 12, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: beach-read
This was a quick, summer read with characters in need of more depthful interaction with one another. My favorite character did not even do yoga and I think I liked him because his Boston accent was featured (reminds me of my buddy from Waltham).

I did enjoy the description of the yoga poses and the sleazy corporate owners, trying to buy out the smaller studios. Maybe a 2.5, when all is said and done.
Aug 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
Yes, it has some of the typical yoga cliches, but they are real (for yoga peeps, you'll have fun recognizing the lingo, idiosyncrasies and mindset), and the book is surprisingly engaging and personable. Fun to think it has been written by a guy :) ...more
Karielle at Books à la Mode
Mar 20, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: blog
Blurb: The yoga studio is where daily cares are set aside, mats are unfurled, and physical exertion leads to well-being, renewal, and friendship.
In Los Angeles, yoga teachers have become celebrities and designer tank tops can cost a small fortune. Still, many students flock to the relatively unglamorous Edendale Yoga in the hip, out-of-the-way Silver Lake neighborhood. It's here where Lee uses her extraordinary teaching skills and unusual empathy to help students gain control of their bodies an
Aug 24, 2013 rated it it was ok
Don't expect anything deep from this book about a group of women who frequent the same yoga studio and who are dealing with different challenges in their lives. Although the story has a yoga theme running through it, it's light on spirituality and full of characters who are flat, cliched and pretentious. There are also way too many characters -- the chapters alternate among 5 central characters; two or three of whom are maybe given a little more attention. The book would have been better if the ...more
Apr 02, 2011 rated it really liked it
Tales from the Yoga Studio installed two desires in me. 1) Must learn yoga. 2) Move to a quaint retro southern Californian town. Tranquility is a theme throughout this book, even during the poignant pieces. The very descriptions Rain Mitchell uses make you feel as if you right there in the scene, seeing, feeling, and experiencing everything the characters do. Both yoga fanatics and those who have never tried a downward dog in their lives will appreciate the way in which yoga and zen is woven int ...more
Mar 03, 2011 rated it it was ok
Lee is the owner of Edendale Yoga studio. Lately, her perfect life is quickly going downhill. Her husband, Alan moved out a few weeks ago. As if that was not bad enough, Lee is having money issues and had to make a decision about the future of Edendale. With some new clients, Lee decides to focus what she does best…teaching yoga and help others discover their full potential. Lee helps Katherine, her friend and masseuse, Graciela, a dancer, Imani, a famous actress and Stephanie, a screenwriter.

Nov 12, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chick-lit, fiction, yoga
I love yoga and I haven't come across many novels that revolve around yoga. Therefore, I was excited to read this. What a disappointment.

There were some beautiful passages about yoga, but otherwise, it was just another shallow chick lit story with way too many characters. The characters were paper thin and the plot almost non-existent. The whole yoga business in Hollywood seemed very pretentious and disgusting and it had very little to do with the yoga I know and love. The author was probably t
Jan 16, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
The book is two stars. But picking it up, you know you are in for chick-lit reading. For me, that lowers my expectations and allows this book to receive three stars.

The book does a good job of describing how people compare themselves to others and in the process judge or accept themselves and others.

The main character - the yoga instructor - has an impending crisis. And it's saved for the very end. I wish it came a little earlier and allowed for a little more in depth look into that resolution.
Aug 07, 2011 rated it really liked it
I'm giving this four stars on the back of the fact that I'll be looking out for the sequel. Hence, despite its flaws, I have to recognise this as a great read - great in the indulgent/really enjoyable sense as opposed to great in the literature/book club sense. It kind of reminds me of a tv show I'm enjoying - Winners and Losers - warm relationships between women. The thing that did annoy me, and pushes it more into the 3 star category is the fact that almost all the male characters are stereoty ...more
Aya Rashdan
I am not going to rate this because if it were possible I would have given it a negative five. This book was very boring. I wasted precious weeks of my limited time on earth trying to like this story and I couldn't. I read it back in 2012 and absolutely can't recall a single thing about the book. I don't remember the story and I don't remember the names of the characters. The only reason I bought this book was because I was starting to do yoga at the time. I really don't recommend it. Life is to ...more
May 29, 2012 rated it did not like it
I hated this book, struggled to get through it. I found most of the characters poorly fleshed-out and shallow - almost like cardboard cutouts instead of people. The plot was meandering and inane, plus the backdrop was unrealistic (coming from the standpoint of someone who is in the yoga biz professionally). I'm glad I didn't pay good money for the book. It was a review copy, but I wouldn't recommend it to anyone. ...more
Oct 11, 2012 rated it really liked it
I think that this book really focuses on how comercial yoga is becoming, without taking away the element of what yoga is about.
May 23, 2014 rated it it was ok
Not a mind bender, that's for sure. A quick read--total fun--especially if you live in LA and are familiar with Silverlake!! ...more
Dec 29, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is a cute book; an easy, fun read!
Jul 29, 2018 rated it liked it
2 1/2 stars. This was a fine read for what it was - a lightweight, quick beach read. Lee and her husband Alan own a yoga studio near LA, and eventually they're wooed by the owners of a yoga studio chain. The book was filled with cliched characters - a "happily married" couple with secrets, a former drug addict trying to turn her life around, a movie star who seems to have it all but who in reality has suffered a terrible loss she can't quite get over. I picked this up because I know Rain Mitchel ...more
Aug 16, 2017 rated it liked it
Likable characters to root for, but too many of them. Since we had to spend so much time on so many main ladies, big stuff happened in the background and we didn't get to see it. The biggest one was a weeks-long mental breakdown/drinking binge by one of the characters. Instead, we just saw this happen from the periphery, thorough a character who didn't even know her very well, for just three or four pages. I'd have preferred the story focus on one or two fewer ladies and delve even deeper in the ...more
Kristina Johnston
Dec 12, 2017 rated it it was ok
Fluff, but enjoyable. Just what I needed to break the cycle of 4 Game of Thrones books in a row. Read it very quickly in just a few sittings. It's comforting that books are being written about yoga settings. Each chapter ending made me think, "Really, did that just happen?" So, I'm intrigued to track down the second book. ...more
Di Richardson
Sweet little beach read.

Nothing too dramatic. No murder mystery. No political drama. No one tries to kill the President or end human civilization. Just a sweet little story about a group of women who become friends through a Yoga studio. Each dealing with the curves life serves up. Couple of good chuckles, and a really good brain cleaner after a very heavy read
Sep 06, 2018 rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2018
filled with every yoga stereotype and cliche there ever was. There was so much potential for this book to really bring substantive yoga precepts into the characters... not worth the effort of turning the pages.
Brittany DiMeglio
Jun 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2020-reads
Somewhere between 3.5 and 4 🌟
Wish there was a little deeper character development but I really enjoyed this story, although I found the ending slightly predictable. Definitely miss going to yoga on a regular basis.
Aug 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I’ve had this one on my to-read list for so long, that there are parts of the book that are outdated (Blackberries for phones!). But I’m glad I finally got a chance to read it...a very cute story and a must read for any yogi out there! 9/10.
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3rd person omnipresent narrator 3 21 Sep 10, 2011 03:39PM  

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