PERSONAL: Daughter of lawyers.
ADDRESSES: Agent—c/o Author Mail, Allen & Unwin, P.O. Box 8500, St. Leonards 1590, New South Wales, Australia.
CAREER: Writer, photographer, and editor. Has worked as an art director, stylist, trend forecaster, photo editor, and creative director in the design, publishing, and fashion industries.
Girlosophy: A Soul Survival Kit, photography by Chris L. Jones, Allen & Unwin (Crows Nest, New South Wales, Australia), 2000.
Girlosophy 2: The Love Survival Kit, Allen & Unwin (Crows Nest, New South Wales, Australia), 2002.
Girlosophy: The Oracle, Allen & Unwin (Crows Nest, New South Wales, Australia), 2003.
Girlosophy: The Breakup Survival Kit, Allen & Unwin (Crows Nest, New South Wales, Australia), 2003.
Girlosophy: Real Girls' Stories, Allen & Unwin (Crows Nest, New South Wales, Australia), 2005.
Also author, with Jessica Adams and Jelena Glisic, of 21st-Century Goddess. Contributor to periodicals.
SIDELIGHTS: Writer, photographer, and editor Anthea Paul has been a stylist, a trend forecaster, a market consulting, and an art director. During six years working in New York's fashion media, where a female's appearance often counts for more than any other characteristic, she conceived the notion of Girlosophy. Girlosophy is "a new philosophy for younger women, aged between fourteen and twenty-five, which helps them take charge of their practical, emotional, and spiritual lives, to better understand themselves and find their true essence and spirit," Paul explained on the Yasmin Boland Web site. "Girlosophy is saying 'find who you are, do a lot of work on yourself, and figure it out early, because you're going to need it; don't wait until you reach your 30s and you rush to the self-help aisle.'"
The Girlosophy series was further inspired by the forthrightness and lack of artifice displayed by model Amber Valetta, who admitted to Paul that the world of high fashion still seemed unreal to her, Boland reported. The books seek to inspire girls and young women to reconsider and reapply the natural in their lives, to approach life with wisdom and common sense, and to ensure that their own personal foundations are solid before accepting criticism from the outside world. Paul "feels strongly there is still far too much emphasis placed on outer rather than inner beauty, and that women are being sidelined from the important issues by being told to worry more about their mascara and foundation than about their life's foundations," Boland remarked. Girlosophy, Boland concluded, "aims to address some of life's unsexier issues in a very sexy way."
The first book in the series, Girlosophy: A Soul Survival Kit, combines stylish design, full-color photographs, and inspirational text with a New Age flavor to introduce the ideas behind Girlosophy. Paul encourages readers to think carefully about their lives and what they want to do with them. The "attractive art direction and the intelligent suggestions for life" make the book "a real winner and sure to appeal to teens," commented Elaine Baran Black in School Library Journal.
Girlosophy 2: The Love Survival Kit again wraps important lessons in spirituality, self-esteem, and selfreliance into a package combining sleek design and artful photography. Paul addresses many issues of love and relationships as they apply to teens and young women. She also includes a glossary of terms and a bibliography of favorite reading to round out her coaching. "Paul's messages are again very sound and will appeal to independent spirits who seek guidance from like-minded women," Black remarked in another School Library Journal review.
Another book in the series, Girlosophy: The Oracle, offers "a splash of fun," commented Sherri Forgash Ginsberg in Kliatt. The book is separated into seven chapters that correspond to the seven chakras of survival: karma, omens, love, truth, crossroads, and destiny. Readers seeking advice in one of these areas can "pick up [the] … book, and flip to the chapter, and whatever advice you need presents itself," Ginsberg noted.
After offering advice on love, Paul provides solace for its downside in Girlosophy: The Breakup Survival Kit. Here she addresses the spiritual and physical aspects of recovering from a breakup—and in this book, breakups can happen with family and friends, as well as with romantic partners. She suggests using meditation and exercise to stave off feelings of sadness. Furthermore, she reassures readers that breakups are not the result of something they did wrong, but are the result of things that happen for a reason. Booklist contributor Gillian Engberg remarked that "teens will trust Paul's friendly, unwaveringly positive voice," and called the book "a great choice for reluctant readers." Paul "does a great job of giving the reader hope and the ability to dream," Ginsberg observed in another Kliatt review.
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, May 1, 2004, Gillian Engberg, review of Girlosophy: The Breakup Survival Kit, p. 1554.
Kliatt, September 2003, Sherri Forgash Ginsberg, review of Girlosophy: The Oracle, p. 36; September, 2004, review of Girlosophy: The Breakup Survival Kit, p. 44.
Publishers Weekly, June 3, 2002, review of Girlosophy 2: The Love Survival Kit, p. 91; June 7, 2004, "Pink and Glittery," review of Girlosophy: The Breakup Survival Kit, p. 52.
School Library Journal, November, 2001, Elaine Baran Black, review of Girlosophy: A Soul Survival Kit, p. 182; May, 2002, Elaine Baran Black, review of Girlosophy 2: The Love Survival Kit, p. 175.
Girlosophy Web site, http://www.girlosophy.com/ (May 15, 2005), "Anthea Paul."
Yasmin Boland Web site, http://www.yasminboland.com/ (May 15, 2005), "She's a Girlosopher."