304 pages
Paperback Original






Shirley du Boulay
Teresa of Avila
An Extraordinary Life

This refreshing biography captures the compelling combination of down-to-earth humanity and profound, enriching spirituality that is Teresa of Avila's hallmark.

This intelligent, balanced portrait of an irreverent, intense, and fiery Renaissance woman and her times includes moving excerpts from her letters and sublime spiritual writings. Her unconventional, progressive views on prayer and worship, her outstanding administrative and literary talents, her travels around Spain to found and supervise convents, and how she spent much of her life under the scrutiny of the Inquisition are all detailed.

For readers of any faith or none, this book brings to life an extraordinarily ordinary, lovable, and inspiring individual.

“A clear, reliable account of Teresa’s remarkable life.”
The Times Literary Supplement

“Shirley du Boulay's engagingly written biography vividly captures Teresa and her world for us, and makes them accessible to readers of all backgrounds. The real Teresa comes palpably near in these pages.”
Ursula King, author of Christian Mystics

“One leaves this book with a deep appreciation of who Teresa was....a delightful read.”
Keith J. Egan, editor of Carmelite Prayer

“A colorful and compelling journey into the heart of one of the greatest mystics of all times...[a] beautiful biography.”
Mirabai Starr, translator of The Interior Castle