UNCHARTED By Lyle Sopel -
Interspersed with subtle humor and an Indiana Jones-like venture, “ UNCHARTED “ by
Lyle Sopel is the compelling story of a Vancouver-born sculptor who gives up a secure and conventional lifestyle to answer the irresistible call to master a stone harder than steel: jade,a gemstone whose history spans over six thousand years and was the exclusive prerogative of Asian royalty for centuries. His aspiration to be prolific in his exectution of producing a number of unique sculptures is realized, but not without a plethoria of trials and tribulations. Including having to jump out of a helicopter balanced on the edge of a cliff to source out the highest caliber rough jade boulders available.
Taking into account the complex yin and yang dexterity it takes to work the stone and not having a living master to emulate. Sopel carries out exploring and experimenting solo from his studio in western Canada. Later, while still early in his career he adds apprentices and artisan assistants.
This act alone makes him distinctly differant from othe jade sculptors in Asia, all of whom have mentors and masters to give direction and receive knowledge from.
Exploring and experimenting from a place of wonder and sometimes unexpected and unwanted surprises. His insights into these raw and refutable events are woven through out the chapters. Offering the reader an up and down emotional journey of the unpredictable nature of living within the eye of the creative storm.
Bridled with a tenacious search for his authentic self and facing nearly devastating personal and financial encumbances, Sopel barrels forward to discover his own creative process. His journey leads to work on the largest jade Buddha in the world for a temple in Bangkok, Thailand. There he learns the secrets of how the temple monks generate millions of dollars each year through their humble promotions, though their vows prohibit touching money. Sopel then proceeds to design and create his own life-sized jade Buddha over a three-year period. His aspirations and reservations about the magnitude of this project, the largest jade Buddha to be created in North America, are poignantly illustrated. No stone is left unturned in this vibrant and reflective quest memoir.
I have exciting news: UNCHARTED has been selected by our editors as one of Kirkus Reviews' Best Indie Books of 2018! Congratulations!! Only 100 books make the list and Kirkus reviews thousands of books through our Indie program every year.
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Independent Press Award announces
Distinguished Favourite - UNCHARTED by Lyle Sopel