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Indy West
Indy West, author

To the outside world, Jade?s life seems like the typical American dream, but to her, there?s a haunting void. When she reaches midlife, she questions who she really is and discovers she?s no longer willing to sit on the sidelines. A chance encounter with a mysterious man opens the door to the yearnings she long denied, awakening her true essence.

Undomesticated is a story inspired by actual events, fictionalizing author Indy West?s own midlife transformation. Like Jade, Indy found the drive and tenacity to push through painful emotions, refuse a mundane existence, and discover a sense of true authenticity and purpose.

With deeply provocative prose, this story is both heartbreaking and self-awakening. It is the passionate portrayal of one woman allowing her spirit to fly free. Jade?s experiences challenge you to open up to the unrelenting urge to become more in midlife. The nagging impulse to be untethered may look different for everyone, but we must stop ignoring the whispers of our authentic souls and live the extraordinary lives we deserve.

West’s debut, loosely based on the author's life, delves deep into the life and mind of a woman trying to find herself in the midst of marriage and motherhood. Jade, the mother of four and the wife of a man preoccupied with business, finds herself listless and unfulfilled in a life that she might once have believed represented the fulfillment of the American dream. Told through intimate diary entries and emails, Jade's discovery of what she really wants—and who she really wants to be—unfolds in a realistic and unapologetically messy fashion that will pull readers into Jade's story.

With a fast pace and an unflinching eye, West deftly writes a raw, honest portrayal of a woman rediscovering who she is in the midst of always putting everyone else's needs above her own. The struggles and growth that the protagonist faces are familiar and resonant, especially for women readers. West holds nothing back as Jade faces intense self-examination, extramarital affairs, and divorce. This deeply personal look at a middle-aged woman no longer settling for the life she once chose, edges into self-help territory, offering inspirational quotes from, among others, Aristotle, Paulo Coelho, and Zora Neale Hurston, prompts chosen to encourage reader reflection on what truly stirs joy in this life. West’s prose in Jade’s journal entries, often frank and direct, at times echoes those quotes: “Love is dominant, and when it awakens in validity, we must oblige.”

Readers may not agree with all of Jade’s choices, but West presents them with clear eyes, an open heart, and a sense of accountability: Jade acknowledges the impact her decisions have on others, something some of the men in her life have never bothered with. While not structured like a traditional novel, Undomesticated will appeal to readers feeling stuck in their present circumstances. Jade's story stands as a reminder that it’s never too late to choose a new path that makes you happy—and that life is too short to settle.

Takeaway: An intimate look into a woman's journey of finding herself outside of marriage and motherhood.

Great for fans of: Chidera Eggerue’s What a Time To Be Alone, Emily Itami’s Fault Lines.

Production grades
Cover: B
Design and typography: A
Illustrations: A
Editing: A
Marketing copy: A