Rebekah Bastian releases Blaze Your Own Trail

Rebekah Bastian’s debut book Blaze Your Own Trail: An Interactive Guide to Navigating Life with Confidence, Solidarity, and Compassion marks the emergence of a first class writer. Her background spearheading Equity and Belonging, Cultural Engagement, and Social Impact Products as Vice President of Community & Culture at Zillow Group informs its quality, but there’s something more at work here. Instead, the book sparkles with an individual voice that lights up its ideas and insights with inspired passion.

The book’s sprawling fifty eight chapter structure may seem daunting initially, but the voluminous chapters are misleading. Bastian focuses her message and writing, not lengthy in any meaningful respect, and ranks as an accessible reading experience for anyone. Her conversational prose style nevertheless manifests eloquence throughout and her insights are unquestionable. Bastian’s story of her journey towards professional and personal satisfaction speaks straight to the experience of women but, ultimately, this is an universal story – its humanity transcends boundaries of gender experience.


The book has an unique structure. It is, in a sense, like a “Choose Your Own Adventure” book from the 1990’s. Bastian lays out a variety of scenarios for readers to choose from and the approach engages readers on a far deeper level than the normal book. In this way, Blaze Your Own Trail boasts a near novelistic style. Some may regard this as more of a gimmick and long, instead, for Bastian to pen a straight forward memoir for readers, but it speaks to her creativity instead that she breaks the mold in such a convincing manner.

This is a book grounded in reality. There’s nothing that smacks of Hollywood, glib clichés, or purple drama. Instead, Bastian depicts the multiple possible paths life can take in a credible and unsentimental fashion . There is a warm and knowing understanding, as well, of the challenges that everyone, not just women, face in choosing the direction our lives will take. The well-rounded approach she takes towards depicting how our choices can alter our trajectories should ring true for any adult and there’s an unfailing consistency to her approach; there’s nary a single moment in this book when readers will crinkle their nose and say, nah, come on, that sounds corny.


It contains a multitude of human emotions and experiences – divorce, parenthood, dealing with aging parents, and so on. There’s an obvious amount of research Bastian has put into making this book so exceptional, but her laser aim on incorporating as much experience as possible into Blaze Your Trail makes is the central strength that makes it work so well. Rebekah Bastian has made quite an impression with her first book and readers can only hope there is more to come from her. It is all the more astonishing when considering her relative youth – there is wisdom and wit in this work you might to expect from a much older writer and thinker. Blaze Your Own Trail: An Interactive Guide to Navigating Life with Confidence, Solidarity, and Compassion embodies all of the qualities contained in its title, but there’s so much more.

Michael Rand

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