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Boatloads of people write self-help and self-improvement books with even the slightest nod to personal crisis, or even no nod at all.

Robert V. Taylor, the first openly gay Episcopal dean in the United States, speaks not so much to surviving personal crisis as he does improving your own personal launching pad to greater heights.

The title of his recent book, A New Way to Be Human: Seven Spiritual Pathways to Becoming Fully Alive, pretty much says it all. So does Taylor's own background as a South African native who stood firmly against apartheid, calls Archbishop Desmond Tutu a mentor, and who's advocated for the sick, disadvantaged and homeless through efforts to help veterans, orphans and those with AIDS/HIV.

One part biography, the other part a resolute handbook to life's travails, Taylor's book takes its full measure through seven sections exploring life's challenges and glories. Taken as a whole, it's his comprehensive effort to "polish the world with kindness."

Twitter:@Artsalt —

Robert V. Taylor presents book A New Way to Be

When • May 24, 7 p.m.

Where • Weller Book Works, 607 Trolley Square, Salt Lake City

Info • Free. Call 801-328-2586 or visit for more information.

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