Brave-ish: One Breakup, Six Continents, and Feeling Fearless After Fifty


As seen in Forbes Best New NonFiction

Although Lisa Niver has traveled in faroff locales from Vanuatu to Nepal and received numerous accolades for both her writing and her top ranked website, what people don’t realize is that this began from the wreckage of a rotten romance.

Newlywed Niver was on the adventure of a lifetime. She had quit her job, rented out her condo, and was traveling around Asia. To the outside world, Niver was a woman living out her dreams of exploring ancient ruins in Cambodia and seeing orangutans in Borneo. In private, she was keeping a dark secret. But, when she found herself lying on a sidewalk in Thailand, looking up at the sky in severe pain, she knew things had to change. At age forty-seven, Niver found the courage to set course on a new life.

Feeling like a failure, pushing fifty, and moving home to her parents’ house to start again from scratch, Niver started taking one tiny “brave-ish” step at a time to take her life far away from the old one and into the adventurous world of travel writing. These small hurdles led to the challenge of trying fifty new things before turning fifty. From diving into shipwrecks, swimming with sharks, bobsledding at 3 Gs, to indulging in wild escapades, Niver found herself traversing the world on a journey of reinvention, personal growth, and discovering what it actually means to be “brave.”

While Brave-ish chronicles Niver’s inspiring expeditions to distant corners of the world including Myanmar, Cuba, Morocco, Kenya and Mongolia this is more than a travelogue. Niver’s story is a testament to the resilience of the human spirit and the power of perseverance. Brave-ish inspires readers to dream big, take risks, and embrace the unknown to create a life filled with wonder and excitement, even when courage seems elusive.

Niver’s global travel exploits had me simultaneously chewing my fingernails and cheering her on as she challenged herself to greater and riskier feats in search of self. Compelling and engrossing. A must-read for fans of Wild and Eat, Pray, Love!

—Alka Joshi, International Best Selling author of The Perfumist of Paris, The Secret Keeper of Jaipur, and The Henna Artist, a Reese Witherspoon x Hello Sunshine Book Club Pick


Lisa Niver’s Brave-ish is a page-turner and inspiration for anyone who finds themselves at rock bottom in mid-life. Through both grand adventures and small, life-savoring gestures, Niver pieces herself back together after heartbreak and hardship. Readers will have the great pleasure of traveling the world through Niver’s stories and will be cheering her on. Don’t miss this book full of heart, adventure, and, of course, courage!

—Christie Tate, A New York Times Best Selling author of Group and BFF, a Reese Witherspoon x Hello Sunshine Book Club Pick


“Niver is a master at being humble, an everywoman with fears and challenges, while taking her readers around the world in quite a powerful and magical way. Her drive and persistence is not only inspiring, but an honest glimpse into what it means to be human: to learn, take joy, and find the people, places, and purpose she needs to grow.With her signature zest, wonder, and grace, Niver takes us on her journey of self-discovery, inspiration, and perseverance. Brave-ish is so much more than a memoir…it is a guide to growing with both humility and curiosity, and shows us the power of inner strength, friendship, community, and drive. This is a beautiful memoir about finding self, about slowly moving past trauma, and about the immense influence that travel has to heal and inspire. This book? Pure magic.”

—Dr. Jessie Voigts,


“Lisa Niver isn’t just brave-ish; she’s courage-in-the-face-of-adversity personified. Her story is bound to be familiar to anyone who’s spent too much time on an unhealthy relationship, and her globetrotting adventures will inspire wanderlust in any traveler. Through an original voice by turns awed and immensely relatable, she proves that finding joy and writing a successful next chapter can happen at any stage of life.”

—Robin Catalano, freelance travel journalist, National Geographic, Travel + Leisure, Smithsonian & more