Set Free

In April 2017 Emma published her book 'Set Free' in partnership with Summersdale Press. It is now printed in five languages, is on its 4th pressing and continues to raise money for Emma's charity Opening Your Heart to Bhutan


The man with the gun pushed me down onto the carpet. I tried to cower to make my body curl smaller, instinctively covering my head.

“Oh God, please don’t kill me.” My words clung to my teeth and now my whole body was so cold.  All I had left were these words.

“Please. Please don’t kill me. Jesus. God. Please.”

I wanted to live and I knew it with absolute certainty.  I don’t want to die.

Emma Slade was a high-flying debt analyst for a large investment bank, when she was taken hostage in a hotel room on a business trip to Jakarta. She thought she was lucky to come out of it unscathed, but over the ensuing weeks and months, as the financial markets crashed, Emma became her own distressed asset as the trauma following the event took hold.

Realising her view on life had profoundly changed she embarked upon a journey, discovering the healing power of yoga and, in Bhutan, opening her eyes to a kinder, more peaceful way of living.

From fast-paced City life to the stillness of Bhutan’s Himalayan mountains, Set Free is the inspiring true story of Emma’s astonishing life lived to extremes and all that that entails: work, travel, spirituality, Buddhism, relationships, and the underlying question of what makes a meaningful life.


All profits from the sale of this book are being donated to Opening Your Heart to Bhutan.

"Must read memoir"

Vogue India

"Pema Deki - the fun nun!"

Economic Times of India

"An amazing story by an amazing woman"

Davina McCall

‘This book chronicles the gradual transformation from a high-flying financial advisor to a committed Buddhist nun through the course of work, relationships, motherhood and finally spiritual commitment. A good read for all those involved in practising a spiritual path in a western context.’

Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo
(author, teacher and Buddhist nun)