It’s about time, by Johnnie Walker

I normally don’t review books on this website, much less putting them up as ‘recommended reading’ in the side bar, so why do I do it now? Simply because this book is so good, everybody interested in the Camino, and its spirituality, should read it! Ok, I am taking a step back now and get a bit less enthusiastic and more in ‘book review mode’ 😉

With “It’s about time” the author has accomplished a difficult task, writing a Camino book that is at the same time interesting for those that never have even heard of the Camino as well as those who have walked many. Short paragraphs explain the history of the Camino as well as practical matters like the Credencial and the Compostela. And it’s framed by a foreword by Camino author Joyce Rupp and a conclusion by Martin Sheen of ‘The Way’ fame. But most of the book is about the inner experience of pilgrims, more precisely how they felt called and answered that call.

The structure of the book itself is quite intriguing. The chapter headings are based on John’s own rendition of Ecclesiastics 3:1

‘For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven’

These are then followed by a pilgrim’s account how s/he felt called to walk the Camino de Santiago and the author’s account about his own pilgrim experience on many Caminos, starting from when he heard first about it and leading up to him living in Santiago, helping pilgrims. Answering also, among other questions, why somebody chooses to walk more then one Camino and/or pilgrimage.

The book focuses heavily on the Camino de Santiago, but also contains one precious story about the Japanese Shikoku 88 temples pilgrimage which the author undertook in 2014. And this one is my favourite story in the book. ‘Osettai’ is the custom to give gifts to pilgrims, be it food, drink or paying for their snack in a bar. It is a way for the giver to participate in the pilgrimage by helping and encouraging pilgrims in their difficult task. And for the pilgrim it is a chance to … (see chapter 7).

“It’s about time” has one main red thread running through it, the internal and external changes pilgrims may make in the way they think and in their daily lives through walking the Caminos. The author has struck a fine balance between taking the readers with him on this inner journey but not overwhelming them with too many personal details. This way, readers can easier identify with the story and see themselves in it.

All proceeds from the book go to charities that help pilgrims. Because the author is not accepting any fees or royalties the publisher is providing up to 2,000 copies free of charge, to Pilgrim Associations worldwide. Already books are on their way to many of them for them to sell to raise funds. 100% of what you pay for a paperback book bought from a Pilgrim Association goes to them to help other pilgrims. The publisher is donating 50% of all Kindle sales to a pilgrim charity.

So, It’s about time – you read this book! You can get your copy here:

Paperbacks: Camino Society (reduced postage worldwide)


For other ‘Kindle countries’ do a search for ‘It’s About Time: A call to the Camino de Santiago Kindle Edition by Johnnie Walker’ in your respective store …

Happy reading and Buen Camino!

3 thoughts on “It’s about time, by Johnnie Walker”

  1. Purchased my kindle copy and read it thru in one sitting (plenty of tissues nearby). Well done, Johnny Walker and a big TY to SYates for telling us.

  2. I took your advice and purchased the book on my kindle. Many tissues later, I finished and am so glad you wrote about it. We leave for our 3rd Camino in 2 weeks!

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