To cut to the chase, I gave it a 3/5. Disclaimer here: I read through it and did many of the exercises, but did not engage in the 12 week course, half hour to hour daily commitment it was designed to be.
The good was that it had the exercises that encourage people to make new connections with the content that help reconstruct beliefs about yourself and creativity. For the right person, I imagine it’s as inspiring as those Amazon.com rave reviews say it is. BUT, the lesson comes from a spiritual framework. To be fair, it says, smack dab on the front cover, “A spiritual path to higher creativity”. But it’s not as general as described from the start. Terms like “Artist’s prayer” and references to the “creator” abound make for a more narrow focus of spiritually. Out of context, but here is an example of content, “It is very important to understand that the time given to morning pages is time between you and god.” Because it’s misleading in that respect, I say that this book’s approach is not for everyone because of its framework.
I have another complaint: the authoritative tone throughout. It’s strong writing, sure, but it really distances me from the work when I don’t completely agree with some statements (of which there are only a few). Different subject matter, I know, but a contrast would be the way in which Stephen King talks in his opinion in “On writing”. It’s much more casual and easy to read that way.
That being said, there are many great gems and exercises between the front and back cover of “The Artist’s Way”. It’s one of the only creativity-based books that boast “process” AND “content” to make lasting changes if you really take part in what the book has to offer. Pick it up if you think you can make it through and ESPECIALLY if you can commit to the 12 week program. It’s unfortunate that I don't know of a similar book without the spiritual framework (any suggestions?). The closest thing I can think of is to pick up a book like “Mind Over Mood” that has many of the same exercises and adapt what you learn to explore and discover creativity.