February 29, 2008

Eat, Pray, Love - One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India, and Indonesia by Elizabeth Gilbert

I'm beginning to wonder if I'm the only person who didn't love Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia. I'd heard about it here and there and then, last fall, a man at one of the book booths at the Texas Book Festival said if I was only going to buy one book, it should be this one.

Of course, I didn't buy it because hello, that would mean my precious money was no longer mine. But I did come home and put it on reserve at the library (hello, fourteen requests ahead of me). Fortunately, I was spared from waiting a year or two by my lovely co-worker who lent me her brand new copy that she'd received for Christmas.

And. . . I'm finally finished, six weeks later. Yuck.

The plot itself sounded pretty fascinating: Liz finds herself in a horrible mid-life crisis, divorces her husband, and sinks into a deep depression. After a second failed relationship, she decides to take a year off. She'll spend it in three chunks - four months in Italy (eating), four months in India (praying), and four months in Indonesia (finding love - awwwww).

Except I found the whole thing tragically dull. It's longer than I wanted and more about her emotional experiences than what she really did. It's hard to feel all that bad for someone who, after a divorce, gets a big book advance to travel the world.

I don't know. It just didn't do it for me. Once again proving that I have possibly the worst book taste in the world. But so be it. I simply did not love this book. And it certainly did not change my life.

Wow, am I glad I didn't hand over any of my own sweet money for this book.

15 comments:

  1. Strangely, I now want to read it.

    It's not because you didn't like it though. I had no clue what the plot premise was prior to reading your review and it sounds interesting.

    I probably won't ever get around to it. I'm too busy watching movies from Blockbuster Online.

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  2. Hmm, I just heard it raved about at a luncheon a week ago. Guess I'll just read more YA before I get around to it.

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  3. No, you are not the only one. In fact, I thought I was the only one. My opinion of the book was that is started out strong but then lost me half way through--I just didn't have any desire to see what happened to her or what she thought of things anymore. I've never heard of anyone else that didn't just love it. Consider yourself in good company.

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  4. Yeah, I started this at Christmas too and I've had the hardest time getting beyond the third chapter. BORing. But then, Oprah loves it, so...:)

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  5. I have wondered about this book and if it would be a good read. It keeps on pulling up as a "recommended read" on my library reserve list.

    I personally think you have great taste in books and enjoy getting book suggestions from you. My own intentions on reading this book were already low, now you could say they are non-existent.

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  6. Janssen I need a few quick recommendations for a great clean book for book club - something that would be fun for discussion.
    I was going to suggest "What Do You Do All Day" but now that I've read it I think I've got to pick something with a little less language. Any suggestions?
    By the way - Have you read "Love Walked In"? Put that on your list the main character is constantly referring to old classic movies - I think you'd really like it. I know I did.

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  7. I also was not a fan, but I thought I was the only one as well! Which is fine with me and all, but it's good to know I'm not completely on my own in my dislike.

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  8. I amazed at how you can finish a book when you don't like it. My sister-in-law is the same way. If she starts a book she has to finish it, no matter what she thinks of it half-way through. I have started so many books and not finished because I just couldn't get into it.

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  9. I'm one of those people who DID love the book. Just shows that there are books for everyone.

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  10. I haven't read it, but just watching the author on Oprah and hearing about it makes me think I would NOT like it. It seemed sort of sappy and self-indulgent and I didn't get the hype.

    Jody

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  11. Hi Janssen! It's Lacie- I hope you dont mind me reading your blog- I just discovered it! Anyhow, no you are NOT the only one who didn't love this book- I borrowed it from a friend and found it dull, poorly structured and not enlightening at all- I just finished reading snow flower and the secret fan- it's an entertaining weekend read- give it a shot (if you haven't already!)

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  12. I realize I'm a year and a half late on this--but I just wanted to throw out there that I really didn't like this book either. Liz Gilbert is an excellent writer, but as a person trying to come through a mid-life crisis she is an absolute nit.

    xox

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  13. I just clicked on your link to this from the Happiness Project because I didn't read this review 4 years ago and wanted to know what you thought about it. SO glad you didn't like it, I always thought I was the only one. The entire premise and "moral" of the story made me angry. I think I'll try the Happiness Project, because I always wondered why Liz couldn't just "find herself" WITH her husband. She drove me nuts.

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  14. I HATED this book too. I just...seriously? You didn't think about putting your effort into working on your marriage instead of a journey of self-discovery? COME ON.

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  15. Oh man! I hated this book too. She's so incredibly whiney!

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