Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert

This story is about Liz Gilbert, who having divorced her husband and being fresh out of a romance on the rebound decides to take a year out and have some ‘me’ time.  The book is split into three because Liz visits three places.  Italy – to eat, India – to pray and Indonesia to love (or be healed).

To be honest this book wasn’t really for me.  I guess I should have thought about it a bit more beforehand really, it’s an autobiography after all and you can’t really expect to read such a book without reading a lot about the person writing it.  I think I was expecting or hoping for a lot more interaction with the people from these three places and to learn a little bit more from them about their culture and I never felt like this happened.

Clearly Liz Gilbert is a very intelligent woman.  She writes really well and obviously undertakes a lot of research because she really knows her ‘stuff’.  She is also witty and obviously likable (as she seems to have no problem making friends no matter where she goes).  So, why isn’t this for me??  I don’t know really.  I think I found it overly self-indulgent and, in fact self pitying.  Here you have Liz, she is clearly an attractive and successful young woman, she has just gone through a divorce BUT, in fairness, this was her own decision followed by a passionate yet doomed relationship on the rebound.  Okay, going through a divorce and a failed romance is stressful and I totally appreciate that fact however I just felt that Liz never really tried to move on.  She sort of wallowed about in misery and in fact seemed to enjoy being overly dramatic.  It just reached a point where it all seemed a bit like attention seeking.  She then has the luxury to be able to take a full year out travelling to three amazing places.  Most people will never have the chance to be able to do something so exciting or life changing and yet I felt that Liz never seemed happy or to appreciate what she had.  I guess I just found it difficult to relate to her and I was really disappointed to not have more information about the places involved.  Italy was my most favourite part of the book and after that the rest felt a bit too much like a chore.

However, I can see why this has been such a popular story and as I say Liz Gilbert definitely has a way with words. I have no doubt that a lot of people will greatly enjoy this book (and obviously have already done so as it’s sold millions of copies and been made into a film!) but for me it was a bit of a struggle.  That said, I would still check out other novels by this author.

Rating C

 

Eat Pray Love

Eat Pray Love

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