Book Nine: Eat, Pray, Love

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

Another of my book club's picks, which, I'm pleased to say, I finished far in advance of the book club meeting. Usually I'm rushing at the last minute as I finish reading the final chapters while trying to whip up a last minute dessert to bring to the meeting. But not this time--this is the new, improved Ara Jane who doesn't procrastinate who just might catch up on her book reading project in a few weeks if she keeps reading so diligently.

I honestly would never have picked this book in a million years. But I'm pretty happy to have read it. Elizabeth Gilbert at times made me infuriated with her. It's hard to not read a memoir and feel like the writer is far too self involved because is that not the nature of a memoir? I just wanted to reach across the pages and shake her and yell, "Snap out of it! Everyone's got their problems--what makes you think yours are so important and critical?" And then by the next page I sympathized with her, because I know how easy it is to get so wrapped up in your own issues that you can't see the forest for the trees, so to speak. And I think maybe that's what she's getting at here in the long run. Point proven, Ms. Gilbert.

The other thing that was difficult for me was all the God talk (actually, I think that's what's at the core of this book). While she doesn't speak particularly about one specific God or promote one religion over another, and even points out repeatedly that she doesn't believe that any one religion is correct, to someone who doesn't believe in any God at all I found it a bit too much. Why put all this effort and emotional energy into worrying about God? Who really cares? If it takes that much work and gives you that much angst, why sweat it so much? But, I found the story so interesting and her writing so simple and very funny and sweet, that in the end I didn't really mind all the other bullshit.


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