Book Review: Eat, Pray, Love

The book Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman’s Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia by Elizabeth Gilbert doesn’t give dating advice or tell singles how to live. What it does instead is provide a look at one woman’s relationship meltdown and what she does to figure it all out.

As the story opens, Elizabeth Gilbert is in her early 30s and having a meltdown on the floor of her bathroom. She has been trying to get pregnant, and realizes suddenly not only does she not want to get pregnant, she doesn’t want to be married anymore, either: at least, not to her current husband.

If the story sounds dramatic, it is. But singles in the same age group as Gilbert will be able to relate to this story, and even find a little inspiration in it. As a way to deal with all Gilbert is struggling with, she travels around the world to get back to basics and figure out why she is the way she is.

As one can tell from the title, the author plans her self-exploration (and recovery) in three parts. She begins in Italy for food and cute men and all-around pleasure. She then heads to India to get into her spiritual side, and finally travels to Indonesia to find a sense of equilibrium. Since Gilbert is writing as she “discovers” pieces of herself, the book is a bit dramatic and artificial. But she is a skilled writer, and where this story could have become tiresome (all that depression, all that whining!) it isn’t. We manage to feel for her, and more than that, pull for her.

Unless you met your special someone at an early age, you’ll bound to wonder about your life when you reach your thirties and are still not the person you meant yourself to be. Who among the single set hasn’t wanted to just fly somewhere exotic, sit under a tree with a cute local villager and forget who you are? Just for a day or so. There is a lesson to be learned for singles in this book, and that is, when something isn’t working in your life – go figure it out. It’s as simple as that. Gilbert shows us how she did it, and in turn gives us all an idea on how we can accomplish this task as well.

Book purchased by reviewer.

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