Around the time Elizabeth Gilbert turned 30, she went through an early-onslaught midlife crisis. She had everything an educated, ambitious American woman was supposed to want: a husband, a house, a successful career. But instead of feeling happy and fulfilled, she was consumed with panic, grief, and confusion. She went through a divorce, a crushing depression, another failed love, and the eradication of everything she ever thought she was supposed to be.
To recover from all this, Gilbert took a radical step. In order to give herself the time and space to find out who she really was and what she really wanted, she got rid of her belongings, quit her job, and undertook a yearlong journey around the world, all alone. Eat, Pray, Love is the absorbing chronicle of that year. Her aim was to visit three places where she could examine one aspect of her own nature set against the backdrop of a culture that has traditionally done that one thing very well. In Rome, she studied the art of pleasure, learning to speak Italian and gaining the 23 happiest pounds of her life. India was for the art of devotion, and with the help of a native guru and a surprisingly wise cowboy from Texas, she embarked on four uninterrupted months of spiritual exploration. In Bali, she studied the art of balance between worldly enjoyment and divine transcendence. She became the pupil of an elderly medicine man and also fell in love the best way, unexpectedly.
An intensely articulate and moving memoir of self-discovery, Eat, Pray, Love is about what can happen when you claim responsibility for your own contentment and stop trying to live in imitation of society's ideals. It is certain to touch anyone who has ever woken up to the unrelenting need for change.
©2006 Elizabeth Gilbert; (P)2006 Penguin Audio, a division of Penguin Group (USA) Inc., and Books on Tape. All rights reserved.
"Sustaining a chatty, conspiratorial tone, Gilbert fully engages readers in the year's cultural and emotional tapestry, conveying rapture with infectious brio, recalling anguish with touching candor, as she details her exotic tableau with history, anecdote and impression." (Publishers Weekly)
"Gilbert's sensuous and audacious spiritual odyssey is as deeply pleasurable as it is enlightening." (Booklist)
This story captured me from the first chapter. I am easily distracted if a book doesn't hook me from the get-go. I've listened to this book at least 20 times. Every time I get to go on an adventure of a lifetime! Don't miss this one!
Was a great read. One of the more uplifting books I've read. Alot for readers to identify with. Good mix of humor and serious reflection. It draws you in so completely that it feels as if you are reading someone's personal diary. Good!
I have listened to hundreds of books and have never before written a negative review. I held my nose through the first two parts, thinking that surely she could not end up the same pathetic human she started out as (plus, I paid for this book and I was going to listen to it). She treats you to at least an hour (and then comes back to the subject several times) of why it's OK she doesn't want a baby. We're all HAPPY you're not having one, OK? Move on, already. She falls apart over the most minor, self-inflicted, personal problems, and treats listeners to repeated dissections of them. This is juxtaposed with limitless descriptions and examples of her otherwise fabulousness. I am almost to the end, and I quit listening when it struck me that she was not going to grow or change during the course of this book, even though that is supposed to be the point of her travels. It is, unfortunately, about a trivial and self-absorbed year in the life of a trivial and self-absorbed icky person.
There were some parts of this book that I loved and many parts where I felt she went on a bit. Over all the book had a good message. I as an audio book, that she shouldn't have read it herself. Not that she has a bad voice... but it just wasn't engaging... perhaps someone who was a little less removed from the story would have added to the audio book.
Overall, it was just Okay.
I felt as if I was this writer's therapist. After several hours I was really tired of hearing her whine on and on about her divorce. Get over it or get therapy. I give it one star for its great description of Italian food (and Audible does not allow zero stars). This book came recommended by a few friends, but none of them had gone past the Italian story when they recommended reading this book, and most of them have not finished reading it. I have finished listening and I am sad to have wasted my credits and happy to be done with this book.
I'm rather disappointed that I listened to "Oprah" on this one. It bored me to tears. I did force myself to finish it, just in case it picked up, but it never did. I'd save my money.
I could not finish this book. The author whines and complains and denies herself pleasure and then over indulges. Must be nice to be rich enough to travel the world and complain how awful your life is. Few of us have that luxury, so I'm not sympathetic with this author's plight. Want to know who you are? Go check the mail box and see who's name is there.
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