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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Book Tour 14: Eat, Pray, Love

Ok, we are back with another episode of the Barren Bitches Book Tour. This month, we read Eat, Pray, Love. I heard a lot of good about this book. I was excited to read it. Here is the truth, I didn't even finish it yet! I stink ... I started reading it too late.

The book is basically a memoir written by a woman who went through a nasty divorce. She was married, successful, owned a home, etc, and when she hit 30 and it was time to have a baby, decided she didn't want this life anymore. So she got divorced, and went on a journey. 4 months in Italy, to enjoy eating, 4 months in India to immerse herself in prayer, and 4 months in Indonesia. I made it through Italy and India. I'm only half way through Indonesia, but it's time to post, so I'll do my best.

One of the criticisms frequently leveled at this book is that it is "self-absorbed" and that its author is "selfish." Interestingly, these same labels have also been applied to infertiles, particularly those of us who blog about our infertility. Do you think this criticism is warranted in either case (i.e., by the book/author and by infertiles/infertility bloggers)? Do you think being an infertile and a blogger influenced your reaction to the book? In what ways?
Hmmm, is she selfish? I don't know. It's her memoir. It's all about her. Isn't that just kind of selfish by nature? I was thoroughly unable to relate to this person at all. First of all, I don't believe in God. So all the God talk was distracting, and I spent half the book rolling my eyes. Why is it that someone ALWAYS finds God when they are at their lowest point? I don't know if she was selfish. It's her life, and I truly believe that it is our most important journey in life to make our own selves happy. If I'm happy, my husband will be happier with me, it's just a cycle like that. I don't think she was selfish, I just couldn't relate to the life that she led.

Which of the three sections of the book -- Eat (Italy), Pray (India) or Love (Indonesia) -- could you most relate to & why?
Well, I didn't fully make it through Indonesia, but even if I had, I think it's Italy. First of all, I'm part Italian. Second of all, I LOVE LOVE LOVE to eat. So I would love a gluttonous 4 months in Italy just eating and doing whatever I want.

During her sojourn at the Ashram, Gilbert speaks of the fight with herself to find her meditative path. Personally, I have lost touch with the spiritual side of myself, so this kind of intrigues me. I wanted to know (if you are willing to share): How important is spirituality in your journey through if?
I wouldn't consider myself spiritual. I am not religious, do not believe in God. I am in awe of beauty in the world, looking around on a summer day, watching birds flying, seeing my children run around. Things like this move me. But my strength, my support, my power, they come from my loved ones. They come from my husband, my children, my siblings, my parents, my friends. These are the things that helped me through my IF battle. These are the people that wiped my tears, held my hand, and cradled my heart. For me, this is where I find my "spirituality". In the actually people that help me get through the tough times in my life.

Hop along to another stop on this blog tour by visiting the main list at Stirrup Queens ( You can also sign up for the next book on this online book club: Baby Trail by Sinead Moriarty (with author participation).


Cassandra said...

I don't think finishing the book will change your answers to any of these questions. If you had faked it, you totally would have gotten away with it! :)

loribeth said...

I especially liked your thoughts on "selfish." I do believe in God, but some of the guru/ashram stuff was just a little too New Age-y for my tastes. But I did like how she related the various world religions to each other & showed that, underneath, they all point in the same direction. Thanks for sharing your answers!

Lori said...

"I am in awe of beauty in the world, looking around on a summer day, watching birds flying, seeing my children run around. Things like this move me."

I think we have this idea the spirituality is something we do AWAY from the world. But what you say here is, for me, very spiritual. Finding the beauty, the divine, in everyday life. Not so much FINDING as RECOGNIZING.

I like Italy, too.