I will admit that I was worried. Would I relate to Eat, Pray, Love? A rich, white woman travels around the world for a year to find herself. Oh, woe is she! Really? Yet, I had heard nothing but rave reviews from friends and I enjoyed the film adaptation, so I decided to give it a try. And I am glad I did! Elizabeth Gilbert won me over with her easy writing style and self-effacing humor.
Having been through a divorce and a self finding journey myself (although not around the world :)), I understood a lot of what Gilbert was experiencing. I knew the yearning for enlightenment and the guilt of being unhappy. And I as I read I grew a bond with her. She was a sister in this adventure we call life.
The novel is broken into three distinct sections. Eat in Italy, which focused on pleasure (my favorite part). Pray in India, which focused on devotion (dragged a bit, but LOVED Richard from Texas!). And Love in Bali, which focused on self-love (my least favorite part, except for some cool discoveries).
I understand the hoop-la now. I am sure that many are afraid to ask the questions that Gilbert asked throughout and many more are terrified of truly looking at themselves–honestly and objectively. Eat, Pray, Love allows the reader to share this journey of self discovery and in turn helps them begin the journey for themselves.