Thursday, August 19, 2010

Eat pray loathe

I'm sure I'm not alone among women in America -- maybe the world -- who hated Eat, Pray, Love. When it first came out I was eager to read it because I'd read such glowing reviews (probably should have considered the sources more carefully) and it was about exotic faraway places. I put in my request and joined the huge queue at the library. Many times I came close to canceling the request and just buying it, but I stuck it out and almost a year-and-a-half later I got the notice that it was available. I ran out to get it and that night got ready to read.... and was almost immediately disappointed. I stuck it out: grimly wading through the pages full of treacly self-help cliches; grimacing over her sanctimonious embrace of new age gimmickry; wondering how anyone could ruin trips to Italy, India and Indonesia (it can't be a coincidence that she chose places beginning with "I"); wondering how anyone can take themselves that seriously. Good grief!

Unfortunately her self-indulgent attitude overshadows just about everything in the book. She epitomizes what's broken with society today: "ego" trumping morals, values and principles; the prevalence of a culture where nothing is definitive and where individuals get to pick and choose the moral code that suits them; a culture that allows people to redefine just about anything that they don't feel applies to them. (Go google moral relativism if you need more info.)

So a big thumbs down on the book and I'll take a pass on the movie too.

I will, however, be spending some time with Jen Lancaster this fall.

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