I wasn't raised religious, nor have I ever become so. If there was an official list of things I hated (maybe I'll make one?), people trying to press their religious beliefs upon others would probably be a the top of that list. For some reason I got it into my head that this is what would happen during the "Pray" section of the book, but boy, was I wrong. In fact, I think I actually ended up enjoying that part of the book the most. I didn't find it religious it all, instead I found it spiritual — and spirituality is something that I can most definitely dig. And with over 10 million copies of the book sold worldwide, I'm obviously not the only one!
I think Eat, Pray, Love was such a huge success because it made people step back and look at their lives and determine, like the author did, if it was really the life they wanted to be living. If it wasn't, what could be done to change that? In fact, a collection of stories called Eat, Pray, Love Made Me Do It was published earlier this year, in which numerous men and women detail how Gilbert's memoir personally affected them, and some of the stories are quite profound.
While I can rant and rave about this book about how inspiring it was to me personally, I'd rather spend the rest of this blog post warning you against how horrible and inaccurate the movie version of this book was. When I say horrible, I mean horrible ... As in absolutely the worst book-to-movie adaptation I've ever seen!
The movie overwhelming dwells on the "Eat" section of the book, practically skims over the "Pray" portion and totally misses the mark on the "Love" part. The movie makes it seem like Liz (played by Julia Roberts) is just a selfish and depressed white lady who takes on the White (Wo)man's Burden of traveling around the world and "saving" others to save herself. This could not be further from the truth and message of the book, and I actually had to shut the movie off before the end because I found it that upsetting.
The long story short is, I don't care who you are, you should read this book. Whether you read it or not ... you should definitely not watch the movie.
I give this book: