Sunday, October 14, 2007

Resistance is Futile

So many people have shoved the book eat pray love in my face, I'm going to stop resisting and just read the damn thing.

It makes me nervous when everyone tells me I'm going to just love this book, movie, song, restaurant, person or whatever. I feel set up, hyper-nervous that I might not behave as I'm supposed to; dislike what I'm supposed to love.

I just started the book today between clients. So far all I can feel is resentment that this person could afford to take a whole year off in order to sort out her spiritual life. Please. I'm hoping the slight bitter taste in my mouth at her ability to indulge herself will shift as I get into the groove of her story. We'll see.

As a friend says, it's good to check out anything that has caught the attention of so many people. I thought The DaVinci Code was a hoot, not a great book but fun, made more fun by the fact that everyone was reading it all at once. Of course I LOVED Harry Potter, so I do have the capacity to get into a trend here and there.

But so far, the jury is out about whether I'll love Elizabeth Gilbert's story. We shall see.

10/17 - Addendum:

OK the final word on eat pray love is that as of page 137, I have given up on it. As soon as I figured out the pattern of the book, I lost interest in the specifics. It's a book that's all about her, and she's a sweet kooky gal, but ... who cares? This happened when I read Anne Lamott's Travelling Mercies, too, a much better book (I think) but still, after awhile, sitting inside someone else's head becomes so boring. If I'm learning something, that's different. Bryan Sykes is a strange guy and his personality is all over his book, but reading The Seven Sisters of Eve was well worth it because I learned so much about mitochondrial DNA.

It's best for me to stick to non-fiction, I guess.


Barbara said...

I could envision a spirited discussion of this book with you, me, Velvet, and Deborah in attendance. Not a group without an opinion I'm sure.

Hey, remember that her year off was funded by her book advance. You too could do that when you write your book!

Momentary Academic said...

What's funny is that people never tell me that I will love something. They say, "you should read it just to see what everyone else is talking about."

I must be out of touch or something.


Steve said...

Hmmm...I haven't even HEARD of this book. Clearly I'm the one who is out of touch! I'll watch for your take on it before deciding whether to tackle it myself. :)

Absolute Vanilla (and Atyllah) said...

I always worry when people insist I read a book and assure me I'll love it. I resisted the Da Vinci Code for years but I did love Harry Potter. Will be interested to hear what you think of eat pray love which I happily confess to never having heard of! :-)

Aileen said...

I am SO with you on this one!!!! It's actually almost gotten to the point where I've been deliberately postponing reading this book out of rebellion!

Confession: after our tea on Saturday, I stopped at the book store and bought it! Haven't started reading yet...

Also- I have to say that I could always tell from your blog that you are a beautiful woman, Reya. Upon meeting you, I saw that you are gorgeous on the outside as well!

lettuce said...

awaitiing your verdict with interest.

i'm just reading The Shipping News - i think its great.

Reya Mellicker said...

Thank you Aileen!! Wow!! When I look in the mirror I see a frumy middle aged woman. Thank you so very much.

OK I'm 50 pages into the book and I am really loving it. I love the way she thinks, not necessarily how she lives but the way she portrays her thoughts. I now see why everyone thought I would love it.

Two thumbs up.

kimy said...

my f is always getting on my case when I enthusiastically endorse a book, movie, etc and tell folks 'they will love x' -reading your post reminds me of to be more mindful with how I suggest things! thank you!

I guess I live in the same private idaho as a few of the other puppy readers as I've never heard of this least it's not ringing a bell. but now I'm intrigued - esp with you being 50 pages in to it and giving it two thumbs up. hopefully it won't be one of those books that is great but falls apart at the end... but since it's about a spiritual journey, I expect there's no end to gilbert's story.


Barbara said...

I really thought you would like this book, but when I first read this post I thought I must have been dead wrong. I think the book is entertaining and still carries a serious message about her experiences over the course of this year, which are definitely not what most of us ever experienced in any year. She comes across as quite human and is completely honest about her shortcomings. Not all authors can pull this off.

Washington Cube said...

I saw her on Oprah while getting my nails done and thought "What a loon. I absolutely could not take her seriously." She had that "blasted by insanity" look about her...and very smug in her knowledge of being right. Never trust someone that has the answers. Oh. St. Petersburgundy on the fingers and toes. Bank on it.

mysticalfeet said...

I've been trying to figure out if I was interested in this book too; being told I'd love it, thumbing through it and not being hooked, debating buying it...meh. For the record, the book I read that was shoved into my face that I ended up not liking was The Celestine Prophecy. Oh, and The Bridges of Madison County.

Reya Mellicker said...

Meh is right.

Hated the Celestine Prophecy. Ghastly writing.

Never read Bridges of Madison County. Whew!!

hollly said...

Hi there!

I agree, I didn't like the book. The author complained so much and her sense of humor became really annoying to me. I only read the first third because I couldn't stand to read more.

But don't give up on fiction: the book I'm reading right now I would absolutely recommend. It's called The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri. Also, have you read the Alchemist?

Ladron de Basura (a.k.a. Junk Thief) said...

Reya, I bought it before it was getting so much buzz. Yes, I know, token estrogen club member here. I also eat a lot of Luna (loony?) bars. I was buying a number of travel books. She's a pretty lame writer, and her "insights" are about as deep as a puddle of hummingbird pee. Okay, I should write something about my trips to Laos, Burkina Faso, Honduras, etc. It's worth a quick read, her path is not a bad one, but I don't think she learned anything. Want real travel literature? Revisit Bruce Chatwin, not this Pottery Barn approach to spiritual quest.