Archive for August 2010

#7 Elizabeth Gilbert's "Eat, Pray, Love"


I've finally done it.  I finished Eat, Pray, Love.  I don't know what my problem with this book was!  I actually did enjoy it (for the most part), but I really struggled to get through a lot of it.

That being said, let me tell you my thoughts.  Like I said, I enjoyed this book, for the most part.  I love the idea of this book, but I am still very skeptical of a lot of it.  I understand that Gilbert went through a huge "bad" spell in her life before the content of the book, but the story (where the novel picks up) just works out to perfectly for me.  Yes, there are still struggles for her throughout the book, but... I don't know.  I'm not at a loss for words as that last sentence makes me out to be, but I am at a loss for thoughts.  Mixed feelings.

Let's break this book up in to three parts.  We'll call them, fittingly, "eat", "pray", & "love".  These sections will be from her time spent in Italy, India & Indonesia, respectively.

  I liked this portion of the book.  I love Europe.  I love food (especially pasta).  I love the romance languages.  I'm sure all of these things helped in my liking this portion of the book.  I don't have a lot to say about this section though other than that I just liked it. 
     *I will add, however, that I got really annoyed by her sob story leading in to Italy.  Not that I don't like a good tale of sadness and despair; she just bordered on pathetic a lot of the time.  I also recognize that she was most likely looking for the reader to see that side of her life though.*

  This part is where I struggled the most.  I am not an overly religious person, but I am not an atheist either.  I have always been very interested in learning about different religions, but consider myself to be agnostic, because honestly, I don't know.  (And, as I've mentioned, I'm a huge skeptic.)
  I don't know if my reason for having difficulty getting through this book had anything to do with this being the more "religious" section of it, but I REALLY struggled through this portion.  When I read stories like this and I hear stories similar from people, or I meet someone with a really strong faith, it always makes me feel the same way.  I wouldn't say that I am jealous of these people, but I definitely am in awe of them.  Don't get me wrong, I have faith.  I have faith in my friends and family and I usually have faith in humanity, in general.  I am talking about religious faith.  There are some things in this world that I can never be sure of and religion is one of them.  I've tried.  I really have.  I've learned a lot of my values and morals growing up in a Christian based family and growing up with the church and I am proud of that fact.  I would change nothing about that fact.  It's made me who I am.  I also want to raise my children in a similar manner, giving them the option of having religion be a part of their lives. 
Sorry, I'm getting off track.   This is supposed to be a book review, but it has turned in to a religion argument.  I will save that for my other blogStay tuned...
Back to the book... well, I think you get a feel for my thoughts on this section.  More power to Gilbert and good for her.

  This is probably the section of the book that I enjoyed the most.  Maybe it's because I'm a sap.  Maybe it's because I love my friends and family and this is the section of the book where you see a strong sense of friendship and the beginning of a family for Gilbert.  I also think some of it is because I love some of the characters you meet in this section.  I love Ketut Liyer (the adorable medicine man) and his complete disregard for time.  I love Wayan, and even more so love her daughter, Tutti.  And let me tell you about my love for Felipe.  (I don't think that it helps that I know Javier Bardem plays him in the movie version... all I have to say about that is YUM.)  I know that I am a hopeless romantic and that only makes me love Felipe more... Gilbert makes him out to be that "perfect" man that only exists in the movies... and books, of course.
  The only part of this section that I was completely liking was Yudhi.  Don't get me wrong; I liked Yudhi.  I did not like the way that they converse with each other... most importantly the "your mother" jokes.  Come on.  Everyone knows that they are "your MOM" jokes.  They don't ring the right way if you say "mother".  :)

Over all, I did like the book.  Consider it RECOMMENDED.

Sorry that this review kind of turned in to a novel, in and of itself.

Here's your first line teaser from it:  "I wish Giovanni would kiss me."

Next up:  Dress Your Family in Corduroy & Denim by David Sedaris.

#6 Dan Wells's "I Am Not a Serial Killer"


First, I'd like to start by saying that blogger has added an underlining option!  Yay!  That makes me feel so much better about blogging about books.  :)

Moving on... number "six" (I quote because you all know I'm getting out of whack with this whole thing) is a book called I Am Not a Serial Killer, by Dan Wells.  Again, I remind you, this is a book club selection so I won't be giving away too terribly much.  Gotta save that for the meeting!  I will tell you this, as I know if for a fact, some of my book club members are going to absolutely HATE this book.  I think it is a bit gorier than some of them can handle, or would like to handle.

Aside from this fact, I also did not enjoy this book.  Mind you, it was a very fast read and I finished it quickly, but I did not really like it.  As those of you who actually know me know, I am not one to be a huge fan of things that I don't think are real or that I don't think could actually happen.  Having said that, I actually was enjoying this book until around page 100 or so.  Said serial killer turns very unrealistic.  I won't elaborate for now.  (Let's face it... I probably won't elaborate later either.  Have I managed to do that for any of my other book club books?)

I have a problem with things being too unrealistic.  I mean, ghosts?  They might be real... you don't always see them but you've got to wonder when you have those freaky happenings going on.  Serial killers?  I'm all about learning about them.  Sasquatch?  Yetis?  Chupacabra?  Probably not, but I wouldn't be surprised to find out that they exist.  Demons?  I'm over this book. 

Honestly, I think I would have been okay with it had I known what I was getting in to.  But with a name like "I Am Not a Serial Killer", you expect it to deal with just that.  At least I did; don't you?  I think had I known the actual topic, I might actually have enjoyed the story, because I do like a mini-man sociopath trying to take on demons.  (Okay, really I just like anything dealing with psychology; sociopathic children included.)

That all being said, if you like the previous paragraph of this, then perhaps you would like this book.  It's just not for me.

First line:  "Mrs. Anderson was dead."

This book is:  not recommended.

Next up:  I am going to finish Eat, Pray, Love.  Oh yes, I am.

Apologies, Apologies


So I just wrote an apology the other day for not blogging on my other blog, and here is my apology for this one.  I'd like to say that I haven't been posting because I've been too busy, but I'm not entirely sure that's true.  Maybe, kind of.

I just wanted to update you all on my current reading situation.  For some reason, even though I really like the book, I am struggling to get through Eat, Pray, Love at a quick enough pace for this challenge.  Thus, I have added my P90X guides (I know... I will try to cancel them out further down the road).  They are very informational though and this program is going to complete kick my tush since I am not in shape, whatsoever.

Bringing me to now.  We had the book club meeting on Monday and chose our new book.  I am taking a break from Eat, Pray, Love in an attempt to be more loyal to it after this book is over.  Our new selection is I Am Not a Serial Killer by Dan Wells.  I started it last night and am probably somewhere between 1/4 and 1/3 of the way done with it.  It's a super easy and fast read so far.  Does it make me a freak that I compare myself to the little sociopath in the book?

Anyway, I promise to get back on track with my booking blog.

#5 P90X


Okay, some of you may say this is cheating.  I have skipped Eat, Pray, Love (which will now be my 6th book instead of 5th).  I am counting my P90X guides as books for my challenge as that has been my reading material for the past few days.

P90X will, in and of itself, be an entirely new challenge for me.  The guides are both over 100 pages long though, so I think that combining them I can count them as one book.  Thoughts?  Call me a cheater; call me what you will; I'm doing it.  Just thinking about doing P90X allows me such convenience.  If you don't know what P90X is, you better check it out.  It's going to be insane, yo.

I promise that if I have time I will add another book to my line up to make up for this one, but for some reason it has taken me almost 3 weeks to get through Eat, Pray, Love.  I like it all right, but I can't stick to reading it for long for some reason.

The next book club meeting is on Monday, so we will see what my next selection will be then.

I shall NOT recommend p90x... YET.  :)