14 March 2010

Committed

Once I find a writer, who is able to capture my imagination, I feel compelled to read their next book.So despite the reviews, which I typically ignore anyhow, I read Elizabeth Gilbert's "Committed: A Skeptic Makes Peace with Marriage". The genesis for the book came to be when Ms. Gilbert's fiance, Felipe, Brazilian born and an Australian citizen was escorted away at the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport by Immigration officers as she watched. Felipe was the man we read about in her memoir, Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia. The man she allowed herself to love after travelling continents trying to understand why she could not love. It was an amazing story and journey.

With Felipe's deportation and the realization that the only way they could continue their life together was to get married, this latest book discusses the trials and history of marriage. Gilbert sums up her trepidation by opening her discussion of the issue with a Polish adage "Before going to war, say one prayer. Before going to sea, say two prayers. Before getting married, say three." stating that she intends to pray all year. With this she begins to weave the story of their journey to marriage with a remarkable dissertation of the history and the cultural aspects of marriage.

Having gone through a difficult divorce and recently married, I was saddened but not confused by her fear and outright dislike for the institution of marriage. So as I read, I gave her kudos for excellent research, writing and finally, applauded her marriage to Felipe. This book was a journey that was perhaps, more personal than the one in which we came to know her. With her research, she revealed elements of herself, that we didn't see in the last book. She is a magnificent writer and storyteller. I look forward to reading more now that she is released from "I do."

Additional Elizabeth Gilbert reading:

Stern Men: A Novel

Pilgrims

The Last American Man

10 comments:

♥ Braja said...

Hey CM :) Nice to meet you....will wander around here :)

Brian Miller said...

nice. i actually read eat, love, pray....and i do that too with authors...

Reya Mellicker said...

I'm not a fan of Elizabeth Gilbert but I know what you mean about finding an author you like, then reading everything they ever wrote.

When Julio Cortazar died I remember thinking, "Oh no. He'll never write another book, and I've read them all!"

Yvonne said...

Hey! We both just reached 50 followers! Kinda cool I think! I admit to letting out a whoop when I saw I had fifty.

I don't usually pay attention to reviews either, especially if it's an author I've already read. I go by what friends and sibs say if I'm looking for a new read. Alas, I already have so many on my to-read list. I fear I'll never get through all of them. (unless I give up blogging!)

Terresa said...

I have been on the fence about reading Eat, Pray, Love. Your thoughtful post may be the nudge I need to read it now.

Gilbert's journey (from the reviews I have read) seems so alien to me. I am filled to the brim and beyond with 4 young children and their needs, which I must balance alongside my desire to travel and soul search. To be free as a bird to travel (and with the time & means to do so) baffles me. And yet, I am certain, I have much to learn from her still.

C.M. Jackson said...

braja--thanks for stopping by!

C.M. Jackson said...

brian--so when you finish that book know that you will have to write another immediately 'cause I will be looking for it!

C.M. Jackson said...

reya--

I believe I read some of Julio's short stories--I am going to have to look around my shelves and come back and tell you what I think;-)

Gilbert's early books are worth a read--the quest and journey seem to be a common theme, well crafted characters and plot.

C.M. Jackson said...

Yvonne--yes it is very exciting to know that people are reading what I post. I must thank you for your kind words of encouragement along the way!

C.M. Jackson said...

terresa--it is a great read regardless of your circumstances--be an archair traveller and wisk yourself away to a foreign land for a few moments when the kids are at school or napping--thanks for stopping by!

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