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Committed: A Skeptic Makes Peace with Marriage

3.39  ·  Rating Details ·  41,348 Ratings  ·  4,783 Reviews
At the end of her bestselling memoir Eat, Pray, Love,
Elizabeth Gilbert fell in love with Felipe - a Brazilian-born man of
Australian citizenship who'd been living in Indonesia when they met.
Resettling in America, the couple swore eternal fidelity to each other,
but also swore to never, ever, under any circumstances get legally
married. (Both survivors of difficult divorces. E
Kindle Edition, 305 pages
Published (first published December 2009)
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Nicole Thole Yes. Her reason for not getting married was her fear that it would end like her first marriage. She wasn't afraid of marriage per say...she was afraid…moreYes. Her reason for not getting married was her fear that it would end like her first marriage. She wasn't afraid of marriage per say...she was afraid of the mental and emotional stress that divorce could bring. She wanted to figure out what marriage meant to different types of cultures and people. She wanted to find out why people who are in arranged marriages seem to be so stable and why they tend to last. And why the absence of love and passion at the begining of a romance still has intimacy after many years. She wanted to know if her marriage to Felipe would stand the test of time, or if the fact that they weren't married made the relationship work. The book isn't about finding the meaning of marriage, it's about realizing that not every marriage means love, and the absence of marriage doesn't mean the absence of love and commitment. Her journey was about assuaging her own discomfort with marriage, so she could go into her own marriage whole-heartedly rather than feeling like she was being forced to do something awful. And she is able to realize that she can let go of her messy first divorce and commit herself to a wonderful man.(less)
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Community Reviews

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La Petite Américaine
**UPDATE: 9/21/16**

This review is getting attention lately (most likely because Gilbert is in the news again), so adding a quick update.

I hated Committed so much that even now, 6 years after reading it, the very thought of the book pisses me off.

I hated it so much that I wrote an irate review -- and it's easily one of the meanest things I've ever written. I'm not exactly proud of it.

I never changed this review because it was always a reflection of who I was when I read the book: on the last l
Apr 22, 2010 Joakley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One thing I have noticed on multiple reviews here and at Amazon is a direct correlation between the amount of expectations the reader has upon entering this book, and the amount of dissapointment a person has by the time they write the review. This correlation makes me thankful that before picking up this book, I had never heard of Eat, Pray, Love, or Elizabeth Gilbert.

What's more interesting is that I have yet to find a critique of the book that hadn't already been addressed... in the book its
Jan 14, 2010 Lena rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir, essays
In thinking about why Liz Gilbert's memoir, Eat Pray Love, was so successful, I suspect that it's because it's the ultimate escapist fantasy. Gilbert flees a bad marriage and a bitter divorce and miraculously receives a large enough book advance to spend the next year traveling the world in search of pleasure, spirituality, and love. That her dream journey results in her finding healing and rebirth, not to mention a passionate new Brazilian lover, gives her story the perfect fairy tale ending.

Moira Russell
Yeah, I broke down and bought this, mainly because it was 40% off at the local grocery store, partly because of this review: I HATED EPL but I like reading about marriage, so, we'll see how this goes while I'm waiting for Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest to get here (apparently England is having blizzards).

-- This wasn't anywhere near as terrible as Eat Pray Love, which isn't saying much of anything at all since I detest that book completely. Gilbert's
May 26, 2010 Marybeth rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Reasonable people have asked why did I read this book when I disliked Eat Pray Love so very very much & this is a reasonable & worthy question. If I were Elizabeth Gilbert I would take an extended vacation slash sojourn to ponder this, bemoaning my ever dwindling funds, with my Brazilian lover (let's call him Darling), internet surfing for books on the topic & having my sister send them out to my hotel rooms (Darling & me, we move around a lot). I would document my inner journey ...more
Jan 20, 2010 Nancy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When I read Eat, Pray, Love a couple of years ago, I remember thinking to myself: "Elizabeth Gilbert is hilarious and sweet and very, very interesting, but I sure would not want to be married to her." Because, you know, she sounds kind of needy. And kind of over-dramatizing, and maybe just slightly nuts. As it turns out, Ms. Gilbert herself feels pretty much the same way. Not only did she not want to be married to someone like her, she did not want to be married at all - and most certainly did n ...more
Aug 10, 2010 Nancy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Oh, Liz. I really want to like you, I do. Here you write a punchy memoir-sequel Nancy-style book that seems like a great idea at first ("The marriage cynic finally gets married!!!!"), but actually it just makes you look like a big fat flaky whiner-opportunist ("I can't believe Homeland Security is making me marry my Brazilian lover!!! Therefore, I must dissect this problem for three years abroad on my publisher's dime so I can fully capture all my emotions in another conveniently best-selling 28 ...more
Oct 20, 2012 Kate rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I was reading merrily along with some arguments as to the structure of her prose or the depth of her arguments but nothing so sinister as to make me put the book down until page 164. In this section Gilbert devotes a few pages to a flyby of American woman's changing perceptions about marriage. Really it is an incomplete homage to Betty Friedan's groundbreaking work, The Feminine Mystique.

Here Gilbert writes,

"She (here Gilbert is referring to her grandmother) was happy because she had a partner
Aug 04, 2010 Julie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I admit, I never finished Eat, Pray, Love. I got stuck in Pray and never got out. But I wanted to read her view on marriage (and second marriages) after what I remembered being a really terrible divorce. I noticed the reviews weren't great, but I also know that there was a lot of praise for E,P,L so that's probably hard to live up to. From previous experience, I was a skeptic about marriage myself. I think this day and age, it has a pretty bad rep with a lot of people. It was really interesting ...more
Jan 11, 2010 Richele rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
While I am only mid-way through this book, I have begun to feel as though Gilbert is happily researching all the reasons why her marriage will prosper, and mine will not. I am in my early twenties, married to a man in his late twenties, and I feel as though Gilbert is not so much researching marriage, as she is all the reasons why Felipe is perfect for her. Although it is a memoire, and power to her for writing it, I sense a certain judgement on those of us out there who aren't as spiritually en ...more
Mar 01, 2010 Salwa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was a big fan of Eat, Pray, Love and even went back and read her journalistic book, The Last American Man, so I was super excited to read this book. I appreciate that it can't have been easy to write again after the insane success of Eat, Pray, Love. Not to mention writing about something so personal knowing that you'd have 100s of thousands of readers this time around. And yet, this book is missing some of the things that made Eat, Pray, Love great.
1) A cohesive narrative arch. The book is b
Apr 12, 2016 Gergana marked it as zzz-books-not-for-me  ·  review of another edition
Nope. As much as I adored by Eat Pray Love, Committed is definitely not my cup of tea. The whole book is about Marriage - the role of marriage, the pros and cons of marriage, the history of marriage, examples of marriages gone wrong or right, etc.. Overthinking, over-analyzing, over-everything.

All I can say is - I like the cover design (the one with the rolled papers shaped as a heart).

Read in September, 2016
Sep 20, 2011 E rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biographies
I have two things in common with Elizabeth Gilbert: I married a foreigner, and I really, really don't want to ever get divorced. As my partner and I planned our wedding and crafted our vows, we were inspired of course by love but also by the many shattered relationships we had observed, hoping to learn everything we could. Not to be better than anyone; on the contrary, to avoid hubris. I wanted my 50 year-old self to look back at my 28 year-old self and be proud, not shaking her head at any flig ...more
Feb 06, 2010 Anne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In Gilbert's memoir Eat, Pray, Love, she has fallen in love with a Brazilian named Felipe. In her latest, Gilbert tells the story of how she and Felipe came to be married, despite their adamant belief that after their painful divorces, they would never enter into the instution of marriage ever again. I was skeptical when I picked this one up. I thought it might be preachy - or an annoying attempt to justify why Gilbert's marriage was worthwhile, when so many others aren't. I thought it would be ...more
Jan 10, 2010 Annie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010, non-fiction
I picked this up to review. I almost put it back down again, because it seems like everyone and her uncle has reviewed this book in print, but I didn't have anything else to replace it with, so I thought I'd try anyway.

I'm glad I did. For some reason, I picked up on things the other reviewers didn't. Well, maybe it's not that they didn't notice, but it didn't matter to them.

As a memoir, this isn't the greatest, but then again I don't like memoirs in the first place. As a book using one relations
Megan Baxter
was fully prepared to not like this book. Not for necessarily rational reasons - I've never read Eat, Love, Pray, and have refrained from doing so both because of the immense hype around the book and the message that in order to find yourself, you had to be someone who already had an immense amount of privilege. I'm not saying that's what Eat, Pray, Love is like, as I'm talking from no knowledge whatsoever. But the publicity around the book just stank of that point of view.

Note: The rest of thi
Mandy Sue
I find it insulting (maybe insulting is a harsh word...disappointing, maybe?) to readers that Ms. Gilbert or "Mrs. Brazilian Felipe" can change the way she portrays herself in two memoirs and expect the readers to embrace it.

In Eat, Pray, Love, Liz portrayed herself as a spiritual person looking to better herself after self destructing (although I didn't feel that way about her situation until reading Committed) her first marriage. The readers loved her yearning for self discovery; some to the p
Jul 17, 2012 Paula rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I simply loved this book. I'd enjoyed reading "Eat, Pray, Love", even though I loathed the "Eat" part, but had seen and heard a fair amount of bad reviews about "Committed" and, for that reason, was apprehensive about it. However, Elizabeth Gilbert is a brilliant author: she presents the right amount of intelligence, wit, sensibility and sense of humor in her writings.

In the beginning of the book, Gilbert warns her readers that this will be different than Eat, Pray, Love was. Her research and wr
Apr 04, 2010 Catherine rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was ambivalent about reading this, because the "Love" section of "Eat Pray Love" was my least favorite part. In fact, I nearly returned it to the library unread when the due date arrived, but decided to read "just a few chapters" in case it was worth putting on hold to read at a later date. Apologies to the next person in the queue.

What I expected: A self-congratulatory recap of how Liz and Felipe overcame immigration complications to achieve wedded bliss.

What I got instead: thoughtful analysi
my love for this book has a lot to do with who i am and where i am in life, so i don't expect that everyone else will have the same experience when reading it. even though i married young, we are coming on 4 years of what EG describes as husbandless, wifeless, childless marriage. in other words, a bit nontraditional. so this book, which is EG's exploration of whether or not her nontraditional relationship can fit into a traditional state-sanctioned marriage, really spoke to me.

at the end of eat
Mar 20, 2012 Bonni rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you're under the impression that Elizabeth Gilbert writes chick lit for middle aged women longing for excitement and dreaming of international travel, you are missing out on some of the most profound writing in modern literature. There is one common theme in her work: that of seeking truth and clarity amid thousands of theories, expectations and ideas sold to us by society. I wouldn't call Committed a love story; I'd call it thoughtful, heartful research, an attempt to break the institution o ...more
Mar 14, 2010 Joan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: those contemplating marriage
I found Elizabeth Gilbert's first book, Eat, Pray, Love, a bit too self-indulgent for my taste. This book, though, struck a better balance of self-indulgent musing and researched social commentary. (And, I use the term "researched" loosely.) If you are contemplating marriage or are just interested in the institution of marriage in Western culture, this is a decent read.
Feb 01, 2010 Irish rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
Love, true love, has brought us together today

I finished Committed, and am at an understanding with the book. I would say this book is worth a read, but as a reader, one must be committed to the book. A reader has to go into this book with an open mind (a few of Gilbert's views may be too liberal for some) and a reader absolutely must finish the book. This is not the type of book one can pick up, read a few chapters of and then put down. You'll walk away with an incomplete viewpoint and it isn't
Jan 24, 2010 Laine rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Can you believe I am actually reading this? My curiousity has won out. And of course I am immediately confused by this woman. She wrote this book just for 25 friends/neighbors? How is it this author thinks it is OK to write "I only care about what these 25 people think," and then gets this thing published? Why did she bother? Surely there are Kinkos in New Jersey.
Her broad sweeping generalizations must be viewed as the opinion of a writer who is not considerate enough of her readers to reference
Rebekah O'Dell
Apr 07, 2010 Rebekah O'Dell rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don’t envy Elizabeth Gilbert the task of following-up Eat, Pray, Love. The book is so popular and so uber-beloved that Julia Roberts herself is playing Gilbert in the hotly anticipated film adaption, for goodness sake! Aside from an Oprah endorsement (though it has that, too), what more could a book ask for than Julia Roberts’ guffaw attached to it?

But, here it is — Gilbert’s big follow-up. In the “love” section of Eat, Pray, Love, Gilbert meets and falls for Brazilian Felipe while traveling
Mar 15, 2010 Jane rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book is in fact a two point five, but I found myself annoyed with the author so gave it a two. How can I be annoyed, you ask? Think of all the hundreds, thousands of people who get married EVERY DAY, some, gasp! for the second or even third time. Do they make an outrageous fuss, crying "I'm so special, I think marriage is too enslaving for me"? No, they bite the bullet and take the risk.

If Elizabeth Gilbert weren't famous for Eat Pray Love, then I wonder what a publisher's reaction to this
Jan 29, 2010 Em rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
I have a weird like/hate with Gilbert's books. She does her research, sort of (it's always kind of random and unapologetically self-serving). And comes off untrustworthy as such. But interesting. She reminds me of one of those friends who is very dramatic and will fight to the death to defend her opinion...until she changes it, of course. Her Ted Talk on Genuis is great, though. Check it out!
full disclosure: i checked this book out of the library & have already retrned it, so i'm writing this review purely from memory & don't have the book around to reference. also, as far as the writing goes, the book probably deserves more than two stars. i am marking it down due to the conceit of the premise, which is as follows: elizabeth gilbert met her sweetie, felipe, during her round-the-world travels following her divorce, as documented in her international bestseller eat pray love. ...more
I'm one of four sisters, and at this moment in time, one is in the midst of wedding preparations and one is en route to divorce. As the (unmarried)youngest of the bunch, I am in the blessed and privileged position of still being at liberty to observe, fantasize and make sweeping declarations about the future at my leisure. As I alternately peruse wedding dresses and condemn the institution of marriage (depending on my ovulation cycle and the phases of the moon), it seemed timely and fortuitous t ...more
Mar 19, 2011 Renate rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir
I feel the need to explain why I read a book with a cute pink curly heart on its cover...

At the end of Eat, Pray, Love Liz literally sailed off into the sunset with her new lover. I just couldn't resist getting hold of a copy of this book to find out whether they "lived happily ever after".

Although neither of them wanted to get officially married again, they find out that they have no other option if they want to live together in the United States. This book describes their spat with Homeland S
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Reflections Book ...: April 2011 1 3 Feb 24, 2013 12:19PM  
Valentine's Day Giveaway-Win Committed by Elizabeth Gilbert 1 30 Jan 30, 2011 02:29PM  
Some reviews 1 34 Dec 26, 2009 11:52AM  
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Elizabeth Gilbert is an award-winning writer of both fiction and non-fiction. Her short story collection Pilgrims was a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway award, and her novel Stern Men was a New York Times notable book. Her 2002 book The Last American Man was a finalist for both the National Book Award and the National Book Critic’s Circle Award.

Her memoir, Eat, Pray, Love, spent 57 weeks in the #1
More about Elizabeth Gilbert...

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“To be fully seen by somebody, then, and be loved anyhow - this is a human offering that can border on miraculous.” 2421 likes
“People always fall in love with the most perfect aspects of each other’s personalities. Who wouldn’t? Anybody can love the most wonderful parts of another person. But that’s not the clever trick. The really clever trick is this: Can you accept the flaws? Can you look at your partner’s faults honestly and say, ‘I can work around that. I can make something out of it.’? Because the good stuff is always going to be there, and it’s always going to pretty and sparkly, but the crap underneath can ruin you.” 1474 likes
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