Jane Stewart's Reviews > Committed: A Skeptic Makes Peace with Marriage

Committed by Elizabeth Gilbert
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's review
Sep 10, 10

it was amazing
bookshelves: memoirs, nonfic-relationship-marriage-travel, 5-star-nonfiction
Read in May, 2010

Do this as an audio book. The author has an enjoyable conversation style. Also read or listen to “Eat, Pray, Love” first.

This is the sequel to “Eat, Pray, Love.” I loved both books. I did the audio book for each. Both were narrated by the author which gave it a conversational feel. She has a an enjoyable voice and style. I strongly suggest you hear “Eat, Pray, Love” first. It’s about the author’s travel and experiences after her divorce. Toward the end of that book she fell in love with Felipe, a Brazilian-born man of Australian citizenship who’d been living in Indonesia when they met. (I also fell in love with him.) They wanted to live together in the United States, but U.S. Immigration wouldn’t allow Felipe to enter the U.S. unless they married. However, they couldn’t do this for over a year while waiting on document processing. “Committed” is Elizabeth’s research and thinking about what marriage means. It is also about Elizabeth’s and Felipe’s travel and experiences during their waiting time.

At the end of the first book, I wanted to know what would happen with Felipe and Elizabeth. I loved hearing their story in “Committed” and hearing Elizabeth’s research and thoughts about marriage. And I’d like a follow-up maybe ten years later. I believe that “Eat, Pray, Love” will have a wider audience than “Committed.” So it’s important to read them in order.

One thing I found especially interesting was the author’s discussion of the marriage benefit imbalance. Actuarial charts for a long, happy, prosperous existence show several ways marriage benefits men, but not so for women.

I disagree with one reviewer who wrote the following. The reviewer “felt uncomfortable with the amount of very personal information” the author “revealed about her husband and her parents. A confessional approach to one's own life by a memoirist is one thing; to expose and discuss other peoples' intimate feelings and issues seems exploitative.” I disagree. I loved hearing all of this. The same reviewer also wrote “this gives the book a talky, chatty quality that does not translate well to the written page. There are too many "anyways", redundancies and extraneous phrases.” It worked well for me, maybe because I did the audio book instead of the written book. For other reasons indicated in my review of “Eat, Pray, Love” I recommend both books as audio books over the written books.

Copyright: 2010. Genre: memoirs, nonfiction relationships marriage and travel.

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