Eat Pray Love Made me Do It

Eat Pray Love Made me Do It Book Review
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If you joined us for book club this month you will already be aware this month’s selection was pretty special. As someone who jumped on the Eat Pray Love train a little late (I thought it sounded a little cliche at the outset), I’m so glad I finally took the plunge, even if I did so back-to-front by watching the film before reading the book. And then late last month I found myself perusing the airport book store, looking for a new WOW Book Club selection. I saw the title “Eat Pray Love” and almost overlooked it, though out of curiosity turned to see how or why the book was in the newcomers section, later realising it was a new book title Eat Pray Love made me do it. And thus we have this month’s book selection!

Eat Pray Love Made me Do It Book Review

Book Review: Eat Pray Love Made me Do It

As someone who thrives off reading other’s stories to success and overcoming hurdles in life, this book was an absolute stand out for me. I love reading through the selection of nearly fifty real life stories that were related to the book and how it changed each reader-turned-writer’s lives.

Rather than relating with a particular story or writer’s words, I found myself identifying small pieces from a handful of stories that I could relate to – not wanting to read past the romance of Italy like Victoria Russell, being given the book as a gift like Mallory Kotzman, not feeling adventurous “enough” like Laurna Stirkwerda… so many of the stories, so many of the anecdotes, so many of the revelations in this book I could completely and directly relate to.

And though while I found myself relating to each writer in a small way (and some not at all), I didn’t find my own story written in the pages, as I’m sure many of you didn’t as we are all on our own journey, whether or not Eat Pray Love made you do it or not.

For me, I wouldn’t say Eat Pray Love made me do anything, as I watched the film and subsequently watched the book much later than most, when I was already travelling quite frequently and had decided that life in other countries, cultures and among other people was the life for me (or at least, at the time and certainly over the past few year).

But I do know that Eat Pray Love gave me some sort of realization and perhaps even a resolution, though it wasn’t to venture off and travel the world, seeking love and answers to life’s bigger questions. Instead, reading Eat Pray Love amidst my travelling lifestyle, I found an answer I had been seeking for a while now: would there be an end to this desire to be restless?

For a long while I have wondered if the magic would rub off, if living out of a suitcase would lose its romanticism and if I would ever want to settle down to some extent, if any? Reading this book made me realise that there needn’t be an end to life as it were, but that there would be a new chapter. A new chapter that would still involve travelling frequently, but perhaps not needing to be away all of the time.

This year I’m trying to balance my lifestyle a little more, spending some time at home with those I love and still at least half of my time on the road (I just love exploring too much to stop any time soon!) But EPL did make me realise that my restlessness would (or perhaps more accurately could) end if and when I wanted it to. Thus I’m looking forward to a little more responsibility this year by balancing life, work, and travel all at once.

Questions for Discussion

  1. What story from the book did you relate to most and why? If you didn’t relate to a story from this book, did you relate better to the original book?
  2. Do you believe travel is what changed Liz Gilbert’s life or the act of freeing herself from commitments she wasn’t totally committed to?
  3. What did the original book, Eat Pray Love, make YOU do? I’d love to see you share your story!


Much love & hope to see you all again next month for the WOW Book Club July selection! xo

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    July 16, 2016 at 6:25 pm

    I found Eat Pray Love to be such an inspiring read, and thought often of Liz and her journey during my recent European holiday (especially as I ate copious amounts of Italian gelato!). This trip marked my first solo journey abroad and the experience was totally, deliciously freeing. The normalcy of home truly felt worlds away and for the first time in my life, there was no one to depend on but myself – and I loved it. Some difficult times in my life over the last few years had made me lose a bit of confidence in myself, but after forging my own path, testing the limits of my comfort zone, and spending time being a fully uninhibited version of myself, I feel that I have reemerged a more grounded, self-assured, and capable being. And I, in part, owe that to Liz Gilbert. I look forward to picking up this read soon and continuing the magic!

    Nikki Vargas
    July 6, 2016 at 9:14 am

    Great book!

    I think that it wasn’t travel so much as it was freeing herself from commitments that ultimately inspired Liz Gilbert to change her life radically. Up to that point, she lived her life largely by expectations set by society to be a good daughter, girlfriend, wife and then mother; so when she gave that all up to ask herself “what do I want?” that was a radical notion that inspired so many people–myself included!

    When I first read Eat Pray Love, I was interning in NYC (where I live now) and was sitting on the steps of the Columbia University campus, eating ice cream. I would take myself on “dates” to read Eat Pray Love on these university steps and lose myself in stories of Liz and her travels. I was newly single, alone in NYC and a semester away from finishing college at the time; Eat Pray Love was a wonderful, life changing read because it let me know that it’s OKAY to diverge from the path everyone else is on, that it’s OKAY to not want kids or even want to get married just yet. It’s a new age for women and Liz Gilbert’s story is inspiring, unnerving and exciting because it shines a light on that!



    Miranda Risser
    July 6, 2016 at 3:58 am

    Wow this sounds like an amazing read! I’ll have to pick it up on my next trip to Barnes & Noble. I was inspired by Eat Pray Love to study abroad in Florence for a semester to overcome a bout of depression. I spent four months running around Europe with my sorority sisters, eating more gelato than I ever dreamed possible, and neglecting my studies a tad :). I even met my boyfriend there who was studying there from my home university as well! I would say that my growth stemmed 40% from travel and 60% from allowing myself to let go and be free and uninhibited for the time being. I would imagine Gilbert might agree with me.

    the adventurer
    July 6, 2016 at 3:48 am

    I added this book to my list and am half way done reading it. I began reading it during my European adventure this summer and each story has been inspiring. I hope to finish it soon =o) Thanks for recommending it!

    July 4, 2016 at 9:20 pm

    I loved this book! Eat Pray Love changed my life. I had a crying on the bathroom floor moment. Next day saw this book in a store, took it home and devoured it. Day after I finished I had the opportunity to go to Cambodia come to me. I took it, met a wonderful new friend in a hostel. Cut to 4 years later I ended up moving to the UK and have had a lot of travel and journies in between. All because of Eat Pray Love 🙂

    What is July’s book, Brooke?

    • Brooke Saward
      July 5, 2016 at 8:46 am

      currently selecting – will post ASAP 🙂 xx

    Jill @ RunEatSnap
    July 2, 2016 at 6:09 am

    I loved this book – thank you so much for bringing it into my life! I also love personal stories of people who realized their passions, pursued their dreams, or otherwise went against the status quo and found their own happiness even if people said they were crazy or it could never work. I loved EPL. I own the movie and watch it often but it’s been a long time now since I read the book so I think it’s time to re-read. I think the life changing part of EPL was Liz going with her heart and her gut even when a lot of people thought she was crazy or it wasn’t the right thing to do. That takes a lot of courage and something I think a lot of people are unable to do. I just got back from 3 weeks in Europe and I loved being with family, traveling and exploring amazing places, and just felt so much more alive than I do in my regular every day life. I would love to find a way to make more travel possible in my life.

    • Brooke Saward
      July 3, 2016 at 6:33 am

      Hi Jill,

      So glad you enjoyed the book as much as I did – its one of those ones you recommend to all your girlfriends and keep around for a rainy day when you or someone you know needs a pick-me-up! You’re so right that travel makes you feel more alive than every day life – but the beauty of it is that it is always there, and you can always build toward + look forward to trips (which in my opinion is half the excitement – planning a trip!) xxx

    July 1, 2016 at 9:57 pm

    Awesome post

    July 1, 2016 at 8:17 pm

    This book has been on my reading list for months, I can’t wait to finally start reading it! 🙂

    • Brooke Saward
      July 3, 2016 at 6:33 am

      Hi Matea,

      You will LOVE it! I devoured it in one plane sitting – really great read 🙂

    July 1, 2016 at 2:48 am

    Hahaha! I’m floored by this fan fiction book. I’m also late to the Eat Pray Love party – I read it after finishing Elizabeth Gilbert’s new book, Big Magic, which I absolutely loved, and actually reviewed on my blog:

    June 30, 2016 at 11:04 pm

    Hi, I have just recently watched the movie, and am still drawn to reading the original book in the nearest future). I am amazed though how many similar stories emerge into public. Not necessarily people were inspired by the book itself but the fact that they found the courage to break away from misery (whatever the trigger), that’s what’s fascinating to me…
    Thank you for your blog, I can’t wait to dig into reading it 🙂

    • Brooke Saward
      July 3, 2016 at 6:35 am

      Hi Jessica,

      Its amazing how many people have come forward to share their stories – just shows how much courage this book has given people to change their lives and most importantly be proud of it! xx

    kate wilson
    June 30, 2016 at 10:18 pm

    I so desperately want to read this!

    Beth Apps
    June 30, 2016 at 8:53 pm

    Oh how exciting I didn’t know she’d bought out another book and I absolutely adored eat pray love so I may have to go and delve into this, I love reading other’s stories and seeing if I can relate or if they shed some sort of light. Since reading the book many years ago it has always given me a lust to travel, experience new cultures and see the world and although I have done it in small steps I will get through my list. The book really made me think how important it is to travel

    • Brooke Saward
      July 3, 2016 at 6:37 am

      Hey Beth,

      Its a great read! One of those books you devour in a one-hour sitting – I hope you get the chance to read it! xx

    Marta Sierra (MartaMademoiselle)
    June 30, 2016 at 8:22 pm

    Would love to read this book! Sounds really interesting


    June 30, 2016 at 6:50 pm

    This is one of my favourite books. I really enjoyed reading this and to be honest it just encouraged me to explore and made me stop panicking so much about getting older because the truth is you never know what’s around the corner and you never know when things are going to start looking up again. What really struck me was towards the start of the book where she said she cried helplessly on the bathroom floor and felt so alone. No one deserves to feel like that so I do my best to never feel like that again. Fantastic read, I have reread this book twice now I love it so much, it just reminds me of the direction I am going. Keep moving forward. Xx

    • Brooke Saward
      July 3, 2016 at 6:40 am

      Hi Kiran,

      Totally agree. The honesty of the book is what makes it all so real and hit close to home – we all realise that we deserve 100% happiness and anyone or anything in our lives not providing that should be set aside! Really glad you enjoyed the read xx

    June 30, 2016 at 6:28 pm

    I was also rather late to the Eat Pray Love party — I read it a few months ago and kind of fell in love with it. Even though it was rather slow at times, it made me feel all the warm fuzzies and gave me that travel boost I needed. (I have anxiety and therefore can’t quench my wanderlust on my own.)

    • Brooke Saward
      July 3, 2016 at 6:44 am

      Hey Inge,

      Thanks for your comment!
      Thats what I love about the travel community – you almost feel like you can go somewhere through someone else’s travels, videos or photos and see the world for yourself! I really love that you can still get a sense of wander from others’ travels… so inspiring.
      Lots o’ love! xx