COMMITTED On Oprah Tomorrow

Elizabeth Gilbert became a household name largely because Oprah fell in love with Eat, Pray Love. Tomorrow, she appears on Oprah’s Marriage Around the World show, to talk about the sequel, Committed.

This time around, the book has been covered nearly everywhere, including the cover of the NYT Book Review this week:

NYT BR — Curtis Sittenfeld, who knows a thing or two about sudden success after her novel American Wife took off last year, like most of the book’s reviewers, is sympathetic to the fact  that Eat, Pray, Love is a tough act to follow, a problem Gilbert herself addresses in the  preface, saying that, after the previous book’s success, she feared she’d ever “write unself-consciously again.”

Sittenfeld sounds regretful when she says Gilbert hasn’t managed to pull it off; “the book is rather chatty and personal to be so heavy on research, but it’s rather researched to be so chatty and personal. Gilbert is equally likely to quote Plato or her friend Ann…”

Washington Post — Carolyn See is much more forgiving, “It’s a charming narrative that ends, Shakespearean-fashion, with a happy-hearted wedding. What’s not to like?”

Time —  compares Committed to another sequel to a popular memoir, Julie Powell’s Cleaving, the followup to Julie & Julia, making this vivid comparison: Cleaving is a “ghastly work of revelation without enough self-reflection,” but it’s “a much livelier book than Committed, in the way that your narcissistic pal is more riveting than your earnest, loyal girlfriend.”

Entertainment Weekly — “The deeper that Gilbert agonizes about marriage — the more she luxuriates in her dithering on What It Is All About — the more Committed loses its brightness, sharpness, and sense of welcome.” Rating: C

New Yorker — typical of many New Yorker reviews, this one uses the book as a pretext for  an exploration of the book’s subject, without actually reviewing the book, like an intelligent and fascinating Cliff’s Notes.

For links to dozens of other reviews, check the Bookmarks site.

Most of the reviews refer to the movie of Eat, Pray, Love, starring Julia Roberts, which is scheduled to debut August 13. No trailer yet, but the first photos have just begun appearing:


Comments are closed.