Monday, December 19, 2016

Two Surprises


I was one of a handful of reading women who didn't adore Gilbert's mega-bestseller memoir Eat, Pray, Love, being a little annoyed with the premise that the answer to a failed marriage was travel -- nice, if you have the time and money but . . .

So I didn't leap on The Signature of All Things which has been around for some three years, till a friend brought it to me to speed my convalescence. 

And I had to revise my opinion of Gilbert -- I loved this densely layered novel. I loved the compelling story, the lush language, the idiosyncratic characters, the beautifully rendered settings -- all of it. 


Barbara Kingsolver's review HERE is excellent.


Another book from the same friend was Ruth Reichl's Delicious!  I've loved Reichl's books about food and was fully prepared to love this, her first novel. It was readable and fun in a predictable sort of way -- awkward girl comes to New York and, after a makeover finds love, along with her inner cook. 

It was a pleasant bit of fluff but a bit more like chick lit than I normally read. There is, however, a recipe for what sounds like a terrific gingerbread cake. 

Here's a review HERE that is harsher than I would have been but that, nonetheless, seems accurate to me.



9 comments:

Frances said...

I've never read any of Gilbert's books or seen That Movie. Maybe some day.

I had the opportunity to meet RR when she she did a book event at the shop back in my management days. She was quite entertaining in person and wrote many entertaining NY Times articles. I have a copy of one of her earlier books, but have never read it, just thumbed through it.

xo

jennyfreckles said...

Both new to me but worthy of a read, I think. I have a little more time to indulge, these days!

Barbara Rogers said...

I tried watching the EPL movie, and couldn't make it through to the end. Glad to know Gilbert's got another one, which I'll try soon. I'm reading some old favorites, like "The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society" which is delightful as an audio with 4 great readers giving the beautiful literary style of letter writing. I've also read the paper version, and would take the audio over it any day.

Thérèse said...

I did not like this first book either by E. Gilbert: too easy for me the idea of escaping, leaving everything behind and starting making a new life... but well luckily we are not all made of the same "stuff."
Thanks for the reviews.

Gayle Pearson said...

I read Signature and loved it! Lush is the perfect word.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

I haven't read either of Gilbert's books you mentioned, but you've piqued my curiosity to read the novel.

katy gilmore said...

I love Gilbert as you probably know. I've heard that complaint before about time and money, but what gets left out is that Gilbert got an advance to travel on because she was already an established author with a track record of interest. I love her enthusiasm and sense of humor. And Signature such an accomplishment. So much fun. I thought her book about marriage wise - she's a researcher after your own heart Vicki. And her book on creativity says it all. Aah books. Their pleasures will remain! Xo

Darla said...

I agree -- Signature of All Things was marvelous! I was left wondering, however, about her love interest's backstory -- would adore an entire book about him. I was disappointed at first with EPL because of all the hype about it before I read it, but then that often happens if I wait too long and then become influenced by other people's idol-worshipping - which leads to letdown when I do read the book like with EPL. But I read it later a second time and enjoyed it much more. And thoroughly enjoyed her Big Magic because I need the inspiration. ;)

Vicki Lane said...

I can see I ought to give EPL another chance -- as well as Gilbert's other books . . .