Committed by Elizabeth Gilbert, with Giveaway

by 5 Minutes for Books

I recently watched the movie adaptation of the mega-bestselling Eat Pray Love book by Elizabeth Gilbert which I had read and loved years ago. Click through the link to my review and comparison of the book and the movie at 5 Minutes for Books.

In February of last year, I reviewed another of her books — sort of part two of the story: Committed: A Love Story (interestingly enough the subtitle of the hardcover book is not “A Love Story,” but “A Skeptic comes to Terms with Marriage,” both of which fit in different ways).

In the book, Gilbert herself addresses the problem of publishing a follow-up to the kind of book that Eat, Pray, Love turned out to be. Whereas that book was a book of self-discovery, Committed is more of a nonfiction research/memoir cross.

I like these types of “project memoirs” as I call them, in which the author takes the approach that a journalist would — examining his or her own life and supplementing it with intensive research on the subject. Yes Gilbert shares her personal experiences, but mostly explains or reacts to other studies she’s read on marriage — and divorce — or laws, or social commentary on the institution.

Ultimately, she’s not trying to change the world (well, she might be trying to sway thoughts and laws about marriage and what it does to women) — she’s telling her story. She’s telling why she chose love, and why she had chosen to be unmarried and child-free before being forced to take another look at marriage.

If you are looking for information on the institution of marriage — particularly if you feel disenfranchised from it either by divorce, or singleness (by choice or circumstance), or exclusion (by the legal definition of marriage), then I can highly recommend this book to you. As she says in the hardcover’s subtitle “A Skeptic Makes Peace with Marriage,” she is in fact looking at the institution of marriage from the viewpoint of one who does not believe that marriage has been a good thing — for her personally and also more broadly for women in general.

But for me, a happy-to-be-married woman who is (fairly) socially conservative, it is more of a flatline. I am glad I read it, because I do like Gilbert’s style and matter-of-fact way of looking at life, but I don’t need to read it again, and I’m not sure that it will stick with me as other memoirs, including Eat Pray Love, have.

We have a copy of Committed: A Love Story to give to one of you (U.S. addresses only). Please leave a comment if you’re interested. We’ll announce the winner on February 28 here in our weekly book column.

Jennifer Donovan would love to be able to travel as widely as Elizabeth Gilbert has. She blogs at Snapshot, where she shares about some of the trips she’s been able to take as well as the ups and downs of her marriage (but not quite as candidly as the memoirist does).

Email Author    |    Website About 5 Minutes for Books

5 Minutes for Books is the 5 Minutes for Mom sister site devoted to reviewing books for adults -- fiction, memoir, and nonfiction -- and kids of all ages. Managed by Jennifer Donovan, other contributors are Dawn, Lauren, Nancy, and Elizabeth. Follow us @5M4B on twitter and subscribe to our feed or like us on Facebook so you don't miss a thing!

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{ 42 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Stacie February 14, 2011 at 12:23 am

I’m always up for a new book.


2 Jennifer H. February 14, 2011 at 1:18 am

Looks like a good read!


3 Susan February 14, 2011 at 2:40 am

I read Eat, Pray, Love, and loved it! I really want to read Committed. Elizabeth Gilbert is a gifted writer.

susanbillietaylor [at] gmail [dot] com


4 Sandra K321 February 14, 2011 at 8:57 am

I would love to read the continuation of the original story.


5 Jen February 14, 2011 at 9:01 am

This book look awesome. Great giveaway on Valentines!


6 Jen E February 14, 2011 at 9:20 am

I adored Eat, Pray, Love and have been wanting to read this follow up, I’d love to win it!


7 Kate {The Parchment Girl} February 14, 2011 at 12:32 pm

I read Eat, Pray, Love and would be very interested in reading Committed as well. Thanks for the giveaway!


8 Sarah - PS Mom Reviews February 14, 2011 at 1:22 pm

This looks like another great book.


9 riTa February 14, 2011 at 1:24 pm

Love story that is memoirish sounds like a winner to me!


10 Karen J Massey February 14, 2011 at 3:08 pm

Sounds llke an interesting read.


11 Kim February 14, 2011 at 3:12 pm

love to win!


12 Jennifer Orozco February 14, 2011 at 3:27 pm

Would love this book…


13 Shantel Cannon February 14, 2011 at 3:44 pm

I loved eat ,pray, love it really helped me get through my divorce and bring new meaning. I have found LOVE again and I would enjoy reading this and seeing her prespective! Thanks for the chance! :)


14 annaliza February 14, 2011 at 3:51 pm

sounds like a sweet book. thanks for the opportunity.


15 Amy February 14, 2011 at 4:04 pm

Looks and sounds like a wonderful read! Thank you for the opportunity! :)


16 Anita Yancey February 14, 2011 at 4:10 pm

The book sounds wonderful. Please enter me. Thanks!


17 Leanne M February 14, 2011 at 4:51 pm

I would love to read another Elizabeth Gilbert book.


18 Maureen February 14, 2011 at 6:25 pm

Would love to win this! Thanks, Maureen (jnomaxx at hotmail dot com)


19 Kim February 14, 2011 at 7:05 pm

looks like an interesting read–thanks for the chance to win!


20 Linda Kish February 14, 2011 at 7:26 pm

I would love to read this book.

lkish77123 at gmail dot com


21 nan February 14, 2011 at 8:36 pm

sounds like a great book
nannypanpan at


22 edj February 15, 2011 at 1:28 am

well I never read Eat Pray Love and I am committed to my marriage and feel it’s been good for both of us. but I’m curious, and an omnivorous reader, so I’d like to read this one!


23 Some Lucky Dog February 15, 2011 at 4:10 am

I loved this first book and would love to read this one!
someluckydog at gmail dot com


24 Susan Heim February 15, 2011 at 8:30 am

I heard this wasn’t as good as “Eat Pray Love,” which I really enjoyed, but I’d like to read it anyway. The author is a very good writer.


25 Beth C February 15, 2011 at 12:36 pm

I’d love to read this. Thanks for the chance.


26 katklaw777 February 15, 2011 at 6:48 pm

Looks interesting…thanks for the giveaway.


27 Tia February 15, 2011 at 9:13 pm

I am always up for a good book!


28 John D. February 16, 2011 at 12:01 am

I am very interested in this book.


29 Natalia February 16, 2011 at 12:02 am

Please enter me.


30 brandy February 16, 2011 at 10:59 am

I would love to win this book!


31 Grace February 16, 2011 at 11:25 am

Please enter me.


32 Martha February 16, 2011 at 12:20 pm

Would love to read this book! :D


33 Fabs February 16, 2011 at 1:29 pm

I’d love a new book to read!


34 tabitha February 16, 2011 at 11:18 pm

please enter me:)


35 Jen Tawse February 20, 2011 at 8:35 am

I have read Ms. Gilbert’s fiction and it is wonderful plus the famous book, Eat, Pray, Love and now I am not sure if her next book,Committed, is for me but I am curious.


36 Ladytink_534 February 22, 2011 at 12:45 am

I remember reading Eat, Pray, Love shortly after it was first released and loving it. I would love to be entered for the sequel!


37 Colleen Turner February 23, 2011 at 3:10 pm

I have heard such great things about this book! Cannot wait to read it :)


38 Lanna Gayle Buchanan February 24, 2011 at 11:28 am

I love to travel, and although I’m thankful for the few places I’ve been,
I’ am looking forward to traveling when I’ve met some family
needs I’m, now, responsible for. I use books to fulfill that need for now.
I really enjoyed Eat Pray Love for that reason, and I’d love to read her
follow-up memoir.


39 melissa February 25, 2011 at 12:00 am

i would love to read this! thanks for another great giveaway


40 Danielle K February 26, 2011 at 4:44 pm

Loved Eat, Pray, Love & would love to win this!

danielleaknapp at gmail dot com


41 Cindi February 27, 2011 at 1:19 am

My friends and I are fans of “Eat, Pray, Love!”
This would be fabulous to read and pass on to
my friends…
Much thanks to you!


42 jamie February 28, 2011 at 9:41 am

This looks like a good read!


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