Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Book Review: Wanderlust by Elisabeth Eaves and a Giveaway

Pages:  256
Genre: Adult/Travel Memoir
Date Published: May 25, 2011
Obtained through TLC Book Tours
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Goodreads says, "Spanning 15 years of travel, beginning when she is a sophomore in college,Wanderlust documents Elisabeth Eaves’s insatiable hunger for the rush of the unfamiliar and the experience of encountering new people and cultures. Young and independent, she crisscrosses five continents and chases the exotic, both in culture and in romance. In the jungles of Papua New Guinea, she loses herself—literally—to an Australian tour guide; in Cairo, she reconnects with her high school sweetheart, only to discover the beginning of a pattern that will characterize her life over the long-term: while long-distance relationships work well for her, traditional relationships do not.  Wanderlust, however, is more than a chronological conquest of men and countries: at its core, it’s a journey of self-discovery. In the course of her travels, Eaves finds herself and the sense of home she’s been lacking since childhood—and she sheds light on a growing culture of young women who have the freedom and inclination to define their own, increasingly global, lifestyles, unfettered by traditional roles and conventions of past generations of women."

Elisabeth loves to travel and that's putting it mildly.  She's spent fifteen years traveling the world; in fact, she's traveled to five continents.  Many of those trips, she faced alone as a young women and she's always immersed herself in the culture of each new place she visited.  Travel is Elisabeth's everything as she is truly unconventional and challenges society's expectations of women.  She's not satisfied by the usual life and wants something more.  Wanderlust by Elisabeth Eaves is a travel memoir that every globe-trotter will love to be lost in.

Although I didn't always agree with Elisabeth's decisions, I understood her need for travel as I, too, love to travel.  I loved how Elisabeth really dived into the various cultures she visited and was always up for an adventure.  She's someone I would LOVE to be friends with.  I admired the fact that she's extremely independent, spontaenous, and a bit of a man-eater. She's like the Carrie Bradshaw of the travel world.  Ah, the stories we would share over cocktails! *sigh*   

Elisabeth used travel to avoid responsibility, to discover herself, to forget, to move on, as a companion, etc,  Travel was like oxygen to her. An obsession.  I found that aspect of Elisabeth to be fascinating.  She visited and lived in such incredible places, such as Papua New Guinea, Cairo, and Australia.  Her stories of her time spent exploring had me salivating to plan my next escape.  On the other hand, I had a weird longing for home and routine as I was reading her story. Travel can be overwhelming and I don't think I could handle as much as Elisabeth did.  For example, she makes a trip sailing in which she encounters a massive storm.  Her descriptions of this event had me gripping the book, sweating and picturing the worst storm ever.  That experience in itself would have caused me to throw in the towel, but Elisabeth is a strong person with an even stronger desire: wanderlust.

This memoir would truly be appreciated by feminists as Elisabeth paints a picture of an unconventional life....one that doesn't include homemade apple pies while made barefoot and pregnant.  I'd like to think that women today don't have to pick either life.  Why can't they have both?  I'm sure many people that will read this might say that Elisabeth missed out on marriage, 2.5 kids and a house in the suburbs, but how many people will ever get to experience what she lived through? The sights she witnessed? The adventures she experienced?  You don't need to convince me that travel is life-changing. Amen! I am a believer. 

So, if you can't get away this summer and you want a vacation for the mind, pick up a copy of Wanderlust by Elisabeth Eaves.  You can live vicariously through her adventures while never leaving the comfort of your backyard.  After all, don't you want to know where Elisabeth ends up?

Thanks to TLC Book Tours for including me in the blog tour and for offering one lucky reader a copy of Wanderlust. Please limit the entries to US/Canada only and the deadline is July 5th.  In order to officially enter, comment below leaving your email address along with the answer to this question:  If you could travel anywhere this summer, where would you go?


*Buy a copy of Wanderlust
*Learn more about the book tour
*Check out Elisabeth's blog

17 comments:

  1. I wish I could travel more! I guess I'll just have to live vicariously through books like this and keep on saving money so eventually I can get overseas:) Nice review Christina, I want to read this one just read about all the places she goes!

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  2. If I could travel anywhere I would go to Germany. I want to start my exploration there.

    (not an entry)

    Great review :)

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  3. I'm glad you enjoyed this one - it's certainly reminded me that it's been WAY TO LONG since I've gone on a travel adventure.

    Thanks for being a part of the tour.

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  4. Ooooh, I really like the sound of this! I would love to take off and travel round the world, but I'm more of a stay in expensive hotels kinda girl rather than a backbacking kinda girl, so my around the world trip would be hella expensive. lol!

    I'll add this to my wishlist though - great review! :)

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  5. "She sheds light on a growing culture of young women who have the freedom and inclination to define their own, increasingly global, lifestyles" -- Good quote. I agree that feminist values are changing the way that young women view their human potential. Traveling is a great way for a young woman to grow more confident and culturally aware.

    If I could go anywhere this summer, it would be an overland journey through Morocco, Western Sahara, Mauritania, Senegal, Mali to Timbuktu.

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  6. OMG this totes looks like my thang! I'm itching to travel and discover new places (China, Egypt, Norway, etc) and go back to places I've already been (Rome, London, Paris, Florence). I would looove to win this..as you know I'm a travelogue whore!

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  7. I'd love to go to Italy. I've always wanted to see Venice.

    Vivien
    deadtossedwaves at gmail dot com

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  8. I would love to go to India or Japan. The culture is so different form ours, it would be so interesting to see!

    Em
    you-know-i-dont-know@hotmail.com

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  9. I would go to Italy. I've always wanted to go there. Thanks for the giveaway!

    Margaret
    singitm@hotmail.com

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  10. This looks so interesting!! Thank you for the great review, I hadn't seen this one before.

    Hmmm, maybe NYC?? Thank you for the contest!!

    inthehammockblog at gmail dot com

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  11. Love the sound of this book! I would travel to Verona, Italy. Just studied Romeo and Juliet, and I loveeee the sound of it! Plus, really love Letters to Juliet :)

    Thanks for the amazing giveaway!

    Rabiah
    iliveforreading[at]hotmail[dot]com

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  12. Thanks for the giveaway. I'd love to go to Norway.
    mtakala1 AT yahoo DOT com

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  13. If I could travel anywhere, I would want to explore England and see all of the backdrops of my favorite novels!(:

    Brittany
    b.dillard2012@gmail.com

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  14. I'd go to the Olympic Mountains in Washington. I miss it out there!

    nfmgirl AT gmail DOT com

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  15. If I could travel anywhere this summer, I would like to go China.

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

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  16. I'd love to go visit my sis in Wisconsin and get away from the heat here in Florida!

    meredithfl at gmail dot com

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  17. bookgirl89@aol.com

    If I could travel anywhere this summer, I'd go to Edinburgh, to be there for the arts and theatre festivals, explore the castles, roam the streets.

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I really appreciate your comments. Thank you!

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