Book review: Tales of a Female Nomad

I’m sensing a theme in my recent reading. I recently read Eat, Pray, Love, about a woman who leaves her life behind for a year to travel and find herself. Loved the book. And now, I just finished reading Tales of a Female Nomad by Rita Golden Gelman.

I think if I had read this one before Eat, Pray, Love, I would have enjoyed it more. It was a good book, a great summer read, but it didn’t grab me like the other one did.

In Tales, the author’s marriage falls apart, and in trying to make sense of it all, begins to travel the world. A little bit at first, then a bit more, then finally, as her way of life. She eventually becomes a nomad; no permanent address, owns very little, works enough (she’s a childrens’ book author) to allow herself this way of life.

It lost me by going on and on…and then, suddenly ending. There seemed to be no focus to the book; it was just an ongoing tale of “I went here and this happened, then I went here, and then I lived in Bali for 8 years…”

Again, as I said, I enjoyed the book and would recommend to others. But Eat, Pray, Love really spoke to me. Maybe it’s a generational difference. In EPL, the author was closer to my age (mid-thirties) when she did her traveling; in Tales, the author has adult children. Perhaps it’s a decade thing. EPL is a recent book (2007); Tales was written in 2001 after 15 years of traveling.

But, above all, I’m starting to wonder if I should be worried that my recent reading centers around the theme of “divorce your husband and travel the world.”

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