Book Reviews: Untamed, The Jetsetters & The Scent Keeper

Untamed by Glennon Doyle

untamed

Goodreads blurb: In her most revealing and powerful book yet, the beloved activist, speaker, and author of the bestselling sensations Love Warrior and Carry On, Warrior explores the joy and peace we discover when we stop striving to meet the expectations of the world, and start trusting the voice deep within us. “Untamed will liberate women—emotionally, spiritually, and physically. I believe Glennon was born to write this book, just this way, at just this moment in history. It is phenomenal.”—Elizabeth Gilbert, New York Times bestselling author of City of Girls and Eat Pray Love

This is how you find yourself.

There is a voice of longing inside every woman. We strive so mightily to be good: good mothers, daughters, partners, employees, citizens, and friends. We believe all this striving will make us feel alive. Instead, it leaves us feeling weary, stuck, overwhelmed, and underwhelmed. We look at our lives, relationships, and world, and wonder: Wasn’t it all supposed to be more beautiful than this? We quickly silence that question, telling ourselves to be grateful. We hide our simmering discontent—even from ourselves. Until we reach our boiling point. Four years ago, Glennon Doyle—bestselling Oprah-endorsed author, renowned activist and humanitarian, wife and mother of three—was speaking at a conference when a woman entered the room. Glennon looked at her and fell instantly in love. Three words flooded her mind: There She Is. At first, Glennon assumed these words came to her from on high. Soon she realized that they came to her from within. Glennon was finally hearing her own voice—the voice that had been silenced by decades of cultural conditioning, numbing addictions, and institutional allegiances. This was the voice of the girl Glennon had been before the world told her who to be. She vowed to never again abandon herself. She decided to build a life of her own—one based on her individual desire, intuition, and imagination. She would reclaim her true, untamed self. Soulful and uproarious, forceful and tender, Untamed is both a memoir and a galvanizing wake-up call. It offers a piercing, electrifying examination of the restrictive expectations women are issued from birth; shows how hustling to meet those expectations leaves women feeling dissatisfied and lost; and reveals that when we quit abandoning ourselves and instead abandon the world’s expectations of us, we become women who can finally look at ourselves and recognize: There She Is. Untamed shows us how to be brave. As Glennon insists: The braver we are, the luckier we get.

My take: 5 out of 5. I absolutely loved this book. If you are a woman, rush to read it. If you are a man, maybe you should too, a lot can be learned!  Such an inspirational, eye opening read, but also a lot of truths of our society and lies we tell ourselves being called out for what they are in Glennon no nonsense approach. Fabulous! You might not agree with everything she said (Even though i fully did) but I doubt that in reading her words your core will not be shifted even a little bit. Her view on the conditioning we have as women in this society is amazing. The cheetah analogy? i was floored let’s all be goddam cheetahs. I bought the audiobook and it was wonderful as it is narrated by Glennon and you can hear her excitement oozing out of the page. It’s like you are having a one on one conversation with her.  There are so many amazing insights, and beautiful quotes that i  had to highlight some of my favorites below! . If you loved this book as much as i did let me know!

  • Now i think that maybe control is not love. i think control might be the opposite of love, because control leaves no room for trust and maybe love without trust is not love at all. Wow… this realization from a mothers love is just so applicable in all relationships, such a simple yet strong realization
  • Judgement is just another cage we live in so we don’t have to feel, know, and imagine. Judgment is self-abandonment.
  • when a woman finally learns that pleasing the world is impossible, she becomes free to learn how to love herself.
  • “ will not stay, not ever again, in a room or conversation or relationship or institution that requires me to abandon myself.
  • Brave does not mean feeling afraid and doing it anyway. Brave means living from the inside out. Brave means, in every uncertain moment, turning inward, feeling for the Knowing, and speaking it out loud.
  • First the pain, then the waiting, then the rising. All of our suffering comes when we try to get to our resurrection without allowing ourselves to be crucified first.
  • What we need right now is more women who have detoxed themselves so completely from the world’s expectations that they are full of nothing but themselves. What we need are women who are full of themselves.
  • Every time you pretend to be less than you are, you steal permission from other women to exist fully. Don’t mistake modesty for humility. Modesty is a giggly lie. An act. A mask. A fake game. We have no time for it
  • To me, faith is not a public allegiance to a set of outer beliefs, but a private surrender to the inner Knowing.
  • We all believe our religious beliefs were written on our hearts and in the stars. We never stop to consider that most of the memos we live by were actually written by highly motivated men
  • What if parenting became less about telling our children who they should be and more about asking them again and again forever who they already are? 
  • I love myself now. Self-love means that I have a relationship with myself built on trust and loyalty…I’ll disappoint everyone else before I’ll disappoint myself. I’ll forsake all others before I’ll forsake myself. Me and myself: We are till death do us part.
  • Privilege is being born on third base. Ignorant privilege is thinking you’re there because you hit a triple. Malicious privilege is complaining that those starving outside the ballpark aren’t waiting patiently enough. 

The Jetsettersby  Amanda Eyre Ward

the jetsetters

Goodreads blurb: When seventy-year-old Charlotte Perkins submits a sexy essay to the “Become a Jetsetter” contest, she dreams of reuniting her estranged children: Lee, an almost-famous actress; Cord, a handsome Manhattan venture capitalist who can’t seem to find a bride; and Regan, a harried mother who took it all wrong when Charlotte bought her a Weight Watchers gift certificate for her birthday. Charlotte yearns for the years when her children were young and she was a single mother who meant everything to them. When she wins the cruise, the family packs all their baggage—literal and figurative—and spends ten days traveling from sun-drenched Athens through glorious Rome to tapas-laden Barcelona on an over-the-top cruise ship, the Splendido Marveloso. As lovers new and old join the adventure, long-buried secrets are revealed, and the Perkins family is forced to confront the defining choices in their lives. Can four lost adults find the peace they’ve been seeking by reconciling their childhood aches and coming back to each other? In the vein of The Nest and The Vacationers, Ward has created a delicious and intelligent novel about the courage it takes to reveal our true selves, the pleasures and perils of family, and how we navigate the seas of adulthood to cruise—we can only hope—toward joy.

My take: 2 out of 5 . I love me a chick lit book, and I have a a really low bar for book entertainment. However I really disliked a lot about this book. WE chose it as our book club selection, and no one in our book club liked it. What was wrong? a lot of things. This book takes itself too seriously , so you couldn’t discard it as a light fun book. So given that, the bar is set high and I don’t think it clears it. The characters were not fully developed. They were unrelateable caricatures and really their motivations were not justified or relatable at all. The ending was inconclusive and not fulfilling. Its like the story crashed and they left us there. Like watching a series finale, getting the cliffhanger and none of the resolution. Additionally the title could not be more misleading. This is as far away from being jetsetters as possible. Maybe that was the irony of the story. But it you want an escapism read, this isn’t it either. The descriptions of the places visited( Athens, Rome, malta, Florence) are terrible, and capture none of the charm of these places. So not even to travel in the page is this worth a read.

The Scent Keeper by Erica Bauermeister

scent keeper

Goodreads blurb:  Erica Bauermeister, the national bestselling author of The School of Essential Ingredients, presents a moving and evocative coming-of-age novel about childhood stories, families lost and found, and how a fragrance conjures memories capable of shaping the course of our lives.

Emmeline lives an enchanted childhood on a remote island with her father, who teaches her about the natural world through her senses. What he won’t explain are the mysterious scents stored in the drawers that line the walls of their cabin, or the origin of the machine that creates them. As Emmeline grows, however, so too does her curiosity, until one day the unforeseen happens, and Emmeline is vaulted out into the real world—a place of love, betrayal, ambition, and revenge. To understand her past, Emmeline must unlock the clues to her identity, a quest that challenges the limits of her heart and imagination. Lyrical and immersive, The Scent Keeper explores the provocative beauty of scent, the way it can reveal hidden truths, lead us to the person we seek, and even help us find our way back home.

My take:  3.5 out of 5. This books started a nit rough for me, but by the end I was very invested. It had an air of Where the Crawdad sings, and that is not a bad thing at all. Both women coming of age stories after being isolated for a period of time. The descriptions of smells in the book were beautiful, you kind of feel you were smelling it with them, quite a a feat. It wa sweet and interesting, however it did loose so many points in the ending though. I was so engrossed in it and then it was the epilogue, which did not satisfy me at all. A beautiful book, I just wish it was a bit longer!

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