Julia Roberts doesn’t write as well as one would hope- “The Signature of all Things” by Elizabeth Gilbert

April 30, 2015 at 10:33 pm 2 comments


This novel has been called an epic. A sweeping, glorious novel. I believe this translates into “this book is ridiculously long and we feel like we have to compliment Ms. Gilbert because she wrote ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ and Julia Roberts played her in the movie.”   Now I love myself some Julia Roberts but I have to say it, Ms. Gilbert should not be writing epic novels.

In the first 20 pages of this novel, we are introduced to Alma Whittaker as she comes into the world as a daughter to a wealthy botanist tycoon and a religiously stern Dutch woman.   Then we learn the terribly long story of Alma’s father and how he amassed his wealth.  But then back to Alma.  She is ugly, but smart. She is lonely, but has found an ability to enjoy herself alone in a broom closet (or something like that).  She, like her father, loves plants and you can learn all about it.  For pages. And then some more pages.  But then…nope wait, there are more pages.  Of course, the story is not that simple. There are loveless marriages and heartache but it just seems to lack any kind of warmth or connection to the reader, at least for me.  I plowed on because I felt like I kept glimpsing the possibility of something interesting happening. But alas, I was just foolishly hopeful.

I quit reading at the last 50 pages of the book -which I have never done in my life. But the storyline was at a place where I just finally admitted that I didn’t care how it would end.

The pretty, shiny cover (look at it, it is pretty) can’t help Ms. Gilbert here and “Eat, Pray, Love” can only take her so far.   Let’s hope that either her writing improves or she stops getting the acclaim that she really doesn’t deserve.  But for the record, I really do wish Julia Roberts would make more movies. Unless it is the movie version of this book.  Then I would just have to watch “Notting Hill”…again.




Entry filed under: April 2015 reads. Tags: , , , .

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2 Comments Add your own

  • Thank you for an honest review. I’m tired of the gushing reviews but then I didn’t get all the way through Eat, Pray, Love. As much as I love Julia Roberts, I walked out on the EPL movie about 2/3 through. I’ve never walked out on a Julia Roberts’ movie before.

    • 2. Emily C  |  May 3, 2015 at 3:35 pm

      I didn’t like it either. So I am right there with you😄


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There is some great literature out there, but there is a lot of bad literature as well. We shouldn't all have to read it. These are my recommendations and thoughts about the books I read.


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