Love With a Chance of Drowning

by Gigi Griffis

“In the context of my childhood home, I saw myself morphed into somebody new: an empowered woman who believed in herself. I was equipped with a powerful mantra that cracked open a world of possibilities: I can do anything. I’ve faced my fears. I’ve journeyed half the Pacific Ocean in a sailboat. I can service dinghy engines!”Love With a Chance of Drowning

Many of my favorite stories are true ones.

They’re about real people with real fears and failings, quirks and charms. People who choose to be vulnerable, to share themselves with their readers. People who choose to do something spectacular and different with their lives.

This is why I’ve read Eat Pray Love a dozen times. It’s why I share blog posts like this one. And it’s why Love With a Chance of Drowning is one of my new favorites.

It’s a book about a real person who takes a big chance, falls in love, and faces her fears. It’s about her hopes and her doubts. It’s about possibility…the possibility that we all could pull up our roots, face our fears, and have an extraordinary life.

Like Eat Pray Love, it’s not a memoir of place as much as a memoir of experience against a superb background of place, as Torre and her Argentinian lover pull up anchor and attempt to cross the Pacific Ocean in a sailboat.

Most of all, for me, it was a story of triumph, of self-discovery, and of strength. I particularly loved this quote from the end of the book:

“The young girl I used to be was shed among the trade winds and seawater, and I’ve returned home as a woman who, it seems, has lived an entire lifetime. I’m strong, self-assured, and deeply connected to the earth by feet that have widened into solid, grounded supports from years without shoes. Life now feels like a game without rules, one I can design to my liking within this enormous playground called earth. Nothing is unobtainable, and this knowledge brings a deep sense of contentment…” – Love With a Chance of Drowning

If you haven’t yet, you should buy it.

And I hope it inspires you as much as it did me.

What’s the best book you’ve read this year?

Finally, allow me to pause and thank Torre for sending me a free copy to read. As usual, all opinions are decidedly my own. I absolutely loved this book and plan on reading it again soon.

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Brianna Crowley July 8, 2013 - 9:20 am

I have an absolute aversion–as in, I cannot confidently say ever that something is “my favorite” or “the best” because I feel completely trapped by the limitations of that absolute…and, yes, I am quirky and weird sometimes. However, with that disclaimer in place, Life of Pi was one of the most haunting, beautifully-written, and thought-provoking books I have read this year. And as a fellow Eat, Pray, Love lover, I will have to put this book on my list as well :) Thanks for the post!

gigigriffis July 8, 2013 - 9:26 am

Oh, I LOVED Life of Pi. As you said, beautifully written and most definitely haunting.

lee July 8, 2013 - 10:21 am

this is interesting, I stopped reading all stories, topics and books on Going Solo once i decided to spend all my time blogging on being an Italian American traveler and blogging about doing this and going solo.
i found the stories of OTHER interesting successful travelers kept me from expanding my dream or list of things to accomplish. perhaps after reading these, I feel ‘oh, i can never accomplish anything so …..”
i will read all these stories when i am in Nepal teaching monks english or when i am driving on the left side of the road in Oz in the outback or living for a week in Kyoto as a Janpanese….. i have BIG goals but dont want to be inhibitted by others.

but it is GREAT that all this inspires others

gigigriffis July 8, 2013 - 1:58 pm

Oh, interesting! I’ve never heard anyone say that those kinds of stories discouraged them before.


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