Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The Lost Girls by Jennifer Baggett, Holly C. Corbett and Amanda Pressner

From back of book:

three friends.  four continents.  one unconventional detour around the world.

With their thirtieth birthdays looming, Jen, Holly, and Amanda are feeling the pressure to hit certain milestones - score the big promotion, find a soul mate, have 2.2 kids.  Instead, they make a pact to quit their jobs, leave behind everything familiar, and embark on a yearlong round-the-world search for inspiration and direction.

Traveling 60,000 miles across four continents, Jen, Holly, and Amanda push themselves far outside their comfort zones to embrace every adventure.  Ultimately, theirs is a story of true friendship - a bond forged by sharing beds and backpacks, enduring exotic illnesses, trekking across the mountains, and standing by one another through heartaches, whirlwind romances, and everything in the world in between.

My thoughts:

This book is just what I needed to inspire me to make my 40 before 40 list ( a list of 40 things I want to do before I turn 40 ).  Its a book about friendship, travel, inspiration, and discovering who you are.

Three friends (Jennifer, Holly and Amanda) are on vacation in Brazil talking about all the dreaded work that they have to face once they return to NYC and they are most definitely not looking forward to any of it. Jokingly, they discuss what it would be like to take off for one whole year and just travel around the world. 
They would finally be able to really see the world and all it has to offer, whilst searching for the inspiration needed in helping them to decide what it is they truly want to be doing with their lives - such as, figuring out if they are on the right career path.  Plus, they would be able to achieve some of their dreams, like hiking the Inca Trail, volunteering in Kenya, training to become a yoga teacher and hanging out with the Maasai.  One whole year of travel could really change their lives.

Of course, talking about it is one thing.  Could these three successful and career-driven women really choose to give up their jobs and lives in NYC for one whole year?  Would they be willing to risk what they had worked so hard for in order to take time out for themselves?  Yes, they could and yes, they would. 

Not long after their vacation in Brazil, Jennifer, Amanda and Holly meet up to discuss turning their year long dream trip into a reality - ASAP!  Soon they are sketching out an itinerary of all the places they want to visit and how long they want to spend at each place, along with figuring out how much money it will take to make this trip come to fruition.  They also begin to realize just how much this trip will cost them with regards to their careers and personal relationships.  Filled with excitement and fear, they book their tickets and are soon packing their bags and headed to their first stop - Peru!

Talk about a fun, interesting and inspiring read.  Not only do we get to know Jennifer, Amanda and Holly as they take us along their year long journey, but we also get to learn about all of these new and exciting places they get to visit.  Its as if we are right alongside them on this journey of self-discovery - we get to hear about all the yucky roaches, their restroom rating system and the language barriers that cropped up from time to time.  We also get to read about their adventures as they trek through jungles, meditate at a yoga retreat, dance til dawn at nightclubs, and sleep on grungy beds in hostels.  From the people they meet to the way a sunset makes them feel, we begin to notice the changes slowly taking place within these women and the fact that they are starting to realize just how lucky they are in their lives already.  Of course, along the way there are arguments, hugs, lots of laughter and an overall appreciation for one another. 

A true testament to friendship, this book really does provide a genuine feel of what these three women mean to each other and what this year means to them; which makes me glad that they decided to chronicle their year of travel.  I found this book to be interesting, fun and inspirational.  Its made me take stock of what I have in my life and also what it is that I want to get out of life.  Of course, its made me want to travel, too. All in all, this is definitely a book I would recommend to anyone interested in reading about friendship, travel and self-discovery. 

Thanks to  TLC Book Tours for letting me be a part of this book's tour. 



Ti said...

I am always suspicious of books that center around female friendships, but this one sounds really good.

A 40 before 40 list? I didn't do that. I think I missed out on a list opportunity. So, tell us what's on your list so far.

Steph said...

I am so glad that you enjoyed this one! I just started it even though I generally don't read memoirs or anything like that but I love the premise here too much! The girls haven't even left Manhattan, that's how little I've read, but so far it's really good!

Sheila (Bookjourney) said...

Awesome review! I posted mine yesterday so had to pop over to see other thoughts on this one. I love your 40 before 40 list idea!

Nadia said...

Ti, I love female friendship-centric books and this one was no exception. It was just such a fun read and really made me step back and re-evaluate my own life. And the 40 before 40 list idea came from a friend of mine who posted hers on her blog and well, it just made me think about all of the things I want and I figured I should make a list and aim for accomplishing them before I turn 40. The list is still in progress, so I'll let you know what makes the cut later on.

Steph, I saw your blog on the tour list and was excited to see it on there. I can't wait to read what you think of this book. I really enjoyed reading about the places they visited, makes me wonder about how I go about choosing the places I visit - I tend to go for comfort.
Hope you like the book!

Sheila, I read your post and loved it! I love the way you highlight how these women had already achieved so much, so they weren't just layabouts deciding to travel around the world on a whim because they had nothing to do. No, they were women who were willing to sacrifice their careers and relationships and go a on journey that would help them discover who they really are. And, yeah, I figured 40 before 40 since I'm turning 33 this year and think that 7 years should be a enough time to work on that list.

Athira said...

I'm so glad you enjoyed this! I can't wait to start reading this one. I'd really love to go on lengthy trips like the authors.

Nadia said...

Aths, hope you like it, too! And me too! How fun would that be? To take a whole year and travel = bliss!!

Anonymous said...

I hope this book inspired you to make some big plans for your 40 by 40 list and to actually DO the things you plan to do ... that IS the hard part after all. :)

Thanks for being a part of the tour.

Nadia said...

heathertlc, it is the hardest part - actually doing the things on the list. But I'm aiming to do them and think that I really will be able to
cross them off my list.

Thanks for having me on the tour - loved it!

Dot said...

This sounds like a very inspirational read that will have me reaching for my suitcase! Great review!

Nadia said...

Dot, it was and it will! Thanks for checking out the post!!

Anonymous said...

I love/am obsessed with reads about girl travel-adventurers (because when I'm not blogging about books/have the time and money, I try my best to be one.)

This sounds reading list worthy, will give it a go!

Vintage Reading said...

Sounds like an inspiring read. I'm intrigued by a 40 before 40 list. I suppose I need to start drawing up a 50 before 50 list!

Traci said...

I just picked this up at the library. Can't wait to read it.

Bellezza said...

Sounds like a wonderful travel book, as well as on friendship. Love this kind! I'm also looking forward to your forty before forty list!!

Tamara said...

I love a travel story, and I love goal setting. I did a 40 before 40 list. I was so proud of myself when I turned 40! Sound like the sort of book to read on a wet and cold doona kind of day...

Booksnyc said...

Ok - I am off to make a 40 before 40 list - that is an Awesome idea and I suspect will make turning 40 much easier with some accomplishments in my pocket!

Andrea said...

I am still reading this, but you have just inspired me to write a 40 before 40 list!!! Thank you! I am loving the book, too. :)

Nadia said...

booksaremyboyfriends, hope you enjoy it!

VintageReading, yes! A 50 before 50 list is an excellent idea. I think I will do one for each decade I turn - will make those birthday interesting to see what all I've accomplished.

Traci, hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

Bellezza, thanks! I need to post it soon!

Tamara, how awesome! What was on your list, if you don't mind my asking? And you are right, its definitely a good book to read on a rainy day.

Booksync, yes, make a list! I think it will make turning 40 something to look forward to.

Andrea, yay! Such a fun idea, isn't it?

Wallace said...

I've been wondering about this book for while now, so glad to know you liked it! I will have to add it to my list!

Nadia said...

booksaremyboyfriend, its such a fun read - really makes you think about taking off a year to just travel and enjoy life.

Vintage Reading, I say go for it! A 50 before 50 list is such a great idea - why not have one at every decade :)

Traci, hope you enjoy it!

Bellezza, it was a good book about the values of friendship and I'm still adding things to my 40 before 40 list.

Tamara, that is ace! You must have felt great turning 40 and having crossed everything off that list - awesome!

Booksynyc, yes! Make a list - it is so much fun. Really gives you an idea about the things that you want to accomplish in life - like what you find value in (travel, love, adventure, etc.).

Andrea, glad you are enjoying the book! And, so glad you are writing your own list now :)

Wallace, its a fun read. Add it to your list!