Untamed. Finished 12-27-20, memoir, 5 stars, 352 pages, pub. 2020
There is a voice of longing inside each woman. We strive so mightily to be good: good partners, daughters, mothers, employees, and friends. We hope all this striving will make us feel alive. Instead, it leaves us feeling weary, stuck, overwhelmed, and underwhelmed. We look at our lives and wonder: Wasn’t it all supposed to be more beautiful than this? We quickly silence that question, telling ourselves to be grateful, hiding our discontent—even from ourselves.
For many years, Glennon Doyle denied her own discontent. Then, while speaking at a conference, she looked at a woman across the room 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. But she soon realized they had come to her from within. This was her own voice—the one she had buried beneath decades of numbing addictions, cultural conditioning, and institutional allegiances. This was the voice of the girl she had been before the world told her who to be. Glennon decided to quit abandoning herself and to instead abandon the world’s expectations of her. She quit being good so she could be free. She quit pleasing and started living.
I don’t know Glennon Doyle, or at least I didn’t until I spontaneously purchased this book the one time I’ve been inside a bookstore since Covid. I’m a sucker for a great cover and I love this one and I was also wanting to support the independent bookstore with as many purchases as possible. One can never have too many books, of course. I’m so glad that I picked this up to read a week or so ago because it was such a nice way to end my reading year.
Glennon talks about her past as a Christian writer and speaker, her marriage that fell apart after infidelity, the moment that she falls in love with Abby, and how she makes her life work for her three kids after the dust has settled. With these stories she mingles insights about parenthood, sexuality, being a Christian, feminism, medication, addiction, race, and finding your inner ‘Knowing’. Quite a few of the chapters really spoke to me and the way she told her and Abby’s story was so endearing.
I could/should take the time to write more about this book, because it is my favorite non-fiction this year, but I’m content just to let you know I loved it. I now follow Glennon on Facebook and she and Abby post videos sometimes that feel like a continuation of this book and a glimpse into their love story. Or you can pick it up just because you like the cover, like I did, and be happily surprised by the life truths found in it.
10 thoughts on “Untamed by Glennon Doyle”
I currently work in a bookstore, and this one is definitely getting a lot of play. I will have to put it on my TBP list.
I was pleasantly surprised. Some of the chapters hit hard, like the one on racism. There’s a lot to think about with this one.
Sounds like a great pick for a book club – begs for discussion, right?
SO much to discuss, whether you agree with the conclusions she reached or not )I often did).
I’m seeing this on a lot of blogs lately. I was going to skip it, thinking it was a Christian inspirational type memoir, but now I think I might give it a read. Thanks for the review!
It’s inspirational in all the right ways. She’s honest about her faith and how it’s changed and is still changing. Some of the things she said to her non-believer wife were so beautiful. But it is not a Christian book. It’s a pro-woman book.
I will definitely read it!
I’d heard of her first one Love, Warrior. And a couple of friends are gushing. I’ve been weary, though cuz it sounds like a sappy self-help book but everyone says it’s not that. I think I’ll break down soon and read it. Very happy you enjoyed it, though! It’s always great to find surprising reads that blow you away. Best feeling!
I don’t think I’d classify it as self help, although there are parts that feel a little like that. It’s more self-reflection at the hands of a gifted storyteller.