"[Holly] explained that during the years between twenty-eight and thirty, the planet Saturn completes its cycle through your birth chart, which marks the end of youth and the start of adulthood. And it brings with it monumental endings and new beginnings." -pg. 16
The first thing that impressed me about this book initially was its sheer size. Topping out at over 500 pages, it was definitely far larger than the other travel memoirs I'd been reading. What drew me to the book was its essential plot: three friends (all poised to turn 28 in the coming year) living in NYC decide to drop it all--jobs, boyfriends, etc.--and embark on a year-long around the world (or RTW) adventure.
There's Jennifer, who's relationship with her long-time boyfriend is going nowhere slowly. There's Amanda, who finds out one day that she finds jury duty more enjoyable than her current job. And there's Holly, who's job isn't quite what she wanted, along with feeling the crowd of NYC and longing for some space.
And so it begins. The girls give up leases, give their two-weeks notice and put all of their worldly possessions in storage. They trade in their NYC apartments for suitcases and backpacks, and they're off!!!
Throughout their journey through four different continents and an army of cockroaches, each of them have to face why exactly they came on this journey, as well as what terrifies them. Along the way, they also gain a new perspective on the world around them.
My absolute favorite part of the book is the portion at the girls' school in Kenya. Signing up via Village Volunteers, the three girls end up at a girls' school. learning what life is like for girls and women on the other side of the globe (and they decide to do something about it!) By each using their own special talents, each of these three amazing women teach the girls about self-confidence and self-empowerment, as well as learning a few things about themselves.
Don't think this book is all about fun and games, though! There are plenty of journeys gone awry, lost baggage, persnickety customs officials, creepy cab drivers, and a few semi-stalkerish dudes that can't take a hint. There's also a few friendly disagreements. However, I admire these girls so much for how they handle these disagreements with maturity and grace. Traveling with others is not always easy (as I've learned myself!), but these three do it, respecting each other's differences and doing it all with humor, respect, and togetherness.
By the end of this book, I not only admired Jennifer, Amanda, and Holly, I wanted to be them! I realized you don't have to have your life figured out in your twenties--that is the time to explore and find that kick-ass woman deep inside you. Plus, I got some really great ideas for some upcoming travels (I really fell in love with Kenya because of this book, as well as Australia).
I truly felt like I had lost three best friends when I finished the book. Getting to know Jennifer, Amanda, and Holly was truly an honor and I hope they, The Lost Girls, know how much they've touched my life, I hope they do the same for you!
Thanks for reading! I hope you've enjoyed my book reviews! I will definitely add to the list when I finish more!
Up Next: It's my first Throwback Thursday!!! Featuring: Belfast, Northern Ireland
ETA: Thursday (of course!!!)