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Inspiring Read by The Lost Girls: Three Friends, Four Continents, One Unconventional Detour Around the World

lost girls travel book review

I was a longtime reader of The Lost Girls blog before their 2010 book about the three best friends’ round-the-world adventure. If you make room for just one physical book in your backpack, this should be it, especially since it weighs in at over 500 pages.

But with three authors each telling their own take on the year of travels, the page count was bound to add up.

About the Lost Girls

lost girls book

It all starts with Jen, Holly and Amanda, three successful New Yorkers looking for something beyond their relationships, careers and apartments.

After a trip to Iguaçu Falls, the trio decides to take the leap, planning a trip through South America, Africa, Southeast Asia and Oceania.

The girls describe their title, which I think many of us could relate to:

Dubbing ourselves ‘The Lost Girls,’ a term describing both our uncertainty about the future and an emotional state we felt represented many in our generation, we committed to spending one year of our late twenties wandering the globe.

The Lost Girls Travel the World

The first stop on the trip was South America where the girls hike the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, mingle with locals in Lima and party all night in Rio de Janiero. One of the most interesting parts of the books for me was learning how three such different personalities view their travels.

And the reader sees that even the closest of friends don’t always get along.

After a brief trip back to New York, the girls headed to Africa, where they volunteered at a girls’ school and were involved in a Maasai tribe initiation ceremony.

In India, they stayed at an ashram before visiting the famous Taj Mahal. Following the Banana Pancake trail, the Lost Girls went through Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam and Bali.

On the final leg of the trip, they saw Australia and New Zealand in true backpacker style, via campervan, which had its own set of misadventures.

Some people referred to them as a younger Eat Pray Love, but I enjoyed this book even more than Elizabeth Gilbert’s. It wasn’t all about escaping a failed romance and running into another one or about a “happy ending.”

The girls each worked for their outcome, some going back to their relationships and jobs and others finding new ones. They didn’t complain about how hard they had it back in New York and even talked about all the people who said, “So why did you leave New York?”

They each did something that was outside of their comfort zone, whether that meant taking a spontaneous detour or staying in a destination far from Internet or phone access.

Every destination and person they met made me feel like a part of the journey. They each dealt with breakups, job losses and travel frustrations. But my favorite quote from the book was an explanation of a Buddhist metaphor:

“But the flower doesn’t open instantly; it has to go through the muck to get to the light. If I ran away from my own moments of darkness, would I never blossom into the person I was meant to be?”

It seems that the girls found what they were looking for because the book has been in talks for both a television series and a movie, in hopes of inspiring even more people to travel.

I highly recommend this book and can’t wait to see what’s next for the Lost Girls.

lost girls book

Written by Caroline

Caroline Eubanks is a native of Atlanta, Georgia, but has also called Charleston, South Carolina and Sydney, Australia home. After college graduation and a series of useless part-time jobs, she went to Australia for a working holiday. In that time, she worked as a bartender, bungee jumped, scuba dived, pet kangaroos, held koalas and drank hundreds of cups of tea. You can find Caroline at Caroline in the City.

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