By Jessica Shaw
February 22, 2006 at 12:00 PM EST
Francois Duhamel

Eat, Pray, Love (Book - Elizabeth Gilbert)

A

Tortured by the ”giant trash compactor of nonstop anxiety” that had become her life, journalist Elizabeth Gilbert embarks on a yearlong quest for happiness — and manages to find romance and some killer pasta along the way. Eat, Pray, Love, an insightful, funny account of her travels reads like a mix of Susan Orlean and Frances Mayes. Whether filling in as a one-woman welcoming committee at an ashram in India, inhaling perfect gelato in Rome, or passing time over coffee with a medicine man in Bali, Gilbert becomes, as her guru advises her, ”the scientist of [her] own inner experience.” Despite a few cringe-worthy turns (”Why have I been chasing happiness my whole life when bliss was here the entire time?”), Gilbert’s journey is well worth taking. A

Eat, Pray, Love (Book - Elizabeth Gilbert)

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