If you find yourself bound to the not so great indoors this winter, incapacitated by a dreadful case of cabin fever, look no further!  Here is a list of must-reads to get you through the season!  So, curl up with a cup o’ joe or a glass of your favorite vino and enjoy these travel-oriented titles that are sure to satisfy your wanderlust and soothe your hermitic woes.

 

1. Eat, Pray, Love — Elizabeth Gilbert  (2007)

If you’ve not read the New York Times bestselling memoir, you have probably heard of—if not seen—the blockbuster Julia Roberts film by the same name.  But regardless of your familiarity with the work that inspired generations of women—and men—alike to abandon it all in pursuit of self-discovery, you are certainly in for a mouthwatering travel treat when you crack the spine of Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat, Pray, Love.

Synopsis:

Confronted by an immanent despair unlike anything she’s ever experienced, well-known journalist and short story writer Elizabeth Gilbert (32) makes the decision to end her ill-fated marriage.  However, not too long after abandoning married life, she quickly becomes entranced by a newfound love affair with a younger man.  But despite her fervent belief that her life has been changed for the better, she soon realizes that her new beau is incapable of filling the gaping void that has pained her for so long.   Liz, zapped of all energy and motivation, and cast deeper into the bottomless pit of depression than ever before, makes the life-altering choice to rise from the ashes and embarks on a year-long adventure through Italy, India, and Indonesia.

Chronicling a journey to physical, spiritual, and emotional restoration, Eat, Pray, Love allows its readers to skirt-tail one woman as she trots globe in search of the something more we all aspire to discover.  Through her indulgences, meditation, and romance, audiences not only find themselves delighted by the variety of setting and experience but they are sure to find themselves enlightened by the ability to reinvent oneself through the life-saving power of travel.

2. Under the Tuscan Sun — Frances Mayes (1996)

If you find yourself craving a second helping of Italy after reading the aforementioned Eat, Pray, Love, you will thoroughly enjoy every last page of Frances Mayes’ Under the Tuscan Sun.

Synopsis:

Yearning for new experiences and a fresh start in life, renowned poet, teacher, chef, and travel/food writer Frances Mayes and her husband Ed, flee their American roots for Italy, after discovering Bramasole, a semi dilapidated Tuscan farmhouse snuggled in the Italian countryside.  Despite the initial intrigue of journeying to a foreign and fascinating place, Mayes quickly realizes that her new infatuation—like any relationship—comes with its own set of struggles.  After a plethora of unlucky run-ins with Italian contractors, bounding over language barriers, taming the stubborn land, and managing old responsibilities in America, Frances—in every way imaginable—is tested beyond comprehension and is catapulted into an era of self-discovery, where she is forced to realize her own patience and strength.

Through her captivatingly rich and sensory prose, readers will be enchanted and inspired by Mayes’ experiences.  And as if the story itself isn’t enough to dazzle the mind and stimulate the senses, the inclusion of authentic seasonal Tuscan recipes might just be enough to tickle the foodie reader’s fancy.  Truly, Under the Tuscan Sun is a work of art to be savored.

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