Tuesday 2/20

Elizabeth Gilbert

Gilbert's memoir, Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia, was written after she hit a personal rock bottom despite her awesome job, husband, and country home. One divorce, book deal, and year of self-imposed exile/personal discovery later, she emerged with one of those books about finding yourself abroad. Cynics (meaning: me) agreed that it didn't seem to inspire anything but eye rolling and a tint of jealousy, aimed squarely at a magazine reporter who was getting paid to spend a year in Italy,India, and Indonesia. Boo-friggin'-hoo. Alas, Miss GQ contributing editor emerged victorious, ending on oodles of Best of 2006 lists with her generous humor, honesty, and that whole personal-story-touching-on-universal-truths bit. While Gilbert goes to an ashram in India, she doesn't get all "holier than Gandhi" on us, she gets all "down to earth and ridiculously likable" on us—now there's a gal you can root for. And Hollywood agrees: so much, that Brad Pitt's production company Plan B, is overseeing the film adaptation, in which Gilbert will be played by someone named Julia Roberts. As if this Roberts character could hold a candle to Gilbert! KARLA STARR

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