The Food Traveler’s Handbook: where to buy, recent press and more

Somehow it is already 2013. As a child, I remember complaining about how long it took to drive from my mum’s in Montreal to my dad’s place on the Vermont border. It was only an hour and a half, but to a six year old that’s an eternity. The quintessential “are we there yet?” was a fixture on those drives, my dad shaking his head bemusedly (and occasionally not-so-bemusedly) from the rearview mirror. “Time moves more quickly the older you get” he’d say “you’ll see….”

He was right, of course. When I think back to 2012 – to conferences and months in Thailand, Portugal, Ireland and Spain and of all the words put to paper – it all compresses into one accordion of memories, taking effort to draw them all out. Somehow, I wrote a book. In my mind, there was a question about whether I’d finish it – so much writing, information and editing – and of course I was terrified to set it free for people to read. It’s one thing to write a blog post but to write a book? Much more scary.

Food Traveler's Handbook by Jodi Ettenberg

Time moved more quickly than I anticipated, with me moving along next to it. I went to New York, to LA, to London and now to Vietnam. I realized I never formally announced the publication of the book on this site. Yes, I have a landing page set up with the back cover reviews, full series of books and table of contents. But I wanted to kick off 2013 with an official announcement and some recent press.

 * * *

Combing through Amazon prior to starting my writing process, I could not find a similar book in their roster. There were books that talked about history of food (I’ve listed a bunch of them here), cookbooks and books about about general street food culture with recipes. But there was no basic book addressing both why food matters as you travel, and how to explore the world through the many ingredients on your plate.  I wanted to tackle how to source fresh eats and find market stalls that serve hygienic meals, but I also wanted to talk about how food can connect you to locals as you roam. While a food traveler’s handbook could have been written from a variety of angles, I chose the one closest to my heart: the book focuses primarily on cheaper, streetside food in developing countries, but its principles and tips can be applied worldwide.

To those who have supported the book thus far, thank you! From the reviews, emails and the lovely comments on this site, I’m superbly happy that it has resonated with so many of you.

Where to Buy The Food Traveler’s Handbook

It took some time to get the digital and print versions up and running, but they are all currently available. Amazon and Barnes & Noble offer both the eBooks (Kindle and Nook, respectively) and print-on-demand hard copies. iTunes and Kobo offer the eBook versions only. Prices are $16.99 (or £12.99 in the UK) for the hard copy and $9.99 (£6.43 in the UK) for the eBook.

Interviews, Guest Posts & Press

It’s been a thrill to see the book in print, but equally fun to partake in the promotional work surrounding it. Part of why I came to Vietnam was to do more pitching – food writing, interviews and guest posts – and all have been a great pleasure. Here are some of the recent posts and Q&As about food and the book. 

Nepali food in Yangon
It’s not a post about a food book without a photo of food, now is it?

How You Can Help

I have been overwhelmed by the support and cheerleading from readers, and for the great reviews on Amazon (the Canadian, UK and US editions, all).  Many of you have also asked how you can help.

  • If you’ve bought the book, please write a review on the outlet that you bought it from – positive or negative, I would love your feedback.
  • If you have thoughts on how it can be improved for a 2nd edition, or have any other comments, please let me know by email – I’d love to hear from you!
  • Those of you on Goodreads, the book page is here. It’s a great community for books and bookworms, and I’m happy to see it on many “to read” lists there too.
  • And of course, if you think someone would be interested in learning more about food, and experimenting with cheaper food as they travel, send it to a friend.

A Personal Bonus: Photos of Readers with the Book

One of the fun side benefits: the photos I’ve been taking and receiving of people reading it. My brother’s copy arrived the day before I was set to leave the UK for Vietnam, so I was able to sign it for him and snap this shot.

Cale Ettenberg with the Food Traveler's Handbook
My brother pondering Chapter 2 of my book.

My brother is one thing, but my readers are getting younger too…My friend Matt posted this adorable shot of his daughter holding my book – almost her size! – when he received his in the mail.

Food Traveler's Handbook
Starting the food adventures at a young age!

Many of you have done the same, tagging me on Instagram or sending me a photo. It’s a wonderful thing, to see the book out in the wild and being read, but more so when there is this personal connection, when it is sent to you with a smile.

So: thank you to everyone who supported the book and helped me bring it to see the light of day. From my parents letting me cook up a storm to calm me down when I was writing, to my brother’s girlfriend Sarah who edited the first draft primarily using Star Wars references to the many readers, colleagues and friends who have supported it and cheered me on along the way.

Now the question remains: what am I going to write about for book #2?


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