The Measure of My Powers
Jackie Kai Ellis
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On the surface, Jackie Kai Ellis's life was the one that every woman — herself included — wanted. She was in her late 20s and married to a handsome man, she had a successful career as a designer and a home that she shared with her husband. But instead of feeling fulfilled, happy and loved, each morning she'd wake up dreading the day ahead, searching for a way out. Depression clouded every moment, the feelings of inadequacy that had begun in childhood now consumed her and her marriage was slowly transforming into one between two strangers — unfamiliar, childless and empty. In this darkness, she could only find one source of light — the kitchen. It was the place where Jackie escaped, finding peace, comfort and acceptance.
This is the story of how, armed with nothing but a love of food and the words of the great 20th century food writer M.F.K. Fisher, one woman begins a journey — from France to Italy, then the Congo and back again — to find herself. Along the way, she goes to pastry school in Paris, eats the most perfect apricots over the Tuscan hills, watches a family of gorillas grazing deep in the Congolese brush, has her heart broken one last time on a bridge in Lyon and, ultimately, finds a path to life and joy. (From Appetite by Random House)
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From the book
In the months that followed, I felt myself become more numb. There were muffled sounds of laughter and life bustling all around me, and yet it felt like I was submerged deep underwater, separated and hearing only the sound of my own breath and my heart slowly beating. I lived in this isolated world, sometimes comforted by the imaginary cocoon that solitude created, but mostly feeling anxious and restless for anything but the stillness. I was desperate to escape the feeling, and the longer it continued, the more I fantasized about a world where not only did I not exist, but where I had never existed at all.
From The Measure of My Powers by Jackie Kai Ellis ©2018. Published by Appetite By Random House.