The book the chef, writer and television personality was working on when he died two years ago has been completed by his longtime assistant Laurie Woolever and will be published on October 13th. It is called World Travel: An Irreverent Guide, and is an illustrated collection of Bourdain’s reflections on his favourite places to visit and dine around the world. The book will also contain contributions by family and friends.
Woolever, who worked closely with Bourdain for a decade and helped him with his book Appetites, has previously written about how difficult it was to work on the book after the chef’s death in June 2018.
“It’s been a wrenching, lurching struggle to get back to that manuscript, as I grieve the enormous loss of his kind, profane, surprising and brilliant existence,” she wrote for CNN in 2018.
Announcing the book, Woolever said: “It’s been my honour and pleasure to create a book that includes stories from his loved ones and colleagues. I was lucky to work closely with Tony, and I’m so pleased to be able to share his reflections and insights about the world as he saw it in this guide.”
The announcement of the book came shortly after Tony’s mother Gladys Bourdain passed away at the age of 85.
In his final interview, Bourdain said about travel: “I much prefer people who just showed up in Paris and found their own way without any particular itinerary, who left themselves open to things happening. To mistakes … because that’s the most important part of travel.”
“My happiest moments on the road are always off-camera, generally with my crew, coming back from shooting a scene and finding ourselves in this sort of absurdly beautiful moment, you know, laying on a flatbed on those things that go on the railroad track, with a putt-putt motor, goin’ across like, the rice paddies in Cambodia with headphones on … this is luxury, because I could never have imagined having the freedom or the ability to find myself in such a place, looking at such things.
“To sit alone or with a few friends, half-drunk under a full moon, you just understand how lucky you are; it’s a story you can’t tell. It’s a story you almost by definition, can’t share. I’ve learned in real-time to look at those things and realise: I just had a really good moment.”
According to People, during his lifetime, Bourdain held 12 passports, “visiting nearly 100 countries in the 250 days per year that he was on the road.” The book is available for pre-order now.