Anthony Bourdain admits cheerfully to selling his soul to the devil [television] in order to carry out his childhood James Bond world adventure fantasies. Along the way he experiences joy, fear, awe, and nausea. Those looking for recipes will be disappointed: those looking for hilarious and insightful descriptions of how food is cooked and served around the world will be thrilled. Bourdain never forgets the importance of food culturally; he packs the book with interesting tidbits on how a cuisine is shaped by necessity [what kind of livestock can you raise in an enclosed town?] Many of his experiences, particularly in Mexico and Vietnam, leave the reader with a feeling of loss. Food in the United States frequently consists of a fast food hamburger eaten alone in front of a television set. The "third world" may be poor but they haven't lost the ability to make food a source of shared joy.