In it, she traces her path from the days before she was diagnosed with celiac disease, when pain and fatigue guided her, to gluten-free living, giving details about what foods she had to learn to avoid (blue cheese is out!), which ten foods she can't do without, and how to cook with the cornucopia of grains that are naturally gluten-free. For someone like me, who's already convinced that $25 is a fair price for a bottle of great olive oil, the book was a good ego boost (Go Shauna! You tell America to stop eating so much shit! Tell them!).
Her book was also sort of an eye-opener. I don't know anyone with celiac disease, and had no idea how widespread it is (try about 1 in 100 people) or how seriously eating microscopic amounts of gluten can harm someone. I consume wheat-based carbs like oxygen - involuntarily, and with bodily necessity. Shauna picks up on the fact that when most of us think of eating gluten-free – whether we need to or not – we think of doing without, of forgoing flavor and enjoyable foods. Based on her recipes, seems to me like the only things she really has to forego are things that come in boxes, with labels and long, unpronounceable ingredient lists.
For foodies, Gluten-Free Girl is also a love story, with a less traditional entry point. It’s the story of Shauna falling in love with real food, which is sexy for those of us who get turned on walking into a cheese shop or running our hands through a box of black beans at the farmers' market.
Shauna's blog says she'll start her book tour in New York tomorrow, but here's a link to her tour calendar - you'll find her at Seattle events the week after next.