The Geography of Bliss


Here at CWS we’re all about wellness, mental wellness, physical wellness the whole she-bang. I think that’s why after reading “Geography of Bliss” I knew I needed to share it.  I mean bliss? That’s a pretty darn good mental state to be in! (And the book is funny to boot!)

I didn’t go searching for the “Geography of Bliss” it was a book-store-stumble, a definite judge a book  by its cover moment (literally). I’m not sure if it was the book’s whimsical cover design (complete with paper airplane), the fact that the biggest word is BLISS (something I imagine we’d all like to find) or just because it’s blue (and well, I like blue), regardless; if the cover wasn’t interesting enough the tag line had intrigued me “One grumps search for the happiest places in the world.”

The inside cover further revealed, the book chronicles Eric Wiener, the book’s author, NPR correspondent and self-proclaimed grump, as he traverses the globe searching for the happiest places on earth using the “science of happiness” and the World Happiness Database, a stockpile of research on the happiest and unhappiest nations in the world (It’s real!). Science of happiness? Happiness Database? Happiest places on earth? In my mind somewhere in there I read “key to happiness.” I had to read it. And while [spoiler alert] the book did not contain the secrets of happiness; it definitely made me happy while reading it.

I’m not sure what genre “Geography of Bliss” falls under. I think it’s more a great recipe for entertainment; add 1 part curmudgeonly sarcasm, 1 part travel literature and 1 part journalism, mix generously with interesting character bios and enjoy with a side of occasional giggles.

So my friend, if you are in need of a good chuckle, maybe a literary escape to exotic destinations (think Bhutan, India and Moldova—okay Moldova not so exotic, but you get the picture), I highly recommend this book.

Oh, and how could I forget—He visits North Carolina, but you’ll just have to read the book to learn just how happy we are. Or maybe you already know?

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