Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver

Barbara Kingsolver’s story of her family’s experiment where they grow their own food in a rural environment is informative and a great read. While the subject matter is very serious, there are some very humorous parts to her story. She provides an extraordinary amount of information regarding everyday foods, how they are produced and how they get to our tables.

Undoubtedly, this is one of the best books I’ve read all year. It didn’t come across as preachy, but rather inviting. The family’s interaction with the food they grew was the most interesting part for me. Because they lived through/with this experiment and wrote about it, it wasn’t just a how to manual, which likely would have been dry and somewhat boring. I loved that the story was presented chronologically featuring produce that’s available at that time of year.

Kingsolver’s family members have also made contributions to be the book. Steven’s sections were very informative and well written. They contained plenty of interesting facts and stats about food production. The recipes and accompanying text by Camille were equally well done. I haven’t any of the recipes yet, but I plan to soon.

While I haven’t made significant changes in my household yet, I’ve certainly had my eyes open by this book. I’m now convinced that I really need to look at where my food is coming from. I’m unlikely to start farming like this family, but there are lots of things I could be doing differently. The book is definitely worthy of a second read.

I’d definitely recommend this wonderful book.

From HarperCollins First Look program.

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