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Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food…

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life (2007)

by Barbara Kingsolver, Steven L. Hopp (Author), Camille Kingsolver (Author)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
6,547233914 (4.15)388
  1. 70
    The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals by Michael Pollan (SqueakyChu, heidialice, booklove2)
    SqueakyChu: Both books address a way of working with our current food culture.
  2. 20
    The Seasons on Henry's Farm: A Year of Food and Life on a Sustainable Farm by Terra Brockman (JanesList)
    JanesList: Both are delightful to read and tell the story of sustainable growing and eating throughout the year, with recipes and family contributions to the books. You might not want to read them both in the same month, but if you liked one, I bet you'll like the other.… (more)
  3. 20
    Made from Scratch: Discovering the Pleasures of a Handmade Life by Jenna Woginrich (sonyagreen)
  4. 20
    The Vegetarian Myth: Food, Justice, and Sustainability by Lierre Keith (owen1218)
  5. 10
    Fifty Acres and a Poodle: A Story of Love, Livestock, and Finding Myself on a Farm by Jeanne Marie Laskas (hipdeep)
    hipdeep: Not a book about slow food, but for my money a far more interesting memoir of an urbanite's move to a farm.
  6. 10
    The New English Kitchen: Changing the Way You Shop, Cook and Eat by Rose Prince (hipdeep)
  7. 10
    Goat Song: A Seasonal Life, A Short History of Herding, and the Art of Making Cheese by Brad Kessler (Muriel743)
    Muriel743: Covers similar topics - i.e. mainly urban people pursuing food self-sufficiency, forming relationships with rural community and neighbours and learning the skills needed to feed themselves.
  8. 10
    An Economist Gets Lunch: New Rules for Everyday Foodies by Tyler Cowen (BookshelfMonstrosity)
  9. 22
    Julie and Julia: My Year of Cooking Dangerously by Julie Powell (sturlington)

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» See also 388 mentions

English (231)  French (1)  All languages (232)
Showing 1-5 of 231 (next | show all)
Though some of the facts presented in this story are covered by The Omnivore's Dilemma, it has a charm of its own. Kingsolver and her family challenge themselves to live on locally produced food for a year. It helps that they live on a small farm and are often able to work from home. The audiobook is read by the authors, which can sometimes be a mistake, but she, and they do a fine job injecting warmth and humor into the narrative. You will probably learn things about turkeys that you have never heard before... ( )
  cindywho | May 27, 2019 |
Thoroughly enjoying, as well as eye opening. Kingsolver's experiment of a year of living locally was a joy to read, has made me more aware of the choices I make when shopping, and the recipes are quite good too! ( )
  snotbottom | Sep 19, 2018 |
Great book about eating organic food, running your farm, & family. Probably won't convert you but if you are on the fence about food choices, check it out. ( )
  CSDaley | Mar 28, 2018 |
Digital audiobook read by the three authors.

Kingsolver, her husband and two daughters moved from their Tucson Arizona home back to southern Appalachia and her husband’s family farmstead. As a family they vowed to get back to their roots – literally – growing much of their own food and buying what they couldn’t grow themselves locally. They pledged to a year of this experiment, allowing each family member one “luxury” – coffee for Steven, dried fruit for Camille, hot chocolate for 9-year-old Lily. They also accepted that they would need olive oil and flour, as well as spices. But they made a commitment to find the best possible sources for organic ingredients they needed to buy. This memoir is a record of their family’s journey.

The book includes essays / asides from Kingsolver’s husband, Steven Holt and eldest daughter Camille. Holt focuses on the global carbon footprint and economics of agriculture. Talk about preachy; I really felt I was being scolded for not paying closer attention to how my eating habits affect the world! Camille’s essays give a perspective from a teenager / young adult and include seasonal meal plans and some recipes.

I was surprised that I liked this as much as I did. Kingsolver is a talented writer and the humor of their situation shone through, making this very readable. I loved the episode describing young entrepreneur Lily’s egg business, or that chapter on turkey sex. That said, she can (and does) get preachy and while she states that she understands that not everyone has a family farm to move to, she doesn’t seem to really take into account that not everyone is actually able to grow so much of their own food, or to spend the time at home to prepare such delicious and seasonal meals for their family. And no, Ms Kingsolver, most of us do NOT have a chest freezer.

Still, she gave me much to think about. My husband and I have developed a more European style of marketing over the last few years. We go to the store every day, buying just what we need for that day’s meals and, with the exception of some staples (chiefly coffee, sugar, olive oil, oatmeal, canned tomatoes, and chicken stock), we wheel our grocery cart almost exclusively on the outer parameters of the store: dairy, eggs, meats, poultry, fish, and produce. (Thank heavens the wine is also on the “outside” … LOL) Come spring (yes, the calendar says we’re already there, but I live in Wisconsin – we still have snow on the ground), I plan to hit the local farmers’ market more often.

The authors narrate the audio book themselves, which lends a sort of personal touch. The recipes, however, are not included in the audio version; rather, the listener is referred to their website where the recipes are available. ( )
  BookConcierge | Mar 23, 2018 |
I admire what the authors' family was able to do over the course of their year of local eating. I wish I had the time and space to grow a lot more of our food.

I really enjoyed this one! ( )
  SoubhiKiewiet | Mar 20, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 231 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Kingsolver, BarbaraAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hopp, Steven L.Authormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Kingsolver, CamilleAuthormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Buchbinder, ClaireTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Daniel, HankPhotographersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hopp, Steven L.Narratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Houser, Richard A.Illustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Jiménez, NoeliaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kingsolver, BarbaraNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kingsolver, CamilleNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Metsch, FritzDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Picture a single imaginary plant, bearing throughout one season all the different vegetables we harvest...we'll call it a vegetannual.
In memory of Jo Ellen
First words
This story about good food begins in a quick-stop convenience market.
If everything my heart desired was handed to me on a plate, I’d probably just want something else. (Camille Kingsolver)
We all cultivate illusions of safety that could fall away in the knife edge of one second.”
People who are grieving walk with death every waking moment. When the rest of us dread that we’ll somehow remind them of death’s existence, we are missing their reality.
Wake up now, look alive, for here is a day off work just to praise Creation: the turkey, the squash, and the corn, these things that ate and drank sunshine, grass, mud, and rain, and then in the shortening days laid down their lives for our welfare and onward resolve. There’s the miracle for you, the absolute sacrifice that still holds back seeds: a germ of promise to do the whole thing again, another time.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0060852569, Paperback)

Author Barbara Kingsolver and her family abandoned the industrial-food pipeline to live a rural life—vowing that, for one year, they’d only buy food raised in their own neighborhood, grow it themselves, or learn to live without it. Part memoir, part journalistic investigation, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle is an enthralling narrative that will open your eyes in a hundred new ways to an old truth: You are what you eat.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:21:42 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Follows the author's family's efforts to live on locally- and home-grown foods, an endeavor through which they learned lighthearted truths about food production and the connection between health and diet.

» see all 12 descriptions

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