Tuesday, November 11, 2008


I haven't been cooking or baking much yet, due to this lingering foot injury. But I have had plenty of reading time and would like to briefly note two recently consumed books here.

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life by Barbara Kingsolver, Camille Kingsolver, and Steven L. Hopp

Heads up to compassionate, caring people, this book is hard to swallow. I've enjoyed Barbara Kingsolver's fiction in the past and think she should stick to it. This nonfiction account of her family's adventures in locavorism is staggeringly earnest, cloyingly confessional, and often downright bitchy. At least, that is the case for the sections Kingsolver penned herself. Her husband and daughter echo in calmer, awkward prose. Barbara offers passionate raves about organic, local vegetables (yay!) and organic, local meat and dairy (ugh). She rails against vegans or as she calls them "vevangelicals," while glorifying her "ethical" cheese making projects (hard to stomach) and poultry slaughters (nightmare inducing). I grew up on a farm and am disabused of romantic, pastoral notions of small farm life. Kingsolver buys many agrarian myths wholesale, including happy meat fantasies. So read this book if you like to be good and outraged. Or just skim the veggie sections and be on your way.

Invincible Summer: An Anthology by Nicole Georges

A charming, personal graphic zine from an artist who offers a unique, compelling voice and amazing portraits of animals and people. Unlike Kingsolver, Georges doesn't pretend to have all the answers. Her life is messier and her vegan recipes sound much tastier. I admired the section about her internship at Farm Sanctuary, which was heavy but honest. This collection is great to share with creative, artsy friends. It also made me want to drink more coffee and move to Portland. I've ordered up and am looking forward to reading part two.

1 comment:

Stephanie said...

Thanks for writing about this. I really enjoyed the Poinsonwood Bible and thought this one sounded interesting but I didn't want to read all about meat and dairy and now I know :)