Since my last book update, I have finished Diet for a Dead Planet (Christopher D Cook) and The Consumer’s Guide for Effective Environmental Choices (The Union of Concerned Scientists), gotten halfway through Redwall, and read The Last Little Cat.

I highly recommend Diet for a Dead Planet to anyone who wants to read about the human costs to the current agricultural system – not so much as a condemnation (which it is) but also as a history of how the system actually developed, both industrially and politically. It’s written in such a way as to be easy to read in small chunks, and it was my bedtime reading book for awhile. Cook also does a great job of endnoting his work, so anything that seems outrageous can be fact-checked – something I did a few times.

The Consumer’s Guide was pretty dry but good to read, since it actually takes SCIENCE to the idea behind “greening” your everyday decisions. Especially in light of this week being Earth Day (more on that later this week), it’s nice to read something that says “these things actually make a difference, but those things really don’t”. For example, choosing to buy an energy efficient refrigerator is a much more important decision than whether you use plastic or paper grocery bags. They line up their scientific method and have a large section of data and analysis in the back of the book to support their findings as well. (Not surprising, given the authors.) Unfortunately, it’s about 10 years old, so it’s not as up to date as it could be, and a lot of the progress they see as possible hasn’t come about yet.

I have given up on the Dalai Lama’s book for now, mostly because it is a little too thinky for me right now. I’ve put off most of the other books for another time.

Instead, on my reading list, I have:

  • Bunnicula and The Celery Stalks at Midnight, by James Howe
  • The Lightning Thief, by Rick Riordan
  • The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels, by Ree Drummond
  • Beezus and Ramona, by Beverly Cleary
  • The Omnivore’s Dilemma, by Michael Pollan
  • A Garden Book for Houston and the Texas Gulf Coast, by the River Oaks Garden Club, and Houston Garden Book, by John Kriegel

Plus, of course, finishing Redwall and whatever other Brian Jacques books I can track down at work. Hopefully this will be a good continuation of both fun reading that I’ll enjoy and reading that will feed my brain (pun intended) as I research and study various things about our food industry and about my local gardening climate.

Also, for what it’s worth, those books at the top of this post are the first books I’ve actually finished since all this started last year. *\o/*

Book Update
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4 thoughts on “Book Update

  • April 20, 2011 at 12:16 pm

    Bunnicula! <3

    Let me know, especially on the Lightning Thief – that's one I'm considering reading myself.

    I, too, set aside the Dalai Lama's book. Apparently I like my philosophy in very small bites.

  • April 20, 2011 at 12:30 pm

    HIGHLY recommend The Lightning Thief, and the entire series for that matter. Very well written, wonderful characters, awesome all around! Hope you enjoy!

  • April 20, 2011 at 12:51 pm

    The Lightning Thief is wondrously fun. I’ve often found Harry Potter a bit too twee, particularly as I’ve grown older, but Riordan’s series is really muscular, which I appreciate.

  • April 28, 2011 at 2:16 pm

    Bunnicula? Yes please!

    Brian Jacques is also pretty awesome, though I haven’t read the last 2-3 in his Redwall series. I should go get them. I haven’t read The Lightning Thief, didn’t even know it existed before they put the movie out, but it sounds worth looking for.

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