Green Diva Meg set me on a mission. After I arrived last Thursday, she had her tea kettle on the stove, Gracie’s leash in one hand and a book in the other. “Would you mind reviewing a book or two,” she asked a little bit timidly (I think) for fear that I would find it mundane and a bit too routine. Well, Green Diva Meg, you have returned a former English Major back to her throne as “Princess of the Pages.” And as the greedy monarch that I am, I took on not one, but three books. So on that note, I command ye to check out some of these awesome, (yet eclectic) titles that have gotten the Green Diva stamp of approval for your enlightened summer reading list.
1. Beg: A Radical New Way of Regarding Animals by Rory Freedman
This book actually made me curious about her first book, which was the New York Times Bestseller, Skinny Bitch. Her writing is clean, funny and very entertaining which was woven throughout Beg in a very classic/charming and informative way.
After reading Freedman’s “Ode to the Animals,” I realized that she embodied the true zeitgeist of the book in her own words right in the introduction when she writes, “This book is a call to arms to my fellow animal lovers to be better animal lovers. It’s an invitation to be more than just good parents to the cats and dogs we live with; Beg is a battle cry to wake up and rise up on behalf of the world’s animals.”
And the rest of her book follows suit. It’s a very charming read, full of isms that only true animal lovers could relate to. She’s a genuine pet lover, and her wit really carries the message forward. I especially liked the descriptions of her own pack, like her dog Timber who she explains as, “ a great white shark, a polar bear, and a brontosaurus.”
So for you pet lovers out there (or pet lovers at heart), pick up Freedman’s book, snuggle with the nearest four-legged fur ball and enjoy!
2. Just Ride: A Radically Practical Guide t0 Riding Your Bike by Grant Peterson, Founder of Rivendell Bicycle Works
Its a little ironic that both books (Beg & Just Ride) to start are all about being “radical” in some form or another, but I found Just Ride to as a way to get rid of all the hype, fancy outfits and stigmas attached to bike riding. Peterson says it best when he writes, “Overall, the message in this book is to jettison the influences of racing that make your bike riding less than fantastic; don’t suffer in the name of speed, imaginary glory, or internet admiration; don’t ride bikes that don’t make sense for you; don’t wear ridiculous outfits just to ride your bike; don’t think of your bike as a get-in-shape tool and riding as something you have to suffer to benefit from. Your bike is a useful convenience, and a fun, somewhat expensive, toy, and riding is best for you when it’s fun.”
Throughout the book, Peterson gives bike tips for the fun-seeker, like his chapter titled, “Corner like Jackie Robinson,” or “Ponchos: the Ultimate Unracer’s Garment.” His writing adds humor, but it is sincerely useful, and is a perfect gift to a new bike enthusiast, or a long-time rider.
As a major foodie, this was my favorite book of the three. Faires exhibits a no-nonsense sort of style that I was drawn to. She goes deep into the political, historical and environmental aspects that have molded our food and our society’s view on food to the level that it is today. Food Tyrants is for the concerned foodie— for people who care about where the food comes from and our freedom to produce and eat it. This is exemplified here when she writes, “You already know about the health effects of processed food, and you are already aware that your food supply is in trouble, otherwise you would be reading some other book. Be warned that tis book recommends subversion. Rebellion. This book advocates growing your own food no matter what. If you choose to do something that yur government considers illegal, I take no responsibility for that. I just don’t think you have much of a choice.”
Starting with her chapter on the “Foundation of Food” and ending on her opinion about “The Right Way to Eat,” Faires really does get down and dirty with the truth. Her book is a perfect afternoon read, since it is only 193 pages and very enlightening in regards to our food systems.
book in cloud image via shutterstock