Known for her bestselling fiction novels, Barbara Kingsolver is joined in this book by her husband and daughters to write a non-fiction account of their attempts of becoming locavores in Animal, Vegetable, Miracle. The authors move into their new home in Appalachia and attempt to eat only what they grow and raise, or those items that are grown, raised, or made within 100 miles of their home. Their rationale for this is twofold. First, they wanted to reduce their energy consumption. It seems that we are consuming 400 gallons of oil a year, per person, on agriculture and the lion's share of that oil is spent on transportation from the farm to your plate with the average typical meal traveling 1,500 miles! (Think about the carbon footprint of a banana). Secondly, they wanted to live and eat organically. With fact-filled sidebars by husband and environmental studies professor Steven Hopp, and family recipes by Kingsolver's daughter, Camille, this informative and funny narrative was a surprising page-turner. I have found myself using information gained in this book when doing my grocery shopping and it helped me to have informed conversations on the topics of healthful eating and the environment. Gardeners will love it.
Recommended by Tim Andrews