Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver
A Year of Food Life

77%

19 Critic Reviews

Kingsolver succeeds in demonstrating that it’s not merely possible but in fact preferable to eat locally and seasonally, both in terms of taste and simplicity.
-Blog Critics

Synopsis

Bestselling author Barbara Kingsolver returns with her first nonfiction narrative that will open your eyes in a hundred new ways to an old truth: You are what you eat.

"As the U.S. population made an unprecedented mad dash for the Sun Belt, one carload of us paddled against the tide, heading for the Promised Land where water falls from the sky and green stuff grows all around. We were about to begin the adventure of realigning our lives with our food chain.

"Naturally, our first stop was to buy junk food and fossil fuel. . . ."

Hang on for the ride: With characteristic poetry and pluck, Barbara Kingsolver and her family sweep readers along on their journey away from the industrial-food pipeline to a rural life in which they vow to buy only food raised in their own neighborhood, grow it themselves, or learn to live without it. Their good-humored search yields surprising discoveries about turkey sex life and overly zealous zucchini plants, en route to a food culture that's better for the neighborhood and also better on the table. Part memoir, part journalistic investigation, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle makes a passionate case for putting the kitchen back at the center of family life and diversified farms at the center of the American diet.

"This is the story of a year in which we made every attempt to feed ourselves animals and vegetables whose provenance we really knew . . . and of how our family was changed by our first year of deliberately eating food produced from the same place where we worked, went to school, loved our neighbors, drank the water, and breathed the air."

Includes an excerpt from Flight Behavior.

 

About Barbara Kingsolver

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Barbara Kingsolver is the author of seven works of fiction, including the novels The Poisonwood Bible, Animal Dreams, and The Bean Trees, as well as books of poetry, essays, and creative nonfiction such as Animal, Vegetable, Miracle. In 2000, she was awarded the National Humanities Medal, our country's highest honor for service through the arts. She lives with her family on a farm in southern Appalachia.
 
Published October 13, 2009 by HarperCollins e-books. 396 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Crafts, Hobbies & Home, Humor & Entertainment, Cooking, Nature & Wildlife, Science & Math, Business & Economics, Education & Reference. Non-fiction
Bestseller Status:
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Peak Rank on May 12 2013
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Critic reviews for Animal, Vegetable, Miracle
All: 19 | Positive: 15 | Negative: 4

Kirkus

Good
on Mar 01 2007

Readers frustrated with the unhealthy, artificial food chain will take heart and inspiration here.

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NY Times

Above average
Reviewed by Corby Kummer on May 27 2007

The link Kingsolver adds to the “locavore” movement, if we agree to adopt that name, is a human one — not just to the people who grow and make food but to the people who eat it together.

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NY Times

Good
on May 14 2007

...she succeeds in dramatizing her own family's story so that these ideas come to life, anecdotally and charmingly.

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NY Times

Good
Reviewed by Janet Maslin on May 11 2007

Without sentimentality, this book captures the pulse of the farm and the deep gratification it provides, as well as the intrinsic humor of the situation.

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Guardian

Good
Reviewed by Kathryn Hughes on Jul 06 2007

It could all be a bit Waltons-ish, but Barbara Kingsolver is a sufficiently shrewd writer to make sure that Animal, Vegetable, Miracle stays just the right side of smug.

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Blog Critics

Good
on Sep 21 2010

Kingsolver succeeds in demonstrating that it’s not merely possible but in fact preferable to eat locally and seasonally, both in terms of taste and simplicity.

Read Full Review of Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A... | See more reviews from Blog Critics

Blog Critics

Good
on May 24 2007

Not only does she advocate the lifestyle and share its wonders, she also has reams of practical advice on how it can be achieved...

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Book Reporter

Excellent
on May 01 2007

...I defy anyone to read this book and walk away from it without gaining at least the desire to change.

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Suite 101

Good
on Jul 30 2008

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle is a perfect read for anyone who is interested in growing food, knowing what to eat during the different seasons, and discovering ways to become healthier...

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Open Letters Monthly

Above average

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle is a big, sprawling book, in turns witty, enlightening, and disappointing.

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The Seattle Times

Below average
on May 11 2007

It looks great on paper, but when I go to the grocery store and have to choose between the agribusiness-produced green peppers or organically farmed peppers at five times the price, guess which one I'm going with?

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Blogger News Network

Good
on Jun 03 2008

...this book offers some manageable recommendations for adjusting your lifestyle to make less of an impact on our natural resources, while supporting local farm communities at the same time.

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Story Circle Book Reviews

Excellent
on Oct 02 2007

This is a fine book in many regards—Kingsolver's great writing, the inspiring and important underlying philosophy, and the recipes. Oh, the recipes!

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Spirituality & Practice

Excellent

As you would expect from a writer of this caliber, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life is an absolute delight to read.

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The Kitchn

Good
on Feb 29 2008

Her "year of food life" begins in April and proceeds seasonally, so now is a good time to start reading and get inspired for your own year of local eating.

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Bay Area Bites

Good
on May 22 2007

Whether you’re not completely sold on the idea of eating locally-grown food...I believe that you will find Animal, Vegetable, Miracle to be an interesting and richly-written story...

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Windy City Media

Below average
on May 16 2007

Kingsolver's solution might work for her family, but the rest of us might not want to revert to our hunter-gatherer selves just yet.

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TreeHugger

Excellent
on May 30 2007

Full of irony, wit and love this book is a must read for anyone interested in growing their own food and everyone else interested in how the food they eat arrives at their table...

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About.com

Above average

The issues are intelligently handled and well researched, but can get a bit heavy-handed and unquestioning.

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Reader Rating for Animal, Vegetable, Miracle
82%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 980 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


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JENNA AUBREY

JENNA AUBREY 5 Sep 2013

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