Book Review: Deb Olin Unferth’s BARN 8

It’s rare to find a novel whose plot centers around animal rescue, and rarer still to encounter one that is deftly written and gets it (mostly) right—which is among the many reasons Deb Olin Unferth’s Barn 8 is both a terrific and important book.  Barn 8 is not necessarily an animal-rights novel—the animals themselves come second to many …

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Eating meat in third person: The Edible Woman by Margaret Atwood

Published in 1969, The Edible Woman is Margaret Atwood’s first novel. As a vegan, I was curious to read this book because it features a protagonist, Marian, who discovers one day that she can no longer eat meat. While at a fancy restaurant with her fiancé… She looked down at her own half-eaten steak and …

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Book Review: Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead

Olga Tokarczuk’s Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead resists easy categorization. It is a dark comedy, murder mystery, treatise on animal rights, and tribute to English poet William Blake. It is also a feminist portrait of a woman taking stock of the social and cultural values that have shaped all that she …

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The best environmental books we’ve read in 2019

Looking back on the year, I’m happy to see that a novel that made our best books list in 2018 won the 2019 Pulitzer Prize: The Overstory by Richard Powers (and deservedly so). Looking ahead, I believe more and more readers are going to be seeking out the stories and insights that can only be …

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Muri

As Arctic sea ice melts, what, if any, responsibility do humans have for the animals whose very existence is threatened? It’s a question worth considering as temperatures rise and sea ice declines, a situation brought to light, once again, in the latest report from the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. It’s also the question …

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Book Review: Katy’s Song by Alison Reese

Katy’s Song by Alison Reese is a warm, witty vegan love story, perfect for any romance reader as well as a fun read for vegans and those interested in vegan life. Like Armand Chauvel’s The Green and the Red, Katy’s Song features dual narratives in which the characters are brought together by veganism; unlike The …

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Where the Crawdads Sing

Kya Clark, the protagonist in Delia Owens’ debut novel, Where the Crawdads Sing, knows little of the world beyond the remote sliver of North Carolina coastal marsh she calls home. Abandoned by her family. Shunned by her community. Kya’s is a near solitary existence, her closest companions the gulls that, like Kya, inhabit the marshland. …

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LitHub’s climate change library

If we lived on this planet only one day a year then perhaps celebrating one “Earth Day” a year would make more sense. But as LitHub points out, every day is earth day. And they are assembling an ambitious list of 365 books for your climate change library, beginning with the classics. It’s nice to …

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The Overstory by Richard Powers wins the 2019 Pulitzer Prize

Congratulations to Richard Powers for a novel that captures the tragedy of what we have lost (and continue to lose) every time we cut down some of the oldest-living inhabitants of this planet. I reviewed the book here with my only criticism being the conspicuous lack of vegan characters. You don’t have to look very …

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