I find reading and self educating to be one of the most important things you can in your life. I believe we should read a little about every thing most importantly read and educate your self about view points other then your own but if you are on this site you are probably interested in homesteading and sustainable living, so here are my personal favorite books that I have read and listened to (its hard to weed your garden with a book in one hand).
“Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A year of Food Life” Barbara Kingsolver
I guess you could sum this book up as one family, one year one county. Barbara and her family go on a yearlong journey of eating only local food, very local food. This book is great for anyone who wants more information on the financial feasibility of locally sourced food or how to get the entire family on board with local agriculture.
“The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals” Michael Pollan
The bible of food sourcing, Micahel Pollan gives it all a try, where does fast food beef come from? A certified organic chicken from a store? A local pasture raise animal? Vegetarian or vegan what helps the Earth? How is killing your own food humane? He doesn’t just state facts and talk to experts he lives 4 very different meals that are truly life styles. For anyone considering a lifestyle change weather you want to go raw vegan or go out in the woods and shoot a bear and eat him this book will shed some light on the truth behind all types of food sourcing.
“Folks, This Ain’t Normal: A Farmer’s Advice for Happier Hens, Healthier People, and a Better World” Joel Salatin
From homesteader to those who live in a NYC high rise this book is a must read. To all those who preach about their carbon foot print or how they support organic farmers, well you’re probably going about it horribly wrong. Joel’s sense of humor and blunt writing style make this an easy read, or listen, I listened to this book while driving home from California and let’s just say I took Joel’s advice. Each chapter is ended with Joel setting simple steps as to how we can live a better life and change the world we live in. The most important thing I took from this book is everyone should grow something, even if that means one vegetable plant on your high rise balcony. I have had the pleasure to meet Joel and his son Daniel on their iconic farm in the Shenandoah Valley and I must say he is the real deal.
“Gaining Ground: A Story of Farmers’ Markets, Local Food, And Saving The Family Farm” Forrest Pritchard
The story of a man rejuvenating the family farm, a true story of struggle hard work and persistence
“The Dirty Life: A Memoir of Farming, Food, and Love” Kristin Kimball
This book is farming in the raw, yup I said it, do you want to know what it’s like to wake up to see your own animals grazing in your vegetable garden or know what it is like to chase livestock down the street in a pair of shorts and rubber boots? Kristin does an amazing job not holding any punches when she describes what it is really like on a true organic farm in the North East.