Top eco-reads for the holidays

The holidays are a great time to give, receive or pick up at the library a book that you can snuggle up with this winter. Here are some top picks for eco-reads, old and new, from Green Action Centre staff, old and new.

Tracy: The Right to be Cold, by Sheila Watt-Cloutier

This is a wonderful human story that connects the impact of climate change to the north and to our collective survival. Watt-Cloutier is a strong and well respected voice for the Arctic and for Inuit rights. As an Inuit women who moved to the south at a young age her memoir provides a distinct perspective on the interconnectedness between the land, culture, food, climate and people of the north.

I like this book because it doesn’t look at the fight for climate action in isolation but instead shows how integral it is to the preservation of a way of life that is tied to ice and snow. I discovered her story at The Walrus Talks at the WAG last year – you can check out her live presentation here.

Becky: I was inspired by Julia Butterfly Hill a few years ago. Amazing work! Legacy of Luna: The Story of a Tree, a Woman, and the Struggle to Save the Redwoods

JackieAnimal Vegetable Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver. (Check out Jackie’s earlier review.)

Shoni: Green Mama by Manda Aufochs Gillespie. Manda is the partner of Sandhu Johnston, Deputy City Manager of Vancouver and founder and co-chair of the Urban Sustainability Directors Network.

Jackie: Free Range Kids: How to Raise Safe, Self-Reliant Children (Without Going Nuts with Worry) by Lenore Skenazy is also excellent!

Becky: The Next Eco-Warriors by Emily Hunter. This book was great for mini-stories, the kind of book you can pick up and put down, and all are inspiring across several sectors.

Jennifer: These are not the most recent publications, but I’ve enjoyed them. The Wild Trees: A Story of Passion and Daring by Richard Preston, and The Geography of Hope: A Tour of the World We Need by Chris Turner.

Sylvie: I read Zero Waste Home by Bea Johnson and really enjoyed it.

Jessie: I enjoyed The Sweetness of a Simple Life by Diana Beresford-Kroeger (read Jessie’s review here), and Margaret Atwood’s trippy finale to the Oryx and Crake series, Maddaddam.

Lea: I loved Ecoholic Body by Adria Vasil and Go Green: Spend Less and Live Better by Crissy Trask.

Beth: My current pick would be Walkable City: How Downtown Can Save America One Step at a Time by Jeff Speck. (For a short synopsis, check out the author’s Ted Talk.) I’m looking forward to reading Climate Changed: A Personal Journey Through the Science by Philippe Squarzoni. The idea of using a graphic novel to explain climate change is intriguing, so I’m curious to give it a read (and a look).

Mel: It’s not a current title, but I found Elizabeth May’s How To Save The World In Your Spare Time very inspiring and practical when I read it years ago. You don’t have to have a day job in the environmental movement or a degree in Environmental Sciences to make a big difference.

2 Responses

  1. Denis De Pape | November 24, 2015 | 7:50 pm | Reply

    I would like to add one of my favourites from the past year, Naomi Klein’s treatise on the urgency of climate change action and the transformative changes needed to maintain a livable world in the future. Her book, “This Changes Everything”, is heavy going but worth the effort for its insightful and compelling analysis. Also, a surprizingly interesting read is Pope Francis’s encyclical letter urging all of mankind to take responsibility for care for the earth entitled “On Care for our Common Home”.

    • beckyblock | December 10, 2015 | 1:15 pm | Reply

      Great additions, thanks Denis!

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