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Farewell, My Subaru: An Epic Adventure in Local Living Hardcover – March 25, 2008


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Villard; First Edition edition (March 25, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1400066441
  • ISBN-13: 978-1400066445
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 5.8 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (73 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #962,640 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In this memoir of mishaps and lessons learned, Fine shares his yearlong trek to turn his newly bought New Mexico ranch into a green and sustainable environment with as little carbon fuel as possible. From using two very lovable goats for his organic food production to transitioning into a biofuel engine for his truck and even installing solar panels, Fine balances the troubling decisions Americans must consider while also revealing a host of unexpected benefits. He advocates that a gradual process, despite having to deal with moments of hypocrisy, is essential for it to work. Fine's wry narration blends well with his often humorous and sarcastic tone. The energy and enthusiasm of his reading indicates that Fine not only relished the events but is happy to share his experience with listeners. Simultaneous release with the Viking hardcover (Reviews, Jan. 7).
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

DOUG FINE, a contributor to NPR and Public Radio International, has reported from remote perches in Burma, Rwanda, Laos, Guatemala, and Tajikistan. He is the author of Not Really an Alaskan Mountain Man, and lives in southern New Mexico.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

More About the Author

After college, Doug Fine strapped on a backpack and traveled to five continents, reporting from remote forests and war zones in Burma, Rwanda, Laos, Guatemala and Tajikistan. He has filed radio work for NPR and PRI and is the author of Too High to Fail, Farewell, My Subaru and Not Really An Alaskan Mountain Man. His print work has appeared in The Washington Post, Wired, Salon, U.S. News and World Report, The Christian Science Monitor and Outside. Fine lives in a remote valley in New Mexico among a few goats and many coyotes. Visit him online at www.dougfine.com. Fine enjoys hiking, running, kayaking, shamanistic drumming, dancing, gardening, siestas, Peter Sellers movies, hot springs, massages, reading and staying alive. He is not quite competent at the saxophone, though he can catch a mean salmon.

Customer Reviews

I found Doug's book inspiring AND funny.
K Donleycott
Rarely do I read a book start to finish without reading something else in between.
Jr Christopher
I recommended the book to several friends hours after finishing the book.
Leslie Craigmyle

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

29 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Timothy Cleves on March 26, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I started Doug Fine's fun book at about 5:00 PM yesterday and finished it by bedtime while also cooking supper, bathing two children and having several meaningful conversations with my wife. It's a quick read, and better for it. I have read a couple of other books in the "What I did for year to help mother earth" genre of books and this one ranks up with Barbara Kingsolvers "Animal, Vegetable and Miracle."

Doug settles down in an isolated valley in New Mexico and begins his adventures in sustainable living by purchasing some goats on Craig's List, replacing the said Subaru of the title with a F250 vegetable oil powered diesel truck, and going substantially off-grid.

On the way we meet some interesting characters, hear a bit too much about Doug's libido and get some practical advice on living the good life. But don't buy this book if you are looking for a step-by-step instruction on how to set up a eco-friendly homestead. Instead Farewell, My Subaru offers a few recipes, some web site links to get more information, and a good deal of evidence that going through life with good karma really pays off.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Jamie Jackson on March 28, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This book was so entertaining and motivational that I ended up purchasing the audio book as well to accompany me on my morning commute. I finished it in a little less than 3 days and was sad to have it end. Much of what Doug spoke about are things I've thought about trying or things I've been putting off, but hearing his experiences and the hurdles he went through and the obstacles he overcame made me a little more confident and has motivated me to continue trying to increase the green in my life. Not only is this a good introduction of how to add more green into your life and perspective, it's a hilarious story that will keep you smiling throughout.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Paul C on April 2, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I just read Fine's book in an evening, the first time in my life I've read a book straight through without closing it once. FANTASTIC stuff. An informative and entertaining read -- Fine's eco-lifestyle spreads it's influence far and wide!!
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By todd shaffer on March 27, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I think this is a great book. It touches on many ideas and all in a humorous way. He pulls not punches and he discusses his success and failures. Hopefully everyone that has the chance to read this book will make one small change. We don't have to go whole hog like Doug. But every little step Helps.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Peter E. Kowalewski on April 3, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Like many of the others who have posted reviews, I was unable to stop reading this book once I opened it (even with three kids running around the house). Doug communicates his successes and failures at turning his ranch into a "carbon-neutral location" very well, often injecting humor into the whole process. The book is not a "how to" for becoming "self-sustaining" but provides factual information, on-line resources, as well as some great recipes to try out...I would highly recommend this book as well as Doug's previous book (Not Really An Alaskan Mountain Man).
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Leslie Craigmyle on April 7, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I loved reading "Farewell, My Subaru" and am pretty sure my husband immediately picked up when I finished. I recommended the book to several friends hours after finishing the book.

Doug Fine does a great job in relaying the first year of his adventures in living a greener life. The one suggestion I have for future editions is to put a reference for the boxed facts interspersed throughout the book.

I look forward to reading more of Doug's adventures!
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14 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Tomas Goodwin on November 28, 2008
Format: Hardcover
There are some truly entertaining anecdotes about trying to live an independent, green lifestyle. I have goats, and his escapades with them certainly ring true. But far too many other things detract from these highlights. Completely unsubstantiated gray fact boxes appear far too often. e.g. "Toyota's 2005 profits were $2.5 billion in 2005". And if it is true, who cares? -- it had nothing to do with the paragraphs it separated. Also there is a limit to the number of times I can tolerate ready such overly cute names as "LVOEsubee", "ROAT", and "Funky Butte Ranch" (which seemed to be on every other page).
He later writes of George Bush has a "coke-headed draft dodger". I guess the author thinks it is better get a quick laugh than to discuss issues. It was a short book, but it could have been made even shorter without subjecting to me hearing about the local women he has slept with --- it gives a new meaning to the word Locavore.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on July 31, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Having recently moved to New Mexico I made a pledge to support local authors by purchasing and reading their books.

I was introduced to Doug and his Fine and funny style through an article in my AAA Magazine. I immediately visited his website ([...] read the dispatches, and ordered the book via Amazon.

Most of my co-workers, friends, and family have heard large portions of the book since I tend to share the particularly funny portions aloud while they are attempting to do other things (like driving and watching TV).

I no longer read the book in public, though, as I got tired of having to explain the outbursts every third page.

Looking forward to more Fine and funny dispatches from the Funky Butte Ranch!

Leslie
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