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Radio Free Vermont: A Fable of Resistance Hardcover – November 7, 2017
"Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress"
Is the world really falling apart? Is the ideal of progress obsolete? Cognitive scientist and public intellectual Steven Pinker urges us to step back from the gory headlines and prophecies of doom, and instead, follow the data: In seventy-five jaw-dropping graphs, Pinker shows that life, health, prosperity, safety, peace, knowledge, and happiness are on the rise. Learn more
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“Is it a surprise that the debut novel from one of our best-known environmental activists focuses on grassroots resistance? In backwoods Vermont, two radicals use an underground radio show to recruit people interested in seceding from the United States. What follows is a zany, witty, and altogether timely imagination of modern resistors.” – The Millions
"Timely..provoctative entertainment...McKibben's book may well be the lost sequel to Edward Abbey's The Monkey Wrench Gang..." – Kirkus Reviews
“rollicking…With a playful and quick-moving plot that belies the seriousness of the book’s environmental and political message, McKibben’s stirring call for recognizing the value and power of smallness in a globalized world makes for a vital and relevant fable.” –Publishers Weekly
“Radio Free Vermont is a charming bit of artisanal resistance lit…what’s surprising is how well-crafted the book is overall; how unhokey its folksiness feels, and how true it’s observations ring.”–Jennifer Senior, The New York Times
“In a time when smart comedy is essential to survival, McKibben’s shrewdly uproarious and provocative fable of resistance is exhilarating.” –Booklist (starred review)
“Only Bill McKibben could set out to write his first novel and produce an addictive caper loaded with craft beer, contract spies, and chase scenes on cross-country skis! This is James-Bond-meets-A-Prairie-Home-Companion and no one but McKibben could pull it off. He does it with such heart, grace, wisdom and fun that I just couldn't put it down. A story as outrageous as our times.”
–Naomi Klein, author of The Shock Doctrine
"What a delicious pleasure to read Radio Free Vermont - a weird and utterly joyous if sometimes hair-raising romp through the dark Wonderland of life under Trump. Bill McKibben is a brilliant storyteller, and I love this book, which is balm for our troubled times."
–Jay Parini, author of The Last Station
“I hope no one secedes, but I also hope that Americans figure out creative ways to resist injustice and create communities where everybody counts. We've got a long history of resistance in Vermont and this book is testimony to that fact.”
"A lean, fantastical, swift-kick-in-the-pants of a read, Radio Free Vermont may not save the world — but it succeeds wildly in making the formidable prospect of resistance feel a bit more fun." –NPR.org
"A little comic story with a big political message" –The Washington Post
“In a time when many Americans feel alienated from the machinery of government, [this] is a message worth taking seriously.” –Book Page
“If busting loose from Washington sounds like a good idea to you, [RFV] makes for fun reading.” –Oustide
“A stirring reminder of the importance of loving our home, working with the people around us to figure out what we want that home to look like in the future, and then fighting for that vision.” –The Christian Science Monitor
“A delightful romp.” –The Buffalo News
“A witty tour de force.” –The Addison County Independent
About the Author
Bill McKibben is an author and environmentalist. His 1989 book The End of Nature is regarded as the first book for a general audience about climate change, and has appeared in 24 languages; he's gone on to write a dozen more books, including Eaarth and Oil and Honey. He is a founder of 350.org, the first planet-wide, grassroots climate change movement, which launched the fast-growing fossil fuel divestment movement. McKibben lives in Vermont.
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HOWEVER, I must admit I found the book to be playful and fun. The inclusion of nearly every micro-brew made in Vermont along with every character owning a Subaru (Enviro Group Think--I just bought one) is self-depracating and laugh out loud funny. In these dark days when Enviros don't have all that much to laugh about, this book brightened my spirits. It is poorly written, implausible, preachy---but ultimately, in the Age of Trump, worth reading. Sometimes something bad can be good. Plus we haven't had any decent Environmental fiction since Abbey created the genre in the 70's. We still don't have any decent Enviro fiction---with the exception of Ecotopia.