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The Vegan Book of Permaculture: Recipes for Healthy Eating and Earthright Living Paperback – December 29, 2014
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“Both inspirational and practical, this book offers us an edible pathway to an ethical and tasty future. The fruit of decades of earth-right living, its presentation of a low-impact delicious diet is relevant to all diners and might inform every plate we eat.”--James Piers Taylor, Permaculture Association Trustee
“Graham’s much awaited book is far more than just being about permaculture for vegans. Within you’ll find in-depth information about creating an ecological and abundant lifestyle that applies to us all. Woven in between the diverse topics are a multitude of tasty vegan recipes that Graham has fine-tuned over the years. As a 30-year vegan myself, I’m looking forward to trying them out and delighted to finally see this long-vacant niche being filled so well. Great job, Graham!”--Aranya, permaculture teacher & author of Permaculture Design
“In his inimitable maverick fashion, Graham Burnett has jumbled together the pragmatism of Permaculture with the DIY ethos of punk, and come up with an essential and practical guidebook for anyone even remotely interested in the true nature of cultural (r)evolution. So, if you’re looking to ‘get a life’, this would be as good a start as any – now’s the time.”--Penny Rimbaud, Performer, philosopher, writer, and founder of the band/collective, Crass
About the Author
Graham Burnett teaches permaculture and works with projects and organizations including Comic Relief, Capital Growth, Bioregional, Naturewise, OrganicLea, Birmingham Decoy, Trust Links, Green Adventure, the Vegan Organic Network, Thrive, Ars Terra (Los Angeles), and Ekosense Ecovillage (Croatia), as well as a number of Transition Town initiatives. In addition to cultivating his own garden and allotments, Graham contributes to publications as diverse as Positive News, The Sunday Times, Permaculture Magazine, Permaculture Activist, New Leaves, The Raven, Growing Green, Funky Raw, The Vegan, and The Idler.
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Top customer reviews
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This book was started when the author, Graham Burnett, was asked by Maddy Harland of Permanent Publications to write a vegan recipe book, but somewhere along the line the project grew into something a little bigger. It still has plenty of recipes, but now they tend to form the final section of the chapters. There is also a comprehensive index to the recipes, reflecting their importance in the book.
The layout of the book is fairly typical for a basic permaculture text, with an introductory chapter followed by chapters pertaining to the various permaculture zones, starting with a surprisingly in-depth chapter on Personal Health and Effectiveness to represent Zone 00, and working right through the other zones and finally back (or is it round?) to the final chapter, Coming Full Circle – The Power of Community. I should also mention the rather delightful line drawings which reflect the author's gentle and unassuming outlook on life.
I've read a lot of vegan literature, and was vegan myself for several years before my son was born and my hormones and blood sugars went haywire and I felt I had to resort to eating animal products so I could keep my blood sugars stable. I can honestly say that this is the only vegan or plant-based book I have read so far that doesn't seem to be a thinly veiled attempt to brainwash you into joining some sort of cult. Quite the opposite in fact. I found the book very positive, enabling and encouraging without a hint of the 'preachy-ness' that I've come to expect every time I tentatively reach for anything with the word 'vegan' in the title. Graham Burnett has been described as the Godfather of London Permaculture, and his style of writing reflects his caring and unassuming outlook on life, gently guiding you through everything you need to know without ever sounding preachy or dogmatic. There is a definite feel of having been written from a London perspective, but the depth of Graham's knowledge and experience shines through and this book will find a place on vegan bookshelves anywhere around the world. I also think it deserves a place on the bookshelf of any permaculturists who might have vegan friends who would be uncomfortable reading about the animal systems discussed in other permaculture texts, so they can lend it out to them.
Having said that, it is an introductory book. If you're already into permaculture it might not offer you enough new information to become your 'go to' book. The only book I know of that might fill that gap is Growing Green: Animal-Free Organic Techniques by Jenny Hall and Iain Tolhurst. I'm still trying to get my hands on a copy of that. It appears to be aimed at farm-scale organic agriculture rather than permaculture, but looks like it might complement The Vegan Book of Permaculture quite well. I'll do a write-up when I can.
In short, The Vegan Book of Permaculture fills a much needed gap, but I also feel that there are gaps still to be filled and I very much hope that someone, somewhere will take up the gauntlet and produce a more in-depth treatise on the subject. In the meantime, and despite Graham's gentle, un-preachy ways, I'm busy experimenting introducing more meat-free days into life, brushing up on the latest research in plant-based nutrition, and gradually reverting towards the vegan I once was and no doubt will become again.