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Time to Eat the Dog?: The Real Guide to Sustainable Living Paperback – 15 Jun 2009

3.4 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Thames and Hudson Ltd; 01 edition (15 Jun. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0500287902
  • ISBN-13: 978-0500287903
  • Product Dimensions: 16.5 x 22.9 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 785,657 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Customer reviews

Top customer reviews

Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Not a bad read, but for me something to dip in and out of.I found some of the facts both surprising and interesting, how ecological is it to use a dishwasher, for example, or what impact keeping our two dogs has, but overall it's a bit too dry and fact and figures heavy to sit down and read. Good if you want some facts to back up your argument on The Guardian or Daily Mail websites or for students of the subject, but not an easy read.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
`Time to Eat the Dog: The Real Guide to Sustainable Living' is an in-depth and accessible look at sustainable living in everyday life and it is written in a way that is relevant to most households. This looks at topics as diverse as food, transport, buildings, home appliances, leisure activities, work and rites of passage (like weddings and funerals). Having read many environmental and ecological books I've found most to be quite vague, excessively alarmist, overly new age, timid to acknowledge climate change or a combination of the above. This book, however, seems to be based on sound science and whilst academic in scope it is firmly aimed at a wider audience. Some of the facts and future projections make for sobering reading and although this isn't bright and breezy, it most certainly is pertinent. There are plenty of tables, charts, figures and calculations to illustrate the various points being made, mostly from respected sources which are cited in an extensive note section at the back. In fact this is one small point that this book loses points for, the sheer amount of calculations that are included in the text break up the flow of the book and could quite have easily been added into the note section for those who want to explore them in greater depth but don`t want to trawl through them as part of the main text. Thankfully, after the glut of information offered in each chapter, each one ends with a succinct conclusion, discussion point or list of things to do. This clarifies each chapter and leaves you thinking about changes you can apply in your own life. Even if you make a few changes based on the knowledge you glean from this book then it will be of value and if you are interested in reading about sustainability then this is a pretty good place to explore first.

Feel free to check out my blog which can be found on my profile page.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This is not a light, jolly through the joys of sustainable living - don't think 'This Morning series'.

Rather this is a detailed look at the pros and cons of how we live, have lived & could live our lives. Everything is broken into the facts and figures for example how much energy and resources are used to make a dishwasher, dishwasher tablets, vs washing up liquid, sinks, & bowls, vs soap flakes etc then the energy used to actually perform the task at hand (washing up in this case) to decide what is more 'sustainable' this goes right down to the food we eat to give us energy to do the task & what we ould grow in how much space to provide the food...

If you've ever watched a 'this morning' style section and wondered, if, really, when you worked it all out...but couldn't be bothered to work it out for yourself, then this is the book for you.

Everything is referenced and it's truly fascinating and highly detailed. it's a book that I'll take tips from it now - I'm all up for a wormery - and go back later to get more info most likely when I see something else that brings me back to wondering...sadly I wont follow all of the most sustainable ideas right away (I do feel bad about that) but I think over the next few years I'll build up to many of them.

I highly recommend this book for any environmentalist or would be and for those on 'the other side' too.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
A tedious, dry read which wants to reduce the entire concept of sustainability to the nuts and bolts of carbon production/reduction which is a long way from the core principles. Sustainability is far more muddied and grey than this black and white list-book seems to suggest. For the first few dips, it's intermittently fascinating but eventually very repetitive! It reads more like a doctoral thesis than a book intended for mass/popular consumption, it's certainly not what the cover blurb would suggest which is a nuts and bolts, how-to guide to everyday sustainability.

As a reference book, I would think it could be a useful carbon-figures guide for academics. As a general-reader guide, I found it annoying and lacking.
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By Stu VINE VOICE on 15 July 2009
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
It's obvious to many that we are at a point in the human story where we need to to make some serious decisions. An exponentially growing population striving to reach the levels of attainment enjoyed in the developed world is just not feasible. Indeed as is pointed out in this book the products of at least three Earths would be needed for everyone to live the way the modern American does. In order to make our decisions we are going to need to base them on sound evidence, this is what Robert and Brenda Vale have set out to do and they have succeeded admirably.

There is a lot of well-referenced and researched material here, presented accessibly in a clear and straight-forward manner. In keeping there arguments convincing the authors' have gone into a lot of detail; you'll need to be prepared to work a little to get the most out this book. That's not to say that reading this is a chore, not at all, rather we're encouraged to engage with what's presented and draw our own conclusions.

Much of the information is in the form of tables and figures, all of which are easy to read and often illustrate a point much more succinctly than the text. In fact these tables and figures are so good I wish there had been more of them to help with every eventuality. Of course that would have created a ridiculously long book (not to mention self-defeating).

At heart this is an optimistic book because it shows us we can be better. If we heed the authors' advice we can begin to avert real disaster before it's too late.
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