Monday, 14 January 2013

Book Review - Veganissimo A to Z

I have an advance copy of this book which is available for pre-order right now, for a February 5th 2013 release date. I am glad I have a copy as after reading it through I really do feel it is a great resource to have on your shelves.

The book is an updated, English language, US focused, version of a German book - which lists pretty much every food (and not just food) additive / ingredient available, and shows the source of each - you can see at a glance whether the ingredient is from an animal, plant, mineral, or if it is synthetic or microbial. Where varying sources exist these are all noted - enabling the individual to make the call as to whether they will contact the manufacturer for more information, or decide to consume or otherwise.

The introductory sections are short and provide a brief how-to of the book, however there are extensive sections at the back of the book which look at issues such as product labelling (Part 2), touch on vegan alternatives (Part 3) and supply a resource section (Part 4). The book is very much a reference book, and does read a little like a text book you'd have from school, but really, that is what it is so the tone and style is appropriate.

The book is full of information which is handy to both new and "older" vegans so is suitable for all! One caveat though, reading through you do get an overwhelming sensation of how pervasive animal ingredients are in every single part of modern life, and this could be a little depressing for some people - and as the book is written as a reference book there is not a balance of "do what you can as you can" or "control what you can control and don't beat yourself up over what you can't" type statements, which I personally feel every vegan needs to bear in mind so as not to become completely discouraged. I do believe that the little steps everyone takes every day do make a difference, and that used in the manner it is written, this book will enable more people to make those little differences which add up to big differences.


Carla said...

I received the following in an email from the author, and to provide a fair playing field thought I would share it - with his permission, here. Carla

Dear Carla,

first of all I would like to thank you for your positive review of Veganissimo A to Z! I hope others will find the book as helpful as I gather you have. As this is my first foray into the North American book market, I appreciate any feedback and am excited to see how things develop from here

Second, I would like to touch on your caveat regarding there not being a balance of doing what you can and not getting too uptight about what you can’t. I can understand why you see it that way, as it is true that we have written the book as a reference work. However, I would like to point out the first page of the introduction (page ) and especially the closing remarks on page 288, in which we have addressed just that aspect, especially in the closing remarks. True, those are “only” two of some 320 pages in the book, but I thought it worth a mention that we haven’t left that aspect entirely unaddressed. And I certainly hope that the main effect of the book will be empowerment and not despondency!

Kind regards,

Reuben Proctor

Blog Mas Acep said...

Very interesting book. I'll have to see if our library has it in the system Blog Mas Acep

Obat Herbal Asam Urat said...

This book really caught my attention