Book review: A Greener Life by Clarissa Dickson Wright and Johnny Scott


I found this book humorous but practical.  It’s sprinkled with anecdotes of interesting people that Ms. Dickson Wright has lived with and of her childhood as a “poor little rich girl” seeing more of the family servants and their work than her socialite mother.  She also interjects fascinating bits of trivia here and there, such as “Lest you should think that candle making is just a hippie thing to do, you should know that the world’s fifth largest yacht is owned by a candle maker and is called Paraffin.” [pg 146]

Overall a fun and well-illustrated read with plenty of good advice, but not your go-to resource.  (I’m pretty sure that the authors are well aware of the existence of John Seymour’s work and hold no illusions about being able to replace him.)  I picked up plenty of vegetable gardening tips, a few good recipes, and was introduced to a few new possibilities (Linen made from nettles?  Hmm . . .).  My only hesitation about giving this book a rousing endorsement is small: they recommend lunar gardening, something I don’t believe in.

The book covers most of the usual self-sufficiency topics, but with less emphasis on alternative energy and (because one half of the writing team is a food writer) more on making and keeping food.

— Amanda


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