Many books today talk about real food (Animal Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver). There is much doom and gloom in some of those books. And despite their harsh realities, I still recommend you read them (anything by Michael Pollan, especially In Defense of Food, and An Omnivore’s Dilemma, also Eric Schlosser’s Fast Food Nation).
But there is a book that is not about the doom and gloom of the food industry. At least, it’s not the prevalent theme…not in my opinion. This book, Trauma Farm by Brian Brett, has snippets of the doom-and-gloom reality, but the basis of the book is about the small farmer. The joys, the beauty, the work, the animals, the weeds, always the weeds. But it’s also about cooking, and eating, and friends, and family, it’s about communities, and tractors, kids and health. It’s about life on a farm, debt and money (or lack of), and it’s about many humorous observations about the farm animals and their behaviour.
It is a wonderful read. It will make you happy, it will make you sad, it will make you shake your head in dismay, and it will make you burst out in laughter. The way the author describes the relationship between one of the geese and his horse….or the rambunctiousness of the puppy, the issues he has with the ram, there are many, many anecdotes about these animals, their life, their function and their death.
If you like food, if you care about where your food comes from, then I recommend you read this book.