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Ecohoic book review

  • Oct 29, 2009
I have made an effort the past few years to do my part, small though it may be, to be more environmentally aware and friendly in my daily life. I recycle most things, I do compost for my garden, I purchase more “green” products and try to buy locally and organically when possible. After reading Ecoholic: Your Guide to the Most Environmentally Friendly Information, Porducts & Services by Adria Vasil, I am now aware that there are so many simple and inexpensive ways to aid in a healthier environment not only for the planet but for my family.

Ms. Vasil is a columnist for Canada’s NOW magazine and has written a weekly “Ecoholic” column for five years. This book is a funny, easy to understand collection of the same ideas and insights included in her column. Ms. Vasil does not ask the you to run out and hug the nearest tree, donate your clothes and start knitting a hemp sweater or forgo bathing. She does provide quite a bit of eye-opening enlightenment which may make you examine your normal purchases and habits in a different light.

The book is divided into twelve sections such as home products, food, clothes, beauty, children and finances. Each section covers quite an array of material but the writing is to the point and gives an overview of both the bad and the good.  Ms. Vasil explains what toxins are in make-up or cleaning products and she is not afraid to name names (as in name brands) of those that are guilty as well as highlighting those manufacturers that are taking some steps to make their products a little safer. She is also honest with the “good” products as well. When discussing nail polish and nail polish removers, she mentions one brand of remover that is 100% soy- and corn-based. Great except for the massive headache it caused. Since regular nail polish remover causes my eyes to water and sinuses to freeze, I would probably look into the natural remover. I may still have the headache but I don’t have to worry about the dogs or cats accidentally knocking over the bottle and sneaking a taste. I enjoyed the quick pace of this book. It was not full of extraneous information, history or examples. It is more like a field guide then an encyclopedia. This also means there is not much in the way of explaining from where Ms. Vasil found her information or many details as to exactly why something is not green. Short, simple and humorous is the name of the game. And it works.

Yes, lurking in your cozy abode are some serious pollutants that can make the indoor air quality in a house worse than a smog-alert day. They’re hiding in your cookware, cleaning products, coffee table, and candles. They’re even building up in household dust (which is a problem when you dust as infrequently as I’ve been known to) and settling in your tissues. (page 162)

The index at the end of the book is wonderful as is the glossary and a list of national environmental organizations. Ecoholic is not a bible for environmentalism. It is an everyday reference tool, fun to read and easy to implement.

I not only had a great time reading this book, the website is fantastic! There is a link to Ms. Vasil’s NOW column as well as the Echolic facebook group,  a weekly podcast, episodes of Ecoholic TV, updates to information in the book, and a list of “kick ass websites”.

I would like to thank Julie from FSB associates for giving me the opportunity to read this enlightening book. I certainly learned a thing or two or three.
Ecohoic book review

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October 30, 2009
Wonderful review! I'm uber intrigued by the name of the book, and even moreso after reading your review. Thanks for sharing! :)
October 30, 2009
Thank you so much for this review! I'll have to check out the book, or at least the website. This review fits very well within the Green Living community on Lunch. So next time if you are sharing something similar it would be great if you tag it with 'green living' (in the right wiki column, I did it for you this time). That way all Lunchers will be able to find it in that community. Thanks again for sharing such a great book!
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Member Since: Aug 14, 2009
Last Login: Apr 24, 2010 07:05 PM UTC
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