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As the author points out within the piece, I picked up this book with the expectation that it would be a straightforward case for vegetarianism. I'm pleased to find out that I was wrong. Of the handful of books I've read on the subject of animal agriculture and food production, this has been by far the most even-handed. Does he have an agenda? Sure. What writer doesn't? But he is relatively fair in its delivery. For example, within books of this type, it's exceedingly rare to find a well-written, logically-convincing, morally-reasonable passage written from the point of view of someone in the meat industry. There were multiple in Eating Animals, which I appreciated. I'm willing to listen to anyone who can present a PETA activist, a normal citizen, a local farmer and an industrial agriculture businessman within the space of 50 pages, and allow each of them to sound equally reasonable (albeit in very different ways).
My only problem with this book was the narration. I'm relatively new to audiobooks -- I've read fewer than a dozen. I thought perhaps it was just my inexperience in the medium that made this narration so jarring to me. The narrator has unnaturally long pauses between words and sometimes seems to emphasize the wrong word within a sentence. It makes it harder to listen to. That said, if you're genuinely interested in the topic, the narration shouldn't be enough to deter you from reading this book -- the writing was strong enough to make up for the poor delivery, in my opinion.
19 of 20 people found this review helpful
The author does a fine job here presenting the information in a well thought out and balanced way. Yes we have heard many of these horror stories about the factory farms and slaughter houses before and yet Jonathan Safran Foer presents all this in a provocative and dare I say friendly tone. This book actually caused me not only to think more about options but motivated me to make changes in the ways in which our household eats meat.
At first listening to thiese atrocities I felt powerless because we are meat lovers. We are not going to choose to become vegetarian yet I can no longer buy these factory farmed animal products.
Listening to this book has reminded me to be a better consumer. If we are going to eat meat we better be prepared to pay more for locally grown meats that come from small farms where the animals are treated kindly and in a humane fashion. I now am going to find out where the local slaughter houses are and be sure that any meats we consume are slaughtered in a humane way. So although this book was not fun or at all enjoyable I am glad I had a listen and I truly thank this author for reminding us to do the right thing and support our local family farms and encourage these farms to treat their stock with dignity and decency. This book was a difficult yet interesting listen, well worth the credit.
15 of 16 people found this review helpful