Monday, June 17, 2013

Small Stories - Big Changes

 My brother, Lyle has his latest book out.  He is a real author with a real publisher.   I have reviewed his previous books Biodiesel Power, Small is Possible and Industrial Evolution.

The book is about sustainability and came the same day the NY Times ran an article on the mass forced movement of population from farms to cities in China.  What a contrast.

This book - Small Stories - Big Changes is actually a series of chapters - each written by different authors.   Lyle knits them all together.  Lyle is a great writer/story teller.  Doing the book this way did not let him get as much of his story telling out (although he did tell of going to a potluck with squirrel roadkill as his contribution - OK you really need to read it to get the full gist of it).

I like books written this way because you can put them down anytime and start a new chapter.  So it is like a series of short, self contained stories.  And of course I read it cover to cover in one sitting because it interested me.

I sense the book is meant to inspire and it does.  Each author tells of their own small part they do to help the environment and help create a sustainable world.   One quote from Mother Theresa was included which sums some of it up "We can do no great things - just small thing with great love".  And it is the small things that add up.

I worry that there can be a snobbery even in the sustainability world where people look down on others as "not being real green".  One of the authors tells of a government meeting where she was proud to have bought a Prius (this is what I drive too but I drive the Prius C so am even more friendly (See - I can snob too)) and one of the committee members was berating her for a Prius not really helping much.

Two of the chapters were written by family.  Glen, my brother, wrote about Sky Generation complete with the intrigue of the anti green Power Workers Union hiring a big PR firm to spread untruths about wind power and nuclear. 

My niece, Jessalyn, wrote about her Greenteam ad agency experiences.  Her chapter had some of the best humor - like her adventures looking for an apt in NYC and learning to ask the right questions like "does a 2 bedroom really mean 2 bedroom or do we have to buy a wall?" and "is the bathroom really separate or is it in one of the bedrooms?".

Of course I am biased but I think it is a great book.  Good work Lyle.

And blog posts from some companies I have invested in are interesting:

From Organimi

From Primal Fusion - a new Wordpress plugin(who always are incredibly insightful)


At 9:19 AM, Anonymous Tami Schwerin said...

Jim, wonderful review...I too love this book! I hope others will share their activist stories on Lyle's website:

At 9:32 AM, Anonymous Justin said...

Congrats to your brother! That's great.

At 9:10 PM, Anonymous David said...

Great review and congrats to your brother!


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