Tuesday 19 July 2022

Taking Stock - Roger Morgan-Grenvillle - Book Review

I got asked a while a go on twitter if I fancied reading a new book coming out. There was no ties or conditions with it, so I agreed (after all my book addiction is only slightly cheaper than my problem with tools).

This one was Taking Stock - A journey among cows, by Roger Morgan-Grenville.  

It's funny timing as I've been listening to a lot of books while I work wood about writing, my other passion. One book I'm listening to is about the genre of "creative non-fiction" and I don't think I could pick a more perfect book that illustrates what that is than this one. The book is beautifully written and talks about the history of cows and their future in the 21st century woven in a story of a man trying to learn and experience more in the subject.

I found the way it was done was very compelling, he worked on a cattle farm while writing it, gaining first hand experience, as well as traveling around the country to find out more and what ends up on the page is easily digested. 

The history of the cow I found particular fascinating and there is some real soundbites I can pull from the book about how we've changed animals over time, one stayed with me - "Apart, perhaps, from the wolf, no animal has been asked to undergo so much change on man's behalf as the cow"

He also talks about the villainization of the cow and yet how important it has been to some rewilding projects. He talks about our hunger for beef but advocates self control over moving away from eating it completely. He talks about these conflicts and how it's not the cow's fault, they never deserved to live in the unnatural conditions some live in now. 

Basically he talks a lot of sense. 

If you have interest in the food system around you and it's future, in the history of our food and animals then I'd recommend this book as a great read. Well written and well rounded. 

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