Saturday, December 19, 2009

Best Books of 2009: Green Metropolis

It's that time of year again, and your friendly neighborhood librarians are eager to tell you about the best books of 2009. Here is Erin with a review of her favorite book of the year.

While my favorite book of the year might actually be The Big Burn (click for review), Green Metropolis by David Owen takes the prize for knocking the wind out of my sails and turning my entire worldview upside down. His central premise is that Manhattan is inherently sustainable and environmentally friendly - at least when compared with the rest of that nation. Surely, this is absurd and illogical? Owen makes some incredibly persuasive arguments on why this is the case, and why urban planners, architects and home owners often get it wrong. He even managed to take to task one of my favorite authors, Michael Pollan, and cause me to rethink a few things in the process. Kudos, sir. Owen's writing is clear and accessible and the topic is fascinating. Green Metropolis blends so many fields of study - environmentalism, behavioral psychology, economics, and more - that there may be something here for almost anyone.

No comments: