Right at the beginning of her published writing career, more years ago than she or I would like to remember, animal rights was something about which Linda Newbery was passionate. Run with the Hare took a fictional look at the topic. Her latest book is a serious discussion of the many areas of our lives that affect animals. It’s serious, thought-provoking and sometimes uncomfortable, but not difficult to read and engage with.

Linda is actively involved with organisations that care about environmental and animal issues. She has thought through how animal welfare impacts on the way she lives her life. In This Book is Cruelty Free she explains her choices and the way in which those choices have altered her lifestyle. However, she does not preach. Her mission here is to inform, and allow her readers to consider their own responses. She offers suggestions and ideas for making small changes and explains the hidden impact of some of our behaviour.

As you would expect from an author of Linda Newbery’s calibre, the writing here is stylish and accomplished as well as having clarity of expression. It is contained in a carefully designed package by Pavilion Books with illustrations, diagrams and helpful chapter divisions. And it is printed on responsibly sourced paper. It’s a book that you might read cover to cover but also one you might dip into, looking for information on a specific topic.

For anyone who cares about our planet, whatever their age, this is an excellent starting point and overview.

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