Short reviews for two short books given to me by Danny. "Dirt-CHeap Survival Retreat" and "Rancho Costa Nada."
Dirt Cheap Survival Retreat - M.D. Creekmore
This book was written by a man who lost everything to his ex wife in divorce. To make ends meet he decided to live in a trailer and go off the grid. The book is VERY practical with charts, diagrams, how-to's, and is also very clearly written. It is also very thorough covering everything from electricity to food storage to security. Aside from the background as to how the author ended up in a trailer, there really isn't a story here in this book as it really is just a how-to manual. I personally liked it a lot in that it was succinct and to the point. A small book that would help to have in your bugout bag, I highly recommend it, especially for the price. M.D.'s site can be found here.
Rancho Costa Nada- Phil Garlington
Rancho Costa Nada is the philosophical flip side of "Dirt Cheap Survival Retreat." The author who is terminally unemployable finds a scrap of land in the Californian desert and basically builds a shack he can live in for free. While there are some elements of "how-toism" the majority of the book is the philosophy of living a minimalistic lifestyle, going off the grid, psychological freedom from the daily grind and a general criticism of people self-stuck in the rat race. This makes for good reading, but it will become very obvious to the reader why this man is unemployed - he lacks focus, structure and organization in his writing (things needed in his former profession as a journalist). By the middle of the book it basically becomes a rambling and repeats itself. The first half is great, but by the middle you're like "OK, DUDE! I GOT IT! FINE, FREEDOM! UNDERSTOOD!" The first half is worth the read and excerpts from "The Crazy Veteran" are also good, but you will get the gist of the book without having to read the whole thing. You can find his website here.