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Publishers WeeklyWith the assumption that "many of us have a false sense of security... assuming that technology will prevail or that some government agency will bail us out in a crisis," this extensive guide gives detailed, down-to-earth advice on what to do when disaster strikes, be it a house fire, an ice storm or biological terrorism. Aided by charmingly retro illustrations vaguely reminiscent of a 1940s air raid brochure, Harrison (Another Place at the Table) presents her "OAR" system for preparedness—organizing, acquiring and rotating supplies—and techniques to safely and even comfortably survive any kind of emergency. She shows how to prepare for a short-term crisis: building a supply of food and water; preparing first aid and evacuation kits; planning communication and a family meeting place in times of crisis. She also presents long-term strategies for self-sufficiency: "eliminating debt and securing a supply of cash in your home"; planting a garden, canning food and making cheese; replacing an inefficient fireplace with a woodstove; building a solar oven. Harrison shows that learning to do it yourself, besides providing some security in an increasingly insecure world, brings less obvious but perhaps equally important benefits: "an incredible sense of self-sufficiency and independence." And pointing out that family preparedness can build community, she reminds readers, "crisis can bring out the best in people, or the worst. Strive to be one of the good guys."
(Publishers Weekly, August 2008)