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Scribner (2013-04-09)
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Self-help, personal development & practical advice


The Ultimate Guide to Simplifying Your Life by Reducing Your Waste

by Johnson, Bea

This is an inspirational story of how Bea Johnson transformed her family’s life for the better by reducing their waste to an astonishing one liter per year. The book offers a practical, step-by-step guide that gives readers tools and tips to diminish their footprint and simplify their lives.

Many of us have contemplated changing our daily habits to limit our impact on the environment. But where to begin? And how? Bea Johnson, who has been profiled in The New York Times and on the Today show, has been sharing with readers waste-reducing tips and the story of how she transformed her family’s health, finances, and relationships for the better in various magazines and TV shows as well as through her fast-growing blog,

In her first book, Zero Waste Home, Bea Johnson shares the story of how she and her family have dramatically improved their lives by reducing their waste. Not only do they now have more time together as a family now, but they’ve also cut their annual spending by a remarkable 40 percent, and they are healthier than they've ever been, both emotionally and physically.

Packed with easy, sustainable tips that even the busiest people can adopt, the book also offers practical guidance that will give readers the tools they need to simplify their own lives—from bringing jars to the store to stock up on bulk items to exfoliating with oatmeal and to cleaning mildew with hydrogen peroxide rather than toxic store-bought cleansers.

Appealing, stylish, and completely relatable, Zero Waste Home offers an overall lifestyle plan that will help readers to improve their overall health, save money and time, and achieve a brighter future for their families—and the planet. UNIQUELY COMBINES ECO-FRIENDLINESS WITH STYLE: French-born American Bea Johnson brings style and grace to a world heretofore associated with granola and unpleasant odors. This book can reach an audience who may have felt that green living was unavailable to them because they didn't want to make the kinds of grim compromises historically associated with going green. Bea illustrates that living sustainably does not mean forfeiting comfort or style.

After Bea's neighbor profiled her in the New York Times in 2010, major media came calling unsolicited. Her family has been profiled in People magazine and on the Today show. She's shared tips on The View.

Bea Johnson has built a passionate and growing community on her blog The blog's fast-growing popularity has an international readership and has garnered significant media attention, with peaks of up to fifteen thousand visitors in a single day. The blog's active forum of users already advocate and support Bea's footprint-diminishing lifestyle. In addition, the Zero Waste Home has a solid following on Facebook and Twitter.

Zero Waste Home is packed with easy tips for sustainable living that even the busiest people can integrate. From exfoliating with oatmeal and cancelling your phone directories to cleaning mildew with hydrogen peroxide and using your plants as air fresheners, this book is full of quick takeaways for anyone interested in reducing their footprint.

Bea shows readers they don't have to go off the grid or give up every creature comfort to make a change and that small changes can make a difference (and not incidentally, save money) by relying on the 5 Rs: Refusing (what we do not need), Reducing (what we do need), Reusing (what we consume), Recycling (what we cannot refuse, reduce or reuse), and Rotting (composting what remains). From making your own mustard to alternatives to going through a roll of toilet paper every morning to packing kids' lunches waste-free, Bea makes these choices appealing and fun.

This is not a book about buying more products. There have been some marked successes in this category on the practical side, and there is a proven market for books that address sustainable living. Many books out there focus on buying green products. This book, on the other hand, hews to one of the core principles of sustainability: consume less. Bea helps readers to find double duty in items already in the home or to buy used and reusable.

Bea makes green look good. And the fascination with the lifestyles of the French continues unabated. From French Women Don't Get Fat to Bringing Up Bebe, women have a boundless interest in how French women do it. Bea's poised to be the French-born spokesperson for creating a simple, sustainable lifestyle---and doing it stylishly.

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UK: Penguin French: Editions Les Arenes Korean: Chungrim

Quote: Client

Before, it was tree-hugging hippies who washed and reused their produce bags and packed waste-free. Zero Waste is now a lifestyle and a stylish one!

Quote: Chance Claxton, Kids Conserve

Johnson has emerged as a guru for people looking to take green living to a new level.

Quote: Sean O'Driscoll, Associated Press.

While we all want to help the planet, the "green" trend has become so ubiquitous that it can feel overwhelming … Let Bea Johnson be your guide.

Quote: Nichol Nelson, Slashfood

f you are a diehard environmentalist, you may be familiar with the name Bea Johnson ... It won’t be long before she becomes a household name.

Quote: Kelly Bevan McIlquham, The Advocate

We can all learn by [the Johnsons’] example.

Quote: Natalie Morales, The Today Show

I am fascinated by the Johnson family and their minimalist living … I am inspired to be thoughtful in my choices.

Quote: Katie Tamony, Sunset Magazine Editor-in-Chief

I have always been an environment conscious person and have been doing my part towards a green living; however, the talk by Bea opened a whole world of possibilities for me to do more. Her work and efforts have become new inspiration for me.

Quote: Adobe Systems employee

Minimalist porn doesn’t get much juicier than, Bea Johnson’s blog about her unbelievably pristine, junk-free home... My reaction was sheer inspiration, and deep respect for someone who’s doing a lot of walking the talk. I admire her spirit of generosity toward the planet.

Quote: Bethany, blogger

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