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The Accidental Farmers: An urban couple, a rural calling and a dream of farming in harmony with Nature

3.66  ·  Rating Details  ·  301 Ratings  ·  47 Reviews
When Tim and Liz Young decided to leave their comfortable suburban life and become first-time farmers in rural Georgia, they embarked on a journey that would change their lives. The Accidental Farmers reveals how the couple learned that hamburgers, bacon, and eggs don't come from the supermarket but from real animals that forge emotional bonds with their human caretakers. ...more
Kindle Edition, 264 pages
Published (first published February 7th 2011)
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Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara KingsolverThe Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael PollanThis Changes Everything by Naomi KleinThe Systems View of Life by Fritjof CapraThe Ecological Rift by John Bellamy Foster
best sustainability
33rd out of 182 books — 223 voters
Cradle to Cradle by William McDonoughThe Urban Homestead (Expanded & Revised Edition) by Kelly CoyneThe Giving Tree by Shel SilversteinSilent Spring by Rachel CarsonThe Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan
Being "Green"
42nd out of 267 books — 188 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,200)
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Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
This type book is generally my very favorite subject matter. Now I don't want to read a homesteading book for awhile. The author comes across as condescending to any other ideas other than his own. He even uses the 3rd person approach when talking about cheesemaking. Oh come on please.
I live in Georgia so I was very excited when I discovered this book and now I'm just shaking my head. I DO know farming is hard, but just to let animals die to strengthen the breed??? Then I proceeded to look up h
Jul 22, 2012 Edie rated it liked it
This book is a mixed bag. The writing is pretty bad, but I forgive him because he is not a writer - he's a corporate exec turned farmer. I'm totally fascinated by the story of city people turning to farming... in any form, really. This is a very personal story, and I admire how bare and honest it is. Tim and his wife Liz made a lot of boneheaded mistakes as they dove head-first into farming with zero experience, and it's interesting to read and learn from their mistakes as well as their successe ...more
Feb 20, 2011 Toni rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was a fantastic read. This author really opened up and shared the good, the bad and the ugly about his (and his wife's) transition from corporate suburban couple to sustainable farmers. Loved the authenticity.

When I started the book, I very quickly fell into the "man, I would love to be a farmer" mindset. By the time I finished, I knew I was not cut out for it. But I am incredibly grateful that some people are. Some parts of Young's life are very enviable. Primarily, cheesemaking! But
Oct 24, 2015 Emily rated it it was ok
Shelves: memoir
This book gave me whiplash. It started out with a great story, a lot of inspiration and humor, and great ideals. Then it got dark - and not necessarily in the way the author warned the reader about. Yes, farming/homesteading involves illness, death, and and unfortunate circumstances. But this book descended rapid from the lofty heights of the charming first half to a ugly, featureless plain – I felt like I was a psychiatrist listening to the author defend his methods with the same arguments over ...more
Jim Maroon
Feb 23, 2013 Jim Maroon rated it liked it

I enjoyed this book. I had a couple of problems with it, but my favorite chapter by far was the one where the author detailed his travails. Farming is very difficult, and sustainable farming is incredibly difficult.

Those who criticize the authors for their treatment of animals are off the mark. Withholding artificial props such as chemical wormers and antibiotics is scientifically sound, if you goal is to create a sustainable farm. It is no different from withholding chemical fertilizer and inse
Julie p
Nov 04, 2012 Julie p rated it it was ok
Although I loved that this book was so informing regarding farming culture, I felt that the tone of the language to be a bit self righteous and condescending. It is always interesting to read about couples that take the deep step from a nine to five into self employment, and for that i give the authors kudos. I felt that this book was a little more about creating a good marketing campaign about farming then it was an honest retelling of life on the farm. That is not to say that the book was not ...more
Dec 14, 2014 Allison rated it did not like it
I'm done. I give up and couldn't finish it. The immature writing style and atrocious editing alone were enough to discourage me, but I was interested enough in the subject matter that I kept pushing through. Eventually though, his condescending tone and arrogance in his approach to people, crop management, and animal husbandry were ... painful. His inept and grasping, failed, attempts at learning from his mistakes became too much to keep reading about, especially after he had revealed that he ha ...more
Sep 29, 2014 Lane rated it it was ok
This book is one of the better stories of how an urban person rediscovers the agricultural life. I would have rated it higher but for the large number of misstatements and wrong information about agriculture in general. His bias against "factory" farming is not supporting of his position of improving the environment and food supply. I have cousins who are farming the farm our great-grandfather started 156 years ago. The farm has not disappeared due to the horrors of today's agriculture.
Among the
Bruce King
Oct 31, 2014 Bruce King rated it did not like it
UPDATE 10-30-2014. Tim has put natures harmony farm and the cheese business he's promoting now up for sale.

Guess that answers the question about sustainability.
Tim and Liz Young have a lot to say about farming; they've blogged, they've done interviews,and they've done a podcast and even tried starting a farming/homesteading forum called farm-dreams. This is a review of the book that they wrote about their farmi
I was fascinated by Tim and Liz Young's sudden life change as they gave up the city for the country. As the title describes, they seemed to 'accidentally' fall into farming, since, once they had purchased 72 acres they really had no idea what to do next. Having given up their careers, becoming farmers seemed the logical choice.

There are hints that Liz would rather homestead, and live off the land, living as she says 'like a hermit'. Tim gently pushes on into the farming life--specifically, raisi
Sep 24, 2012 Francis rated it it was amazing
Holy pun intended! I'm in the midst of reading this book a second time. The beginning chapters tell how this urban couple picked up and moved from the city (Atlanta) to the middle of nowhere and began farming, without ANY experience. Not content to just grow lettuce, they took on every imaginable livestock species...cows, pigs, chickens (meat and laying), ducks, geese, sheep, name it and returned them all to their natural environments. That's when everything got interestin ...more
Dec 04, 2015 Jill rated it it was amazing
"The Accidental Farmers" is a very entertaining and informative tale of a couple who gave up their careers and high lifestyle to go "back to the earth". As the author wrote,"...our Green Acres story is one of love. Mainly love for each other and a deep desire to have a life where we could spend all of our time together and not be in separate jobs, but also ur passion for animals and nature." They quit their jobs, sold their suburban home, and moved to a remote farm in Georgia, without any prior ...more
Mar 19, 2014 Greydrakkon rated it liked it
I waffled between 3 and four stars but settled on three for a few reasons.

The author is a type A personality that had spent most of his life in business, so he is very much the kind of person who gets the gist of things, llots a general course, asks himself if it's feasable and plows ahead. That outlook affected the writing of the book, in that it could have used a good editor. Not that there were many errors (I only caught three) but in the shifts of time, insertion of blog posts, and overall
Sylvia Walker
If natural farming involves treating animals with the level of cruelty displayed in this book, I suggest we look for another, more humane, model. For example, when a flock of his heritage turkeys became so ill that the swelling of the sides of their faces literally caused their eyes to pop out of their sockets, nothing was done to lighten their suffering, as nothing had been done to prevent the illness in the first place. These birds had been pre-sold for customers' Thanksgiving dinner, so there ...more
Apr 11, 2013 Beth rated it it was ok
I would have liked this more had it been a little less preachy and a little more book rather than an advertisement to read their blog. I'm really torn on how I feel about how they handle their animals. I see the point, but it does seem cruel too.
Jul 08, 2011 Leslie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Interesting book and while this is one of my favorite subjects, I didn't like that more than half the book was old blog posts - made me wonder why I bothered to buy the book?
Nathan Foy
Dec 13, 2014 Nathan Foy rated it it was amazing
A candid, fun look at two city-dwellers with no farming skills beginning their own farm that works in accordance with nature.
Four years after leaving suburbia to purchase farm land in rural Georgia, Tim Young wrote this book about how he and his wife, Liz, learned to farm. Truly novices, they raised, slaughtered, and sold pigs, cows, and chickens. They learned to make cheese, and grew their own vegetables. The drawbacks and difficulties are clearly expressed, as well as his satisfaction with their decision. Posts from their blog are included at the beginning of many chapters; some of which repeat almost verbatim parts ...more
Aug 30, 2015 Katie rated it liked it
Shelves: kindleunlimited
I enjoyed listening to this book mainly because I love farming stories. It is interesting to hear how different people decide to move away from typical American life and join homesteading movement. This couple were apparently very naive and just went for it, figuring it out as they went. I know other stories of successful farmers who have done the same, but it seems a little unfair for them to act as anyone can just do it at a drop of a hat. Just spending a little more time doing some research a ...more
Sep 22, 2012 Jessica rated it liked it
Shelves: farming
I wish I could have rated this book with 2.5 stars - there were some parts that I did like, but overall it was just OK. Tim Young describes he and his wife's journey from typical suburbanites with high stress lives to rural farmers. They initially started their journey by learning more about the industrial food system and how terrible it is for everyone involved - the animals, the people working with the animals, and the consumers. Because they had fairly high paying jobs they were able to purch ...more
Sharon Snider
Apr 23, 2015 Sharon Snider rated it liked it
Finally finished!

The book has some useful points. I felt it would of held my interest more if the author had spent more time on their personal story and less time on the struggle of the thousands of animals.
Jun 20, 2015 Lynn rated it really liked it
I Give this book 4 stars for its efforts to teach and encourage healthy and natural farming. Thanks to the author and his wife for their most valuable contribution to the world.
Aug 14, 2015 Debra rated it really liked it
So much truth in this book. My hat is off to this couple and their endeavors. If you are interested in understanding where your food comes from, give it a read.
Dec 18, 2015 JoLene rated it really liked it
3.5 stars

Interesting listen about a couple who quit working for "the man" and start working "the land". The couple buy a farm in GA and decide to become livestock farmers. The book covers day to day live on the farm as well as current issues with industrialized farming. One topic that I found extremely interesting was that maternal instincts are being bred out of breeds used in industrialized farming because mothers don't raise their young anymore. The country life is not for the faint of heart
Lauren Csaki
Nov 01, 2015 Lauren Csaki rated it liked it
Certainly a bit less sophisticated than some of the other urban-turned-rural farm dream books out there, it was still an enjoyable read. Sometimes the author gets a little whiny, but he also has some nice moments of self-reflection that read endearingly genuine.
Kathi Herter
Aug 22, 2015 Kathi Herter rated it liked it
The story was good. The information was really good. The style was a little long winded.
Dec 09, 2014 Jon rated it it was amazing
Amazing, amazing, amazing. If your on the edge of wanting to get into farming this is the book. This book also makes you stop and think about your current life, health and future.
Geri Hand
Did not finish
Rusty Henrichsen
Jul 21, 2014 Rusty Henrichsen rated it really liked it
If you've ever thought of homesteading, farming or getting back to the land, you'll probably enjoy this book. I did.
Lynne Parker
Jan 25, 2012 Lynne Parker rated it it was amazing
I was so excited to get a copy of the book after listening to Tim and Liz's podcast. I was not disappointed. This is a moving—and at times heartbreaking—narrative of one couple's move from city to farm. Tim's writing flows beautifully from one topic to another and he draws you in to their adventure. I learned so much from his honest assessment of their efforts to raise animals in the most natural and humane way possible.

This is a book I have shared and will certainly read again.
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Tim Young is a farmer, best-selling author and award winning artisanal cheese maker in Georgia.

While flying high over corporate America, Tim Young received a call he couldn't ignore. He shredded his business cards and said goodbye to the conveniences of urban life, to become a farmer and homesteader. Today, Tim is an award-winning cheese maker and author. He lives in Georgia with the most beautifu
More about Tim Young...

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“The point is that this is not only for the rich; it is for those who prioritize healthy, naturally raised food over other discretionary spending.” 0 likes
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