The Dirty Life

A Story of Farming the Land and Falling in Love

Kristin Kimball

Published: 5 January 2012
Paperback, B Format
129x198mm, 288 pages
ISBN: 9781846273285


Kristin Kimball had no plans to become a farmer. But then she met Mark and everything changed. Within a few months, she'd traded her high heels, vegetarian diet and city apartment for a pair of boots, a troupe of chickens, and a shared commitment to turning 500 swampy acres into an organic community farm. Passionate, inspiring and beautifully written, this is a true story of following your dreams and learning to grow your own happiness.

About the author

Image of Kristin Kimball

Before becoming a farmer, Kristin Kimball graduated from Harvard University and worked as a freelance writer, writing teacher, and an assistant to a literary agent in New York City. Since 2003, she and her husband have run Essex Farm in the Adirondacks, where they live with their young daughter. This is her first book. More about the author


‘[An] inspiring adventure of losing her heart to a man and the land.’



The Dirty Life is passionate, inspiring, and well written, a page-turner for anyone who has ever dreamed of settling into a very different way of life... Captivating.’ Imen McDonnell

‘If you want to understand the heart and soul of the new/old movement towards local food, this is the book you need. It's the voice of what comes next in this land, of the generation unleashed by Wendell Berry to do something really grand. A wonderfully told tale’ Bill McKibben

‘In her beguiling memoir, Kimball describes the complex truth about the simple life in prose that is observant and lyrical, yet tempered by a farmer's lack of sentimentality ... This is a grown-up love story about falling in love twice, with a man and with the land, and learning how to devote oneself fully to both’

‘This frank, funny account doesn't shy away from the back-breaking labour... Yet the book also celebrates moments of sheer happiness.’

‘This memoir combines the histories of two love affairs: one with the land, and one with [...] a man.’ Emma Hagestadt

Mind Unit - websites, content management and email marketing for the arts