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YALC: How to live a cruelty free life with Linda Newbery and Gill Lewis

08/08/2021 3:00 pm | YALC's Youtube channel

Bestselling and award-winning authors, Linda Newbery and Gill Lewis have been campaigning on animal welfare and environmental issues for many years. Gill Lewis has a focus on weaving the human and natural worlds together in her writing, and September 2021 sees the publication of the 10th-anniversary edition of her acclaimed novel, Sky Hawk.

Linda has recently published This Book is Cruelty Free, is an accessible and timely new non-fiction guide in which she shares her knowledge, research and ideas on a range of topics including how our diet and food choices impact on animal welfare and the environment, cruelty-free fashion and beauty, considerations around owning a pet, and the role of zoos and animal parks.

Aimed at anyone concerned about animals, wildlife and the planet we live on, the book will open readers’ eyes to how the everyday choices we make affect animals and the environment, offering insight, exploring the morals and ethics, and giving practical guidance on how we can change our behaviour for the greater good.

In this pre-recorded session, join Linda and Gill in conversation, as they discuss their activism around animal welfare and environmental justice, talk about the morals and ethics of a range of related topics, and explore ideas of how young people can find their voice and inspire change for the future. A hope-filled and inspiring session. The session is free to watch.


How do the everyday choices you make affect animals and the environment? This book looks at all the things you can do to live cruelty-free. 

It’s a guide for older children and teenagers concerned about animals, wildlife and the planet we live on. Packed with information on how to live a cruelty-free life, it includes sections on:

Using your spending power. The choices we make – what to eat, what to buy, what to wear – and how these affect animals. Asking questions and reading labels. Cruelty-free fashion and beauty. What’s on your plate? Being vegetarian or vegan, or just eating less meat? What impact can your diet have on cruelty and on the environment? Should you have a pet? If so, would your pet choose you as its owner? Points to consider before bringing an animal into your home. Animals on show. Do zoos and animal parks look after animals or exploit them? Good zoos and their important conservation work. Watching wild animals. Watching and learning about wildlife – building an appreciation of nature and helping your mental wellbeing. Love those bugs! Many people are squeamish about insects, but these creatures are vital to ecosystems. Don’t throw it away – there is no away.

Simple things everyone can do to avoid waste: recycling, re-using, choosing plastic-free. Resist the throwaway culture. Where do you draw your line? What can you realistically achieve? Some of the difficulties, especially if family/friends don’t agree with you. What are the best (and worst) ways of influencing others? How to feel confident with your decisions. How to handle everyday situations and counterarguments. Campaigning – anti-cruelty organisations to support. The power of protest.

This book will help you to live as cruelty-free as possible and to examine all of the areas in your life where you can help animals and the environment.



Linda Newbery has published books for children of all ages and for adults. She has been shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal and the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize, and won the Costa Children’s Book Prize in 2006. Newbery had been vegetarian since her early twenties and recently became vegan. She is a long-term supporter of various welfare and environmental organisations and is a member of the campaign groups Authors4Oceans, Wild Justice and Extinction Rebellion. Twitter @lindanewbery

Gill Lewis is a multi-award-winning children’s author and activist for environmental justice and change. Her books explore our human relationship with the natural world. She lives on the edge of the Somerset Levels and writes from a treehouse in the company of squirrels. Twitter @gill__lewis

When: Sunday 8th August, 3pm
Online. The session is posted on YALC’s YouTube channel so will be available after this day
Tickets: The session is free to watch