I've just finished reading Kevin McCloud's Principles of Home - Making a Place to Live.
You may or may not be a fan of Kevin and his Grand Designs (I admit to being a real Kevin tragic!), but he has a sensible and refreshingly positive approach to sustainable living. He believes we need to embrace a slower, more enjoyable and gentler way of living that is less taxing on the resources of the planet, but that we don't have to compromise our comfort or lifestyle to do it.
He also believes that despite our current depletion of the planet's resources, we will be saved by our own resourcefulness and imagination, by returning to good design and craftsmanship, and by embracing a philosophy of sharing rather than wanting everything for ourselves.
The book offers practical suggestions on both building and retrofitting your home to make it energy efficient, how to shop sensibly and ethically, and what items are worth investing in (and what aren't), as well as looking at what a home offers in terms of social and personal values.
Kevin McCloud practices what he preaches. His building company, Hab (It stands for Happiness Architecture Beauty.) builds low-cost, affordable and sustainable homes, designed in the belief that they should enrich the environment, create a sense of community and make people happy.