I am often asked to read and review books in the preparedness and health genres. I have a lot of respect for anyone who can organize information and put together an informative and/or entertaining manuscript, and because of this, I can find something positive in any text. I am honest, and I point out the places where I feel things might need to be expanded, but I also look for positives and present those too.
I had never written a totally negative book review in my life, but that was before I read The Prepper’s Cookbook: Essential Prepping Foods and Recipes to Deliciously Survive Any Disaster.
Don’t waste your money on this cheap hack.
You may notice that I am not sharing an Amazon link to this book, and there is a reason for it. Everytime someone goes to Amazon and looks at it, the book rises in the ratings and I refuse to participate in that.
When I received the book, my spidey senses began to tingle. I noticed it had a very similar title to my favorite preparedness cookbook….VERY similar.
Tess Pennington recently published The Prepper’s Cookbook: 300 Recipes to Turn Your Emergency Food into Nutritious, Delicious, Life-Saving Meals, which is an excellent resource for anyone from the complete newbie to the experienced prepper. (I reviewed Tess’s book HERE.)
The similarities didn’t end there. The knock-off cookbook is not plagiarized word for word, but many of the concepts are the same. The table of contents is quite similar and many of the charts included are quite reminiscent of the ones in Tess’s book.
The second book was published just 2 months after Tess’s book, a book which immediately climbed to the top of the Disaster and Preparedness section of Amazon. A coincidence?
Even more suspicious is the author of this second book.
There isn’t one.
Seriously – this preparedness guide was not written by a prepper. It is merely a compilation of information that could have been easily gathered from prepping websites across the net. If a 10th grade student was asked to write a report about prepping using sources gleaned from the internet, they could easily achieve the same level of information provided by this book. It’s a report, and nothing more.
Because this book has no author, it lacks credibility. It lacks passion. It lacks personality and experience. There are no friendly anecdotes. It completely lacks sincerity.
The information itself is not bad. It is simply recycled from prepper websites by an unscrupulous company that decided to cash in on the preparedness community. They decided to cash in on Tess Pennington’s hard work, the popularity of her website, and the success of her book by using her title and concept in order to trick people into purchasing their book instead of hers. Apparently this is not illegal – a book title only has to be changed by 30% to be re-used by someone unscrupulous It is like the old bait and switch – people search “The Prepper’s Cookbook” and they have a good chance of ending up with this hack instead of the original book.
I wrote to Tess Pennington and asked her about this. I wondered if she was upset. I wondered if this had any effect on her own book sales. Here’s what she had to say:
“Well, I guess you could say I have a quite a few feelings on that subject. At first, I panicked. Because of the similarities in titles, it would be easy to misconstrue one for the other and I didn’t want readers to think that I had written that. Then I was in disbelief. How could a company have such dishonest policies in place allowing them to do replicate a book and title on the market? It’s despicable that a group of people can do this.
It took six months (and a lot of sacrifices) to write The Prepper’s Cookbook, and once it was finished, I was very proud to have my name on that cover. To see your hard work chopped up, my name and personality removed so that another company can make a quick buck, it’s hard to swallow. Once all of this sunk in, I realized that my book must be pretty darn good for another publishing company to copy the concept. I figured, that once this got out, the two books would speak for themselves. And, as you point out, clearly there is a big difference between the two.
The worst part is that I have received responses from people about this copied version of my book and I have to explain to them that my manuscript was copied and they purchased the wrong book. I believe this is the sole focus for putting this copied book out there – to confuse the reader in thinking it is the real deal.”
So it looks like the deceit of Rockbridge Press is paying off, at least to some degree. Let’s not reward their unethical move by putting any more money into their pockets. Please pass this review on to the other preppers in your community so that they know that when looking for the prepper’s cook book to search for the real deal – the original Prepper’s Cookbook by Tess Pennington: