'Taint easy, any of it; but the rural homesteader can--""if he labors for love and experience""--dig and stone his own shallow well, say, or install and operate a wood stove, construct a ladder, build a smokehouse, raise geese, keep a cow-or butcher a whole pig. Bacon, a subsistence farmer himself, sets forth the attractions and drawbacks in an informal mixture of advice and instruction--with, usually, appended references--that's encouragingly down-to-earth. He also includes projects suitable for suburbanites (reclaiming an old apple tree, preparing wild spring greens) and some--like whittling a toy log cabin or weaving a black ash basket--that even a city-dweller, properly equipped, could execute. In true Yankee Magazine fashion, individual country craftsmen are cited, and historical lore is introduced where appropriate: few may be tempted to make paint from scratch, for instance, but it's fun to be reminded of both Silas Lapham and the Shakers in that connection. Altogether, a refreshing, informative book that expresses a healthy attitude without attempting to sell a wholesome way of life.